The Chain

The ChainIt is Spring, 1982, and change is in the air.

Frank has left the Hutt Valley in a quest for a job in one of the big Hawkes Bay meatworks.

Mereana’s Uncle Kingi has got her a place on the mutton slaughter floor, and taken her away from life in the backblocks.

Adam, who has weathered many a sacking, is trying his luck back at the employment office.

The meat companies have plans to bring in machinery that will wipe out jobs, and the government is about to eliminate subsidies to farmers.

James Robb tells the uncompromising story of ordinary people transformed in the dramatic events that ensue. He takes us under the skin of a semi-rural working class world rarely seen in contemporary literature.
(from Publisher’s notes).

The Chain is available as a paperback in good bookshops in New Zealand, including Unity Books in Auckland and Wellington. It can also be ordered directly from the publisher, Steele Roberts Aotearoa.

Available now in ebook format from Smashwords.
Also available at Amazon (for Kindle readers) 


Reviews of The Chain

“This is a complex, cleverly worked and very readable first novel.”      Jane Orchard, Takahe magazine, April 2013
(for full review, go to:

“The Chain is an excellent novel that deserves to be widely read.”      Toby Boraman, Labour History Project Bulletin, August 2013.
(for full review: an archive of LHP newsletters is available through the LHP website

Hear an interview with the author on Radio New Zealand
Radio New Zealand The Arts on Sunday 17 February 2013

One response to “The Chain

  1. Pingback: The fatal logic of class collaboration « A communist at large·

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