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Sun 27 Oct, 3.30pm
60 mins, no interval


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Discover what happens when you team up feminist writer and playwright Renée, ONZM (born 1929), with journalist and debut novelist Becky Manawatu (born 1982).

Renée, one of Becky’s writing heroes, recommended that Mākaro Press publish the debut author’s novel, and they’ve never met. Renée calls her first foray into crime fiction, The Wild Card, ‘cosy noir’. She has championed Manawatu’s Auē, since its first reading. The two will meet for the first time at the Festival and discuss their new novels and what delights them about each other’s work.

Chaired by Mary McCallum.

Becky talked to Lynn Freedman on Standing Room Only, in the lead up to her festival appearance


Renée ONZM, Ngāti Kahungunu, is one of Aotearoa’s writing rangatira. A novelist, poet and playwright, who lives in Ōtaki, she was recently awarded the Prime Minister’s Award for Literary Achievement and the Playmarket Award for significant artistic contribution to New Zealand theatre. In 2017 she published her bestselling memoir, These Two Hands, and this year her first crime novel, The Wild Card. She turned 90 this year.

Becky Manawatu

Becky Manawatu (Ngāi Tahu) was born in Nelson, raised in Waimangaroa and has returned there to live with her family, working as a reporter for The News in Westport. Becky’s short story ‘Abalone’ was long-listed for the 2018 Commonwealth Short Story Prize, her essay ‘Mother’s Day’ has been selected for the Landfall anthology Strong Words. Auē is her first novel.

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