Book Design & Print

With over a million books printed of nearly a thousand different titles in the past five decades, we’re known nationwide for our designing and production of books – and we’ve even won awards for a number of publications! We specialise in book design and work with our clients providing our expert advice on layout, printing, binding and publishing. Check out our gallery below to view a selection of the books we have printed, or head over to our bookstore to buy one of many Craigs’ produced publications.

Hot off the press

Proudly designed by Craigs’ book designer Ellie van Empel. 
Printed using our high quality offset printing press.

You’ll Never Make It:
A New Zealand Pilot’s Story

At 17 years old, Invercargill-born Rod Hall-Jones has one goal: to become a commercial pilot. And when the chief flying instructor of Southland Aero Club tells him, “You’ll never make it,” it only makes him want to succeed more.

Fighting prejudice at every turn, Rod not only earns his commercial pilot licence, but goes on to become one of the most respected helicopter pilots in New Zealand. His helicopter career begins with live deer capture on a farm. He then completes six years as the helicopter pilot operating off the research vessel Calypso for Jacques Cousteau – landing in storms when all other aircraft are grounded, flying over war-time former-Yugoslavia, and being present at Mururoa while the French conducted a nuclear test.

Finally, he comes home to fulfil his dream of being a pilot in his beloved Fiordland, notorious for its changing weather and difficult flying conditions.

From being blessed by the Pope to visiting an isolated Indonesian tribe to transporting tourists in one of the most beautiful places in the world, Rod’s 50-plus years of flying have never been dull. This is his story.


• A classic Kiwi adventure tale written in a down-to-earth style
• First book written by anyone who worked on Jacques Cousteau’s Calypso
• A great gift for the typically hard-to-buy-for male

Rod Hall-Jones has flown fixed-wing aeroplanes and helicopters since taking flying lessons at the age of 17. He has overcome more than a few hurdles to get to where he is today – including an examiner determined that he should not become an instructor, six engine failures, a wire strike, and a CAA medical branch restricting his medical. He sailed, flew, and ate his way through more than 20 countries during his six years flying as part of the Cousteau crew. Rod lives in his beloved Fiordland and is lucky enough to still be flying and loving it, 50-plus years later. As the quintessential ‘Southern Man’, he enjoys nothing more than sharing the special beauty and history of Fiordland, to inspire others to treasure and care for our national heritage as much as he does. This is his first book.

208 pages – colour photographs
270x140mm portrait – sewn and drawn binding
Publisher: Rod Hall-Jones, Te Anau

Recent Publications

Keith Neylon - A Touch of Madness

The Inside Story Of A Successful Southlander – A New Zealand Primary Industries Entrepreneur From humble beginnings in Nightcaps leaving school at 15, Keith Neylon MNZM has now had more than 50 years’ involvement in New Zealand and international primary industries.

Shot Over into the Shotover

This book tells the absorbing story of an unusual accident. Experienced pilot Brian Waugh’s Dominie was forced down by engine failure into Queenstow’s Shotover River.

Fraught with Danger

Hunting deer in the mountains led on to crayfishing around the south coast and a helicopter pilot’s licence for Doc Sutherland.

Port to Plains

The politics, the technology and the human stories behind the construction of the Lyttelton Railway Tunnel.

Featured Author

Ian Dougherty

IAN DOUGHERTY is a Dunedin-based writer. He was born and raised in the city and has lived there for about a half of his adult life. He has a Master of Arts degree in history from Otago University and a Diploma in Journalism from Canterbury University. He is the author of 26 books on New Zealand history, biography, culture and society, including biographies of legendary gold prospector William James ‘Arawata Bill’ O’Leary; and publisher, writer and long distance walker Alfred Hamish Reed.

Southern Spirit

Ian Dougherty

Southern Spirit: The People and Places
of Southland
is Ian Dougherty’s take on a region he regards as part of his extended back yard. The book is a celebration of southern landscapes, from the fantastic fiords in the west and across the green plains to a fossil forest in the east. It introduces readers to unique flora and fauna, from one of the world’s rarest plants to some of its rarest birds. It serves up a platter of mouth-watering delicacies, from oysters to cheese rolls. It acquaints readers with old and new settlers, authors and artists, brewers and distillers, champion shearers and sawyers, and machines and the men who collect them. Finally, it lays out the region as an enormous playground relished by locals and visitors alike.

84 pages
Colour throughout
286x210mm portrait
Saddle Hill Press
PO Box 90
Dunedin 9054

A Good Joke

Ian Dougherty

A Good Joke  tells the uncensored story of New Zealand’s only convicted art forger, Karl Fedor Sim (Carl Fedor Goldie) and his associates; and provides an insight into the shady side of art dealing and the incompetent side of art expertise in New Zealand over the past five decades. It is also a reliable guide to many of the hundreds of Sim forgeries in public and private ownership, including forgeries that continue to be traded. Let the buyer be informed.

Pulpit Radical

Ian Dougherty

Pulpit Radicaltells the story of one of New Zealand’s most influential social campaigners. From his base as a minister at the St Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Dunedin, Rutherford Waddell immersed himself in all manner of causes, most notably in campaigning against the miserable plight of women in the clothing industry, which led to major changes to labour legislation. Although Waddell’s views on subjects such as eugenics and prohibition find little contemporary favour, his campaigning on issues such as poverty and inequality remains relevant today.

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We would love to hear about your next book idea – get in touch today!