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Vol. 26 No. 7 August 2019



Faber Forever

I first opened Toby Faber’s Faber and Faber: The Untold Story thinking, as a bookseller, that I’d find an interesting insight into how publishing really works, through a history of one of the truly iconic publishers. I did, but I found so much more—a delightful treasure trove. Toby tells the story of the firm his grandfather Geoffrey founded in 1924 through a chronological series of extracts from letters, diaries, memoranda, with his own commendably spare comments providing the links. What a history it is. Of course there’s the poetry: Virginia Woolf never forgave Faber for stealing T S Eliot from Hogarth—by offering him job security. Early on we have Faber’s letter to Eliot, thanking him for the offer to publish The Waste Land: ‘You won’t think it unkind of me to say that I am excitedly groping in it. You are obscure, you know’. And Eliot turned out be an amazing talent-spotter—Auden, Spender, Pound, Finnegan’s Wake. A heritage continued by the legendary Charles Monteith later in the century with Hughes, Plath, Larkin, Heaney and the list goes on. Add the phenomenal Faber play list, music publishing, and a growing list of fiction (also later in the century) which included P D James, Carey, Ishiguro, Kundera, Vargas Llosa, and you’ve an idea of how high in the pantheon of literary publishers Faber ranked. Yet the pleasure and fascination in the book comes, unexpectedly, in the quality of the writing—whether in the candour or delicacy of the correspondence between publisher and author, or in readers’ reports, or in internal dealings within the company. Threaded throughout is the sense of the precarious financial state of independent publishing. Originally ‘The Scientific Press’, publishing mainly journals and books for nurses, funded its literary forays, and the sale of that arm, as well as the Faber family trust, bankrolled its early decades (there was only one Faber, actually, but Walter De La Mere suggested that Faber and Faber was better, ‘because you can’t have too much of a good thing’). It’s conceivable that, other tribulations and triumphs aside, the house could have failed to see the 20th Century out, bar the fabulous good fortune of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats. The astonishing success of of the musical based on T S Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats meant a river of gold in royalties to Faber and the Eliot estate. And who remembers Derek Llewellyn Jones’ Everywoman or John Seymour’s Complete Book of Self-Sufficiency? Both (seemingly unlikely) publications of Faber, that paid the rent through the 1980s. But most of all, through the sheer excellence of the letter writing, we have the joy of anecdote, and recognition of the serendipity of it all. To choose but a couple: a senior publisher grabbed from the reject slush pile a first novel about which the initial reader was scathing (‘an absurd and uninteresting fantasy about the explosion of an atom bomb on the colonies. A group of children land in jungle country. Rubbish). Golding was lucky that Lord of the Flies made it. They rejected Animal Farm as too risky. And there’s a delightful apology to the Traveller’s Club for having brought the poet Thom Gunn to lunch (he wore a fringed leather jacket and cowboy boots, and the letter reminds you just how much a Gentlemen’s Club the whole industry was). If that’s not enough to whet the appetite, this is, unsurprisingly, a beautiful book to hold, to look at, and to own—Jacket design, endpapers, typeface, photographs, and binding. Faber lives on, ninety this year, and we’re the winners. David Gaunt

Ghosts of the Past by Tony Park ($33, PB)

Africa, 1906: A young Australian adventurer is condemned to death. Sydney, the present: journalist Nick Eatwell has just lost his job, enter South African journo Susan Vidler chasing information about Nick’s great-great uncle, Cyril Blake, who fought in the Anglo-Boer War & later joined the struggle for independence across the border in the German colony of South West Africa, now Namibia. In Germany, historian Anja Berghoff is researching the origins of the famed desert horses of Namibia. She’s also interested in Blake and an Irish-German firebrand & spy, Claire Martin, with whom Cyril had an affair. Nick & Anja head to Africa on the trail of a legend, but someone else is delving into the past, looking for clues to the secret location of a missing horde of gold that’s worth killing for.


Now in B Format Taboo by Kim Scott, $23 Two Old Men Dying by Tom Keneally, $20 Preservation by Jock Serong, $23

Australian Literature The Shelly Bay Ladies Swimming Circle by Sophie Green ($30, PB)

It’s 1982 in Australia. In a seaside suburb, housewife Theresa takes up swimming. She wants to get fit; she also wants a few precious minutes to herself. So at sunrise each day she strikes out past the waves. From the same beach, the widowed Marie swims. With her husband gone, bathing is the one constant in her new life. After finding herself in a desperate situation, 25-year-old Leanne only has herself to rely on. She became a nurse to help others, even as she resists help herself. Elaine has recently moved from England. Far from home & without her adult sons, her closest friend is a gin bottle. In the waters of Shelly Bay, these four women find each other. They will survive bluebottle stings & heartbreak, find companionship, and learn that love takes many forms.

The Pillars by Peter Polites ($33, PB)

Don’t worry about the housing bubble, she would say. Don’t worry about the fact that you will never be able to afford a home. Worry about the day after. That’s when they will all come, with their black shirts and bayonets, and then you will see the drowned bodies and slit necks. And I would stand there and say, But Mum, why are you telling me this when I’m ten years old. Working as a writer hasn’t granted Pano the financial success he once imagined, but lobbying against a mosque being built across the road from his home (and the occasional meth-fuelled orgy) helps to pass the time. He’s also found himself a gig ghostwriting for a wealthy property developer. The pay cheque alone is enough for him to turn a blind eye to some dodgy dealings —at least for the time being. In a world full of flashy consumerism and aspiration, can Pano really escape his lot in life? And does he really want to?

Near and the Far V 2: More stories from the Asia-Pacific region (eds) Carlin & Rendle-Short A vibrant collection of stories that features writers who have forged connections across cultures and generations, with contributors from Australia, Papua New Guinea, South Korea, Vietnam & China, among others. ($30, PB)

The Burnt Country by Joy Rhoades ($33, PB)

Australia 1948. Kate Dowd is running Amiens, a sizeable sheep station in NSW, against many odds. Her grazier neighbour is attacking her method of burning off to repel a bushfire. Her farm is the only protection she can offer her half-sister Pearl, as the Aborigines Welfare Board threatens to take her away. Ostracised by the local community for even acknowledging Pearl, Kate cannot risk another scandal. Which means turning her back on her wartime lover, Luca Canali. When ex-husband Jack threatens to extort her she finds herself putting out fires on all fronts to save her farm, keep her family together & protect the man she loves. Then a catastrophic real fire threatens everything.

The Returns by Philip Salom ($30, PB)

Elizabeth posts a ‘room for rent’ notice in Trevor’s bookshop & is caught off-guard when Trevor answers the ad himself. She expected a young student not a middle-aged bookseller whose marriage has fallen apart. But Trevor is attracted to Elizabeth’s house because of the empty shed in her backyard, the perfect space for him to revive the artistic career he abandoned years earlier. The face-blind, EH Holden-driving Elizabeth is a solitary & feisty book editor, and she accepts him, on probation... In this poignant yet upbeat novel the past keeps returning in the most unexpected ways. Elizabeth is at the beck and call of her ageing mother, and the associated memories of her childhood in a Rajneesh community. Trevor’s Polish father disappeared when Trevor was 15, and his mother died not knowing whether he was dead or alive. The authorities have declared him dead, but is he?

Mother of Pearl by Angela Savage ($30, PB)

Anna is an aid worker trying to settle back into life in Australia after more than a decade in Southeast Asia; Meg, Anna’s sister, holds out hope for a child despite 7 fruitless years of IVF; Meg’s husband Nate, and Mukda, a single mother in provincial Thailand want to do the right thing by her son & parents. The women and their families’ lives become intimately intertwined in the unsettling and extraordinary process of trying to bring a child into the world across borders of class, culture and nationality.

The Gospel According to Lazarus by Richard Zimler

According to the New Testament, Jesus resurrects Lazarus, but the Gospel of John doesn’t indicate whether he had any special purpose in doing so. Richard Zimler continues the story. Restored to physical health, Lazarus has difficulty picking up his former existence; his experience of death has left him fragile and disoriented, and he has sensed nothing of an afterlife. As he turns more and more to Jesus for guidance, while observing his friend’s growing mystical powers and influence, he finds their lives becoming dangerously entwined. Zimler places Jesus in the historical context of ancient Jewish practice and tradition; he is at once a charismatic rabbi and a political activist who uses his awareness of a transcendent reality—culminating in the Kingdom of Heaven—to inspire compassion for humankind and try to bring justice to his people. ($33, HB)

ARAB, AUSTRALIAN, OTHER Edited by award-winning author and academic Randa Abdel-Fattah, and activist and poet Sara Saleh, this collection explores the experience of living as a member of the Arab diaspora in Australia.

FROM HERE ON, MONSTERS ‘Traverses the chasm between truth and history . . . It’s a modern Australian novel about modern Australia that, refreshingly, doesn’t read at all like a modern Australian novel.’ Shaun Prescott

THE GOOD FAT GUIDE In this fully revised and updated edition of his 2013 bestseller Toxic Oil, David Gillespie reviews the latest research from this rapidly evolving field linking seed oils to a host of diseases.

THE 117-STOREY TREEHOUSE From Australia’s bestselling author and illustrator, a brand new wonderfully wild and wacky treehouse adventure. Well, what are you waiting for? Come on up!

Snake Island by Ben Hobson ($30, PB) Vernon & Penelope Moore never want to see their son Caleb again. Not after he hit his wife & ended up in gaol. A lifetime of careful parental love wiped out in a moment. But when retired teacher Vernon hears that Caleb is being regularly visited & savagely bashed by a local criminal as the police stand by, he knows he has to act. What has his life been as a father if he turns his back on his son in his hour of desperate need? He realises with shame that he has failed Caleb. But no longer. The father of the man bashing Caleb is head of a violent crime family. The town lives in fear of him but Vernon is determined to fix things in a civilised way, father to father. If he shows respect, he reasons, it will be reciprocated. But how wrong he is. And what hell has he brought down on his family? The Trespassers by Meg Mundell ($29.95, PB)

Fleeing their pandemic-stricken homelands, a shipload of migrant workers departs the UK, dreaming of a fresh start in prosperous Australia. For 9-year-old Cleary Sullivan, deaf for 3 years, the journey promises adventure & new friendships; for Glaswegian songstress Billie Galloway, it’s a chance to put a shameful mistake firmly behind her; while broke English schoolteacher Tom Garnett hopes to set his future on a brighter path. But when a crew member is found murdered & passengers start falling gravely ill, the Steadfast is plunged into chaos.

Taking Tom Murray Home by Tim Slee ($33, PB) Bankrupt dairy farmer Tom Murray decides he’d rather sell off his herd & burn down his own house than hand them over to the bank. But something goes tragically wrong, and Tom dies in the blaze. His wife, Dawn, doesn’t want him to have died for nothing & decides to hold a funeral procession for Tom as a protest, driving 350 kilometres from Yardley in country Victoria to bury him in Melbourne where he was born. To make a bigger impact she agrees with some neighbours to put his coffin on a horse & cart & take it slow—real slow. But on the night of their departure, someone burns down the local bank. And as the motley funeral procession passes through Victoria, there are more mysterious arson attacks. Dawn has five days to get to Melbourne. Winner of the inaugural Banjo Prize.

Dolores by Lauren Aimee Curtis ($25, PB) On a hot day in late June, a young girl kneels outside a convent, then falls on her face. When the nuns take her in, they name her Dolores. Dolores adjusts to the rhythm of her new life - to the nuns with wild hairs curling from their chins, the soup chewed as if it were meat, the bells that ring throughout the day. But in the dark, private theatre of her mind are memories - of love motels lit by neon red hearts, discos in abandoned hospitals and a boy called Angelo. And inside her, a baby is growing. An ambitious debut novel— short, lyrical and intense

On D’Hill

Believe it or not, I actually have exciting news about a big event coming up at Dulwich Hill. In the past, I think we can all agree, that Dulwich Hill Fair Day has been less than rivetting. As with so many other suburban Fair Days it was mainly professional stall holders selling cheap stuff from Asia, and apart from performances by the local school kids, there was very little that was community based. Well, this year—it’s a whole new ballgame. An energetic new team of events people at Inner West Council have asked gleebooks at Dulwich Hill to curate a day of local children’s authors. They are supplying a gorgeous tent which will be in the car-park in Seaview Street, and I’ve got together a terrific program of very local authors. Ursula Dubosarsky lives in Marrickville and will talk about her new children’s picture book Ask Hercules Quick. Singer/songwriter Josh Pyke (lives on D’Hill) will present his first children’s book Lights Out, Leonard. Local debut author Lisa Siberry will do a workshop for middle graders around her charming, science-based book The Brilliant Ideas of Lily Green in which Lily makes cosmetics using local plants and flowers. Then the lovely Norton Lodge sisters, Zoe and Georgia will entertain with their books about the redoubtable Elizabella. Finishing off the day will be a wonderful event with the makers of the fabulous locally produced book The Hollow Tree. Put together by Addison Road Community Centre and written by long-time gleebooks customer, journalist & author Mark Mordue, the book tells the story of a hollow tree in a park in Marrickville which was retained & made into a habitat for animals. Many of the local children joined in doing the drawings for this informative & beautiful book. There’ll be lots of other excellent things happening on Dulwich Hill Fair Day—Sunday, September 15th and I’m confident it will have quite a different feel than in the past—less commercial, more community. I am so looking forward to it. What I’ve been reading: Three Women by Lisa Taddeo is an astounding work of narrative non-fiction in which she analyses the hopes and desires of three ordinary American women. Taddeo researched the book over eight years during which she even moved to the same towns as her subjects—so the book reads like a novel of intense intimacy, she describes their sexual encounters as if she was witness to them. All three women have very troubled relationships with the men in their lives and they tallk about it with amazing honesty. It beggars belief how they are treated so appallingly in this day and age. But maybe not! I’ve also loved another American debut—The Travelers by Regina Porter. This is a big sprawling novel that follows a white and a black family from the mid 20th century to the election of Obama. Characters come and go, they meet and intersect in unusual and interesting ways creating a kind of patchwork of modern America. Beautifully written and very compelling. the book is dotted with black and white photographs which is odd but endearing. See you on D’Hill, Morgan

Undara by Annie Seaton ($30, PB)

When entomologist Emlyn Rees arrives at Hidden Valley she wants nothing more than to escape her marriage breakdown by burying herself in the research team’s hunt for new species of insects in the depths of the dramatic Undara lava tubes—little does she suspect she will be the key to solving a mystery that’s more than one hundred years old. Travis Carlyle is initially resistant to letting some city folks tramp over his cattle station, but soon the researchers’ findings and a growing friendship with Emlyn bring opportunities to turn around his struggling farm. With a broken marriage behind him and children to care for, he needs to plan for the future and this could be his family’s best chance. But when things start going wrong for the farm and around the dig site, Emlyn and Travis are at a loss to understand why. Are they cursed with bad luck, or is there a more sinister force at play? Are the tall tales of enigmatic stockman Bluey turning true? As the unseen saboteur grows bolder, Emlyn and Travis are caught in a race against time to save the station ... and their lives..


International Literature

Quichotte by Salman Rushdie ($33, PB)

Inspired by the Cervantes classic, Sam DuChamp, mediocre writer of spy thrillers, creates Quichotte, a courtly, addled salesman obsessed with television, who falls in impossible love with a TV star. Together with his (imaginary) son Sancho, Quichotte sets off on a picaresque quest across America to prove worthy of her hand, gallantly braving the tragicomic perils of an age where “Anything-Can-Happen”. Meanwhile his creator, in a midlife crisis, has equally urgent challenges of his own. Rushdie takes the reader on a wild ride through a country on the verge of moral and spiritual collapse—the lives of DuChamp & Quichotte intertwine in a profoundly human quest for love & a wickedly entertaining portrait of an age in which fact is so often indiscernible from fiction.

Tidelands by Philippa Gregory ($33, PB)

Midsummer’s Eve, 1648, and England is in the grip of civil war between renegade King and rebellious Parliament. The struggle reaches every corner of the kingdom, even to the remote Tidelands – the marshy landscape of the south coast. Alinor, a descendant of wise women, crushed by poverty and superstition, waits in the graveyard under the full moon for a ghost who will declare her free from her abusive husband. Instead she meets James, a young man on the run, and shows him the secret ways across the treacherous marsh, not knowing that she is leading disaster into the heart of her life. This is the time of witch-mania, and Alinor, a woman without a husband, skilled with herbs, suddenly enriched, arouses envy in her rivals and fear among the villagers, who are ready to take lethal action into their own hands. ‘A soaring memoir of longing, resilience and delight in the natural world.’ – Jemma Birrell


atti lives to walk and Barney is obsessed with paragliding:

a brother and sister bound to the joys of nature. Strangers for most their lives, their relationship changes when a tragic accident occurs. Patti tells their story, creating an intense narrative of

determination and triumph.

Murakami 2020 Diary by Haruki Murakami

This diary includes visual & textual references to his works, from Wind/Pinball, A Wild Sheep Chase & Norwegian Wood to Killling Commendatore & Novelist as a Vocation. Contents include: Yearly Planner; Selection of Japanese Holidays & Festivals; Dates of cycles of the moon; Seasonal quotations & extracts from Murakami’s books; Significant dates from the books marked; Images of jackets in progress as well as the finished versions; Visual content from The Strange Library; Specially designed artwork to match the seasons; Notes section at the back. ($32.99, HB)

Gleebooks’ special price $29.99

Deep River by Karl Marlantes ($33, PB)

In the early 1900s, as the oppression of Russia’s imperial rule takes its toll on Finland, the three Koski siblings—Ilmari, Matti & the politicized young Aino—are forced to flee to the western edges of the United States. The brothers face the excitement and danger of pioneering this frontier wilderness. But while they are tearing down ancient, colossal trees, Aino is striving to build up the country’s first radical union movements. Karl Marlantes masterfully depicts the tyranny of nascent America, the limits of human survival and the enduring might of family love.

Chances Are by Richard Russo ($30, PB) ‘This bold, utterly timely book goes to the key issues determining how we will live together into the future.’ – Stephanie Dowrick


n The Politics of the Common Good, Jane R. Goodall asks

how and why our political culture and economic policies are so hostile to communal resources and public ownership. This important book calls for a radically different kind of economy.

w w w. n ews o u t h p u b l i s h i n g .co m

Three 66-year old friends from college in the 60s convene on Martha’s Vineyard. Lincoln is a commercial real estate broker, Teddy a tiny-press publisher, and Mickey a musician beyond his rockin’ age. Each man guards secrets, especially about the mystery that none of them has ever stopped puzzling over since a Memorial Day weekend on the Vinyard in 1971. 44 years later, as this new weekend unfolds, 3 lives & that of a significant other are displayed in their entirety while the distant past confounds the present like a relentless squall. Shot through with Russo’s trademark comedy & humanity, Chances Are also has a level of suspense & menace to quicken your heartbeat throughout this absorbing saga of how friendship’s bonds are every bit as constricting & rewarding as those of family or community.

Such Good Work by Johannes Lichtman ($47, HB)

Jonas Anderson wants a fresh start. He’s made plenty of bad decisions in his life, and at age 28 he’s been fired from yet another teaching position after assigning homework like, Attend a stranger’s funeral and write about it. But, he’s sure a move to Sweden will be just the thing to kick-start a new & improved—and newly sober—Jonas. When he arrives in Malmo in 2015, the city is struggling with the influx of tens of thousands of Middle Eastern refugees. Driven by an existential need to ‘do good’, he begins volunteering with an organization that teaches Swedish to young migrants—where he might find if he could just get out of his own way.

