2021 Programme

Week One

Supoergood Chelsea Winter

As a gala precursor to this year’s Yarns in Barns Festival we are excited to have teamed up with Bubbles & Inspiration to bring the wonderful Chelsea Winter to the Wairarapa.

Chelsea’s new book, Supergood is a super addition to your Chelsea Winter collection. If you have enjoyed her previous recipes, are curious about plant-based eating or you have someone at home with special dietary requirements – this is a night (and book!) not to miss.

Venue: Carterton Events Centre

Time: 7pm – 8.30pm (doors open 6.15pm)

Price: $20 (includes a glass of bubbles)

Sold Out  |   Buy the Book

Fridays with Jim BolgerOfficial festival launch by former Prime Minister, Jim Bolger, followed by Jim Bolger in discussion with David Cohen, author of the new book of Bolger’s reminiscences titled Fridays with Jim: Conversations about our country.

For six months the pair sat down on Fridays to reflect on Bolger’s life and times, our nation and the world. Fridays with Jim reveals a quintessential Kiwi man who is fully in sync with New Zealand today.

Venue: Copthorne Solway Park Hotel

Time: 7pm
Price: $20 Adult / $10 Student (includes refreshments)
Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

Hinemoa Elder

Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre is the perfect backdrop for an event that delves deep into the meaning and wisdom of Māori whakataukī (proverbs).

Respected Māori psychiatrist Dr Hinemoa Elder explores what these whakataukī can teach us as told in her new book Aroha – Māori Wisdom for a Contented Life Lived in Harmony with our Planet. 

Following the presentation, attendees are invited to spend time in the Pūkaha forest, connecting with nature and exploring the last remnant of Te Tapere nui ō Whatonga (The great domain of Whatonga) and its inhabitants.

All book sales in support of the Pūkaha Forest Restoration Project. Ticket price includes free entry into Pūkaha park following the talk.

Venue: Pūkaha National Wildlife Centre

Time: 11am (ticket price includes a free bus leaving Masterton at 10am from the Church St Bus Stop and returns leaving Pūkaha at 1pm)
Price: $10

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

The Little Doctor Book Launch, the previously unpublished autobiography of Dr Guy Scholefield, author of the first NZ Dictionary of Biography.

Launched by Chris Szekely, Chief Librarian, Alexander Turnbull Library. Hosted by the Wairarapa Times Age in conjunction with Fraser Books.

Venue: Masterton District Library

Time: 3pm

Price: Free event

RSVP  |   Buy the Book

Rose Carlyle The Girl in the MirrorRose Carlyle’s edge-of-your-seat, number one bestselling thriller The Girl in the Mirror is addictive, intoxicating and the kind of book you cancel plans for. Rose will speak in conversation with Lucy Cooper about what it’s like to have your debut novel create an international publishing sensation, optioning Hollywood film rights as well as her life as a keen adventurer.


Venue: Ata Rangi Vineyard, Martinborough

Time: 11am (with author signing at noon)

Price: $15 Adult includes a glass of Ata Rangi wine

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

Childrens Author Stacy Gregg and the historic barnStacy Gregg tells her Pony Club Secrets and entertains from her new book The Forever Horse.


Venue: The Historic Barn, 121 Humphries St, Greytown (sorry no wheelchair access)

Time: Session one 12.30–1.30pm
Session two 2–3pm (full)

Price: $8 Adult / Free Student

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Wellington Chef Monique Fiso is a modern-day food warrior, taking Māori cuisine to the world and breathing new life into the ancient knowledge of foraging and kai Māori through her award-winning restaurant and new book Hiakai. In conversation with Cuisine columnist, Martin Bosley.


Venue: Greytown Town Centre

Time: 4pm

Price: $20 Adult / $10 Student

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

Week Two

Yarns in Barns Fantastic Fiction AuthorsJoin us for the ultimate book club night! Former Books and Culture editor of The Listener, Guy Somerset, will chat to three of NZ’s most exciting novelists about life, writing and what it takes to create page-turning stories.

Award-winning short story writer and Katherine Mansfield Menton Fellow, Carl Nixon’s The Tally Stick is an atmospheric thriller set on the rugged West Coast. Stephanie Parkyn’s Josephine’s Garden tells the story of a woman who is a budding young botanist – and Napoleon’s wife –during the French Revolution. Wellington-based author, Charity Norman’s supremely well-written thriller The Secret’s of Strangers is unputdownable.

Venue: Hedleys Books, Masterton

Time: 7pm

Price: $10 Adult  / Free Student

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Books

Walking Back to Happiness Book by Don Farmer

Journalist Don Farmer shares his experiences as a young boy growing up in a small Wairarapa town in the 1950s, the subject of Walking Back to Happiness – A Wairarapa Boy’s Story, his first book.

Tea, coffee and finger food will be available. Copies of the book will be on sale (cash only).


Venue: Greytown School Hall

Time: 5pm

Price: Free event

RSVP  |   Buy the Book

The Quick and the Dead by Cynric Temple-CampPathologist Dr Cynric Temple-Camp talks about life and death, crime and forensics from his recent book The Quick and the Dead.  


