Maori Tales of Long Ago is a fresh facsimile edition of a classic collection of sixteen stories adapted from Maori mythology for a young readership. The tales were originally published by A.W. & A.H. Reed during the late 1940s in two hardback volumes, Maori Tales of Long Ago and Wonder Tales of Maoriland. Best-sellers of their time, they gave a generation of New Zealand children a lyrical introduction to the world of Maori mythology. In each story, a myth is narrated and brought to life by genial old Popo, the village storyteller and friend of the chief's son and daughter, Rata and Hine. Now in a new paperback edition, this book faithfully keeps the charming original line drawings by A.S. Paterson, including eight illustrated colour plates. It contains a foreword from David Simmons, a distinguished ethnologist, former assistant director of the Auckland War Memorial Museum, and author of several books on Maoritanga.
Alexander Wyclif ('Clif') Reed was born a century ago. Educated in Auckland, he joined his uncle A.H. ('Alf') Reed in a new business that, as A.H. & A.W. Reed, would play a central role in New Zealand publishing. The author of more than 200 books, Clif is remembered best for his children's tales, among which Myths and Legends of Maoriland won the 1947 Esther Glen award. Clif Reed died in 1979. Alan Stuart Paterson (1902-1968) worked as staff cartoonist for the Dominion newspaper for 25 years and illustrated several books.