Granta 148: Summer Fiction (ed) Sigrid Raussig ($25, PB)

New fiction from Andrew O’Hagan, Elif Shafak, Adam Foulds, David Means, Jem Day Calder, Magododi OuMphela Makhene, Caroline Albertine Minor, Thomas Pierce, Adam O’Fallon Price, Amor Towles. And Tom Bamforth on the refugee camp in Bangladesh known as ‘Cox’s Bazaar’.


Inland by Téa Obreht ($33, PB)

Nora is an unflinching frontierswoman awaiting the return of the men in her life—her husband who has gone in search of water for the parched household, and her elder sons who have vanished after an explosive argument. She is biding her time with her youngest son, who is convinced that a mysterious beast is stalking the land around their home, and her husband’s 17-year-old cousin, who communes with spirits. Lurie is a former outlaw haunted by ghosts. He sees lost souls who want something from him, and he finds reprieve from their longing in an unexpected relationship that inspires a momentous expedition across the West. Using true but little-known history, Orange Prize winner Téa Obreht reimagines the myths of the American West.

Nobber by Oisín Fagan ($33, PB)

An ambitious noble and his three serving men travel through the Irish countryside in the stifling summer of 1348, using the advantage of the plague which has collapsed society to buy up large swathes of property and land. They come upon Nobber, a tiny town, whose only living habitants seem to be an egotistical bureaucrat, his volatile wife, a naked blacksmith, and a beautiful Gaelic hostage. Meanwhile, a band of marauding Gaels are roaming around, using the confusion of the sickness to pillage and reclaim lands that once belonged to them. As these groups converge upon the town, the habitants, who up until this point have been under strict curfew, begin to stir from their dwellings to a deadly standoff. A Double Life by Karolina Pavlova ($32, PB) In unsung classic of 19th century Russian literature Cecily is being trapped into marriage by her well-meaning mother; her best friend, Olga; and Olga’s mother, who means to clear the way for a wealthier suitor for her own daughter by marrying off Cecily first. Cecily’s privileged upbringing makes her oblivious to the havoc that is being wreaked around her. Only in the seclusion of her bedroom is her imagination freed: each day of deception is followed by a night of dreams described in soaring verse. Karolina Pavlova alternates prose & poetry to offer a wry picture of Russian aristocratic society & vivid dreams of escaping its strictures. She combines rich narrative prose that details balls, tea parties & horseback rides with poetic interludes that depict her protagonist’s inner world—and biting irony that pervades a seemingly romantic description of a young woman who has everything.

The Far Field by Madhuri Vijay ($30, PB)

In the wake of her mother’s death, Shalini, a privileged young woman from Bangalore, sets out for a remote Himalayan village in the troubled northern region of Kashmir. Certain that the loss of her mother is somehow connected to the decade-old disappearance of Bashir Ahmed, a charming Kashmiri salesman who frequented her childhood home, she is determined to confront him. But upon her arrival, Shalini is brought face to face with Kashmir’s politics, as well as the tangled history of the local family that takes her in. And when life in the village turns volatile & old hatreds threaten to erupt into violence, she finds herself forced to make a series of choices that could hold dangerous repercussions for the very people she has come to love.

The Warlow Experiment by Alix Nathan ($30, HB)

1792, Herbert Powyss, set on making his name as a scientist, is determined to study the effects of prolonged solitude on another human being. He fills three rooms beneath Moreham House with books, paintings & a pianoforte, then puts out an advertisement, hoping for a gentleman recluse to claim the substantial reward. The only man desperate enough to apply is John Warlow, a semi-literate farm labourer who needs to support his wife Hannah & their six children. Cut off from nature & the turning of the seasons, Warlow soon begins losing his grip on sanity. Above ground, Powyss finds yet another distraction from his greenhouse in the form of Hannah, with whom he rapidly becomes obsessed. Does she return his feelings, or is she just afraid of his power over her family’s lives? Meanwhile, the servants are brewing up a rebellion inspired by recent news from across the Channel.

Now in B Format Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver, $20 The Catholic School by Edoardo Albinati ($33, PB)

In 1975, three young well-off men, former students at Rome’s prestigious all-boys Catholic high school San Leone Magno, brutally torture, rape & murder 2 young women. The ‘Circeo massacre’ shocks & captivates all of Italy, exposing the violence & dark underbelly of the upper middle class at a moment when the traditional structures of family & religion are under threat. Edoardo Albinati sets his novel in the halls & corridors of San Leone Magno in the late 1960s & the 1970s, exploring the intersection between the world of teenage boys & the structures of power in modern Italy. Along with indelible portraits of teachers & pupils—the charming Arbus, the literature teacher Cosmos, and his Fascist friend, Max—Albinati’s novel also reflects on the legacy of abuse, the Italian bourgeoisie, & the relationship between sex, violence & masculinity.


with Anna Feinberg and g uest publisher Anna McFarlane A perfect beginner course for people who wish to write for children. This four-week course shows you how to create a compelling story, memorable characters, authentic dialogue and an evocative setting. Thursdays, 3 - 24 October 2019


This new five-week course will help you develop skills to carry with you for the rest of your writing career. Includes a copy-edit of a sample of your work by a senior editor. Wednesdays, 9 October - 6 November 2019

For more information: Talk to us: (02) 8425 0171 Email us: faberwritingacademy@allenandunwin.com Visit us: www.faberwritingacademy.com.au Follow us: www.facebook.com/faberwriting https://twitter.com/faberwriting

Whiskey When We’re Dry by John Larison

In the spring of 1885, 17-year-old Jessilyn Harney finds herself orphaned & alone on her family’s homestead. Desperate to fend off starvation & predatory neighbours, she cuts her hair, binds her chest, saddles her beloved mare & sets off across the mountains to find her gun-slinging fugitive brother Noah & bring him home. A sharpshooter herself, Jess’s quest lands her in the employ of the territory’s violent, capricious governor, whose militia is also hunting Noah—dead or alive. Wrestling with her brother’s outlaw identity, and haunted by questions of her own, Jess must outmanoeuvre those who underestimate her, ultimately rising to become a hero in her own right. ($23, PB)

Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage by Bette Howland ($47, HB)

In the tradition of Lucia Berlin & Grace Paley Howland rose in the 1980s before all but disappearing from public view for decades. An intellectual from a working-class neighbourhood in Chicago she was a brilliant observer, capturing the meanings of everyday life in its grit, humour & splendour in portraits of criminal courts & public libraries, southern belles, funerals & the end of an affair. This collection spans her entire career.

Bright by Duanwad Pimwana ($28, PB)

When 5-year-old Kampol is told by his father to sit in front of their run-down apartment building & await his return, the confused boy does as he’s told—until he realises his father isn’t coming back anytime soon. Adopted by the community, Kampol is soon being raised by various figures in the homes around. Duelling flea markets, a search for a ten-baht coin lost in the sands of a beach, pet crickets that get eaten for dinner, bouncy ball fads, and loneliness so merciless that it kills a boy’s appetite—Thai woman, Duanwad Pimwana’s, urban, at times gritty vignettes are balanced with a folktale-like feel & a wry sense of humour.

His Name is David by Jan Vantoortelboom

Flanders, 1915. David Verbocht, sentenced to death as a deserter, stands before the firing squad and looks back on his short life. As a young man, David was sent away by his parents, after a tragic accident in the family, to become a school teacher in a remote village. There he develops a special bond with a sensitive young student, along with feelings for the boy’s mother. When fate strikes again, the history of loss and guilt seems to repeat itself. ($30, PB)


Crime Fiction

Good Girl, Bad Girl by Michael Robotham ($33, PB)

6 years ago, Evie Cormac was discovered, filthy & half-starved, hiding in a secret room in the aftermath of a shocking crime. Now approaching adulthood, Evie is damaged, self-destructive & has never revealed her true identity. Forensic psychologist Cyrus Haven, a man haunted by his own past, is investigating the death of champion figure-skater Jodie Sheehan. When Cyrus is called upon to assess Evie, she threatens to disrupt the case & destroy his ordered life. Because Evie has a unique & dangerous gift—she knows when someone is lying. And nobody is telling the truth.

City of Windows by Robert Pobi ($33, PB)

The shot is impossible. In the middle of a blizzard, down a busy New York avenue, into a moving car. Lucas Page, physics professor & maths prodigy, quit the FBI after it nearly cost him his life. But he can’t resist the call to help, to prove that he is still capable of extraordinary things. Because Page is wired to see crime from a different angle. The science that explains the impossible shot. The geometry that reveals the killer’s location. The logic that tells him this shooter has killed like this before. And will do it again, and again, until they are stopped.

Lapse by Sarah Thornton ($30, PB)

Former corporate lawyer Clementine Jones is living in self-imposed exile, passing the time by coaching a country-league footy club & trying to forget the past. Now the team is winning, and the pressure is on to take the Cats to their first grand final in over 50 years. When her star player, Clancy Kennedy, quits on the eve of the finals, something doesn’t stack up. Clem’s a tough negotiator, used to getting her own way—but when she sets out to win Clancy back, she uncovers a deadly conspiracy that puts them both in danger. Solving the mystery could end in the exposure of her shameful secret—but only if she survives to tell the tale..

Where the Dead Go by Sarah Bailey ($30, PB)

A 15-year-old girl has gone missing after a party. The following morning her boyfriend is found brutally murdered. Was the girl responsible for the murder, or is she also a victim of the killer? The aftermath of a personal tragedy finds police detective Gemma Woodstock in the coastal town of Fairhaven with her son Ben in tow. She has begged to be part of a murder investigation so she can bury herself in work rather than taking the time to grieve & figure out how to handle the next stage of her life. As she searches for answers, and tries to overcome the hostility of her new colleagues, the mystery deepens & Gemma is increasingly haunted by a similar missing persons case she once worked on.

This Poison Will Remain by Fred Vargas ($33, PB)

After 3 elderly men are bitten by spiders, everyone assumes that their deaths are tragic accidents. But Inspector Adamsberg suspects there’s more to the case. It isn’t long before Adamsberg is investigating a series of rumours & allegations that take him to the south of France. Decades ago, at La Misericorde orphanage, shocking events took place involving the same species of spider—the recluse. For Adamsberg, these haunting crimes hold the key to proving that the 3 men were targeted by an ingenious serial killer. His team, however, is not convinced.

The Night of Rome by Bonini & de Cataldo ($33, PB)

Things are changing in Rome. The new Pope, determined to bring radical reform to the Vatican, proclaims an extraordinary Jubilee year, one ‘of Mercy.’ A new centre-left government replaces its disgraced predecessor. And with crime lynchpin Samurai in jail, his protégé Sebastiano Laurenti attempts to establish himself as the designated successor. But he must reckon not only with a new generation of enterprising gangsters & racketeers—out to carve for themselves a slice of the profits & opportunities offered by the major public works planned for the Jubilee—but also with ambitious newly elected politician, Chiara Visone.

The End of the Line by Gillian Galbraith ($20, PB)

After the death of leading haematologist Professor Anstruther, antiquarian book dealer Anthony Sparrow is tasked with clearing out his mansion of its books and papers. He soon begins to question the real circumstances of the old man’s death: was he in fact murdered, and if so, who was responsible? The answer might be found in the personal diaries and letters which Sparrow unearths. But as he closes in on the answer, the perspective suddenly shifts and everything which he was sure about dissolves into darkness and shadows.

Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman ($30, PB)

In 1966, Baltimore is a city of secrets. Madeline ‘Maddie’ Schwartz. has bolted from her marriage of almost 20 years, determined to make good on her youthful ambitions to live a passionate, meaningful life. Drawing on her own secrets, she helps Baltimore police find a murdered girl —assistance that leads to a job at the city’s afternoon newspaper, the Star. Working at the newspaper offers Maddie the opportunity to make her name, and she has found just the story to do it: a missing woman whose body was discovered in the fountain of a city park lake. Cleo Sherwood was a young African-American woman who liked to have a good time. No one seems to know or care why she was killed except Maddie.


The Second Sleep by Robert Harris ($33, PB)

1468. A young priest, Christopher Fairfax, arrives in a remote Exmoor village to conduct the funeral of his predecessor. The land around is strewn with ancient artefacts—coins, fragments of glass, human bones—which the old parson used to collect. Did his obsession with the past lead to his death? Fairfax becomes determined to discover the truth. Over the course of the next six days, everything he believes—about himself, his faith and the history of his world will be tested to destruction.

Gleebooks’ special price $29.99

From Here On, Monsters by Elizabeth Bryer

In a city locked in a kind of perpetual twilight, antiquarian bookseller Cameron Raybould accepts a very strange commission—the valuation of a rare codex. Although seemingly ancient, the codex tells of a modern mystery: an academic missing for eleven years. Stranger still, as finding the truth becomes ever more of an obsession, Cameron begins to notice frightening lapses in memory. As if, all around, words, images, even people are beginning to fade from sight. As if unravelling the riddle of this book may be unravelling the nature of reality itself. And something frightening and unknown is taking its place. ($30, PB)

A Grave for Two by Anne Holt ($30, PB)

Selma Falck’s personal life & career as a lawyer have hit rock bottom. Then Hege Chin Morell—Norway’s best female skier—asks her to help overturn a doping charge—with only 2 months to the Winter Olympics. However, when a male skier is found dead after a training accident, it becomes clear to Selma that there is something more serious at risk. Encountering corruption, hidden enmity & shady connections, the pattern of recent crimes & ancient sins becomes undeniable.

See You at the Toxteth: The best of Cliff Hardy, and Peter Corris on Crime ($30, PB) This selection of stories cover Cliff Hardy’s early cases that often leave him as battered as his Falcon to the older, wiser Hardy who uses his head more than his fists, but the cases are as tricky as ever and Hardy’s clients lead him to the murkiest surroundings. This collection also includes a selection of Corris’ columns on the world of crime & crime writing, along with his ABC of Crime Writing which gives a fascinating insight into Corris’ vast knowledge of the genre.

Beyond Reasonable Doubt by Gary Bell ($30, PB)

Elliot Rook is a highly successful old Etonian QC—but in fact, he is an ex-petty criminal with a past that he has spent decades keeping secret. An unidentified young woman of Middle Eastern origin has been found murdered on the outskirts of Rook’s home town. Billy Barber a violent football hooligan & white-supremacist is accused of her murder. Barber insists that Rook must defend him. If Rook refuses, Barber will expose him, bringing crashing to the ground the life & career that Rook has spent his life building.

The Cabin by Jorn Lier Horstrg ($33, PB)

Politician Bernhard Clausen has been found dead in his cabin on the Norwegian coast. The police discover a piece of explosive information which could put the whole nation’s future at risk. In a frantic search for answers they discover a web of lies which conceal the secrets to a series of cold cases. The police soon realise that to uncover the truth these cases need to be solved. And quickly. Chief Inspector William Wisting, together with Kripos investigator Adrian Stiller, delve into Clauren’s past and soon find that his interests lay less in Norway’s political world, and more in its dark, and deadly, criminal underbelly.

The Colours of Murder by Ali Carter ($20, PB)

Flirtatious American blonde, Miss Hailey Duke, should never have accepted a summer weekend invitation to Fontaburn Hall—especially since she’s the only of the Hon. Archibald Cooke Wellingham’s gentrified house party dead. With the aid of well-mannered DCI Reynolds, Sergeant Ayari & loyal friend Dr Toby Cropper, Susie Mahl, on a timely commission drawing 6 racehorses nearby, seizes the opportunity to play detective for a 2nd time. Her artist’s eye for detail make her ideally suited to the task in hand, but is she getting carried away by her previous triumph, possibly endangering her reputation & her burgeoning relationship with Toby?

Bad Day at the Vulture Club by Vaseem Khan

The Parsees are among the oldest, most secretive & most influential communities in the city: respected, envied & sometimes feared. When prominent industrialist Cyrus Zorabian is murdered on holy ground, his body dumped inside a Tower of Silence—where the Parsee dead are consumed by vultures—the police dismiss it as a random killing. But his daughter is unconvinced. Inspector Chopra (& his elephant sidekick), uneasy at entering this world of power & privilege, is soon plagued by doubts about the case. But murder is murder. And in Mumbai, wealth & corruption go in hand in hand, inextricably linking the lives of both high and low. ($33, PB)

True Crime

Griffith Review 65: Crimes and Punishments (ed) Ashley Hay ($28, PB)

What is it about crime stories that make people hunger for them? The volume of content produced in these genres—from the pages of mysteries & thrillers to audio & visual dramas & reconstructions—hints at a primal & deeply ingrained fascination with the darker side of human nature. While crime fiction has long held appeal for the reading public, the ways that crimes play out in the real world are often more complex, compelling & shocking than the most complicated imagined plots. Griffith Review 65 tells stories of reform & possibility from inside our institutions, from the greatest to the smallest of their participants. Contributors include Matthew Condon, Gideon Haigh, Kristina Olsson, Behrouz Boochani & Omid Rofighian, Amy McQuire, Ross Hommel, Sally Piper, Cathy McLennan, Bill Wilkie & Paul Mazerolle.

Gangland This Unsporting Life by James Morton & Susanna Lobez ($30, PB)

Sport has always attracted organised crime. Huge sums of money are wagered in every arena, and rorts, swindles & unsporting behaviour have shadowed players of all codes. Plenty of punters have criminal connections, and drugs play a major part on & off the fields of play, with horses and greyhounds also routinely doped. James Morton & Susanna Lobez investigate the cheating underbelly of sport, from the first cricket pitch invasion in the 1890s to today’s scandals that will leave you wondering if there is such a thing as a sporting chance.

Kingdom of Lies by Kate Fazzini ($40, HB)

There is a global war going on between hackers, security specialists & law enforcement personnel. The targets can be anyone from a global corporation to a randomly selected person. From Vladimir Putin’s national hacking policy, to cybercrime villages like Ramnicu Valcea in Eastern Europe, to China’s intellectual property theft campaigns, these are the true stories of the hackers behind some of the largest cyberattacks in history, and those committed to stopping them. Kate Fazzini has met the hackers that create new cyberweapons, develop ransomware that can stop global companies in their tracks, and produce digital campaigns that sway popular opinion around the world. A fast-paced look at the technological innovations that were mere fantasy only a few years ago, but now make up an integral part of all our lives.

Indecent Advances: A Hidden History of True Crime and Prejudice Before Stonewall by James Polchin ($35, HB)

Indecent Advances is a skilful hybrid of true crime & social history that examines the often-coded portrayal of crimes against gay men in the decades before Stonewall. James Polchin shows how homosexuals were criminalised, and their murders justified, in the popular imagination from 1930s ‘sex panics’ to Cold War fear of Communists & homosexuals in government. He shows the vital that role crime stories played in ideas of normalcy & deviancy, and how those stories became tools to discriminate against & harm gay men. Featuring characters such as J. Edgar Hoover, Kerouac, Burroughs, Patricia Highsmith, James Baldwin, Alan Ginsberg & Gore Vidal Polchin investigates how queer men navigated a society that criminalised them, showing how this discrimination was ultimately transformed by gay rights activists before Stonewall, & exploring its resonances up to & including the policing of Gianni Versace’s death in 1997.

