Books

Book Review: Spotlight on the girl from Botany Bay in Meg Keneally’s Fled

April 23, 2019

Meg Keneally may have a literary giant for a father, but her career speaks for itself.  Beginning her working life as Junior Public Affairs Officer at the Australian Consulate-General in New York, she has worked as a sub-editor and freelance features writer in Dublin, as a journalist at the Daily Telegraph in Australia, as a talkback […]

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Book Review: Melina Marchetta’s The Place on Dalhousie makes you appreciate those boys & girls next door

April 21, 2019

Some people read books to escape their lives. For other readers, they want to consume a story that mirrors their own. Author, Melina Marchetta certainly fits into the latter camp. Her latest novel – the third in her Inner West trilogy, set in the suburbs of Sydney – is a close examination of the issues […]

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Book Review: Melissa Ferguson’s The Shining Wall explores scientific possibilities through fiction

April 16, 2019

The Shining Wall, the gripping debut novel from author Melissa Ferguson, is an exploration of scientific possibility through the lens of feminism and fiction. The novel tells the frightening story of the orphaned Alida and her younger sister Graycie, who are left along following the death of their mother in the Demi-Settlements outside the wall.  […]

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Book Review: Gerald Murnane’s A Season on Earth shines new light on early classic for potential Nobel winner

April 15, 2019

It is rare that at the age of eighty and after publishing sixteen books – a mixture of novels, short story collections, and non-fiction – that an author comes into the light of the public consciousness and begins to find notoriety. But the works of Gerald Murnane have begun to garner considerable interest in recent […]

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Book Review: Editor Maxine Beneba Clarke celebrates voices from the African diaspora in Growing Up African in Australian

April 11, 2019

Edited by Maxine Beneba Clarke, with Magan Magan and Ahmed Yussuf, Growing Up African in Australia is a new anthology from Black Inc., following on from Alice Pung’s Growing Up Asian in Australia, Benjamin Law’s Growing Up Queer in Australia and Anita Heiss’ Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia. Whilst, Carly Findlay, who also contributed to this […]

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Shortlist announced ahead of the 2019 ABIA Awards Night in May

April 11, 2019

With just under a month to go until the ABIA Awards Night on May 2nd in Sydney, the folks at the Australian Publishers Association have whittled down the longlisted titles to what is an admittedly still healthy six titles per category. The ABIA Awards celebrate the very best of Australia’s literary scene, heralding the achievements of authors, publishers, […]

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Debut author Vicki Laveau-Harvie takes out Stella Prize

April 10, 2019

At an event held last night ats Art Centre Melbourne, the $50,000 Stella Prize was announced. First time author Vicki Laveau-Harvie snapped up the title, for her dark, yet moving, memoir The Erratics. It is the first time a memoir has won the prize and only the second time it has been awarded to a […]

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Book Review: Janet Malcolm’s essay collection Nobody’s Looking At You prove that journalism is often skin deep

April 1, 2019

If there were a title for Grand Master of narrative fiction then the undisputed champion would be Janet Malcolm. This American author has been writing since the 1960’s when she first began with The New Yorker. The author of several books, her latest one, Nobody’s Looking At You, focuses on recent times by drawing together […]

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Book Review: David Cullen’s Parkland provides a deeply moving account of the teenage survivors of the Parkland shooting

April 1, 2019

David Cullen, author of the definitive bestseller Columbine, returns with a second book, this time detailing the story of the events surrounding the Parkland, Florida school shooting in February 2018, the extraordinary teenage survivors and the March For Our Lives (MFOL) campaign that followed.  In Parkland, Cullen takes the readers inside the school in the […]

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Interview: Melina Marchetta holds up a magnifying glass to beautiful & ordinary aspects of suburban life

March 30, 2019

Melina Marchetta’s novels are often about the boy or girl who lives next door. Her book, Looking for Alibrandi, was a perfect example of this and continues to find new audiences, some thirty years after it was released. Marchetta’s latest novel, The Place on Dalhousie, takes a leaf out of her previous works by reprising […]

