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Pacific Books & their Authors

It's exciting to see such a wide range of books from Pasifika Authors and Illustrators. 

Check out some of these books and where to buy them! 

Free Love by Sia Figiel 

Set in 1980's Samoa,  'Free Love'  revolves around the first love experiences of a seventeen-year-old girl.

Sia Figiel is an award winning Samoan author, often referred to as 'Samoa's first female novelist'. Her very first book 'where we once belonged' (1996) awarded her the Best First Book Award in the Commonwelath Writers Prize (South East Asia/South Pacific region) in 1997. Alongside her novels, Figiel also has two volumes of prose poetry under her belt. She grew up in Samoa and attended formal school in both Samoa and New Zealand.…more


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Sex & the Suga's - Part 6

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 8pm every Wednesday! 

Part.6

Kels, 26, Samoan 

"Looking back, do I wish my family had spent more time discussing sex and sexuality with me? Yes, to a certain extent I do. It would have been much easier coming to terms with the fact that I was attracted to both men and women, if religion hadn’t suggested that it was a sin. I had to discover this side of myself alone until I found the courage to tell others."

It took me a long time to realize that my sexuality was mine. That I was in control of my feelings, how I acted on them and who I experienced that with.…more


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Sex & The Suga's - Part 5

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday!

Part 5. 

Kat, 35, Samoan. 

I am of full Samoan heritage, born and raised here in New Zealand & am now a proud single Mother of 3 children.

I grew up in West Auckland only knowing what was normal through the things that surrounded me. This was obeying your parents, staying truthful, doing as you were being told and turning up to all family or church events ready to work. Because I was the only girl and the youngest, I had a lot of expectations to live up to; something I was reminded of, everyday.

My 1st sexual experience was when I was 17 years old.…more


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Samoan Language Apps made by Pre-Schoolers

Two language Apps 'O Luga O Le Motu' and 'Tatou ō ile Maketi' were created with direct help from Tino e Tasi Preschoolers; based in Christchurch and Dunedin.…more


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Sex & The Sugas - Part 4

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday!

Sasha , 44, Cook Islands

As far as my brain would allow me to remember, I would say I was first exposed to sex at the mere age of 7. It was me. Sitting on the red lazy boy in the downstairs lounge, breathing in the smell of my Mum’s freshly moisturised hand that abruptly crossed my eye line when the man aggressively took the ladies dress off. Even when I couldn’t see what was on screen while Mum scrambled for that remote, I knew that whatever was happening, wasn’t violent.

I grew suspicious... fast. 

 My upbringing was fast paced.…more


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Sex & the Sugas - Part 3

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday!

Part 3.

Lose, 28, Tongan.  

“I didn’t have a girlfriend to have sex with. I dated boys who wanted to have sex but I didn’t want to, I said no. It’s one thing to go to your parents as a heterosexual couple (which is accepted), but it’s another thing to ask to have sex and teach me about having sex with girl. So I had to confide in friends and do research.” 

I started having sex when I was 21. I knew I wanted to have sex, but I didn’t have sex until I got to New Zealand, because I couldn’t have sex back home.…more


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Sex & the Sugas - Part 2

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday!

Part 2.

Dione, 32, Samoan 

Mother, Daughter, Sister, Lover and Ex Apparent Paumuku

We talked about nearly all year, at lunchtimes, smoking behind the tuck shop, whispered through maths classes, walking home. When would it happen, who had it happened to, who did we know definitely did it..that most famous of whispered Samoan words..Paumuku. Translated = rubber mouth or broken skin.

Too many fumbled feel ups, sloppy pashes and dangerous situations that could have lead to much worse endings then they did. Pushed onto bathrooms floors, hundreds of party people pulsating to drum n bass on the other side of the door.…more


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Sex & the Sugas - Part 1

Sex & The Suga’s, brought to you by The Coconet, is an after-hours series written exclusively by Pasifika women, talking about all things sex and sexuality. A subject that is usually shied away from in Island culture, five women of various ages, sexual identities and island backgrounds, reveal some of their personal experiences and explore what their sexuality means to them. Stay tuned for a new story each week, after 10pm every Wednesday!

Part 1. 

Ana, 31, Samoan.

“At one point I went through an "A-Sexual Faze" because certain relationships had failed and I just reached a point of MEN ARE TRASH and I don't need one. Then I questioned if I was maybe a Lesbian because I was just so open to embracing other female’s beauty, and speaking up about it openly...gohhh whatever the faze I've probably thought that was the box I belonged in”.

My relationship to sex wasn't always actually a "relationship" so to speak, to be honest. I remember back in intermediate, the thought of sex used to literally terrify me. I kid you not.…more


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PACIFIC SISTERS

“We have challenged ourselves to think about how we reflect Aotearoa, and our place in the Pacific, as well as the way in which we reflect the Pacific to the world.     I think that this kaupapa is embodied in the exhibition "Pacific Sisters: Fashion Activists" and acknowledges how the Pacific Sisters have been doing this for over 25 years.

I think it also honours the sisters’ bravery in being unapologetically political and pushing beyond the white cube of the gallery to incorporate indigenous art forms of dress, music, oratory and performance.…more


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PENINA DAVIDSON: CALI LOVE & BASKETBALL

From suburban Lynfield to big time Berkeley, Penina Davidson isn’t your cookie cutter 21 year old Kiwi. Breaking the mould of New Zealand Women’s Basketball, her perseverance to overcome trials of mental illness and societal changes in her new home of California State, is definitely one for the history books.

Standing at 6 ft 3, it was inevitable. The Missy Peregrym - ‘Stick it’ look alike, was born to be an athlete.  Like many basketball athletes, Penina grew up with a ball glued to her hand and knew no different.

“Mum seems to think I went to a YMCA camp when I was 4 but my first memory was around age 8 - so we’ll stick with that number”

Coming through the New Zealand development ranks for basketball was no foreign feat for her. Repping in all the highest teams of every school she attended, Penina took out top-scoring games at regional and national representative levels.…more