Infamy: The Crimes of Ancient Rome by Jerry Toner ($35, HB)

From its brutal games to its depraved emperors, its violent mobs to its ruthless wars, Rome resounds down the centuries like a scream in an alley. Jerry Toner conducts a detective’s hunt to discover the extent of Rome’s crimes. From the sexual peccadillos of Tiberius & Nero to the chances of getting burgled if you left your apartment unguarded (pretty high, especially if the walls were thin enough to knock through) he leaves no stone unturned in his quest to bring the Eternal City to book. Meet a gallery of villains, high & low. Discover the problems that most exercised its long-suffering citizens. Explore the temptations of excess & find out what desperation can make a pleb do.

A Woman Like Her: The Short Life of Qandeel Baloch by Sanam Maher ($30, PB)

A beautiful woman in winged eyeliner and a low-cut top lies on a bed urging her favourite cricketer to win the next match. In another post, she pouts at the camera from a hot tub. She posts a selfie with a cleric, wearing his cap at a jaunty angle. Her posts are viewed millions of times & the comments beneath them are full of hate. They call her Pakistan’s Kim Kardashian, they say she’ll do anything for attention. When she’s murdered, they’re transfixed by the footage of her body. Drawing on interviews & in-depth research, Sanam Maher pieces together Qandeel’s life from the village where she grew up in the backwaters of rural Pakistan, to her stint in a women’s shelter after escaping her marriage, to her incarnation as a social media sensation & the Muslim world’s most unlikely feminist icon.


Becoming Beauvoir: A Life by Kate Kirkpatrick ($40, HB)

Simone de Beauvoir’s unconventional relationships inspired & scandalised her generation. A philosopher, writer & feminist icon, she won prestigious literary prizes & transformed the way we think about gender with The Second Sex. But despite her successes, she wondered if she had sold herself short. Her liaison with Jean-Paul Sartre has been billed as one of the most legendary love affairs of the 20th century. But for Beauvoir it came at a cost—for decades she was dismissed as an unoriginal thinker who ‘applied’ Sartre’s ideas. Kate Kirkpatrick draws on never-before-published diaries & letters to tell the fascinating story of how Simone de Beauvoir became herself.

Arab, Australian, Other ($33, PB) (eds) Randa Abdel-Fattah & Sarah Saleh

Although there are 22 separate Arab nationalities representing an enormous variety of cultural backgrounds & experiences, the portrayal of Arabs in Australia tends to range from homogenising (at best) to racist pop-culture caricatures. Randa Abdel-Fattah, activist and poet Sara Saleh, Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Ruby Hamad & Paula Abood, among many others explore the experience of living as a member of the Arab diaspora in Australia with stories of family, ethnicity, history, grief, isolation, belonging & identity.

A Lot with a Little by Tim Costello ($45, HB)

Tim Costello explores the people & experiences that have shaped him into a socially active fighter for the world’s most challenging issues. Tracing each defining stage of his life he untangles his ongoing struggle to align his self-perceptions with his choices & what his life represents. More than a simple life story, this is a book about individual & community, public & private, spiritual & material, equality & liberty—and faith and its power to sustain in the face of the world’s big issues.

Jack Charles: Born-again Blakfella ($35, PB)

Stolen from his mother & placed into institutional care when he was only a few months old, Uncle Jack was raised under the government’s White Australia Policy. The loneliness & isolation he experienced during those years had a devastating impact on him that endured long after he reconnected with his Aboriginal roots & discovered his stolen identity. Even today he feels like an outsider; a loner; a fringe dweller. In this honest & no-holds-barred memoir, Uncle Jack reveals the ‘ups & downs of this crazy, drugged up, locked up, fucked up, and at times unbelievable, life’. From his sideline as a cat burglar, battles with drug addiction & stints in prison, to gracing the nation’s stages & screens.

Tastes of Honey: The Making of Shelagh Delaney & a Cultural Revolution by Selina Todd

On 27 May 1958, A Taste of Honey opened in a small fringe theatre in London. Written by a 19 year-old bus driver’s daughter from Salford, the play would blow Britain open & expose a deeply polarised society. It would also make its young author a star. As PM Harold Macmillan was telling people they had ‘never had it so good’, the play illuminated the lives of the millions left to languish in Britain’s slums. Shelagh Delaney’s life & work reveal why women of her generation were provoked to challenge the world they’d grown up in. Exploding old certainties about class, sex and taste, Delaney blazed a new path—redefining what art could be. ($40, HB)

On Drugs by Chris Fleming ($29.95, PB)

Philosopher by training, Chris Fleming explores his experience of drug addiction. Combining a meticulous observation of his life with a keen sense of the absurdity of his actions, he describes the intricacies of drug use & acquisition, their impact on the intellect & emotions, and the chaos that emerges as his tightly managed existence unravels into arrests, hospitalisations & family breakdown. He also reflects on his childhood when he developed acute OCD & became fixated on martial arts, music-making & bodybuilding. In confronting the pathos & comedy of drug use, hiss memoir also opens out into meditations on the self & its deceptions, on popular culture, religion & mental illness, and the tortuous path to recovery.

Interior by Thomas Clerc ($27, PB)

Composed of bite-size vignettes, remembrances & digressions, and filled with lighthearted transitions from pure description to quirky reminiscence & back, this meticulous tour through the rooms of Thomas Clerc’s small Parisian apartment reveals fascinating insights into the his obsessions, desires & frustrations. Each space is described in painstaking detail, sometimes down to the centimetre, and the history of every object and appliance & strata of his existence as a bourgeois city dweller approaching middle age is fully excavated with self-deprecating wit. Playful and irreverent, as well as a sly commentary on materialism, Interior finds drama in the domestic and dark humour in every doomed attempt to express individuality through the things that we own.



Major Thomas by Greg Growden ($30, HB)

Major Thomas, the bush lawyer drafted at the last minute to defend Breaker Morant and his Australian co-defendants, is invariably depicted either as a hero or an incompetent fool—Greg Growden attempts to unravel the truth about the lawyer & soldier who returned from South Africa a broken man. Before the Boer War Thomas had been a pillar of his community. He was a published poet, newspaper proprietor, lawyer and decorated soldier, but defending Breaker Morant became the defining episode of his life. The former ‘King of Tenterfield’ endured a stunning fall from grace, slipping into bankruptcy & imprisonment—ending his days as an eccentric recluse, his life ruined by the ignominy & frustration of finding himself on the wrong side of history. Seen as a footnote in diverging historical arguments, Growden offers Thomas proper hearing, long overdue.

The Way through the Woods: Of mushrooms & mourning by Long Litt Woon ($35, HB)

When Long Litt Woon loses her husband of 32 years to an unexpected death, she is utterly bereft. An immigrant in his country, in losing the love of her life she has also lost her compass & her passport to society. For a time, she is stuck, aimless, disoriented. It is only when she wanders off deep into the woods with mushroom hunters & is taught there how to see clearly what is all around her, and learn how to make distinctions, take educated risks & hear all the different melodies in Nature’s chorus, that she returns to living—and it is mushrooms which guide her back. In this book, she describes how they saved her, and how they might save you.

The Millionaire Castaway by Dave Glasheen

Losing his fortune in the stock market crash of 1987 was the final straw for Dave Glasheen. Opting out of the rat race, he cast himself away to a deserted island off the north-east tip of Australia and has lived there ever since. One annual supermarket shop, a sketchy internet connection & enough ingredients for a home brew are all he needs. He catches fish, traps rainwater & cooks on an open fire. For company he tames dingoes, meets with friends from the Aboriginal community 40 kilometres away, and entertains drop-ins such as Russell Crowe sailing past on his honeymoon or the chairman of McDonald’s on a game-fishing trip. Then there’s his running feud with Boxhead, an antisocial saltwater crocodile who just won’t leave him in peace. ($33, PB)

Poster Boy: A Memoir of Art and Politics by Peter Drew ($30, PB)

Peter Drew’s posters are a familiar sight across Australia—his ‘Real Australians Say Welcome’ & ‘Aussie’ campaigns took on lives of their own, attaining cult status & starting conversations all over the country. But who made them, and why? In this memoir, Peter Drew searches for the answers to these questions. He traces the links between his creative & personal lives, and discovers surprising parallels between Australia’s dark, unacknowledged past & the unspoken conflict at the core of his own family.

Offcuts by Patrick Hartigan ($25, PB)

Artist Patrick Hartigan recalls the weeks leading to his father’s death & his daughter’s birth. The people he meets, the places he visits, even the objects he touches for a moment, take on a radiance usually seen in artworks we admire. Part visual memoir, part meditation on the colours & contours of life’s events, Offcuts reveals the substance of seemingly mundane moments. With stylistic precision & unreserved sincerity, Hartigan has created a work of art akin to Knausgaard’s My Struggle—the difference being that he has distilled his raw material.

The Gap: An Australian paramedic’s summer on the edge by Benjamin Gilmour ($35, PB)

Benjamin Gilmour has been a paramedic for the past twenty years. He has seen his fair share of drama. But the summer of 2008 remains etched in his memory for the very worst reasons. Gilmour recounts the call-outs that summer—some dangerous, some gruesome, some downright ridiculous. And we meet fellow paramedic John who, they say, can get a laugh out of everyone except the dead. This is a vivid portrait of the lead-up to Christmas; an unflinching, no-holds-barred look at what happens after the triple-zero call is made—the drugs, nightclubs, brothels, drunk rich kids, billionaires, domestic disputes, the elderly, emergency births, even a kidnapping. Patients share their innermost feelings, and we witness their loneliness, their despair and their hopes.

Shame On Me by Tessa McWatt ($30, PB)

‘What are you?’ Tessa McWatt knows first-hand that the answer to this question, often asked of people of colour by white people, is always more complicated than it seems. In Shame On Me she unspools all the interwoven strands of her inheritance, and knits them back together using additional fibres from literature & history to strengthen the weave of her refabricated tale. She dismantles her own body & examines it piece by piece to build a devastating & incisively subtle analysis of the race debate as it now stands, in this beautifully written exploration of who and what we truly are.

On the Red Hill: Where Four Lives Fell Into Place by Mike Parker ($40, HB)

In early 2006, Mike Parker & his partner Peredur were witnesses at the first civil partnership ceremony in the small Welsh town of Machynlleth. The celebrants were their friends Reg & George, who had moved to deepest rural Wales in 1972, not long after the decriminalisation of homosexuality. When Reg & George died within a few weeks of each other in 2011, Mike & Peredur discovered that they had been left their home—a whitewashed ‘house from the children’s stories’, buried deep within the hills. They had also been left a lifetime’s collection of diaries, photographs, letters & books, all revealing an extraordinary history. This is the story of Rhiw Goch, ‘the Red Hill’, and its inhabitants, but also the story of a remarkable rural community and a legacy that extends far beyond bricks & mortar.

A funny, bittersweet Australian story for fans of The Castle

Funny Man: Mel Brooks by Patrick McGilligan

Patrick McGilligan navigates the epic ride that has been Mel Brooks’ life story, from his childhood in Williamsburg tenements to his breakthrough in early television—working alongside Sid Caesar & Carl Reiner—to Hollywood & Broadway peaks (and valleys). Funny Man offers a meditation on the Jewish immigrant culture that influenced Brooks, snapshots of the golden age of comedy, behind-the-scenes revelations about the celebrated shows & films, and a telling look at the four-decade romantic partnership with actress Anne Bancroft that superseded Brooks’s troubled first marriage. McGilligan lays bare the strengths and drawbacks that shaped Brooks’s psychology, his willpower, his persona, and his comedy, delivering a great man’s unforgettable life story & an anatomy of the American dream of success. ($70, HB)

Fay Wray & Robert Riskin: A Hollywood Memoir by Victoria Riskin ($53, HB)

Fay Wray starred in more than 120 pictures, received an Academy Award & was directed by such masters as William Wellman, Erich von Stroheim & Vincente Minnelli. Her husband Robert Riskin, was one of Hollywood’s seminal screenwriters—his sophisticated stage plays & screen comedies became famous for their blend of humour & romance, wisecracking & idealism. Winner of the Academy Award for It Happened One Night & nominated for four other Oscars, Riskin was a producer & longtime collaborator with Frank Capra on such pictures as Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Lost Horizon, You Can’t Take It with You & Meet John Doe. Their daughter, Victoria Riskin, a former president of the Writers Guild of America West, tells the story of their lives, their work, their Hollywood, their fairy-tale marriage that ended so tragically.

Travel Writing

The Oarsmen by Scott Patterson ($35, PB)

At the end of WW1 there were 270,000 demobilised Australian soldiers in Europe. Getting them home after the Armistice was a task of epic proportions that would take more than 2 years. In the meantime, how to keep these disgruntled, damaged men with guns occupied? In a word: sport. Scott Patterson tells the story of the servicemen who survived the war to row for the coveted King’s Cup at the 1919 Royal Henley Peace Regatta. Competing against crews from the US, New Zealand, France, the UK & Canada, the Australians were a ragtag bunch of oarsmen thrown in an old-fashioned boat & expected to race. Many had seen the worst of the action during the war at Gallipoli & the Western Front, and carried scars both physical & psychological. The baggage they brought to the boat would soon threaten to capsize the whole endeavour.

Paris and Other Disappointments by Adam Rozenbachs ($35, PB)

Sick of going overseas & enjoying himself, comedian Adam Rozenbachs decided he would take his father on the trip of a lifetime to Europe. For his dad, it was a chance to return to the place he hadn’t seen since fleeing post-war Germany. For Adam, a chance to repay his dad for everything he’d given him in life. After 3 weeks of travel, Adam decided not killing his dad was more than enough repayment. Frustration reached a whole new level as Adam discovered his dad didn’t like museums, galleries, landmarks, travelling, or Paris. God, he hated Paris. But amid the irritation of travelling with an adult toddler (an adoddler), Adam learned—through gritted teeth—more about his dad, his family & himself. .

The Joy of High Places by Patti Miller ($33, PB) Patti Miller tells the story of her own long-distance walking over hundreds of kilometres in Europe & of her brother’s obsession with paragliding. As adults, a tragic accident changes their relationship. One day, Barney’s wing collapses & he plummets to earth, breaking his spine. The story of his struggle to walk again intersects with Patti’s long-distance journeys, creating an intense narrative of determination & triumph. For Patti, walking is a radical act—a return to what has made us all human—that bestows a connection to wild nature & to creativity itself. But as she listens to her pragmatic & methodical brother tell his story, she learns that flying is his door to untrammelled joy too. She realises that she is ‘meeting’ him for the very first time.

This is a book for every person with a bank account.


The Crow Eaters: A journey through South Australia by Ben Stubbs ($30, PB)

Combining his own travel across the million-square km of SA with an investigation of its history, Ben Stubbs seeks to find out what the state is really like. In the spirit of the best travel writing & literary non-fiction, he lingers in places of quiet beauty & meets some memorable people. Along the way he debunks most of the clichés that plague the state. Travelling to Maralinga, Ceduna, Kangaroo Island, the Flinders Ranges, Coober Pedy, the storied Adelaide suburb of Elizabeth & the once-mighty river that is the Murray, Stubbs brings this diverse state to life.

Holidays and High Society: The Golden Age of Travel by Lucinda Gosling ($38, PB)

In the 19th century, the phenomenon of ‘going abroad’ was born. Beautiful Mediterranean towns, luxurious spas of Mittel-Europe & the golf courses of France became the playground of the idle wealthy. These picturesque towns & smart hotels catered to an elite mix of royalty, celebrities & high society. Lucinda Gosling traces the growth of some of Europe’s most exclusive & desirable holiday destinations from Monte Carlo to Maidenhead, Biarritz to St Moritz, and explores the lives of the privileged holidaymakers who travelled there.

Epic Runs of the World by Lonely Planet

In this comprehensive runner’s companion, you’ll find 50 of the world’s greatest running routes—from short city runs and mustdo marathons to cross-country trails and challenging ultras— plus a further 150 courses around the globe to satisfy runners of all abilities. ($44, HB) Also out from Lonely Planet this month:

Epic Bike Rides of the World—$29.95, PB Travel Goals: Inspiring Experiences to Transform Your Life—$35, HB The Little(r) Museums of Paris: An Illustrated Guide to the City’s Hidden Gems ($27, HB)

It is often Paris’ off-beat destinations hold the greatest treasures— so rather than travelling by neighbourhood, this charming guide explores the different types of institutions nestled within Paris, from time capsules like the Musée Nissim de Camondo to explorations of the world beyond the city limits, including the Institute of the Arab World. Peek behind the curtains of artists’ apartments & into the microscopes of collections of scientific oddities. Each entry has a description of the museum’s collection, as well as a short history, watercolour illustrations, and a miniature map.


books for kids to young adults

picture books

Storm & Sun by Sam Usher ($17, PB)

Joey and Riley by Mandy Foot ($16, PB)

From the best tradition of children’s literature—books based in reality but that take a flying leap into fantasy—these two picture books are a celebration of different weathers, and where your imagination can take you. A little boy and his grandfather travel to the most unlikely places in both these books, the dynamic watercolour illustrations are full of fun details, with lots of colour and movement. There are also two other books in this series, Rain ($17, PB) and Snow Day ($20, HB), and they are both equally exciting. Louise

Joey lives on a farm with his mum, his grandad, and his best friend—Riley, a working dog. Joey & Riley are inseparable, but when Joey and his mum have to move to town so that she can find work the only way he can in touch with his beloved dog is through his grandad’s letters. Until the day Grandad writes to say Riley has gone missing in a big storm. Joey is devastated—but things might not be as they seem. Mandy Foot’s naturalistic illustrations beautifully capture Australian rural life.

non fiction

Hello, Horse ($17, PB) by Vivian French (ill) Catherine Rayner

In this Nature Storybook Vivian French & award-winning illustrator create a warm and witty introduction to horses— from the safety of the page! Children unfamiliar with, or a little nervous of, these large, beautiful creatures are introduced to Shannon, a friendly chestnut mare—the text giving practical tips like the right way to offer an apple, and explanations about their life cycle, and horse behaviour, like their need for company.

How to Save the Whole Stinkin’ Planet: A Garbological Adventure by Lee Constable (ill) James Hart ($20, PB)

Lee Constable dives into the rubbish bin, delves into landfill, rummages through the recycling and digs about in compost to give waste warriors in training an understanding of waste management and the impact their household rubbish is having on the (stinkin’) planet. Kids get to earn badges as they work their way through each chapter, completing activities, DIYs and eco-experiments.


6 to 8

The Race to Hornswaggle Rock by Ruth Quayle (ill) Philip Davenport ($17, PB)

Vic is from a family of pirates, and they are preparing to enter the Race to Hornswaggle Rock, the hardest, most dangerous pirate contest in the country. But the dastardly Captain Guillemot has stolen their ship and thrown their parents overboard. Together with siblings Bert and Maud, and annoyingly resourceful friends Arabella and George, Vic must come up with a plan to steal the ship back from their arch-enemy, join the race and win victory. But there are fearsome pirate crews, hungry sharks and some lovesick parrots in the way—will they be the rulers of the seven seas or the scurviest losers to ever walk the plank?