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Book Review: Carrie Tiffany’s Exploded View presents a surprisingly feminist coming of age story

March 27, 2019

The unnamed protagonist of Carrie Tiffany’s new novel, Exploded View, lets us into her life by increments. Immediately, as readers, we are welcomed into her interior world– a place where the only things that make sense are cars, and engines. It is the late 1970’s, and the girl and her brother watch things like Hogan’s Heroes on the TV, careful […]

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Book Review: Zoë Foster Blake’s Love! gives us a fresh and modern perspective on matters of the heart

March 25, 2019

Relationship advisor Zoë Foster Blake takes us on an enthusiastic journey through matters of the heart and offers a fresh perspective in her new reference guide: Love! The book offers hints, solutions and ideas on how to deal with many of the issues us women experience when dating, whilst also giving some insight into why we […]

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Trent Dalton’s Boy Swallows Universe takes top honours at 2019 Indie Awards

March 19, 2019

Since 2008, the Indie Book Awards have been celebrating both the work of independent Aussie booksellers and the books they’ve raved about to customers over the previous year. Last night, the 2019 winners were announced, with Trent Dalton’s coming of age tale Boy Swallows Universe taking out the top honour of Book of the Year.Speaking […]

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Book Review: Regency London meets rich fantasy in Zen Cho’s The True Queen

March 18, 2019

Washed ashore on the island of Janda Baik, sisters Muni and Satki have no memory of their former lives. Mak Genggang, the region’s foremost witch, knows a curse when she sees it and in the mortal Muna and the magical Satki, it’s clear as day to her what has happened. Unable, or unwilling, to answer […]

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Book Review: Australia YA fiction flexes its muscles in new anthology Underdog

March 11, 2019

Underdog is a collection of short stories, collected from upcoming and unpublished Australian YA fiction writers. Edited by (and featuring contributions from) Tobias Madden and Sarah Taviana, Underdog celebrates a uniquely Australian genre, one as diverse and emotive as the country in which it is written. Featuring twelve short stories, Underdog is the first #LoveOzYA […]

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ABIA 2019 Longlist revealed ahead of May awards show

March 9, 2019

The Australian Book Industry Awards are back again for 2019! An initiative of the Australian Publishers Association, the ABIAs applaud the achievements of writer, illustrator, publicist and publisher alike. A 250 strong team, made up of representatives across the industry, came together to craft this latest longlist, celebrating the bookish best of 2018. The 2019 […]

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Stella Prize announces 2019 shortlist

March 8, 2019

The Stella Prize judges have revealed the six authors who have made it to their 2019 shortlist. Timing the announcement with International Women’s Day, judging panel chair Louise Swinn described the chosen works as “an incredibly diverse knot of books. […] The books on this shortlist inform and entertain, and while they speak absolutely to our […]

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Book Review: Art dealer-cum-detective Alex Clayton returns in Katherine Kovacic’s Painting in the Shadows

March 6, 2019

Art dealer Alex Clayton is back, and conservator best friend John Porter and faithful hound Hogarth aren’t too far behind either. Invited to preview a new exhibition at the Melbourne International Museum of Art, they’re present to see museum staff unveil a supposedly cursed painting. But when one of the workers collapses and damages the […]

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Book Review: Monica Tan’s debut Stranger Country may inspire you on your own adventure around Australia

March 3, 2019

Monica Tan’s first novel, Stranger Country, will take you on a 30,000km journey of discovery around selected parts of Australia. Tan is Chinese Australian, but at thirty-two, felt that she didn’t know as much about Australia’s history as she did about China’s. In a bid to change that, Tan embarked on a journey around parts […]

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Interview: Ben Okri talks The Freedom Artist and literary festivals

February 27, 2019

Whilst he was in the country for both Perth Writers Week and Adelaide Writers’ Week, I had the chance to sit down with author, poet and Man Booker Prize winning novelist Ben Okri to chat about his new novel The Freedom Artist. Set in a world uncomfortably like our own, The Freedom Artist is a […]

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