My Book

Art of Excavation Book CoverIn The Art of Excavation, poet Leilani Tamu delves into the complex and multifaceted nature of the region that we know as the Pacific. In poetry that is by turns fierce and political, tender and insightful, contemplative and intimate, Leilani creates a beautiful ‘ie tōga (fine mat) that weaves together living memory in a way that also acknowledges and places the past at the centre of the narrative.

Challenging the popular orthodox approach of ‘digging up’ the past, Leilani reclaims the process of excavation as a creative metaphor for  reframing and retelling Pacific stories from her own perspective, as a Pacific woman.

This book is a vibrant and challenging offering from a young Pacific writer who is also a mother, historian, former New Zealand diplomat and columnist.

The Art of Excavation is an exciting project by a voice much needed in the New Zealand literary landscape — Pasifika, female, informed academically and culturally, with an eye capable of sighting and microscoping wide-ranging, important historical and social affairs.”

— Siobhan Harvey (award-winning poet and teacher)

ISBN 978-0-473-29004-7, 160mm x 225mm, pb, b&w, approx 90pp

E Books can be purchased via Amazon while print copies can be purchased from all good NZ bookstores or online via