Hotel Flamingo by Alex Milway ($13, PB)

When young Anna inherits a dilapidated once-grand hotel from her Great Aunt Mathilde, she’s determined to restore it to its former glory. However, it turns out that all of her staff and guests are animals! But she rises to the challenge—and whether it’s a flamingo, a penguin or a hippo knocking at the door, she is ready to welcome them all, with the help of T Bear the doorman, Squeak the friendly mouse, and Lemmy the lemur receptionist. The first part of an enchanting four-book series featuring the adventures of Anna and her animal friends

I Am Still Alive by Kate Alice Marshall ($18, PB)

teen fiction

Jess hadn’t seen her survivalist, off-the-grid dad in over a decade. But after a car crash killed her mother and left her injured, she was forced to move to his cabin in the remote Canadian wilderness. Just as Jess was beginning to get to know him, a secret from his past paid them a visit, leaving her father dead and Jess stranded. With her cabin burned to the ground, she knows if she doesn’t act fast, the cold will kill her before she has time to worry about food. So with only her father’s dog for company, Jess must forage and hunt for food, build shelter, and keep herself warm. Some days it feels like the wild is out to destroy her, but she’s stronger than she ever imagined.

Once & Future by Amy Rose Capetta & Cori McCarthy ($17, PB)

Ari Helix has been an illegal immigrant in the galaxies for as long as she can remember. But when her spaceship crashes on Old Earth and she pulls a magic sword from an ancient willow, her destiny becomes set in stone. As the 42nd reincarnation of King Arthur she must save humanity from tearing itself apart, with only the help of an adolescent wizard named Merlin. This female king must battle for her right to be herself, take down totalitarian governments and unite the world. How hard could that be?


Baby Business by Jasmine Seymour ($25, HB)

Jasmine Seymour is a primary school teacher in the Hawkesbury area of NSW. She is also is a Darug woman and a descendant of Maria Lock, daughter of Yarramundi, the Boorooberongal Elder who had met Governor Phillip on the banks of the Hawkesbury in 1791—and her hope is that through her books, everyone will know that the Darug mob are still here, still strong. This book tells the story of the baby smoking ceremony that welcomes baby to country. The smoke is a blessing—it will protect the baby and remind them that they belong. Seymour tells this beautiful ritual in a way that young children will understand and relate to.

Beastly Puzzles: A Brain-Boggling Animal Guessing Game by Rachel Poliquin ($25, HB)

Rachel Poliquin’s concept is a spin on early natural histories, which introduced new animals by describing them as a hodgepodge of parts—eg a beaver was described as flounder, otter, goose feet, squirrel paws & a rabbit’s front teeth. Poliquin’s book asks children to guess which animal a given list of features makes. Clues like: ‘3 billiard balls,’ ‘dinosaur feet’ and ‘five feather dusters’ are further complicated by being presented in scenarios like a ‘gentlemen’s den’ or a spy submarine. Once the kids make a guess (or if they get stumped!), they can open the gatefold to reveal the animal, with each clue explained and lots of additional fascinating facts.


Vincent and the Grandest Hotel on Earth by Lisa Nicol ($17, PB)

8 to 12

Perched high on the snowy slopes of the Mabombo Ranges lies The Grandest Hotel on Earth. It’s wilder than the African savanna, more fantastical than Disneyland and more magical than Shangri-la. So when 11-year-old Vincent meets the hotel’s young Florence he sets off on a path leading into his most wondrous dreams. But of course, dreams have a funny way of taking strange and surprising turns and, before long, Vincent is torn between right and wrong, friendship and family and the most enticing of desires—to see into the future. A warning- this book includes insanely cute pocket dogs, travelling by llama or jet pack, chocolate fountains and shoes that play Bach.

Lizard’s Tale by Weng Wai Chan ($17, PB) In 1940 Singapore 12-year-old Lizard doesn’t know war is just around the corner. He lives in Chinatown above a tailor’s shop, surviving on his wits and hustling for odd jobs. When he steals a small teak box containing a Japanese code book from a Raffles Hotel suite, he finds himself mired in wartime spycraft. How is the mysterious book inside the box connected to his friend Lili, a girl full of secrets and fighting skills? Can he trust her, or will she betray him? To Night Owl from Dogfish by Holly Goldberg Sloan & Meg Wolizer ($17, PB)

Told as an email conversation by two 12 year old girls, Avery and Bett, this very contemporary book is like a modern day Parent Trap. Avery and Bett are the daughters of single (gay) fathers who are dating. At first they don’t know each other, and their fathers are trying to change that by sending them to the same Enrichment Summer Camp. Machinations by both the girls ensue, some of them very funny. Goldberg Sloan and Wolizer have succeeded in creating very different voices for the characters, and I’m finding them extremely credible. I would have loved this book when I was 9 or 10, I still enjoy rereading the original Parent Trap by Erich Kästner. Louise

Girl Geeks 1: The Hackathon ($15, PB) Girl Geeks 2: Game On by Alex Miles ($15, PB)

A Hack-a-what?! Hamsa doesn’t know anything about tech or coding! Can she & her team come up with the goods. Skateboarder & gamer Niki is the first to enter biggest esports tournament announced in her town—and it’s Game On. Get your geek on with this girl gang as they design, make, game, hack, code and more! This series was developed in partnership with Girl Geek Academy. https://girlgeekacademy.com/. Check it out and get your daughters coding, communicating and doing yoga! You don’t have to be white & pasty and live in the basement to master the hack!

Food, Health & Garden

Eat Like a Fish: My adventures as a fisherman turned restorative ocean farmer by Bren Smith

Former commercial fisherman turned restorative ocean farmer Bren Smith shares a bold new vision for the future of food: seaweed. Part memoir, part manifesto, through tales that span from his childhood in Newfoundland to his years on the high seas aboard commercial fishing trawlers, from pioneering new forms of ocean farming to surfing the frontiers of the food movement, Smith introduces the world of sea-based agriculture & advocates getting ocean vegetables onto our plates. He shows how we can transform our food system while enjoying delicious, nutritious, locally grown produce & how restorative ocean farming has the potential to create millions of new jobs & protect our planet. Also included are recipes from acclaimed chefs Brooks Headley & David Santos. ($30, PB)

The Good Fat Guide by David Gillespie ($25, PB)

Over the past century, manufactured seed oils—canola, sunflower and rice bran oil, among others—have systematically replaced saturated fats in our diet. Despite nutrition guidelines stating this is good thing, our rates of obesity, diabetes & heart disease are soaring. In fact, recent findings suggest that animal fats are not the villains we once thought them to be. As most processed foods—from breads & crackers to mayonnaise & pesto—contain seed oils, David Gillespie shows us how to identify these toxic products & make healthier choices at the supermarket. In this fully revised & updated edition of Toxic Oil he tells which brands to avoid, which to enjoy—and how to create seed-oil free versions of favourite foods at home.

The Jewish Cookbook by Leah Koenig

A true fusion cuisine, Jewish food evolves constantly to reflect the changing geographies & ingredients of its cooks. Featuring more than 400 recipes for everyday & holiday foods from the Middle East to the Americas, Europe, Asia, & Africa—as well as contemporary interpretations by renowned chefs including Yotam Ottolenghi, Michael Solomonov & Alex Raij—this definitive compendium of Jewish cuisine introduces readers to recipes & culinary traditions from Jewish communities the world over. ($65, HB)

All Day Cocktails: Low (and no) alcohol magic by Shaun Byrne & Nick Tesar ($35, HB)

Enjoy cocktails at any time of day with this collection of fresh, creative low- and no-alcohol recipes—showcasing nearly 50 varieties of citrus, berries, tropical fruits, stone fruits, pome fruits, vegetables, herbs & nuts. This book brings you 90 cocktail recipes + 50 prep recipes, including: bitters, caramels, cordials, coulis, granitas, honeys, jams, jellies, juices, kefirs, liqueurs, sherbets, shrubs, syrups, tisanes & vinegars.

Infused Waters: 50 Simple Drinks to Restore, Revive & Relax by Georgina Davies ($20, HB)

Georgina Davies offers 50 beautiful, healthy drinks that will help you get through the day’s challenges. With drinks designed for whether you want an reviving lift, a relaxing sip or a restorative burst of hydration, through these imaginative fruit infusions, herbal waters and spicy blends, you’ll find ways of adding a little vitamin C to your office bottle—and fruity and floral fragrance and delights to the dullest of drinks.

Apple: Recipes from the orchard by James Rich

Out this month $30 each paperback Tokyo for Food Lovers by Jonas Cramby Rome for Food Lovers by Peter Loewe Paris for Food Lovers by Elin Unnes also James Halliday Wine Companion 2020, ($40, PB) Grow Your Own Herbs: The 40 Best Culinary Varieties for Home Gardens by Belsinger & Tucker

Starting with basic gardening information—details on soil, watering, and potting—this book profiles of 40 herbs including popular varieties like basil, bay laurel, lemon verbena, tarragon, savoury, thyme, and more. It features tasting notes, cultivation information, and harvesting tips and includes instructions for preserving & storing, along with techniques for making delicious pastes, syrups, vinegar & butters. ($25, PB)

Veganissimo: Italian Vegan Cuisine by Angelique Roussel ($40, HB)

Italian cuisine is traditionally rich in products of animal origin. Veganissimo translates all the Italian classics into vegan alternatives. There are recipes for Antipasti: arancini, pizza-style muffins, artichoke cream with hazelnuts, olive spread & bruschetta. Tofu ragu, aubergine crumble, tempeh marengo, creamy polenta with mushrooms, seitan osso bucco & polpetti. Produce home-made egg-free pasta such as lasagne, lemon & almond spaghetti, carbonara & conchiglioni. Create your own vegan versions of mozzarella, ricotta, & mascarpone. As well as all the wonderful Italian dolce: lemon tiramisu, ice cream, cantucci, pannacotta & amaretti—every dish is sumptuously photographed.

History of Gardening in 50 Objects George Drower

The earliest record of an enclosed space around a homestead comes from 10,000 BCE and since then gardens of varying types and ambition have been popular throughout the ages. Whether ornamental, wild cottage gardens, container gardens blooming over unforgiving concrete or one turned over for growing produce, gardens exist in all shapes and sizes, in all manner of ways. Today we benefit from centuries of development, be it in cultivation of desirable blossom or larger fruits, in the technology to keep weeds and lawn at bay or even from garden visionaries who tore up rulebooks and cultivated pure creativity in their green spaces. Here George Drower takes 50 objects that have helped create the gardening scene we know today, exploring the history of beautiful, fruitful outside spaces in a truly unique way. With stunning botanical and archive images, and colourful photographs, this lavish volume is one no garden lover should be without. ($50, HB)

James Rich hails from apple country in Somerset, England, where his family own a cider farm. Apples, it could be said, are in his blood, this is a collection of over 90 of his best-loved recipes. Try your hand at a summery Crunchy apple, cherry & kale salad, a comforting Slow-roasted pork belly & pickled apple, and an Ultimate apple crumble, all washed down with a Cider & thyme cocktail. James uses whole apples as well as cider, apple juice, cider brandy & cider vinegar to add depth to his dishes. ($40, HB)

Veg: Easy & Delicious Meals for Everyone by Jamie Oliver ($50, HB)

Whether it’s embracing a meat-free day or two each week, living a vegetarian lifestyle, or just wanting to try some brilliant new flavour combinations, this book ticks all the boxes. Sharing simple tips & tricks that will excite the taste buds, and help keep people’s brains & mouths engaged, Jamie Oliver also gives people the confidence to up their veg intake & widen their recipe repertoire, safe in the knowledge that it’ll taste utterly delicious. From simple suppers & family favourites to weekend dishes for sharing with friends, this book is packed full of phenomenal food—pure & simple.

Marriage of Flavours: Four seasons of beautifully balanced food by Scott Pickett ($40, PB)

Sweet. Sour. Bitter. Salty. Spicy. Umami. Temperature. Texture. Inspired by the changing seasons, the abundance of quality Australian produce & the principle of 8 key flavour profiles, with this collection of 80 irresistible recipes Scott Pickering opens the door into his kitchen for a masterclass in putting together a dish or meal that’s perfectly balanced. From his interpretations of the classic combinations to more unusual pairings that bring unexpected sensory delight, these are dishes & ideas to help you find a new harmony in the way you cook.

TULUM: Modern Turkish Cuisine by Coskun Uysal ($50, HB)

Coskun Uysal is chef at Melbourne’s award winning restaurant, Tulum. Tulum takes traditional, usually Anatolian, recipes & gives them contemporary twists using modern techniques. Every 3 months Tulum’s menu moves to a different region of Turkey, and this handsome cookbook’s 7 chapters represent the 7 diverse regions of Turkey, each with their own seasonal ingredients, capturing the essence of Tulum’s delicious modern Turkish cuisine.

Miso, Tempeh, Natto & Other Tasty Ferments by Kirsten & Christopher Shockey ($45, PB)

This in-depth handbook offers accessible, step-by-step techniques for fermenting beans & grains in the home kitchen. With 50 recipes, they expand beyond the basic components of these traditionally Japanese protein-rich ferments to include not only soybeans & wheat, but also chickpeas, black-eyed peas, lentils, barley, sorghum, millet, quinoa & oats. Their ferments feature creative combinations such as ancient grains tempeh, hazelnut cocoa nibs tempeh, millet koji, sea island red pea miso & heirloom cranberry bean miso..Plus 50 additional recipes for using your ferments. 11


Events r Calenda



Don’t miss out! Sign up for gleemail! The gleebooks weekly email events update. asims@gleebooks.com.au




TUESDAY Coming in September

Wed.4: Jack Charles—Born-again Blakfella Thur. 5: Antony Loewenstein—Pills, Powder & Smoke Tue. 11: Brian Toohey—Secret: The Making of Australia’s Secur Thu. 12: Aimee Baird & Dr Karl—Sex in the Brain Fri. 13: John Maynard & Karen Menzies—The Aboriginal Socc for more events go to: http://www.gleebooks.com.au/bookin

Event—6 for 6.30 Adele Ferguson

Banking Bad in conv. with James Chessell Adele Ferguson tells the full story of the power imbalance, toxic culture and cover-ups uncovered by the Banking Royal Commission. She describes the long fight for justice by whistleblowers, victims and political mavericks, and she looks at the outcomes of the commission.



Event—6 for 6.30 Niki Savva

Plots & Prayers in conv. with Laura Jayes Niki Savva reveals the inside story of a bungled coup that overthrew the Liberal prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, and installed a surprise successor, Scott Morrison, who went on to take the party to a miraculous electoral victory.

—6 for 6.30 13 Launch Craig Campbell & Debra Hayes



Jean Blackburn: Education, feminism & social justice Launcher: Susan Ryan AO In Raewyn Connell’s summation, Jean Blackburn was ‘the most influential feminist educator in Australian history’. This book makes clear the profound influence Jean Blackburn had on Australian society.






Women in conv. with Dr When an Indian been absorbed int appeared one ni planation Megan understand the g implications of wa received, & emot drawn in t

14 Launch—

Jane G

The Politics of the Panel: Bronw & Tim Intr. by Stepha Jane Goodall asks ple of the common respond now to th structive effects of calls for a radicall my that will serve t

21 Launch—

Chris F

On D Launcher: Dr Combining a metic nographic observa and addictions, wi the absurd, Chris On Drugs opens ou cal meditations o popular culture


26 Event—6 for 6.30 Lee Kofman

Split in conv. with Kate Holden & Fiona Wright In this anthology of 18 personal essayssome of Australia’s most beloved writers reveal, for the first time, powerful, occasionally funny and often heartbreaking stories of significant endings and their aftermath.


27 Event—6 for 6.30 Suzanne Daniel

Allegra in Three Parts in conv. with Nicole Abadee Eleven-year-old Allegra shuttles between her grandmothers who live next door to one another—Matilde, all about discipline, duty & restraint; Joy,full of colour, possibility & emotion. Gambler, surfer, Rick lives in a flat out the back. And Allegra is caught between all three.

28 Launch—

Samia K

Australi Launcher: Prof. Australian desert with the ruins of old ning with a Bengal discovered in a 19t in Broken Hill, K gether the stories o colonised by the B chart a history of S

All events listed are $12/$9 concession. Book Launches are free. Gleeclub members free entry to events at 49 Glebe Pt Rd

August 2019

Events are held upstairs at #49 Glebe Point Road unless otherwise noted. Bookings—Phone: (02) 9660 2333, Email: events@gleebooks.com.au, Online: www.gleebooks.com.au/events




rity State

cer Tribe ngs

—6 for 6.30 n Stack



Event—6 for 6.30 Tim Costello

Launch—6 for 6.30 Lizzie O’Shea


Future Histories Launcher: Mary Kostakidis When we talk about technology we always talk about the future. Weaving together histories of computing and social movements with modern theories of the mind, society, and self, O’Shea constructs a ‘usable past’ that help us reclaim a democratic digital tomorrow.


Launch—6 for 6.30 Ben Gilmour


n’s Work r Elizabeth Hill nanny who had to her family, disight with no exStack vowed to global & personal ages paid, services tional boundaries the home.

A Lot with a Little in conv. with Melissa Doyle Tim Costello explores the people and experiences that have shaped him into a socially active fighter for the world’s most challenging issues. This is a book about individual & community, public & private, spiritual & material, equality & liberty, and the power of faith.

The Gap Benjamin Gilmour has been a paramedic for the past 20 years. In this riveting memoir, Gilmour recounts the call-outs, summer of 2008: some dangerous, some gruesome, some downright ridiculous. An unflinching, no-holds-barred look at what happens after the 000 call is made.

—6 for 6.30 Goodall

15 Launch—6 for 6.30




24 Launch—6 for 6.30

e Common Good wen Morgan m Hollo anie Dowrick s does the princins offer us ways to he increasingly def neoliberalism & ly different econothe common good.

Scott Patterson

The Oarsmen The Oarsmen tells the story of the servicemen who survived WWI to row for the coveted King’s Cup at the 1919 Royal Henley Peace Regatta— and how The baggage they brought to the boat would soon threaten to capsize the whole endeavour.

—6 for 6.30 Fleming


—6 for 6.30 Khatun

29 Launch—6 for 6.30

Jannali Jones

Drugs r Alex Wodak culous, almost ethation of his own life ith a keen sense of stopher Fleming’s ut into philosophion time, religion, e and the body.

ianama . Penny Russell ts remain dotted d mosques. Beginli poetry collection th century mosque Khatun weaves toof various peoples British Empire to Sth Asian diaspora.

My Father’s Shadow aya is completing her HSC when her mother wakes her in the middle of the night—to pack and head to the Blue Mountains. Her father is involved in a court case giving evidence against some dangerous criminals. A thrilling story which stays on the edge right to the end.

Jason Goldsmith

Surfing for England: Our Lost Socceroos Launcher: Frank Farina This book looks at the players who might have or could have played for Australia but who didn’t, and those who had to fight to do so in the landmark FIFA ruling known as the ‘Cahill Rule’.

