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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Quick Heads Up – Win Tickets to Tyrannosaurs in Wellington

Absolutely  Positively Wellington is giving away 4 tickets to “Meet the Tyrannosaurs at Te Papa” – but it’s only until 4 o’clock today (23/01/15)

To win – go here fast!

It’s a great little exhibition – Ike and I will be doing a post soon 🙂


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My Author is Neglecting Me!

ike-rescued1.jpgYes, it’s true, my author is ignoring my plight and allowing herself to get caught up in Lilly Lionheart’s adventures. This is not acceptable behaviour, and I would call on all of you to tell her that the next project has to be Londonne Towne.

I don’t care about dangerous mutant creatures, undead thugs or underground lairs. If you do I suggest you go to AmazoWizard's guide to London logon, at, that, or you visit Lilly’s blog at

If on the other hand you can’t see what all the fuss is about, and you would rather have a sensible adventure, with me as the star, then I’d love to hear your opinion on the matter. Although, thinking about it, there’s no hurry, it is summer, and someone needs to keep an eye on Wellingtowne, especially at this time of year…


Karaka Bay 190

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22 Reasons Living in Wellington will Ruin Your Life

Buzzfeed has 53 Reasons Living In New Zealand Will Ruin You For Life here… So in the same spirit, here are 10 reasons Wellington will ruin your life…

Because whatever the weather, or the disaster…blue skies are always just around the corner.WGBuilding

You can ride the cable car to work (or play) every dayIke-riding-Cable-Car.

You never know who you are going to meet…631

…when you’re off to the theatres, the coffee, the waterfront and the…DSCF0046

museum.Museum 220

Everyone gets in on the action…including the suburbs (Upper Hutt’s biannual jousting tournament and medieval fair).IMG_4345

Gollum lives in the airport.Gollum with Ike

Work or play, there’s almost always a view…Wellington Wellington 102

…balls…Wellington 135

…buckets…Wellington 300


…and sunsets.Wellington 140

There’s a little excitement around every corner. IMG_3551

A little more excitement. birdman s 004

…and maybe a little mystery.Perrin Alec 087

It’s gorgeous…At the Bay.2001wharfgood

It’s still the capital city, full of busy bees (and politicians -but we’re a forgiving lot).Wellington 338

Opportunity is always knocking…IMG_3523

…and we have some of the most creative people in New Zealand, with a cave to show off their amazing creativity.Perrin Alec 123

Wellington is secretely magic, and everyone is in on the secret…even drycleaners.IMG_3653

Because it’s Wellington, day…Copy of Pictures welly water 207

…and night.Sunset425

ike-rescued1.jpgP.S. Ike and I know we could have posted hundreds more pictures of special places in the Wellington area, too many to name. We might add a few more another day, but in the meantime, happy New Year for 2015, all the best wherever you live from both of us.

And if you want to find out more about the magic of Wellington  check out our book, Wizard’s Guide to Wellington at Amazon and good New Zealand bookstores.

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