Free ebooks – Miss Lionheart and Twisty Christmas Tales

cover-L-Thrice-Shy  TOP SECRET! 978-0-9941155-0-8

shhh don’t tell anyone but…to celebrate the launch of Miss Lionheart – and the Laboratory of Death Part 3: Thrice Shy – on the 31st of March Phantom Feather Press is offering Twisty Christmas Tales and Miss Lionheart and the Laboratory of Death free To celebrate the final installment of

“Bundled into a super secret undergrocover-L-Twice-Poisoned-webund bunker Lilly must use her awesome genius skills – and her not so awesome social skills to survive long enough to create awesomely dangerous creatures and escape almost certain death… “

Twisty Christmas Tales  is  FREE 28th and 29th March (Pacific Time) – crazy Christmas adventures for the whole family! Christmas in outer space or at the beach, havoc in Santa’s workshop, monsters running amok, and mad scientists who turn Christmas into chaos by awesome New Zealand authors including Joy Cowley and David Hill

For readers 8+

And, Miss Lionheart and the Laboratory of Decover-L-Modified-Once-Bittenath  Part 1: Once Bitten will be free 31st of March Pacific Time (9pm 31 March to 9pm 1st April NZ time)

“I wish this book had been written when I was younger” Lee Murray

“a fun read for any YA mad scientist, secret spy, or evil super-villain” Peter Friend

“Fantastic read, highly recommended. Can’t wait to read parts 2 and 3. Very descriptive characters, lots of humour and horror!! Shelley Whittaker

For readers 12+

So why not start reading the series now and enjoy!


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The ruins of Rivendell, Kaitoke National Park

If you should find your way to Kaitoke National Park, you never know what you might find hidden in the undergrowth, or passing through the ruins of the Elven archway that used to lead to the long lost Elven city of Rivendell.

Hidden ElvesAlthough it is important to watch out for danger,



Most of the peoples you meet wont be as scary as you first thought,

IMG_5106Fortunately Ike and I went on a special day, so we saw many wonderful characters passing through the Arch to Rivendell. There were Hobbits, Warriors,


and an elf that appeared to be the esteemed Galadriel herself,

A vision of Galadriel

A vision of Galadriel

A vision of Galadriel leaving Rivendell

Aragorn was also about to lead people through the dangerous perils on the walk showing some of the famous Kaitoke film sites. A major player in the Rivendell Archway revival project, he was happy to pose for a photo.

IMG_5142These young warriors were setting out on a journey of discovery, IMG_5131

And if you too want to set out on a journey of discovery, especially if you’re not too far from Wellington, then remember “…you shall not pass!” Or at least you shouldn’t pass without stopping by to walk in the footsteps of all the people both big and small who have made Kaitoke National Park (Waterwork Road entrance) truly magical.

Gandalf - You shall not pass!


We hope you enjoyed this post and don’t forget to follow us for more events

A.J. Ponder and Ike

Wizards Guide to Wellington is available in good New Zealand bookstores, as well as Amazon, Wheelers and Fishpond

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Rivendel Archway Revival

The Rivendel Archway Revival opening event was a lot of fun, so look out for pictures of the official Rivendel Archway opening in the beautiful Kaitoke Regional Park over the next couple of days. And if you can, why not take a trip to see this wonderful spot and maybe enjoy a picnic by the river?




10am tomorrow (7 March 2015) The Rivendel Archway will be officially opened in Kaitoke Regional Park.  7 March 2015 Why not go and enjoy the fun? Ike says we should all be looking out for elves, dwarves, and maybe even the occasional citizen of Laketown!

If you think that sounds fun here are two links with more details:
The Official Wellington city Council Information is here
Weta Workshop Timeline Photos on Facebook are here

Here’s hoping the weather is as fantastic as we had for the jousting a couple of weeks ago.


(edited after the event)

Rivendell Cake

The city council’s cake, because Elves are known to have sweet teeth. Or is that Pixies?

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Top Secret. Mad science and new book – coming soon…do not read.

cover-L-Twice-Poisoned-webTop Secret! Keep Out.Top Secret

Please be careful, this upcoming book is not for younger readers. Yes, that is right, I have been keeping an eye on what my writer has been up to, and it is very scary. But more on that later. If you have not read Miss Lionheart and the Laboratory of Death – First Bitten you should turn back now. It is far too scary. Stay away from Miss Lionheart’s blog and from all the thugs and minions at the World Wide Web of Evil, lest you regret it. Because Miss Lionheart and the Laboratory of Death: Twice Poisoned is about to be released, and I for one, would not want you to read it!
But the blog is quite fun, my favourite post is “Miss Lionheart and Mad Science” at Spider Photo You might even be able to ask Miss Lionheart a question – I think I am going to ask what this spider of his is, if it is poisonous, and how big it is going to grow. And if Lilly could use it in one of her hybrids…because I do not think I would like that very much at all.