30 Launch—6 for 6.30 Raghid Nahhas

No One Knows My Name/ The Cities Launcher: Deborah Ruiz Wall OAM A collection of poetry by Australian/ Iraqi poet Khalid al-Hilli in Arabic & English and a selection of poetry from the 5 poetry collections published by the Australian/Lebanese poet, journalist, singer & oud player Ghassan Alameddine. Translations, design & photos by Raghid Nahhas



Granny’s Good Reads

with Sonia Lee

The name Robyn Ravlich is well known to all lovers of ABC radio as a creative broadcaster for such productions as The Listening Room, Into the Music, Earshot, and her award-winning documentary on asylum seekers On the Raft, All at Sea. Now retired after 35 years with the ABC, she has written a delightful memoir which is part autobiographical, but mainly a description of the glory days of radio from the 70s to the present more straitened times. Her father Nick was a migrant from Dalmatia who married an Australian and settled in a Croatian enclave in Broken Hill where he worked as a miner. With a loving extended family and supportive teachers, Robyn did well at school and won a scholarship to Sydney University, where she flourished, writing poetry and giving poetry readings. It was then a natural progression to the ABC, where she was mentored by Allan Ashbolt and produced many innovative radio features and documentaries. I enjoyed her nostalgia trip through years of brilliant programs such as John Hinde’s The Week in Film, the early Boyer Lectures, and Chatwinesque, RN’s classic doco about Bruce Chatwin. There’s also a marvellous chapter on the making of her program on Halley’s Comet and Van Gogh’s Starry Night. With husband Mark Aarons she now lives on the NSW South Coast. Since retiring she’s produced for Earshot the touching 2018 program Robert Manne’s Voice. Her book is Skywriting: Making Radio Waves, a neat paperback with a good index, many photographs and audio links to selected programs. It’s a valuable resource and will surely become a classic. My second good read this month is Judith Brett’s From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage. Brett thinks we have a good electoral system, better in some respects than those of many other democracies. We have compulsory, preferential voting and independent electoral authorities administering it. This tends to make parties seek the middle ground, which seems better than having a bunch of crazies at either end of the spectrum playing to minority ‘bases’ (though some might doubt this post-2019). We’ve inherited paper ballots and pencils to write on them because pens and inkwells slowed things down, as well as divided booths to speed the process up a bit. In 1894 women in South Australia won the right to stand for parliament as well as the right to vote, a world first. The 1902 Electoral Act extended the vote to all Australian women, but denied it to Aboriginals. (It would take another 60 years before Aboriginal people had their vote restored.) In 1924 voting was made compulsory. Brett pays tribute to all the men and women who worked to bring about our exemplary voting system and her book is a must read. Tikka Molloy is 11 when her friends Hannah, Cordelia and Ruth Van Apfel vanish from a school concert one hot night in 1992. Tikka is still haunted by their disappearance when she returns from Baltimore twenty years later, after her sister Laura phones to say she has just been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Felicity McClean’s novel The Van Apfel Girls are Gone has been described as Picnic at Hanging Rock for a new generation. It’s full of suspense and some genuinely creepy moments as McClean skilfully depicts the rituals of adolescent girls at school and at play. Young Tikka’s voice is completely authentic as she observes situations and overhears conversations that make more sense to the reader than to her, smart and precocious though she is. This novel is part thriller and part coming-of-age story and I greatly enjoyed it. Now for some hearty metaphysics, first with Scott G. Bruce’s The Penguin Book of Hell. Bruce, a professor at Fordham, was once a gravedigger, so comes to his task not wholly unprepared. The good old-fashioned hell was a place of punishment in the afterlife. Bruce begins with the Greek underworld, whose jailers were Tartarus (for baddies) and Hades (for mums and dads), which extra-special humans like Odysseus and Aeneas could visit in order to make small talk with the spectral dead. The Jews had their own version in Sheol, which Christ was said to have ‘harrowed’ after the Crucifixion. Hades and Sheol had been, at best, boring, but the Christians livened them up with fire, of which harrowing (no pun) accounts are given in the Gospel of Nicodemus, Dante’s Inferno and other graphic medieval narratives. But why obsess about the afterlife when we have hells right here in our Treblinkas, Guantanamos, death rows and even, as Sartre says, other people? A somewhat jollier read is God: A Human History by Reza Aslan, whose topics are old-time monotheism and polytheism. The God of Israel, says Aslan, is a by-product of El, the gentle Canaanite god, and Yahweh, the martial god of the Midianites. He goes on to illuminate the Christian doctrine of the Trinity and ends with Allah, the stern but merciful desert god of Islam. Aslan’s book is an international bestseller and deservedly so. Sonia


Australian Studies

The Wooleen Way: Renewing an Australian resource by David Pollock ($35, PB)

Through retelling the struggle of his family amid droughts, financial ruin, depression & death, David Pollock exposes the modernday realities of managing a remote outback station. Forced by a sense of moral responsibility, he set out on an uncharted course to restore the 153,000 hectares of degraded leasehold land that he felt he was obliged to manage on behalf of the Australian people. Then, just at the point when that course seemed certain to fail, the project was saved by the generosity & faith of everyday Australians. This is an urgent story of political irresponsibility, bureaucratic obstinacy, industrial monopolisation, and, above all, ecological illiteracy in a vast segment of the Australian continent. Yet it is also a story of the extraordinary ability of the natural environment to repair itself, given the chance.

Changing Fortunes: A History of the Australian Treasury by Paul Tilley ($45, PB)

Treasury has been at the centre of every major economic policy issue the Australian Government has faced, its role evolving from the government’s bookkeeper at Federation in 1901 to the economic policy advising agency it is today. Throughout its history Treasury has been a robust & stable institution with a consistent marketoriented economic framework—but its policy influence has waxed & waned. It has supported reformist Treasurers such as Keating & Costello, and been a voice of caution when political imperatives have pushed governments down economically damaging paths. Amidst the political chaos of recent times, Treasury has been dragged closer to government & become a less effective policy adviser. The consequent lack of a consistent government economic reform narrative over the last decade is plain for all to see. Paul Tilley tracks Treasury’s history since Federation, with a focus on the modern era since its 1976 split with Finance.

Songspirals: Sharing women’s wisdom of Country through songlines by Laklak Burarrwaŋa et al

Aboriginal Australian cultures are the oldest living cultures on earth and at the heart of Aboriginal cultures is song. These ancient narratives of landscape have often been described as a means of navigating across vast distances without a map, but they are much, much more than this. Songspirals are sung by Aboriginal people to awaken Country, to make and remake the life-giving connections between people and place. Songspirals are radically different ways of understanding the relationship people can have with the landscape. For Yolngu people from North East Arnhem Land, women and men play different roles in bringing songlines to life, yet the vast majority of what has been published is about men’s place in songlines. Songspirals is a rare opportunity for outsiders to experience Aboriginal women’s role in crying the songlines in a very authentic and direct form. ($35, PB)

Don Dunstan: The visionary politician who changed Australia by Angela Woollacott ($33, PB) As Premier of South Australia, Don Dunstan blazed a trail of reform—his influence reaching far beyond his home state. Angela Woollacott recounts how he battled Adelaide’s conservative establishment to win office for Labor, and then pioneered Aboriginal land rights, abolished the death penalty, supported women’s rights, relaxed censorship & drinking laws & decriminalised homosexuality. He worked against the White Australia Policy, and was an ardent supporter of the arts & food. Although he was much loved by the public, Dunstan’s career was marked by controversy & vilification—his life story illustrates just what a watershed era the 1960s & 70s were in Australia, and to see how one small state could, for a time, lead a nation.

That Was My Home: Voices from the Noongar Camps in Fremantle and the Western Suburbs by Denise Cook ($30, PB)

This book explores the hidden histories of the Noongar camps around Fremantle, Swanbourne & Shenton Park in the suburbs of Perth along the Swan River. The focus is the 1930s, 1940s & 1950s, a time when many Noongar people lived with their families in camps. The voices of Noongar people, juxtaposed with information from the archives, photographs & stories from others in the community, tell of life in the camps, work, cross-cultural tensions & friendships. Together they give a greater understanding of the shared histories of our suburbs. Denise Cook followed Aboriginal cultural protocols in obtaining permission to include stories, photos & other information.

James Hardy Vaux’s 1819 Dictionary of Criminal Slang (ill) Simon Barnard ($30, PB) In the early 1800s magistrates in the Australian colonies were often frustrated by the language used by reoffending convicts to disguise their criminal activities and intensions. Convict clerk James Hardy Vaux came up with a useful idea- a dictionary of slang and other terms used by convicts. And so, in 1819, he compiled what was to be Australia’s first published dictionary. Boost your vocab with colourful terms like: flesh-bag (a shirt), knuckle (to pickpocket), ruffles (handcuffs), wrinkle (a lie) and many more.

The Politics of the Common Good: Dispossession in Australia by Jane R. Goodall ($33, PB)

‘The Earth is a Common Treasury’, proclaimed the English Revolutionaries in the 1640s. Does the principle of the commons offer us ways to respond now to the increasingly destructive effects of neoliberalism? Jane Goodall argues that as the ravages of neo-liberalism tear ever more deeply into the social fabric, the principle of the commons should be restored to the heart of our politics. She looks in particular at land & public institutions in Australia & elsewhere. Many ordinary citizens seem prepared to support governments that increase national debt while selling off publicly owned assets & cutting back on services. In developed countries, extreme poverty is becoming widespread yet we are told we have never been so prosperous. This important book calls for a radically different kind of economy, one that will truly serve the common good.

Banking Bad: How Corporate Greed and Broken Governance Failed Australia by Adele Ferguson

Few people were more instrumental in bringing about the royal commission into the banking & financial services industries than journalist Adele Ferguson. She pursued the truth about funds mismanagement, fraud, lack of probity, and the hard-sell culture that took over the finance industry after deregulation in the 1980s—not just putting light-touch regulators and crooked bankers growing fat on bonuses under the spotlight, but also the victims who found they had no recourse when they discovered empty accounts, egregious fees, forged documents & broken promises. Ferguson tells the full story of the power imbalance, toxic culture & cover-ups. She describes the long fight for justice & looks at the outcomes of the royal commission—the falls from grace, the damaging hubris, the scathing assessment of the regulators, and the colossal compensation bill—an estimated $10 billion. With the re-election of the Coalition government, which resisted calls for a royal commission, bank stocks surged & lending regulations were loosened. Will it all be business as usual from now on, or have our financial executives learned that their wealth cannot come at the expense of ordinary Australians? This is a book for every person with a bank account. ($35, PB)

Inside the Greens by Paddy Manning ($35, PB)

If the Australian electorate is disillusioned with the 2 major parties, what about the Greens—the supposed ‘third force’ in Australian politics? Paddy Manning exposes the workings of a divided, defensive organisation reckoning with structural & strategic challenges. Reeling from a series of shocking seat losses, the dual-citizenship crisis, dramatic factional showdowns & suggestions of internal sabotage, can the party hang together? Has it strayed too far from its origins in grassroots activism? Can the Greens do politics differently and still succeed at the polls? Manning draws on archival material, conferences & interviews with party friends & foes, and with Greens past & present—including Bob Brown, Christine Milne, Lee Rhiannon & Richard Di Natale weaving a compulsively readable account of where the Greens are heading, and what that means for Australia.

Superpower: Australia’s Low-Carbon Opportunity by Ross Garnaut ($23, PB)

‘The fog of Australian politics on climate change has obscured a fateful reality—Australia has the potential to be an economic superpower of the future post-carbon world.’—Ross Garnaut. We have unparalleled renewable energy resources. We also have the necessary scientific skills. Australia could be the natural home for an increasing proportion of global industry. But how do we make this happen? Garnaut offers a road map for progress, covering energy, transport, agriculture, the international scene & more. Rich in ideas & practical optimism, this is a crucial, timely contribution to this country’s future.

Sludge: Disaster on Victoria’s Goldfields by Susan Lawrence and Peter Davies ($35, PB)

Gold made Victoria rich, but gold mining was disastrous for the land, drowning it in floods of the sand, gravel & silt that gushed out of the mines—and this environmental devastation still affects our rivers & floodplains. This mining waste, or ‘sludge’, submerged Victoria’s best grapevines near Bendigo, filled Laanecoorie Reservoir on the Loddon River & oozed down from Beechworth to cover thousands of hectares of rich agricultural land. Children & animals drowned in the sludge lakes that collected in mining towns. Mining effluent contaminated three-quarters of Victoria’s creeks & rivers. This book exposes how mining transformed the state’s water & land, and also how the battle against sludge helped to lay the ground for the modern environmental movement.

The Commission We Had To Have by David Trodden ($24.95, PB)

Once predominantly working-class, rugby league has become a sporting powerhouse, a producer of heroes from Dally Messenger to Johnathan Thurston, and survivor of courtroom battles, endless controversies & the Super League War. In charting this evolution, NSW Rugby League CEO David Trodden confronts a question now facing those in charge of all major professional sports: is our game a sport or a business, or something in between? The answer has huge implications, not just at the elite level but also for the ‘grassroots’.


Fictional television and American politics: From 9/11 to Donald Trump by Jack Holland

We live in a golden age of fictional television, while our politics has never been so controversial. This book explores that relationship, asking what it is that some of America’s most popular TV shows have to say about its politics. Perhaps, like the author, you have gasped at Game of Thrones and balked at Breaking Bad. This book illustrates how, far from being outside of politics, shows such as these are deeply political— and to this end, Jack Holland analyses Game of Thrones, House of Cards, The West Wing, Homeland, 24, Veep, The Wire, The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad. These are all politically consequential shows that shape how we feel and think about world politics. ($50, PB)

Fully Automated Luxury Communism by Aaron Bastani ($30, PB)

The first decade of the 21st century marked the demise of the current world order. Despite widespread acknowledgement of these disruptive crises, the proposed response from the mainstream remains the same. Against the confines of this increasingly limited politics, a new paradigm has emerged. Aaron Bastani claims that new technologies will liberate us from work, providing the opportunity to build a society beyond both capitalism & scarcity. Automation, rather than undermining an economy built on full employment, is instead the path to a world of liberty, luxury & happiness. For everyone. Bastani conjures a new politics—a vision of a world of unimaginable hope, highlighting how we move to energy abundance, feed a world of nine billion, overcome work, transcend the limits of biology & build meaningful freedom for everyone. Rather than a final destination, such a society heralds the beginning of history.

From Cold War to Hot Peace: The Inside Story of Russia and America by Michael McFaul

In 2008, when Michael McFaul was asked to leave his perch at Stanford & join an unlikely presidential campaign, he had no idea that he would find himself at the beating heart of one of today’s most contentious & consequential international relationships. As President Barack Obama’s adviser on Russian affairs, McFaul helped craft the US policy known as ‘reset’ that fostered new & unprecedented collaboration between the two countries. And then, as US ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014, he had a front-row seat when this fleeting, hopeful moment crumbled with Putin’s return to the presidency. This riveting inside account combines history & memoir to tell the full story of US/Russia relations from the fall of the Soviet Union to the new rise of the hostile, paranoid Russian president. ($25, PB)

Now in paperback and B Format Making Sense of the Alt-Right by George Hawley, $40 Leadership in Turbulent Times: Lessons from the Presidents by Doris Kearns Goodwin, $23 How to Lose a Country: The 7 Steps from Democracy to Dictatorship by Ece Temelkuran, $25 The Government of No One: The Theory and Practice of Anarchism by Ruth Kinna ($40, HB)

Often associated with chaos or disorder, anarchy defies definition & routinely gets a bad press. And yet from Occupy to Pussy Riot, Noam Chomsky to David Graeber, this philosophical & political movement is as relevant as ever. Contrary to popular perception, different strands of anarchism—from individualism to collectivism—do follow certain structures & a shared sense of purpose—a belief in freedom & working towards collective good without the interference of the state. Ruth Kinna traces the tumultuous history of anarchism, starting with thinkers & activists such as Peter Kropotkin & Emma Goldman & through key events like the Paris Commune & the Haymarket affair. Introducing the nuanced theories of a range of anarchist groups from around the world, Kinna reveals what makes a supposedly chaotic movement particularly adaptable & effective over centuries.

We Have Been Harmonised: Life in China’s Surveillance State by Kai Strittmatter ($25, PB)

Kai Strittmatter shows how China’s leaders are using powerful new technologies to create the largest & most effective surveillance state the world has ever seen. This is a fascinating journey behind the Great Firewall into a land where Big Brother has acquired a whole new set of toys with which to control & cajole—‘harmonise’—the masses. It is also an urgent warning against Western complacency. China is already finding eager overseas buyers for its ever-upgrading ‘Operating System for Dictators’—in Africa and Asia, Russia & the Middle East. It is time we paid attention.



Athens: A History of the World’s First Democracy by Thomas N. Mitchell ($35, PB)

The first democracy, established in ancient Greece more than 2,500 years ago, has served as the foundation for every democratic system of government instituted down the centuries. Thomas N. Mitchell tells the full & remarkable story of how a radical new political order was born out of the revolutionary movements that swept through the Greek world in the 7th and 6th centuries BC, how it took firm hold & evolved over the next 200 years, and how it was eventually undone by the invading Macedonian conquerors, a superior military power. His lively history addresses the most crucial issues surrounding this first paradigm of democratic governance, including what initially inspired the political beliefs underpinning it, the ways the system succeeded & failed, how it enabled both an empire & a cultural revolution that transformed the world of arts & philosophy, and the nature of the Achilles heel that hastened the demise of Athenian democracy.

The Regency Revolution: Jane Austen, Napoleon, Lord Byron and the Making of the Modern World by Robert Morrison ($40, HB)

The Regency began on 5 February 1811 when the Prince of Wales replaced his violently insane father George III as the sovereign de facto. It ended on 29 January 1820, when George III died & the Prince Regent became King as George IV. At the centre of the era is of course the Regent himself, who was vilified by the masses for his selfishness & corpulence. Around him surged a society forced to confront a whole range of pressing new issues that signalled a decisive break from the past—bringing our modern world clearly into view. This book vividly explores the period, revealing the remarkably diverse ways in which the cultural, social, technological & political revolutions of this decade continue both to inspire & haunt our world.

The Colour Of Time: A New History Of The World, 1850–1960 by Marina Amaral and Dan Jones ($35, PB)

A collaboration between a Brazilian artist, Marina Amaral, and British historian Dan Jones, this history spans more than 100 years of world history from the reign of Queen Victoria & the US Civil War to the Cuban Missile Crisis & beginning of the Space Age. Amaral has created 200 images, using contemporary photographs as the basis for her full-colour digital renditions. These are anchored by narratives written by Dan Jones that weave them into a vivid account of the world that we live in today, offering a unique—and often beautiful—perspective on the past.

Why North is Up: Map Conventions & Where They Came From by Mick Ashworth ($50, HB)

What lies behind the process of map-making? How have cartographers through the centuries changed their craft & established a language of maps which helps them to better represent our world & users to understand it? This book tells the story of how widely accepted mapping conventions originated & evolved from map orientation, projections, typography & scale, to the use of colour, map symbols, ways of representing relief & the treatment of boundaries & place names. It charts the fascinating story of how conventions have changed in response to new technologies & ever-changing mapping requirements, how symbols can be a matter of life or death, why universal acceptance of conventions can be difficult to achieve & how new mapping conventions are developing to meet the needs of modern cartography.

