Author(s): David Hair
As we Otago lads have only enough men for two squadrons, the General has decided that we are to be merged with the incoming Maori contingents to form a new battalion. Our new battalion will be Pioneers, doing behind-the-lines work: building barracks, railroads, roads and trenches. As you can imagine, Father, were not happy we want to fight, not dig holes. When Leith McArran signed up to fight in a war half a world away, little did he know that he and his fellow Dunedin Scots would end up shovelling dirt with Maori lads from home. Nor did he know that hed become best mates with a young orphan named Tamati Baines, who is haunted by nightmares of steel serpents and blood-red butterflies visions that might save them from a secret enemy or get them both killed.
Shortlisted for NZ Young Adult Awards 2017