That’s Miss Lionheart and Mad Science at 

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Spiders, Ferns, DeClassified at Te Papa Sunday 1 Mar 2015

Wellington Family Event:

Do you love to discover new things, find out more about the natural world, meet the scientists, and find out some fun facts, or maybe you desperately need to know what that spider is!!!!! Maybe it will eat your children! (It wont).  But just to be sure, Dr Phil Sirvid will be there to tell you everything you need to know.

Te Papa has put on a Family Fun day just for you. Find out about recent plant and animal discoveries by Te Papa scientists in DeCLASSIFIED! Nature’s Secrets exposed.  Sunday 1 Mar 2015. Two different events are running at 1:30 and 3pm, focusing on spiders and ferns.

Find out more here on the Te Papa page PhotosOn/allevents/Pages/FamilyFunDeCLASSIFIED!.aspx.

Learning is magic


Wizards Guide to Wellington is available in good New Zealand bookstores, as well as Amazon, Wheelers and Fishpond

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Jousting Harcourt Park!

During this event a tiny part in Wellington slips back to the medieval era to enjoy the thrill of the joust. But there’s plenty of other events, archery, medieval battles, and something for everyone. But if you do go, there are a few pointers, after all it was dangerous back then, so –

1) Watch out for dragons!

2) Watch out for horses 🙂 Actually most of the watching out is just so you don’t miss how gorgeous they are, so enjoy, but stay back from the ropes and leave some of these highly strung horses to the experts, especially when they’re about to joust.



Young warrior

3) Watch  out young warriors for opportunities to try your hand at bow and arrow and other activities.

4) Go have fun, and talk to the re-enactors and enjoy something that you would struggle to see anywhere else in the world. 🙂 And it’s just down the road in Upper Hutt.


Definitely a point! – A broken jousting tip

Hiding Dragon

Hidden Dragon, not hiding well enough

Dragon Weta

Dragon – I think I killed him!


young warrior is getting into the spirit of the event!


more jousting tips flying! So fun to see live! 🙂


If you look closely, you can see the jousting tips flying!


You can see a veritable cloud of jousting tips – that has to be 6 points!

IMG_5052 IMG_5059 IMG_5068 IMG_5077 IMG_5087 IMG_5098  P1010637 P1010647 P1010650 P1010654   P1010659 P1010670

This event it so much fun, we’d like to thank all those who put it on every two years.

so thank you,

A.J. Ponder and Ike

P.S. So if you get a chance, grab some friends and go!

Wizards Guide to Wellington is available in good New Zealand bookstores, as well as Amazon, Wheelers and Fishpond

PPS (please note this post has been updated now the event is over)

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Miss Lionheart’s “Ask Me” for those tricky science questions

To celebrate the upcoming release of my latest Miss Lionheart book (for older readers who like to read tricky books), Miss Lionheart has released an “ask me” blog – where you can ask all those difficult science questions like “are zombies real?” and “Why is this strawberry growing little strawberry plants?”

Do you have a burning science question you need answered?  Well, now you have a chance to have all those pesky questions answered. The weirder the better. So far Lilly’s fended off questions about strawberries and zombies, so throw her a curve-ball. See if Lilly knows her stuff by dropping by at

You could even ask her some questions about her story. But I can’t promise she will tell you the truth. At least not all the truth. Miss Lionheart likes to play her cards close to her chest, so everybody is kept guessing as to what she might do next. Especially me.

Science icover-L-Modified-Once-Bittens an art, and mad science doubly so, with much of it based on real science, crazy theories, and even a little mythology. So find out more at and have fun! Because science is about having fun and playing with the world. And a large part of that is about asking why? Why is the sky blue? Why is my little brother taller than me? What is the difference between adult stupidity and adult condescension? Why is this strawberry growing little strawberry plants? Are zombies real?

If you want to know, find out more at and ask away! If you’re an older reader that revels in difficult, then why not check out the ebook itself, Miss Lionheart and the Laboratory of Death: Part 1: Once Bitten here at

Either way, I hope you enjoy!

A.J. Ponder

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