Trinity: The Treachery and Pursuit of the Most Dangerous Spy in History by Frank Close Klaus Fuchs knew more nuclear secrets in the last two years of WW2 than anyone else in Britain. He was taken onto the Manhattan Project in the USA as a trusted physicist—and was the conduit by which knowledge of the highest classification passed to the Soviet Union. When Truman announced at the Potsdam Conference that the US possessed a nuclear bomb, Stalin already knew. This book, by scientist and historian,Frank Close, is the first to explain the physics as well as the spying, and because Close worked, like Fuchs, at the Harwell Laboratory, it contains much important new material. ($55, HB)

When the Clouds Fell from the Sky by Robert Carmichael ($33, PB)

To keep you is no benefit, to destroy you is no loss.’ During the Khmer Rouge’s four-year rule of terror, two million people, or one in every four, Cambodians, died. To illustrate this era and its consequences, Robert Carmichael has woven together the stories of five people whose lives intersected to traumatic effect—he describes one family’s decades-long quest to learn their husband’s and father’s fate and the war crimes trial of Comrade Duch (pronounced ‘Doyk’), who ran the notorious S-21 prison in Phnom Penh—illuminating the tragedy of a nation.


Science & Nature

The Grass Library by David Brooks ($26.95, PB)

A philosophical and poetic journey recounting David Brooks’ relationship with his four sheep & other animals in his home in the Blue Mountains. Both memoir & eloquent testament to animal rights. ‘One of the most beautifully written books about animals I have ever read. I know of nothing else like it published in this or any other country. Deep, sensitive, charming, instructive & above all, humble. I cannot imagine anyone reading it without coming away in some profound sense altered.’—Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, author of When Elephants Weep.

Arithmetic by Paul Lockhart ($33, PB)

What are numbers, how did they arise, why did our ancestors invent them, and how did they represent them? They are, after all, one of humankind’s most brilliant inventions, arguably having greater impact on our lives than the wheel. Lockhart recounts their fascinating story, and gives a nuanced understanding of working with numbers, gently connecting procedures that we once learned by rote with intuitions long since muddled by education, presenting arithmetic as a pleasurable pastime—describing it as a craft like knitting.

The Mosquito: A Human History of Our Deadliest Predator by Timothy C. Winegard ($33, PB)

What was George Washington’s secret weapon during the American Revolution, and how did it lead to Britain colonising Australia? What protected Popes for centuries? And what does Starbucks have to thank for its global domination? The answer to all these questions, and many more, is the mosquito. The mosquito has razed economies, determined the fates of empires and decided the outcome of pivotal wars. She—only females bite—has dispatched an estimated 52 billion people from a total of 108 billion ever to have lived. As the greatest purveyor of extermination we have known, she has played a greater role in shaping our history than any other living creature.

The Enchantment of the Long-haired Rat: A Rodent History of Australia by Tim Bonyhady

Tim Bonyhady tells the story of a small Australian rodent known for its fast & prodigious spread after big rains—plagues for the European colonists who feared & loathed all rats; an abundance of food for the indigenous peoples who feasted with delight in these times of plenty. While the rats brought despair & hardship for the early colonist eating not only crops & supplies but clothes, boots & saddlery, their presence also offered a lifeline as a food source. The Burke & Wills story might well have had a different ending had the hapless explorers been tempted to follow the example of the Aboriginal people & make use of a nutritious & readily available meal. Bonyhady’s account-from the earliest evidence of it, found in caves & overhangs, to its most recent boom triggered by the immense rains across Australia of 2010–11 & current research of its mysterious lifepresents a fascinating view of Australia’s history, illuminating a species, a continent, its climate & its people. ($33, PB)

The Australian Bird Guide: Revised Edition

Winner of the 2018 ABIA Small Publisher’s Adult Book of the Year Winner of the 2017 Whitley Medal The Australian Bird Guide sets a new standard in field guides. This Revised Edition includes updated maps, artwork and species accounts, reflecting current knowledge of the biology and distribution of Australia’s birds. ($50, PB)

The Wolf Within by Bryan Sykes ($23, PB)

Bryan Sykes paints a vivid picture of the evolution of dogs & the forces that drove its amazing transformation from a fierce wild carnivore, the wolf, to the range of comparatively docile domesticated dogs that we know today. While undoubtedly it was the mastery of fire, language & agriculture that propelled Homo sapiens from a scarce, medium-sized primate to the position we enjoy today, Sykes credits a 4th element for this success: the transformation of the wolf into the multi-purpose helpmate that is the dog. Drawing upon archaeology, history & genetics, he shows how humans evolved to become the dominant species on Earth, but only with the help of our canine companions.

The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of Life by David Quammen ($20, PB)

This book is about a new method of telling the story of life on earth—through molecular phylogenetics, which involves the reading of the deep history of life by looking at the variation in protein molecules found in living organisms. David Quammen chronicles these discoveries through the lives of the researchers who made them—such as Carl Woese, the most important little-known biologist of the 20th century; Lynn Margulis, the notorious maverick whose wild ideas about ‘mosaic’ creatures proved to be true; and Tsutomu Wantanabe, who discovered that the scourge of antibiotic-resistant bacteria is a direct result of horizontal gene transfer

Philosophy & Religion

The Weil Conjectures: On Maths and the Pursuit of the Unknown by Karen Olsson ($38, HB)

It starts with science.

Simone Weil—French philosopher, writer, political activist, mystic was sister to André, one of the most influential mathematicians of the 20th century. Karen Olsson studied mathematics at Harvard, and when she got hold of the 1940 letters between Simone & André the lives & obsessions of these two extraordinary siblings returned her to the intellectual passions of her youth. André’s pursuit of his studies became increasingly incomprehensible to his sister, leading her to directly question him about the value of such rarefied knowledge as it applied to the lived experience. Struck by this conflict, Olsson revisits her own time at university, how she came to be consumed by mathematics, and the unexpected similarities that can be found between two seemingly opposed subjects. At the core of the book lies her curiosity about the inception of creative thought that flash of insight experienced by writers & mathematicians alike.

Islam and the Future of Tolerance: A Dialogue by Sam Harris & Maajid Nawaz ($33, PB)

Sam Harris & Maajid Nawaz present an antidote to the polarizing rhetoric & obscurantism that have become defining features of our time: honest dialogue. A renowned critic of religion, Harris finds the doctrines of Islam dangerous & irredeemable. No, the Muslim antiextremist Nawaz argues, Islam is amendable to reform & can find its place in a secular world. Guided by a mutual commitment to the belief that no idea is above scrutiny & no people beneath dignity, Harris & Nawaz challenge each other, and consequently their readers, to defend incompatible positions, define & explore their facts, & discover common ground. Published with the explicit hope to inspire many more such conversations, this dialogue extends an invitation to a world riven by violence to take up the task of engagement.

Liberty in the Things of God: The Christian Origins of Religious Freedom by Robert L. Wilken

In the ancient world Christian apologists wrote in defense of their right to practice their faith in the cities of the Roman Empire. They argued that religious faith is an inward disposition of the mind & heart & cannot be coerced by external force, laying a foundation on which later generations would build. Chronicling the history of the struggle for religious freedom from the early Christian movement through the 17th century, Robert Wilken shows that the origins of religious freedom & liberty of conscience are religious, not political, in origin. They took form before the Enlightenment through the labours of men & women of faith who believed there could be no justice in society without liberty in the things of God. Wilken draws on writings from the early Church as well as the 16th & 17th centuries, reminding us of how the meditations of the past were fitted to affairs of a later day. ($45, HB)

The Art of Logic: How to Make Sense in a World that Doesn’t by Eugenia Cheng ($23, PB)

For thousands of years, mathematicians have used the timeless art of logic to see the world more clearly. Eugenia Cheng shows how anyone can think like a mathematician—and see, argue & think better. Learn how to simplify complex decisions without over-simplifying them. Discover the power of analogies & the dangers of false equivalences. Find out how people construct misleading arguments, and how we can argue back. Cheng teaches how to find clarity without losing nuance, taking a careful scalpel to the complexities of politics, privilege, sexism & dozens of other real-world situations—this is a practical & inspiring guide to decoding the modern world.

Galileo’s Error: Foundations for a New Science of Consciousness by Philip Goff ($35, PB)

Understanding how brains produce consciousness is one of the great scientific challenges of our age. Some philosophers argue that consciousness is something ‘extra’, beyond the physical workings of the brain. Others think that if we persist in our standard scientific methods, our questions about consciousness will eventually be answered. Some even suggest that the mystery is so deep that it will never be solved. Philip Goff offers an alternative that could pave the way forward. Rooted in an analysis of the philosophical underpinnings of modern science & based on the early 20th century work of Arthur Eddington & Bertrand Russell, Goff makes the case for panpsychism, a theory which posits that consciousness is not confined to biological entities but is a fundamental feature of all physical matter—from subatomic particles to the human brain—the first step on a new path toward the final theory of human consciousness.

Little Book of Philosophy by Rachel Poulton

If you want to know your Socrates from your Sartre & your Confucius from your Kant, this approachable little book will introduce you to the key thinkers, themes and theories you need to know to understand how human ideas have sculpted the world we live in and the way we think today. Also available: The Little Book of Psychology by Emily Ralls & Caroline Rigg ($17 each, PB)

Reissued this month Hope Without Optimism by Terry Eagleton, $33

Visit the CSIRO Publishing website for more quality science books, journals and magazines


Psychology Emotion-Focused Psychotherapy by Michelle A. Webster ($88, PB)

In her 2nd book on her approach to Emotion-Focused work Michelle Webster provides an in-depth, sensitive view of working with people in longer-term therapy. Rich in detail & practical in approach, the new book is a highly readable, well-crafted guide, featuring theoretical explanations & protocols, interspersed with specific clinical examples. This volume, and its companion, Emotion-Focused Counselling, are required reading for practitioners with a passion for understanding & working with feelings & emotions.

Never Enough: The neuroscience and experience of addiction by Judith Grisel ($30, PB)

Using her experience as both a daily drug user, and her 25 years as a neuroscientist, Judith Grisel reveals the unfortunate bottom line of all regular drug use—there is no such thing as a free lunch. All drugs act on the brain in a way that diminishes their enjoyable effects & creates unpleasant ones with repeated use. Drug abuse has been called the most formidable health problem worldwide, and Grisel delves with compassion into the science of this scourge. She points to what is different about the brains of addicts even before they first pick up a drink or drug, highlights the changes that take place in the brain & behaviour as a result of chronic using, and shares the surprising hidden gifts of personality that addiction can expose. She describes what drove her to addiction, what helped her recover, and her belief that a ‘cure’ for addiction will not be found in our individual brains but in the way we interact with our communities.

Surrounded by Idiots: The Four Types of Human Behaviour by Thomas Erikson ($25, PB)

After a disastrous meeting with a highly successful entrepreneur, who was genuinely convinced he was ‘surrounded by idiots’, communication expert Thomas Erikson dedicated himself to understanding how people function & why we often struggle to connect with certain types of people. He offers a simple method for assessing the personalities of people we communicate with—in & out of the office—based on 4 personality types, and provides insights into how to adjust the way(s) we speak & share information. Erikson will help you understand yourself better, hone communication and social skills, handle conflict with confidence, improve dynamics with your boss and team, and get the best out of the people you deal with and manage.


Plots, Prayers & Big Sky I love the photo on the cover of Niki Savva’s Plots & Prayers—Malcolm Turnbull looking intelligent, urbane and amused, and Scott Morrison looking, well, not like that. In fact I’m not a political person, and have never read a book about politicians in my life; but I was curious about this book. Like many people, I don’t understand why Malcolm Turnbull was overthrown, and noone seems to be able to explain why it happened. Niki Savva calmly and competently unravels the whole mess, somehow managing to put in a timeline that makes sense, with a credible description of all the players in this coup. It’s not her fault that they are, in the main, insufferably dull, and incredibly self serving. Savva maintains a dignified stance with all of them, even the really awful ones, never descending to their level, which is admirable given the behaviour of some of them. What does come across is the incredible plotting and machinations of the people who are supposed to be governing us—the extreme solipsism and utter egocentricity of most of them, while they scheme and backstab, grandstand and flounce. Monkeys in a zoo, although lacking in any simian charm. This is a good book, but I still don’t understand what happened. Speaking of our leaders’ banality, the latest Jackson Brodie book by Kate Atkinson, Big Sky, is riddled with similarly nasty and banal characters. Set in a seaside town in North Yorkshire, Jackson Brodie has left the police and is now a PI. He is working on one case, which of course leads to far greater crimes for him to eventually uncovers. Jackson is a charismatic character, the product of a tragic childhood, he has risen above this tragedy and gone forth into the world, attracting both good and bad. This is the fifth Brodie book, and it’s definitely the darkest—reflective of the times we live in—where long buried crimes and misdemeanours are coming to light, and silenced victims are getting a voice. I would recommend that you read some of the earlier books in this series, before embarking on this one. Fans of Jackson are invested in him, but he isn’t at his peak in this book. Like a lot of us, he is tired and somewhat disappointed, and that’s reflected in this story. Most of Kate Atkinson’s books have lots of intriguing secondary characters, and a strong and evocative sense of place, Big Sky is no exception. Louise

Pen in Hand: Reading, Rereading and other Mysteries by Tim Parks ($30, HB) How can other people like the books we don’t like? What benefit can we get from rereading a work? Can we read better? If so, how? These & many other questions, ranging from the field of writing to that of reading & translation, are given a comprehensive answer by author, translator & essayist, Tim Parks, in a series of stimulating & challenging literary essays perfect for all book explorers & practitioners of the pen.

Growing Up Queer in Australia (ed) Benjamin Law ($30, PB)

‘No amount of YouTube videos and queer think pieces prepared me for this moment.’ ‘The mantle of “queer migrant” compelled me to keep going - to go further.’ ‘I never “came out” to my parents. I felt I owed them no explanation.’ ‘All I heard from the pulpit were grim hints.’ ‘I became acutely aware of the parts of myself that were unpalatable to queers who grew up in the city.’ ‘My queerness was born in a hot dry land that was never ceded.’ Benjamin Law has assembled voices from across the spectrum of LGBTIQA+ identity that spans diverse places, eras, ethnicities and experiences of growing up queer in Oz.

Our Women on the Ground: Arab Women Reporting from the Arab World (ed) Zahra Hankir ($35, PB)

A growing number of intrepid Arab & Middle Eastern sahafiyat—female journalists—are working tirelessly to shape nuanced narratives about their changing homelands, often risking their lives on the front lines of war. From sexual harassment on the streets of Cairo to the difficulty of travelling without a male relative in Yemen, their challenges are unique—as are their advantages, such as being able to speak candidly with other women at a Syrian medical clinic or attend an exclusive beauty contest for sheep in Saudi Arabia. This book collects 19 of these women—their daring and heartfelt stories, told here for the first time, shatter stereotypes about the region’s women & provide an urgently needed perspective on a part of the world that is frequently misunderstood.


Now in B Format The Unpunished Vice by Edmund White, $23

Cultural Studies & Criticism Women, Men and the Whole Damn Thing by David Leser ($30, PB)

‘How to find the right words to frame this horror? How to understand why men do what they do to women? How to comprehend this malign force that seems to seep from the male psyche and infect us all? . . . That is the central hope, the appeal, embedded in this book: that other men might join me in this investigation and ruthless self-interrogation-and in doing so, become part of the change that is so urgently required.’. ‘David Leser has written the book a man needed to write. He has a deep ethical understanding of discrimination against women. He cares about that injustice.But he also cares about how men themselves can be part of the solution.’—Catherine Lumby

Home Grown: How Domestic Violence Turns Men Into Terrorists by Joan Smith ($30, PB)

Terrorism is seen as a special category of crime that has blinded us to the obvious—that it is, almost always, male violence. The extraordinary link between so many tragic recent attacks is that the perpetrators have practised in private before their public outbursts. Feminist & human rights campaigner Joan Smith makes a persuasive argument for a radical shift in perspective. Incomprehensible ideology is transformed through her research into a disturbing but familiar pattern. From the Manchester bomber to the Charlie Hebdo attackers, from angry white men to the Bethnal Green girls, from US school shootings to the London gang members who joined ISIS, she shows that, time & time again, misogyny, trauma & abuse lurk beneath the rationalisations of religion or politics. Criminal authorities miss this connection because violence against women is dangerously normalised. Yet, since domestic abuse often comes before a public attack, it’s here a solution to the scourge of our age might be found.

Make, Think, Imagine by John Browne ($30, PB)

Today’s unprecedented pace of change leaves many people wondering what new technologies are doing to our lives. Has social media robbed us of our privacy and fed us with false information? Are the decisions about our health, security and finances made by computer programs inexplicable and biased? Will these algorithms become so complex that we can no longer control them? And has our demand for energy driven the Earth’s climate to the edge of catastrophe? John Browne argues that all progress stems from the human urge to make things & to shape the world around us, resulting in greater freedom, health & wealth for all. Drawing on history, his own experiences & conversations with many of today’s great innovators, he uncovers the basis for all progress & its consequences, both good & bad. He argues compellingly that the same spark that triggers each innovation can be used to counter its negative consequences.

A Primer for Forgetting: Getting Past the Past by Lewis Hyde ($35, HB)

We live in a culture that prizes memory—but what if forgetfulness were seen not as something to fear, but rather as a blessing, a path to peace & forgiveness? Lewis Hyde forges a new ‘history of forgetfulness’ by assembling fragments of art & writing from the ancient world to the modern, weighing the potential boons forgetfulness might offer the present moment as a philosophical & political force. He also turns inward, using the his own life & memory as a canvas upon which to extol the virtues of a concept too long taken as an evil. Drawing material from Hesiod to Jorge Luis Borges to Elizabeth Bishop to Archbishop Desmond Tutu, from myths & legends to very real & recent traumas both personal & historical, he produces a unique & remarkable synthesis.

Fabulous Monsters: Dracula, Alice, Superman, and Other Literary Friends by Alberto Manguel

Alberto Manguel examines how literary characters can have changing identities, and can suddenly shift from behind their conventional stories to teach us about the complexities of love, loss & life. In this personal reckoning with his favourite characters, including Jim from Huckleberry Finn, Phoebe from The Catcher in the Rye, Job and Jonah from the Bible, Quasimodo, the Hippogriff, Little Red Riding Hood, Captain Nemo, Hamlet’s mother & Dr Frankenstein’s Monster, the author shares his unique powers as a reader, encouraging us to establish our own unique literary relationships. Manguel’s own doodles complete this delightfully magical book. ($38, HB)

That Other World: Nabokov & the Puzzle of Exile by Azar Nafisi ($50, HB)

The ruler of a totalitarian state seeks validation from a former schoolmate, now the nation’s foremost thinker. A literary critic provides commentary on an unfinished poem that both foretells the poet’s death & announces the critic’s secret identity as the king of a lost country. Humbert is lost within the antithesis of a fairy story, in which Lolita does not hold the key to his past but rather imprisons him within the knowledge of his distance from that past. In this precursor to Reading Lolita in Tehran, Azar Nafisi deftly explores the worlds apparently lost to Nabokov’s characters, their portals of access to those worlds, and how other worlds hold a mirror to Nabokov’s experiences of physical, linguistic & recollective exile. Written before leaving the Islamic Republic of Iran this book evokes the reader’s journey of discovery & reveals what caused Nabokov to distinctively shape & reshape that journey for Azar Nafisi.

