Victory Park

Book Author Rachel Kerr
Rights Available World excl. NZ

Kara lives in Victory Park council flats with her young son, just making a living by minding other people’s kids – her nightly smoke on the fire escape the only time she can drop her guard and imagine something better. But life is unpromising until the mysterious Bridget moves in to the Park. The wife of a disgraced Ponzi schemer, she brings with her glamour and wild dreams and an unexpected friendship. Drawn in, Kara forgets for a moment who she’s there to protect.

Bridget is privileged and selfish. The drop in her fortunes is just a blip for her, the council flats just a short-stay solution. She is careless when she’s minding Kara’s young son and selfish in minding her own. When she needs to get out of town during her husband’s court case, she takes Kara with her and their two sons come too, but when court officials turn up to the family holiday home to confiscate property her husband owes Bridget takes an overdose and is hospitalised. This leaves Kara to get back to Wellington with the boys and little money.

The trip is a desperate one and things get worse in Wellington when Kara’s health declines. But her community at the flats and her mother help get Kara back to health and give her a glimpse of happiness and a new life.

Rachel Kerr writes with huge compassion, humour and insight about the ordinary lives of the less privileged in society and the inequities they struggle with.

Winner of the MitoQ Best First Book Award for Fiction 2021

About the Author
Rachel Kerr
is a Wellington writer who lives in Island Bay, Wellington, with her family. She is studying te reo Māori and has degrees in film and creative writing. Rachel has worked as a librarian for Te Kooti Whenua Māori and Judicial Libraries. Victory Park is her first novel and she is writing King Tide.


Mākaro Press


B format



Contemporary Fiction

Age range

Publication Date
September 2020

Rights Available:
World excl. NZ

Rights Agents:


Nadine Rubin Nathan of High Spot Literary

Contact Mākaro Press about this book

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A rich, funny, compassionate exploration of care and carelessness — this is a wonderful book — like its heroine, astute as hell and full of heart.

Emily Perkins

I remember what it felt like to finish Becky Manawatu’s Auē, which went on to win last year’s Jann Medlicott Acorn Prize for Fiction. Electric. Elating. An in-my-bones knowing that this story mattered. Victory Park feels that way, too. Another debut, by Wellington writer Rachel Kerr, it is an examination of privilege and blinkers and how we all trade in the currency of paying attention. How the all-day mathematics of poverty wears a person down. It is also funny, knowing, and joyous – a celebration of people who give a shit. You’ll want to give it to people you love.

Catherine Woulfe, The Spinoff

A fantastic character novel based around a council flat in Wellington. Single mother Kara starts spending time with new tenant Bridget, who has moved in after her husband is caught up in a Ponzi scheme. Subtle, yet still punchy and compelling, this is the newest novel from the publisher of Becky Manawatu’s Auē.

Jenna Todd, Time Out Bookstore