The Great War for New Zealand: Waikato 1800-2000

Due to be published by Bridget Williams Books in October 2016, Vincent O’Malley’s lavishly-illustrated new history of the Waikato War promises to challenge assumptions that we know all we need to about the wars fought on New Zealand’s own shores. The great war for New Zealand was fought, he suggests, not at Gallipoli or on the Western Front, but right here in Aotearoa New Zealand. See the book’s webpage for updates on the work.


No te taenga ki te kohuru i Rangiaohia, katahi au ka mohio he tino pakanga nui tenei, no Niu Tireni

When it came to the (time of the) murder at Rangiaohia, then I knew, for the first time, that this was a great war for New Zealand

Wiremu Tamihana (1865)


BWB8126_The Great War for New Zealand_HR

A monumental new account of the defining conflict in New Zealand history. It was war in the Waikato in 1863–64 that shaped the nation in all kinds of ways: setting back Māori and Pākehā relations by several generations and allowing the government to begin to assert the kind of real control over the country that had eluded it since 1840.

Spanning nearly two centuries from first contact through to settlement and apology, ​Vincent ​O’Malley focuses on the human impact of the war, its origins and aftermath. Based on many years of research and illustrated throughout, The Great War for New Zealand is a groundbreaking book written in the conviction that a nation needs to own its history.

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