James's blog

  • Teens+Phones=Lonely


    At the beginning of last year, a good friend’s daughter left home for university. She was excited, a little nervous, but looking forward to a new chapter in her life. She had a place in the halls of residence, and I was pleased for her, because it was in the halls at Otago University that I made lifelong friends. I knew she would have...
  • I want to say thank you!

    I want to say thank you!

  • Unboxing Children of the Rush - Book Two!

    Unboxing Children of the Rush - Book Two!

    This is the moment that the advance copies of Children of the Rush - Book Two - arrived at my house, and I got to hold it in my hand for the first time! Here's the link to the Whitcoulls Kids Top 50 vote. I'd love your vote for Children of the Rush #1, The Dragon Defenders #1 or The Dragon Hunters - or all...
  • Come on a tour of my writing shed!

    Come on a tour of my writing shed!

      People often ask me about where I write, and I end up talking about my writing shed, a little oasis of calm in the garden of my home in Auckland. It's decorated with a dog's breakfast of art, mementoes and various bits and pieces, and it has way too many distractions, but it's inspiring to me and a wonderful place to dream up...

Louise Ward

Wardini Books and RNZ critic

"The plot is thrilling, the setting at once idyllic and dangerous. Readers will be inspired to leave their devices and see what they can see from the top of a tree, to go outside, look for dragons, and have adventures as breathtaking as Paddy, Flynn and Briar."

Adele Broadbent


"Part 3 in this heart-pounding adventure is sure to please Dragon Defenders fans. An Unfamiliar Place pounds the young brothers with new challenges, but with their feathered accomplice (Lightning the falcon) along for the ride, they battle through and never give up! The story stands on its own but the digital side of this great Kiwi series is a wonderful bonus. Loved it!"

Charlotte McKay

Judge, NZ Book Awards for Children and Young Adults

"Told at a rip-roaring pace with feats of incredible daring, masterful guile, and heart-stopping action. This is the book the fans have been waiting for!"

Eileen Merriman

award-winning author of A Trio of Sophies and Pieces of You

"A fast-paced action adventure that will have readers hanging on until the last page."

Tom E. Moffatt

award-winning author of Barking Mad and Mind-Swapping Madness

"An earth-shattering adventure of seismic proportions. You might need to feign sickness so you can finish it in one sitting."

Jenna Todd

NZ Book Awards Judge, Time Out Books manager

"I had so much fun reading this. It’s a rollicking adventure with a loveable cast of brave heroes."
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