Salt: Selected Essays & Stories by Bruce Pascoe

Bruce Pascoe has been described as a ‘living national treasure’ and his work as ‘revelatory’. This volume of his best stories & essays, collected here for the first time, ranges across his long career, and explores his enduring fascination with Australia’s landscape, culture, land management & history. Featuring new & previously unpublished fiction alongside his most thoughtprovoking nonfiction—including extracts from his modern classic Dark Emu—this collection showcases the range & depth of this most marvellous of local writers. ($35, PB)

The Art of Growing Up by John Marsden

John Marsden has spent his adult life engaging with young minds—through both his award-winning young adult fiction & his work as one of Australia’s most esteemed & experienced educators. As the founder & principal of two schools, Marsden is at the coalface of education & a daily witness to the inevitable & yet still mysterious process of growing up. In this insightful & ambitions manifesto, he pulls together all he has learned from over 30 years’ experience working with & writing for young people. He shares his insights into everything—from the role of schools & the importance of education, to problem parents & problem children, and the conundrum of what it means to grow up & be ‘happy’ in the 21st century. ($35, PB)

Fierce Bad Rabbits: The Tales Behind Children’s Picture Books by Clare Pollard ($33, HB)

Clare Pollard takes an eye-opening journey on a pea-green boat through the history of picture books. From Edward Lear through to Julia Donaldson, she shines a light on some of our best-loved childhood stories & what they really mean, weaving in tales from her own childhood & her re-readings as a parent. Because the best picture books are far more complex than they seem—and darker too. Power is not always used wisely, and the wild things are closer than you think. Sparkling with wit, magic & nostalgia, her book will make you see even stories you’ve read a hundred times afresh.

Jean Blackburn: Education, Feminism & Social Justice by Craig Campbell & Debra Hayes

From the maelstrom of the Depression & WW2, from Communist Party membership in the 1930s–1950s, and early attachment to the feminism & peace, Jean Blackburn emerged as a significant public intellectual. Her life work was the attachment of education policy to the causes of social equality & opportunity. She worked with Peter Karmel on the most significant government report framing school policy in the 20th century, the blue-print for the Australian Schools Commission. Blackburn was the architect of the Disadvantaged Schools Program, which revolutionised the way that public & Catholic schools delivered education to families marked by many disadvantages, including poverty. She was an architect of the Girls, School & Society report of 1976. Jean Blackburn possessed a charismatic presence, never more in evidence than as she worked on senior secondary school reform in Victoria in the 1980s. As a feminist Blackburn bridged the generations. She was a fiercely independent, courageous, creative & effective social reformer and public intellectual. ($34.95, PB)

Unrequited Love: Diary of an Accidental Activist by Dennis Altman ($29.95, PB)

Dennis Altman first travelled from Australia to the US when Lyndon Johnson was President, beginning a long obsession with the US. In the early 1970s he was involved in New York Gay Liberation; in 1971 he published Homosexual: Oppression and Liberation. In the 1980s Altman lived in San Francisco during the onset of the AIDS epidemic. Later he sat on the Australian National Council on AIDS & international organisations including, as president, the AIDS Society of Asia & the Pacific. He was in California when Trump was elected. This diarised memoir, moving between Australia, the US, Europe & parts of Asia, Gore Vidal, James Baldwin, Susan Sontag, Christopher Isherwood & many others people tells a story of a half century of activism, intellectualism, friendship & conflict.

The Bad Boy of Athens by Daniel Mendelsohn ($50, HB)

Classicist Daniel Mendelsohn uses the classics as a lens to think about urgent contemporary debates. He invokes the automatons featured in Homer’s epics to help explain the AI films Ex Machina and Her, and perceives how Ted Hughes sought redemption by translating a play of Euripides (the ‘bad boy of Athens’) about a wayward husband whose wife returns from the dead. There are essays on Sappho’s sexuality & the feminism of Game of Thrones; on how Virgil’s Aeneid prefigures post-WW2 history & why we are still obsessed with the Titanic; on Patrick Leigh Fermor’s final journey, Karl Ove Knausgaard’s autofiction & the plays of Tom Stoppard, Tennessee Williams, & Noël Coward. His new collection ends with a poignant account of his boyhood correspondence with the historical novelist Mary Renault, which inspired his ambition to become a writer.

2nd2nd2nd Hand Hand Hand Rows Rows Rows Avast , me hearties !

Scourge of the Seas: Buccaneers, Pirates and Privateers by Angus Konstam (Osprey Publishing, Oxford. 2007) Hardcover. First Edition. Map endpapers, 240pp., b/w and colour illustrations, glossary, bibliography, index. Fine copy in Fine dustjacket. $40.00. Pirates and I go back decades. Beginning with (at age 14) reading and (regularly) re-reading Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island (1883). This granddaddy of all pirate stories is quite simply one of the finest adventures novels ever written. Don’t just take my word for this. Hilary Mantel, the famed historical novelist, regards it as superlative also. In learning about 18th century pirates I encountered a whole new historical glossary. Firstly, in strange, exotic sounding Coinage. I was constantly researching the meaning and values of Pieces of Eight, Doubloons, Georges and Louis Dórs. A whole raft of strange Nautical Terms were also encountered. I remember shuddering when first learning what keelhauling was (look it up). Pirates’ weaponry was a similarly exotic listing of: Flintlocks, a Dirk, Cutlasses, a Powder Horn and Musket Balls. And lastly, Pirate nomenclature—Billy Bones, Black Dog, Blind Pew, Captain Flint and Ben Gunn. A letter, written at Porto Bello, Panama, dated 14th July 1668—from the buccaneer, Captain Henry Morgan to Don Augustin de Bracamonte, Spanish Governor of Panama: Senor, Tomorrow we plan to burn this city to the ground and then set sail with all the guns and munitions from the castles. We will take all our prisoners with us and we will show them the same kindness that English prisoners have received here. However, departure could be delayed and the city spared on the payment of 350 000 pieces of eight. Piratical diplomacy at its most elegant and blunt. To find out if (Sir) Henry Morgen carried out this threat or if the Governor paid the ransom—approx. 35 Million Dollars in today’s values—you will have to read this encyclopaedic, handsomely illustrated volume. Discovery of Australia’s Fishers: A History of Australian Ichthyology to 1930 by Brian Saunders CSIRO Publishing, 2012. Hardcover. $40 This book traces the discovery of Australia’s fishes from the earliest days of taxonomy to the first part of the 20th century. It provides a unique insight into the diverse pathways by which Australia’s fish were discovered and outlines the history of early maritime explorations in Australia that collected natural history specimens. The book covers the life and work of each of the most important discoverers, and assesses their accomplishments and the limitations of their work. The book is well illustrated with both black & white and colour plates. It provides an historical overview of the discovery and taxonomy of Australia’s fish, includes brief biographies of many Australian zoologists with more detailed accounts of those most important to the subject, and gives an appreciation of the nature of the day-to-day work of zoologists in Australian institutions 1885 to 1930 The Moon Man: A Biography of Nikolai Miklouho-Maclay by E M Webster Melbourne University Press, 1984. Hardcover. Some fading and light edge wear to dust jacket. Sort inscription in pen to front endpaper. Small retailer’s sticker to front paste down. Faint marks to edges but internally tight and clean. $25 Few people have crammed 4 decades so full as Miklouho-Maclay. Russian-born in 1846, he studied the natural sciences at a time when Darwin was revolutionising Western cosmology. He took the whole world for his laboratory: sponges in the Red Sea, or the ancestry of the sharks; head measurements in New Guinea; negrito races in Malay jungles; marine life in Sydney Harbour. His fame today—to those who have heard his name at all — rests chiefly on the humanity of his approach to ‘native races’. He sa the harm to indigenous peoples that followed white encroachment; his vision of himself was guardian & trustee. What irony, that Russian warships testing an early Pacific imperialism should have been his means of transport to his beloved New Guinea shores. The startled people of the villages near modern Madang believed that he came from the Moon. Webster rescues this short life of high adventure from total oblivion on the one hand & the adulatory veneration in which he was held in the USSR where he was depicted as the ideal forerunner of humane socialist man. The Explorers of the Pacific by Geoffrey Badger Kangaroo Press. 2nd edition 1996. Paperback, 1984. $15 This is a story of hazard & adventure, a story of the explorers who found their way around the Pacific Ocean, the largest single feature on the Earth’s surface. From Polynesians in their double canoes to Magellan, Drake, Cavendish, Dampier, Tasman and the ‘Golden Age’ from 1760 top 1830. This 2nd edition updates the 1989 edition using new genetic research concerning the origins of the Polynesians, plus the story of French explorer Hyacinthe de Bougainville and a record of the English journeys in search of the North West passage.


Untold and Unsolved

The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold ($40, HB) British social historian and novelist Hallie Rubenhold investigates the lives of five women: Mary Ann ‘Polly’ Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly—the ‘canonical’ five, killed by Jack the Ripper in Whitechapel, London between August and November 1888. Their murderer is completely absent from this story. Through researching parish registers, rate books, newspaper articles, coroner’s inquests—although three of these are missing—workhouse archives and birth, marriage and death certificates, Rubenhold brings them back to life and takes us through every aspect of their life—from the moment they are born to the moment they are killed. We see their hopes and their dreams as well as their struggles. We are also taken down the dark path that led them to their circumstances—alone and destitute in Whitechapel. Mary Ann Nichols, aged 43 at the time of her murder, was a locksmith’s daughter born off Fleet Street and later subsequently a married mother of five. Her marriage collapsed in 1880 when her husband William left for another woman. Annie Chapman, 47, a private coachman’s wife, had lived in relative middleclass comfort in Knightsbridge, a married mother of three. However, alcoholism—which afflicted both her and her husband, John following the death of their 12-year-old daughter, Emily—caused the breakdown of their marriage and Annie’s slide into poverty. Elizabeth Stride, 44, (born Elisabeth Gustafsdotter) was a Swedish farmer’s daughter from Gothenburg. She was a domestic servant. An unwanted pregnancy, syphilis, a stillborn child were her misfortunes. She attempted a fresh start in London—marriage and opening a coffee parlour in Poplar, East London with her husband John. That failed. The couple separated and she drifted into a workhouse and receiving charity. Catherine Eddowes, 46, who died on the same night as Stride, came from Wolverhampton and married to ex-soldier Thomas Conway. The pair wore matching tattoos and travelled the countryside as chapbook sellers. They moved to London and had three children. Again, alcohol played a role in their separation. By 1888, she was impoverished, living in a Spitalfields dosshouse with John Kelly, her common law partner. Mary Jane Kelly, 25, is the youngest, most well-known and the most mysterious of the five. Kelly may not even have been her real name. There is a tantalising lack of any documentary evidence for what she mentioned of her past. She was probably born in Ireland and may have lived in Wales. Kelly worked as a high-class prostitute in Piccadilly. Rubenhold suggests that she was abducted by a sex trafficking ring and taken to Paris. Escaping, she changed her name to Kelly and fled to the East End of London. She was the only victim of the Ripper to be killed indoors. One of Rubenhold’s key arguments is that there is no evidence, that Nichols, Chapman or Eddowes ever worked as prostitutes. These Ripper victims, were chosen not because they were soliciting sex but because they were homeless, drunk and most likely asleep. The final chapter of the book, entitled A Life in Objects, lists the inventories made of the items found on the bodies of four of the five. A listing was not made for Mary Kelly who was murdered in bed wearing only a chemise. I found the cataloguing of these humble possessions—the imprint of a life—quite moving. This is a major work of historical investigation that restores these women to the humanity, respect and compassion to which they are entitled. True Crime Addict: How I Lost Myself in the Mysterious Disappearance of Maura Murray by James Renner ($31, PB) At around 7.27pm on the snowy, cold winter night of 9 February 2004, Maura Murray, a 21-year-old University of Massachusetts nursing student crashed her car on Wild Ammonoosuc Road (Route 112) in Woodsville, a small, rural village at the base of the White Mountains in New Hampshire. A call reporting the accident was made to the Grafton County Sheriff’s Department at this time by Faith Westman, a resident in a nearby house. Another couple, John and Virginia Marrotte, looking out of their kitchen window from their house on the other side of the road, saw the car in a ditch and someone walking around. Arthur ‘Butch’ Atwood, a bus driver finishing his shift, got out of his vehicle and asked if Maura needed help. She declined, stating that she had already called for assistance. Atwood was puzzled, since he knew no cell phone reception was possible in the area. He recalled Murray seemed a little shaken but otherwise unhurt. He drove his bus to his house, some 200 yards (183m) from the accident site, went inside and asked his partner to call the police. This call was logged by the Sherriff’s Department at 7.43 pm. At 7.46pm police officer Sgt Cecil Smith arrived on the scene. Maura Murray had vanished—within a five to seven-minute time frame, in sight of three houses and three individuals. Her whereabouts remain unknown to this day. Journalist James Renner, has devoted five years attempting to solve this case. He can be persistent, sometimes prickly and argumentative. He locates Murray’s friends and family members and repeatedly requests interviews, despite the wishes of many to be left in peace. Renner is distrusted by Maura’s family. Every trail, every cold lead and theory, no matter how implausible, are grist for the inexhaustible Renner. To assist his research, he enlists the aid of his ‘Irregulars’—an in-


ternet crowd sourcing community of like minded obsessives. Renner believes everyone involved in this case has a reason to lie. The layers of puzzles, tensions and deceptions he uncovers of the driven, overachiever Maura Murray and her supposedly pristine past are counterpointed by the toll this relentless sleuthing takes upon his own family, his marriage and his sanity. His dedication eventually leads Renner to a plausible conclusion as to Maura Murray’s fate. Towards the end of this unusual, controversial book, a psychic gives James Renner a warning of the dangers of his obsession: ‘You went into her past. Why? It’s so much sadness, bad luck. She wanted to escape this…You thought this would be an adventure. But her bad luck has rubbed off on you, hasn’t it? Why did you welcome this darkness? I need to ask: Do you ever feel possessed? You must leave this. Go. As quickly as you can. Leave it behind. Before the darkness follows you home.’

Flèche by Mary Jean Chan ($25, PB)


Flèche (the French word for ‘arrow’) is an offensive technique commonly used in épée, a competitive sport of Mary Jean Chan’s teenage years. This cross-linguistic pun presents the queer, nonwhite body as both vulnerable (‘flesh’) & weaponised (‘flèche’) in public & private spaces. Themes of multilingualism, queerness, post-colonialism, psychoanalysis & cultural history emerge by means of an imagined personal, maternal & national biography, spoken by a polyphony of female voices, as Chan deftly examines relationships at once conflictual & tender.

Deaf Republic by Ilya Kaminsky ($25, PB)

Deaf Republic opens in a time of political unrest in an occupied territory. It is uncertain where we are or when, in what country or during what conflict, but we come to recognise that these events are also happening here, right now. Kaminsky’s parable in poems unfolds episodically like a play, its powerful narrative provoked by a tragic opening scene: when soldiers breaking up a protest kill a deaf boy, the gunshot becomes the last thing the citizens hear—in that moment, all have gone deaf. Inside this silence, their dissent becomes coordinated by sign language. The story then follows the private lives of townspeople encircled by public violence. ‘A perfectly extraordinary book. I feel quite sure my grandchildren will read this book. It’s one of those.’—Max Porter

Solid Air: Australian & NZ Spoken Word (eds) David Stavanger & Anne-Marie Te Whiu

This book showcases the work of more than 100 spoken word artists from Australia and NZ—combining elements of slam, hip hop and performance poetry—to deliver an unforgettable reading experience that is both literary & loud. Contributors include- Evelyn Araluen, Courtney Barnett, Hera Lindsay Bird, Behrouz Boochani, Maxine Beneba Clarke, Candy Royalle, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Michelle Law, Omar Musa, Sara Saleh, Taika Waititi, Te Kahu Rolleston, Claire G. Coleman, Selina Tusitala Marsh, PiO, Tayi Tibble & many more. ($29.95, PB)

Life of the Party: If A Girl Screams, and Other Poems by Olivia Gatwood ($30, PB) In this multi-faceted collection of odes, anecdotes, sonnets & prose, Olivia Gatwood weaves together the trials & triumphs of growing up & explores the many ways that fear & violence can be internalized in a woman’s psyche. At times blistering & riotous, at times soulful & exuberant, Life of the Party is about what it means to be a girl & a woman in today’s world & the challenge of briefly being both.

The Government Lake: Last Poems by James Tate ($45, HB)

In James Tate’s last collection before his death in 2015 a woman named Mildred starts laying eggs after feathers from wild poultry begin coming down the chimney. A man becomes friends with a bank robber who abducts him and eventually rues his captor’s death. A baby is born transparent. James Tate’s work, filled with unexpected turns and deadpan exaggeration, ‘fanciful and grave, mundane and transcendent’, (New York Times) —his dark yet whimsical humour, his emotional acuity, and his keen ear for the absurd are on full display in these finely crafted prose poems that are lyrical, surrealistic & provocative.

Zong! by M. Nourbese Philip ($32, PB)

In November, 1781, the captain of the slave ship Zong ordered that some 150 Africans be murdered by drowning so that the ship’s owners could collect insurance monies. Equal parts song, moan, shout, oath, ululation, curse, and chant, Zong! excavates the legal decision Gregson v. Gilbert-the only extant public document related to the massacre of these African slaves.












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The Ways of the World: A James Maxted Thriller Robert Goddard, PB

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Shaler’s Fish: Poems Helen Macdonald, HB

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The Refugees Viet Thanh Nguyen, HB

Novels Vol. 1 Samuel Beckett, HB

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H Is for Hawk Helen Macdonald, HB

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The Gustav Sonata: A Novel Rose Tremain, HB

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The Return: Fathers, Sons Walk Through Walls: A Memoir and the Land in Between Marina Abramovic, HB Hisham Matar, HB

The Summer Before the War Helen Simonson, HB

Earthly Remains Donna Leon, HB

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City of Light, City of Poison: Murder, Magic, and the First Police Chief of Paris Holly Tucker, HB

Four Princes: Henry VIII, Francis I, Charles V, Suleiman the Magnificent John Julius Norwich, HB

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The Upright Thinkers: The Human Journey from Living in Trees to Understanding the Cosmos Leonard Mlodinow, HB

Stalin & the Scientists: A History of Triumph & Tragedy, 1905–1953 Simon Ings, HB

Science in the Soul: Selected The Souls Of China: The Writings of a Passionate Rationalist Return of Religion After Mao Richard Dawkins, HB Ian Johnson, HB

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Dietrich & Riefenstahl: Hollywood, Berlin, and a Century in 2 Lives Karin Wieland , PB

David Bowie Black Book Barry Miles, PB

The History of Medicine: A Beginner’s Guide Mark Jackson, PB

Renaissance Art: A Beginner’s Guide Tom Nichols, PB


The Arts Drawing the Curtain: Maurice Sendak’s Designs for Opera and Ballet ($70, HB)

Children’s book author & artist, Maurice Sendak, was also an avid opera lover & designed a number of sets for opera & ballet productions, among them Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen, Prokofiev’s The Love for Three Oranges, Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, and an opera by Oliver Knussen based on Where the Wild Things Are. This book brings together over 125 pieces from among the more than 900 in the Morgan Library & Museum’s collection, including preliminary sketches, final watercolours & cardboard models. Essays in the book discuss the importance of music to Sendak’s work, his fascination with comic strips, movies, mechanical toys & pop-up books & the artworks that inspired his stage designs.

Felix Vallotton: Painter of Disquiet ($80, HB)

The Swiss artist Felix Vallotton (1865–1925) was born in Lausanne, but spent much of his working life in France. Closely associated with Pierre Bonnard & Edouard Vuillard, and a member of the avant-garde group Les Nabis, he has been overshadowed by his more famous contemporaries. Although he produced some of his most important work in Paris in the 1890s, his original & innovative approach persisted throughout his career. Texts in this volume look at his life, work & reception. Generously illustrated throughout with the finest exemplars of his paintings & prints, including some works never seen before.

