History L SPECIA PRICE
Viking HB WAS $49.99 NOW $19.99
This accessible take on Australian history explores both well- and little-known stories through the objects of the time and the people who made and owned them. Creswell takes each object as a starting point to tell the stories that make up our national history, exploring and celebrating key technological, social, political, artistic and sporting moments. From Ned Kelly’s armour to Henry Lawson’s pen and Julia Gillard’s glasses, the objects are sometimes iconic, sometimes unexpected and quirky. Together, they create a compelling, multilayered story.
Scribe PB $32.99
1947: WHEN NOW BEGINS Elisabeth Åsbrink
Scribe HB $29.99
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NLA HB WAS $39.99 NOW $12.95
Swedish journalist Elisabeth Åsbrink and her English translator Fiona Graham were awarded one of the 2017 English Pen Translates Awards for this unorthodox history, which uses the present tense to create a sense of immediacy when chronicling what Åsbrink categorises as the year in which the modern world was created. Delivering a compelling story of famous and non-famous people, of well-known and obscure events and actions, Åsbrink follows countless stories, from the creation of Israel to the writing of George Orwell’s final book Nineteen Eighty-Four and the publication of Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex, all the way to Christian Dior’s unveiling of the ‘New Look’, Arnold Schoenberg’s creation of a new musical form, the partition of British India and the establishment of the CIA.
ROYAL VISITS TO AUSTRALIA Jane Connors
Queen Elizabeth II’s visit to Australia in 1954 – the first visit by a reigning monarch to our shores – is the centrepiece of this book. During that tour seven million people out of a population of nine million went out on the streets to catch a glimpse of her. Royal Visits shows how affection for the royal family has waxed and waned since Prince Alfred came to Australia in 1867 and a ‘deranged Irishman’ attempted to assassinate him. While most attention is given to the 1954 tour, Jane Connors uses previous and later tours not just to trace the tensions between republican sentiment and royal ties, but as a way into the social and political history of our country.
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INGLORIOUS EMPIRE Shashi Tharoor
THE HISTORY OF AUSTRALIA IN 100 OBJECTS Toby Creswell
In this incisive reassessment of colonialism, the former under-secretary general of the UN exposes the reality of Britain’s stained Indian legacy. Inglorious Empire tells the real story of the British in India – from the arrival of the East India Company to the end of the Raj – and reveals how Britain’s rise was built upon its plunder of the country. British imperialism justified itself as enlightened despotism for the benefit of the governed, but Tharoor takes on and demolishes this position, demonstrating how every supposed imperial ‘gift’ – from the railways to the rule of law – was designed in Britain’s interests alone. Powerful and persuasive, this mythbusting work should demolish Raj nostalgia once and for all.
Viking HB WAS $49.99 NOW $45
BER DECEM SE RELEA
QUEENS OF THE CONQUEST Alison Weir
Jonathan Cape PB $35
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Hamish Hamilton HB WAS $45 NOW $16.95
Absorbed in the power plays that are a constant feature of this book, you might forget you’re reading real history and think you’re reading the background to a complex Middle Ages–inspired TV drama. There are alliances, betrayals, bastards, love, conquests, wars, religion, money, births, deaths and marriages on every page. But Alison Weir is a serious historian who has published many books for general readers. In this, the first of four volumes about England’s medieval queens, Weir tells the stories of the five consorts of the Norman kings of England who ruled from 1066 to 1154 – four Matildas (one also known as Maud) and Adeliza – whose power was not solely due to their royal status. As intriguing as it is accessible.
Atlantic HB WAS $39.99 NOW $35.99
A SINGLE TREE: VOICES FROM THE BUSH Don Watson
This collection of the raw material that Don Watson used to research his award-winning 2014 book The Bush comprises diary extracts, memoirs, journals, letters, histories, poems and fiction. Most of the materials display a deep and sentimental connection to the land, and an equally deep ignorance and abuse of it. All the romantic themes are here – the heroic myths and legends; the rural landscape as the formative and defining element in Australian culture; the mysterious and sometimes malevolent deep silence. Watson presents us with accounts of journeys, of work and recreation, of religious observance, of creation and destruction. He also gives us musings on what the future of the bush might be.