Venue: Carterton Courthouse

Time: 12 noon

Price: $10 Adult / $5 Student

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

The Mirror Steamed Over by Anthony ByrtAnthony Byrt talks about Billy Apple, David Hockney and Ann Quin from his new book The Mirror Steamed Over: Love and Pop in London, 1962 in conversation with broadcaster Noelle McCarthy.

The Spirit of the 60s: The Photography of Michael Cooper Exhibition provides a fitting backdrop to this conversation and will be open to view from 6pm hosted by exhibition curator, David Hedley.

Venue: Aratoi Wairarapa Museum of Art and History

Time: 7pm

Price: $10 Adult / $5 Student

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This Farming Life by Tim Saunders An unsentimental yet lyrical love letter to the land, in This Farming Life, Tim Saunders shares the joys and the harsh realities of farm life over five generations. 

Book Cobblestone’s famous morning tea to enjoy after the talk for an additional $7.50. This offer is only available to ticket holders and must be booked and paid when purchasing your event tickets.  

Venue: Cobblestones Museum

Time: 10am

Price: $8 Adult (+$7.50 for morning tea) / $5 Student (+$7.50 for morning tea)

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In Wild at Heart Miriam Lancewood explores the dangers and delights of a nomadic life.

Miriam’s first book ‘Woman in the Wilderness’ told her story of living for 7 years in the NZ bush with her husband, hunting and gathering, and roaming the bush as nomads. She now recounts a sequel story in remote parts of Europe seeking a simple life unfettered by society’s norms.

Miriam will speak in conversation with Sally Round.

Venue: Strang’s Woolshed, Gladstone (4km on the right, south of the Gladstone intersection)

Time: 1pm

Price: $10 Adult / $5 Student

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Author Mark VetteThis year’s iconic Yarn in the Barn event features world renowned animal trainer and behaviouralist, Mark Vette, telling stories from his life from Buddhism to Hollywood and all the puppies in between as told in his new memoir Zen Heart: What I have learnt from Animals and Life. In conversation with Gareth Winter.


Yes, there will be puppies!


Venue: Strang’s Woolshed, 1683a Longbush Rd, Gladstone (4km on the right, south of the Gladstone intersection)

Time: 3pm (more tickets now available!)

Price: $10 Adult / $5 Student 

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Searching for Charlie by Tom Scott

In his new book Searching for Charlie: In Pursuit of the Real Charles Upham VC and Bar Tom Scott uncovers the true story of the most highly decorated soldier in the Commonwealth forces of WWII, and arguably the bravest soldier of the war.

Tom Scott in conversation with Defence Minister Ron Mark.

Stay for a light lunch after Tom’s event and enjoy Wendy Campbell’s famous cheese scones, home baking (as well as gluten free treats) along with tea and coffee provided by the Featherston Booktown Country Tea & Cakes volunteers team. $5 for a hot drink and either a sweet or savoury item of food. From 12-1pm before the second event with Ian Trafford at 1pm. Both events are in association with Featherston Booktown. 

Venue: Anzac Hall, Featherston

Time: 11am

Price: $20 Adult / $10 Student or Featherston double header price $30/$15 includes the Ian Trafford event at 1pm.

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

Ian Trafford

Into the Unknown is a personal account of WW1 from the diaries of a Gisborne farm boy, shaped into a gripping narrative by the diarist’s grandson 100 years later.

Come at 11am for the first event with Tom Scott, then stay on for a light lunch featuring Wendy Campbell’s famous cheese scones, home baking (and gluten free treats) along with tea and coffee provided by the Featherston Booktown Country Tea & Cakes volunteers team. $5 for a hot drink and either a sweet or savoury item of food. Both events in association with Featherston Booktown.


Venue: Anzac Hall, Featherston

Time: 1pm

Price: $20 Adult / $10 Student or Featherston double header price $30/$15 includes the Tom Scott event at 11am.

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Book

Poems on the Vine Yarns in Barns event

This year, the ever popular Poems on the Vine event will be chaired by Jan Gerritsen and features passionate poet, Tim Wilson with poet-painter Rebecca Hawkes who holds NZ Pacific Studio’s Ema Saiko Poetry Fellowship, RAK Mason Fellow Jenny Powell reading from her ‘Meeting Rita’ on the artist Rita Angus, and James Brown reading from his newly published Selected Poems of James Brown.


Venue: Gladstone Vineyard

Time: 2.45pm

Price: $15 Adult includes a glass of Gladstone Vineyard wine or juice.

Buy Tickets  |   Buy the Books

Author and Pipi chef Alexandra Tylee and illustrator Giselle Clarkson celebrate the release of their wonderful new cooking book for kids, Egg & Spoon with an illustration workshop, author signing and pizza party.

Venue: Masterton Library

Time: 4pm-5pm illustration workshop (full).
5pm-6pm meet the authors and have your books signed.

4pm-6pm Pipi’s Pizza truck on site for pizza sales to the public.
Price: $5 for the illustration workshop / book signing free.

RSVP  |   Buy the Book