John Carter: On Paper ($60, HB)

John Carter is best known for his ‘wall objects’, shallow sculptures based on abstract mathematical formulae. He begins each work with notebook sketches, moving on to larger, measured drawings. It is these drawings—taken from throughout Carter’s career—that this book presents. Each drawing is a fascinating model of colour abstraction, with commentary by the artist. Carter’s drawings reveal the originality of his mind & the love of exactitude & clarity that drives his practice.

Enduring Legacy of Weimar: Bauhaus, Dada, New Typography by Alston Purvis

This striking book focuses on the pivotal years of 1919– 1933 to show how 50 artists redefined the field & helped create modern graphic design. Art historian & graphic artist Alston Purvis provides a concise & engaging overview of the dawn of modern graphic design & the artistic possibilities that were laid bare in a seismically shifting Europe. He explores how a variety of burgeoning & established movements contributed to the innovations of graphic design such as the German Dadaists, the Bauhaus School & the European avant-garde artists. He looks at how groundbreaking trends in typography, the rise of consumerism & a new focus on schools of graphic design combined to create a new language of design that is still in use today. ($110, HB)

Michael Wolf: Paris ($75, HB)

Singling out typical architectural features of the Parisian landscape Michael Wolf renders the seemingly banal immortal—roofs, chimneys, & lights provide the pictures with rhythm, with their colours, shapes, and above all their volumes. Wolf encourages the viewer to consider the environmental & architectural context that provides a framework for all these rigorously rectangular features. This dreamlike journey into a Paris viewed from the rooftops is underlined in the 2nd part of the book. The shadows of trees decorate the façades of various buildings, creating a visual poetry & prompting an intimate dialogue where, in the absence of all human presence, nature & architecture blend into one another.

Bartolomé Bermejo: Master of the Spanish Renaissance ($50, PB)

Painted in 1468, Saint Michael Triumphant over the Devil is the first documented work by Bartolomé Bermejo (c. 1440–c. 1501), a 15th-century Spanish artist by whom only about 20 paintings are known. The painting depicts the Archangel Michael defeating Satan, in the form of a hybrid monster, with Antoni Joan, feudal lord of Tous, kneeling nearby. Remarkable for its mastery of the oilpainting technique, influenced by Netherlandish painting it is unrivalled by Bermejo’s contemporaries in Spain. Following the painting’s detailed technical examination & restoration, the authors provide a fascinating account of this rare work, accompanied by high quality photography & placing the painting in the broader context of Bermejo’s career in 15th century Aragon.


Bauhaus Diaspora and Beyond: Transforming Education through Art, Design and Architecture by Philip Goad et al ($64.99, PB)

From 1930, the arrival of so many emigre, internee and refugee educators helped to transform art, architecture and design in Australia and New Zealand. 15 thematic essays & 20 individual case studies bring to light a tremendous amount of new archival material in order to show how these innovative educators, exiled from Nazism, introduced Bauhaus ideas and models to a new world. As their Bauhaus model spanned art, architecture & design, the book provides a unique cross-disciplinary, emigre history of art education in Australia & New Zealand. It offers a remarkable and little-known chapter in the wider Bauhaus venture.

Gleebooks’ special price $59.99

Savage Messiah by Laura Oldfield Ford

Laura Oldfield Ford has become well known for her politically active and poetic engagement with London as a site of social antagonism. Savage Messiah collects the entire set of Ford’s fanzine to date. Part graphic novel, part artwork, the book is both an angry polemic against the marginalisation of the city’s working class and an exploration of the cracks that open up in urban space. ($30, PB)

Carlo Zinelli ($80, HB)

Carlo Zinelli, called Carlo (1916–1974), is one of the leading figures in Art Brut, along with Aloise Corbaz and Adolf Wolfli. gathers together a series of articles on Zinelli by experts in different disciplines. This makes it possible to give due weight to relatively neglected aspects of a rich and diverse opus, such as Carlo’s writings, which mingle with his graphic compositions, well known for their characteristic accumulation of motifs, especially stylised human beings and animals, as well as vehicles. This book is lavishly illustrated throughout with reproductions of Zinelli’s paintings and many photographs, several of which are by John Phillips, as well as previously unpublished archive material.

A Feast for the Eyes: Edible Art from Apple to Zucchini by Carolyn Tillie ($33, HB) Explore the artistry of apple-head dolls, butter sculptures, a grand cathedral carved entirely from salt. Learn about the ancient role of food creations in ritual & global folk art, electrified vegetable sculptures & ethereal molecular gastronomy, why Salvador Dalí had an obsession with lobsters, and why there is a giant palace in the American Midwest made entirely of corn. For food lovers & art aficionados alike.

Bags: Sew 18 Stylish Bags for Every Occasion by Anna Alicia ($25, PB)

Defeat the single use plastic bag as you work your way through these 18 projects—you’ll learn how to create interesting shapes (such as a cubed bag or round bucket bag), work with different fabrics (cotton, canvas, linen & more) & discover how to work in zips, poppers, pockets, straps & other add-ons. Step-by-step guidance, plus a wealth of tips & tricks this is the ideal book for those looking to expand on their sewing skills, create beautiful, lasting additions to their wardrobe or make impressive and covetable gifts for friends and family.

Tiny House: Live Small, Dream Big by Brent Heavener ($35, HB)

Whether you’ve been dreaming about a treehouse in the wilderness of Montana, or a remote eco-cabin in Patagonia or Australia; driving a campervan on the open roads of Quebec, or floating on a houseboat in Sweden—find escape, inspiration & a window into a freer, simpler, happier kind of life in 250 awe-inspiring images of the world’s most creative small homes, alongside the stories, ideas & advice of those living in them.

Wood: Living & Working by David Andreu

Wood is one of the very best materials for building construction because of its versatility, its capacity as a thermal & acoustic insulator, its warm appearance, pleasant texture & feel & its ecological character. Architects love to use this natural material for exterior design & decoration, aided by new ways of fixing & joining wood thanks to modern technology. Today’s criteria for sustainable housing (‘living’) and offices (‘working’) also benefit greatly from the use of wood. The great variety of available wood & the fact that it is easy to recycle results in the construction of the masterful & varied designs shown in this book. 350 colour images. ($40, HB)

The Ultimate Kogin Collection by Susan Briscoe

Kogin is a variation of the popular Japanese embroidery technique sashiko and is rapidly becoming as popular as its ‘big sister’. In this book (following on from her previous title The Ultimate Sashiko Sourcebook) Japanese embroidery expert, Susan Briscoe, has compiled a collection of over 60 pattern charts—kogin is a counted embroidery technique—and 12 accompanying projects. ($40, PB)

Chloe Groom: Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill—It’s very rare, in my frantic life, that I re-read a book, but Dept. of Speculation is an exception. My most recent reading of Jenny Offill’s thin gem of a book was probably my sixth, and I’ll be very happy to go back and read it again. It’s quite simply the clearest depiction of the constant compromise of adult life I’ve ever read. That makes it sound depressing, but it’s also one of the funniest, self-deprecating novels I know. It has none of the annoying cockiness that so many self-referential authors display (Franzen; Safran Foer; other people whose names aren’t Jonathan) and yet there is clearly so much of Jenny Offill in this book. In the first part, the protagonist speaks in the first person and through a series of very short, unconnected but overall chronological vignettes we learn about her life as a creative writing teacher, her marriage to the host of an obscure music show, and her hilarious, very realistic struggles with parenthood. (She also offers tit-bits of general knowledge that you’ll find yourself wasting hours trying to verify. In part two the protagonist has become ‘the wife’ and the narrative switches to the third person. A family emergency, which for mystery’s sake I won’t describe, has driven her at least partly towards madness. Whereas in part one, she was so much more than a wife, in part two she feels defined and depressed by that role—this second half is a deconstruction and reconstruction of a family in a beautiful, complicated way. I first read it close to five years ago when I was in the very early stages of parenthood. Every moment of love and pain rang true. Yet this is not just a book for parents. Offill’s understanding of relationships of all kinds is spot-on, and her images will stay with you forever. Please read this book. It’s very short, it’s truly wonderful, and you won’t regret it. (Offill has a new book coming out in 2020 called American Weather which tells the story of a librarian-cum-fake-shrink who finds herself drawn into the polarised world of left-wingers worried about extreme weather and right-wingers worried about the decline of western civilisation.)

4 thumbs up for Ocean

what we're reading

Stef: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong—Ocean Vuong is a celebrated young American poet and this discipline shines through when reading this, his first novel. His prose is so perfectly nuanced, capturing our often conflicted emotions, especially when it comes to love, love of our family, friends and lovers. The book is written as a letter from a son to a mother who can’t read. The letter writer, Little Dog, is in his late twenties and his epistle unearths a family history that begins in Vietnam before he was born and serves as a doorway into parts of his life his mother has never known. Vuong draws on his family’s migrant experience, his difference in a new land. He explores his sexuality and the barriers he must break down. His observations of the passing of time, change in seasons and of life and death are truly poetic. If you only read one book this year, make it this one—it is so raw, so powerful and so beautiful. Andrew: This debut novel from the author of the acclaimed poetry collection Night Sky with Exit Wounds is wonderful. Narrated by a young Vietnamese immigrant to the USA, Little Dog, written as a letter to his mother Rose. Whether it is napalm and gasoline infused descriptions of seventies Saigon or the heady acetone drenched backdrop of a nail bar in middle American—(the work that Rose scrapes by on) Vuong’s writing is immediate and raw, startling and corrosive. Definitely worth checking out, and absolutely a writer to watch.

Roger: Prompted by the release of Big Sky ( Kate Atkinson’s new novel in the eccentrically brilliant series featuring ex soldier, ex cop, now nearly ex private eye, Jackson Brodie) I took advantage of a recent holiday at son’s family’s house in beautiful Bermagui to get stuck into the backlist of Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie series of novels. I first fell in love with Atkinson’s writing when I laughed out loud at her first novel Behind the Scenes at the Museum, and I had read and loved the first Brodie book, Case Histories, when it came out in 2004. But somehow work and personal pressures had kept me away from the three subsequent books featuring the lovable Jackson, victim (or Influencer?) of fate. And now there was this fifth coming out—so I had to catch up. And what an exciting ride it is. Good characters, irony and comedy galore combined with tragedy on steroids in fast moving, zanily coincidental but emphatically believable plots, ( What is the plural of ‘Deus ex machina’?). What more could you want in the modern British novel. They stand alone, but the best way to read them is in order as Jackson struggles and sails through adversity and good fortune adapting himself to the changes of life and society. We need someone to publish a book The Jackson Brodie Novels and Philosophy.) If you want to catch up we have two early books in the series: Case Histories and Started Early, Took My Dog in stock at the special price of $12. And of course Big Sky in stock at the special price fo $29.99.

Performing Arts

Malcolm Young: The man who made AC/DC by Jeff Apter ($33, PB)

Malcolm Young was always destined for a life in rock & roll: his elder brother George was a key member of The Easybeats & was also a vital early mentor of AC/DC. Malcolm lived hard & fast, enduring incredible hardship when the band started out in the mid-1970s, surviving the terrible loss of Bon Scott in 1980, and suffering numerous personal demons, including alcoholism. Yet without Malcolm Young, there would have been no AC/DC. As the band’s former bassist, Mark Evans, wrote of Malcolm: ‘He was the driven one, the planner, the schemer, the behind the scenes guy, ruthless & astute.’ Brent Heavener tells the story of his remarkable rise from working-class Glasgow&and the Villawood migrant hostel in Sydney to the biggest stages in the world.

Mad as Hell and Back: A Silver Jubilee of Sketches by Shaun Micallef and Gary McCaffrie ($35, PB) To mark the 10th season of Mad as Hell and Shaun Micallef’s 21st year in comedy this is a comprehensive collection of the funniest scripts & scenes from Micallef’s long TV career? The book feature the highlights of Mad as Hell, and also favourites from Full Frontal, The Micallef P(r)ogram(me) and Newstopiä. Micallef & his co-writer Gary McCaffrie usher us behind the scenes with hilarious footnotes to their most loved sketches.

Dream About Lightning Bugs: A Life of Music and Cheap Lessons by Ben Folds ($35, PB) From growing up in working class North Carolina amid the race and class tensions that shaped his early songwriting, to painful life lessons he learned the hard way, Ben Folds also ruminates on music in the digital age, the absurdity of life on the road, and the challenges of sustaining a multi-decade, multi-faceted career in the music business. He opens up about finding his voice as a musician, becoming a rock anti-hero, and hauling a baby grand piano on and off stage for every performance—a funny and wise chronicle of his artistic coming of age, infused with the wry observations of a natural storyteller.

50 Years of Glastonbury: Music and Mud at the Ultimate Festival ($50, HB)

50 Years of Glastonbury celebrates the mud and mayhem that makes the festival one of the most popular musical events in the world, for fans and for artists, alike. Packed with incredible photographs and stories of the acts and attendees who have made Glastonbury a phenomenon, this is a visual feast showing lineups from each festival and outstanding photographs of headliners and cult acts from the festival’s extraordinary history.

Revenge of the She-Punks : A Feminist Music History from Poly Styrene to Pussy Riot by Vivien Goldman ($32, PB)

Vivien Goldman blends interviews, history & her personal experience as one of Britain’s first female music writers in a book that reads like a vivid documentary of a genre defined by dismantling boundaries. A discussion of the Patti Smith song Free Money, for example, opens with Goldman on a shopping spree with Smith. Tamar-Kali, whose name pays homage to a Hindu goddess, describes the influence of her Gullah ancestors on her music, while the late Poly Styrene’s daughter reflects on why her Somali-ScotsIrish mother wrote the 1978 punk anthem Identity, with the refrain ‘Identity is the crisis you can’t see’. Other strands feature artists from farther afield (including Colombia & Indonesia) and genre-busting revolutionaries such as Grace Jones, who influenced the movement while absorbing its liberating audacity. From punk’s Euro origins to its international reach, this is an exhilarating world tour.

Bob Dylan’s Poetics: How the Songs Work by Timothy Hampton ($54, HB)

Focusing on the interplay of music & lyric, Hampton traces Dylan’s innovative use of musical form, his complex manipulation of poetic diction, and his dialogues with other artists, from Woody Guthrie to Arthur Rimbaud. Moving from Dylan’s earliest experiments with the blues through his mastery of rock & country to his densely allusive more recent recordings, Hampton offers a detailed account of Dylan’s achievement. Locating Dylan in the long history of artistic modernism, he examines the relationships among form, genre & the political & social themes that crisscross Dylan’s work.


Editor & desktop publisher Viki Dun vikid@gleebooks.com.au Printed by Access Print Solutions


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is a publication of Gleebooks Pty. Ltd. 49 Glebe Point Rd, (P.O. Box 486) Glebe NSW 2037 Ph: (02) 9660 2333 Fax: (02) 9660 3597 books@gleebooks.com.au


The gleebooks gleaner is published monthly from February to November with contributions by staff, invited readers & writers. ISSSN: 1325 - 9288 Feedback & book reviews are welcome

Registered by Australia Post Print Post Approved

The Body by Bill Bryson Due October

Bestsellers—Non-Fiction 1. Born at the Right Time: A Memoir

Scott Morrison’s Ascension

Niki Savva

3. The Talking Cure: Normal people, their hidden

struggles and the life-changing power of therapy

Gillian Straker & Jacqui Winship

4. Skywriting: Making Radio Waves

Robyn Ravlich

5. QE 74: Prosperity Gospel: How Scott Morrison Won

and Bill Shorten Lost Domestic Violence

Jess Hill

7. No Friend But the Mountains

Behrouz Boochani

8. How to Defend Australia

Hugh White

9. Who’s Minding the Farm? In This Climate Emergency

Patrice Newell

10. Australia Day

Stan Grant

Bestsellers—Fiction 1. City of Girls

Elizabeth Gilbert

2. The Overstory

Richard Powers

3. The Yield

Tara June Winch

4. Big Sky

Kate Atkinson

5. Songs: From ‘Flame Trees’ to ‘Khe Sanh’ & beyond

Don Walker

6. Normal People 7. Frankissstein: A Love Story

Sally Rooney Jeanette Winterson

8. On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous 9. The Chain 10. Three Women



Go in the draw to win a double pass to see Bill Bryson at ICC in Darling Harbour on Friday 6th September. The winner will be selected and advised on 31st August.

Erik Jensen

6. See What You Made Me Do: Power, Control and

special price of $39.95 (RRP $49.95)

Ron McCallum

2. Plots & Prayers: Malcolm Turnbull’s Demise and

Pre-order in August for the

Ocean Vuong Adrian McKinty Lisa Taddeo

and another thing.....

This month finds me styling a moon boot, not because of the Apollo 11 celebrations, but because of a broken ankle picked up on a less than mindful walk home from work, no I was not on the phone. But Lucy Ellmann’s Booker long-listed book, the curiosity-invokingly titled Ducks, Newburyport, which I’ve just had to drag myself out of, comes very close to my state of mind just before I hit the pavement. A one thousand page sentence of strung-together thoughts, factoids, musings on the state of the world, connections and lists lists lists, once entered into it’s quite hard to extract yourself from. I’m not generally a fan of stream of consciousness, but so far I’m completely engaged with this explosion of endless 21st century too-much-information babble. I’m going to attempt the whole sentence—which will probably have me following my own thoughts down the rabbit hole, but hopefully not to another broken limb. Meanwhile to get out of my head I’m working through ABC science & tech journo Lee Constable’s book How to Save the Whole Stinkin’ Planet (what a great title)—which may be on the kid’s page this month, but as far as dealing with the 2 billion tonnes (37,900 Sydney Harbour Bridges) of global waste produced yearly we’re all in need of the basic instruction and exercises this book provides—time to get prepared for when Sydney’s recycling companies go the way of Melbourne’s (not to mention when Asia sends our rubbish back). From the crime aisles this month I’ve just finished the new Fred Vargas, This Poison Will Remain, which was the usual entertaining zen combo of wordplay and detection, with Inspector Adamsburg tangling with the recluse spider and the barbaric practice of female ‘reclusion’ in Medieval Europe. I’ve also just opened Salman Rushdie’s new book. His last couple have been disappointing, but 60 pages into Quichotte it feels like Rushdie has hit his stride again. Viki

For more August new releases go to:

Main shop—49 Glebe Pt Rd; Ph: (02) 9660 2333, Fax: (02) 9660 9842. Open 7 days, 9am to 9m Thur–Sat; 9am to 7pm Sun–Wed Sydney Theatre Shop—22 Hickson Rd Walsh Bay; Open two hours before and until after every performance Blackheath—Shop 1 Collier’s Arcade, Govetts Leap Rd; Ph: (02) 4787 6340. Open 7 days, 9am to 6pm Blackheath Oldbooks—Collier’s Arcade, Govetts Leap Rd: Open 7 days 10am to 5pm Dulwich Hill—536 Marrickville Rd Dulwich Hill; Ph: (02) 9560 0660. Open 7 days, Tue–Sat 9am to 7pm; Sun–Mon 9 to 5 www.gleebooks.com.au. Email: books@gleebooks.com.au; oldbooks@gleebooks.com.au

Profile for Gleebooks

Gleaner August 2019