JOHN CURTIN’S WAR John Edwards
Written by John Edwards, adjunct professor at the John Curtin Institute of Public Policy at Curtin University and author of Keating: The Inside Story, this biography of John Curtin, our country's 14th prime minister, is long overdue and very welcome. In the first of two volumes, Edwards takes the story of one of our most underrated leaders from the late-19th-century socialist ferment in Melbourne through to his struggle for power against Joe Lyons and Bob Menzies, his appointment as prime minister two years into WW2 and his determination to be heard in Washington and London as Japan advanced seemingly inexorably towards Australia. Riveting reading.
ROME: A HISTORY IN SEVEN SACKINGS Matthew Kneale
Novelist and historian Matthew Kneale has written a fascinating popular history of his adopted home, Rome, seen from the perspective of its most significant sackings, from the Gauls to the Nazis and everything in between. Examining the most important of these attacks, he reveals how they transformed the city – and points out that this wasn’t always for the worse. Drawing an intense and vibrant portrait of the city and its inhabitants, both before and after being attacked, Kneale delivers a meticulously researched, magical and novel blend of travelogue, social and cultural history.
THE TEMPLARS Dan Jones
Head of Zeus HB $39.99
The Templars have come to encapsulate the bloody Crusades, becoming an image of fervent religious extremism in the process. Dan Jones’ history describes their inception as a small band of knights seeking to protect pilgrims in the aftermath of the first bloody crusade within the Holy Land in 1102, to their eventual incarnation as one of the most powerful political organisations of their time. His detailed but eminently readable style of writing and storytelling describes the order’s rise to power and influence within the Holy Land and also in the courts of some of the most powerful and famous kings of Europe, drawing from accounts, legend and facts to both shed light on the Templars’ influential reign and deliver an authoritative account of their history.
Highly Recommended A LITTLE HISTORY OF ECONOMICS
Niall Kishtainy Yale University Press HB $37.99 This accessible book is ideal for those new to economic theory and for anyone seeking a better understanding of the full sweep of economic history and ideas.
PRISONERS OF GEOGRAPHY
Tim Marshall Elliot & Thompson PB $22.99 In 10 chapters dedicated to different countries, continents and regions, Tim Marshall shows how geography has shaped current world events.
THE MOTHER OF ALL QUESTIONS
Emmanuel Macron Scribe PB $32.99 The youngest president in the history of France reveals his personal story and his inspirations, and discusses his vision of France and its future.
OUT OF THE WRECKAGE
UTOPIA FOR REALISTS
Naomi Klein Penguin PB $29.99 Klein (No Logo) shows us how we have ended up in the surreal and dangerous Trump era, how to stop things getting a lot worse, and how we can make things better.
Rebecca Solnit Granta HB $24.99 A new collection of ‘further feminisms’ – essays that are searing, smart and provocative – written by the author of Men Explain Things to Me and River of Shadows.
NO IS NOT ENOUGH
BER DECEM SE A E L E R
Royce Kurmelovs Hachette PB $32.99 A first-hand account of the phenomenon of One Nation, seen from the backrooms and corridors of the national parliament as well as the towns, rural communities and states that provide its voter base.
George Monbiot Bloomsbury PB $24.99 Monbiot argues that we urgently need a positive vision that can re-engage people in politics, and outlines ideas that show the way to a better social and environmental future.
Rutger Bregman Bloomsbury PB $21.99 Dutch historian Bregman believes that we can construct a society with visionary ideas (eg universal basic income, a 15-hour work week) that are, in fact, wholly implementable.
Published on Nov 9, 2017