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Kin & Kingdoms Books

For Fun

"I want you to experience history.
To join these diverse characters on their crazy adventures.
History doesn't have to be boring, learning doesn't have to be dull.
Education is best learned through experience
and it should definitely be fun."

Angela Curtis

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The Shotover
Note From The Editor
I knew when Angela first joined Tauranga Writers that she was approaching her writing career as a true professional. She has learned how to use writing and editing programs like Scrivener and AutoCrit and signed up for Chandler Bolt’s renowned Self-Publishing School.
Angela’s impetus was a page from a family diary that hinted at possibilities. Her well-crafted Kin and Kingdoms trilogy is based on thirteen years of research. 2018 is the year we’ve been promised the first, Ashmore. I for one can hardly wait.
In the interim, I dared to suggest to Angela that she might use some of that research material to craft a brief history of the discovery of gold in Thames. Especially as one of her ancestors, William Cobley, was one of ‘the Shotover four’ who stumbled on the waterfall of gold that made their fortunes and led to Thames formation.
Quite a challenge to set, daunting even to an experienced writer, but I had seen the commitment Angela brings to any project she undertakes. In only five weeks, The Shotover – Thames Gold was written, reviewed, edited and published in time to be launched on August 12th 2017 at the 150th-anniversary events in Thames. Angela was a leading figure in her green and gold Victorian dress, and 75% of the first print-run sold the day it launched.
Extra copies are now available and in my opinion, this prime read should be in every school and college library. It’s a fascinating account of a historical event that describes the dynamics of such an extraordinary discovery.
Jenny Argante
President, Tauranga Writers
Editor-in-Chief, Freelance – Writers Helping Writers

 Angela dedicated
13 years to researching
and travelling the country to ensure this book is historically correct.
In my opinion,
The Shotover should be taught in our
NZ Education system.
It is not only about the Shotover, but a comprehensive guide to early New Zealand.
Doug Curtis
Grandson of William Cobley
"The Shotover" provides a refreshing view of Thames' first gold strike after the field was proclaimed on 30th July 1867.
Cobley family history is thoughtfully intertwined with the early history of the Thames Goldfield. William Cobley's life after The Shotover is covered, supplemented with photographs to round off
an informative and easy read.

Angela moved the reader through expository and narrative text seamlessly. The historical setting of
the story enabled the characters to talk beyond the pages
in a way that makes them feel familiar today.
   "The Shotover"  is a lively depiction of the people and circumstances of the first discovery of
gold in The Thames.
The Author has drawn upon family sources to add to the existing public
record of the event.  
A 'must read'
if you wish to get a taste of the excitement and challenge
of the time.
Rosalie Steward

This is one of the most
well researched and educational
history books
I have had the pleasure of
reading in a very long time.
I would highly recommend The Shotover to anyone interested in New Zealand’s history and it’s gold mining industry back when a few individuals like William Cobley had the privilege to contribute to the formation of our new colony.
Roy Ramsay

Ebook Available Now

Picked this book up and
couldn't put it down.
It really personalised the lives of the miners and gave me a greater appreciation of
my great-grandparents.
A "must read",
especially for those who
descend from settler families.
   "The Shotover" is
a great little nugget of colonial history in the Thames goldfields
of 150 years ago.
Describing the discovery and development of the first
gold strike in Thames,
it’s a fascinating insight into
the effects on both discoverers and community after four hopeful prospectors really do strike it rich. Really enjoyed it and
recommend for anyone with an interest in old New Zealand.
   A compelling read to all you history lovers. The Shotover is a remarkable, captivating true story of
William Cobley set against the harsh realities of early New Zealand.
Angela takes you on an
insightful and engaging journey
into the hardships, cheating and rags to riches that marked the golden era of the 1860s.
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for $28 + $2 p&P

In New Zealand. . .
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150 Year Celebrations - Sun Live
150 Years of Gold Fever
   Featuring The Shotover

Latest News

Angela Curtis
And The Shotover
150-Year Souvenir
​Page 91

NZ Herald - Interview

Watch the video
and read the two-page spread
Watch  Now
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Thames Genealogy & History
The Shotover Book Launch
by Althea Barker
Historian, Author, Publisher - Thames

William Cobley on left with a light-coloured jacket and black hat - The Shotover - 1868

Read Now
Image: Courtesy of Deborah Gardner

Angela Curtis
is an avid historian,
writer and ghostwriter
of both Young Adult Historical Fiction,
and non-fiction.

To learn more about Angela
​and her adventures
My Novel Idea - Facebook
and other Social Media below.

A Young Adult
Historical Adventure

I found an old diary from 1882 at the back of a museum. 
Doctor Knight, who sailed on the S/V Ashmore from Great Britain to New Zealand, recorded their 103-day journey.

I devoured the pages, researching the old English
phraseology and nautical terminology.
What I found inside was such an incredible story,
it had to be brought to life and shared with the world.

It's a story about courage, as they endured the
ruthless forces of nature, light-hearted buffoonery, 
motivated by boredom, and the relationships that
blossomed in more than one love triangle.
It's also about the birth of my great, great-granddad
three weeks out from New Zealand  and named after
the ship, as Ashmore Curtis.
If you want to be swept back in time and experience
this true adventure yourself, this book is for you.
By the time you turn the last page your heart
will be forever linked with the courageous characters
you'll come to know and love.
Because it's a true story they will stay with you like
old friends long after you've turned the last page
and read the words 'The End.'
Tel: 0064-27-277-8315
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