Books

Love Your Bookshop Day returns on October 9th

September 29, 2021

Love Your Bookshop Day (LYBD) is back again! Taking place on October 9th, this year’s major events will be entirely virtual, so that everyone – locked down or not – can join in the celebration. Long before we were confined to our couches, the local bookstore was the place to go for all your literary […]

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Book Review: Dark family history collides with gothic fantasy in A.G. Slatter’s All The Murmuring Bones

September 29, 2021

Long ago, the O’Malleys prospered, striking a deal with the mer to secure their ships as they made their fortune. But the O’Malleys have failed to live up to their end of the bargain, and Mirin’s grandmother, Aoife, must find a new way to save the family. Sacrificing a child of each generation to the […]

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The Stars Beyond The Stone

Book Review: Bonnie Wynne’s stellar The Price of Magic continues with The Stars Beyond the Stone

September 23, 2021

Life seems to have finally slowed for Gwyn. After the battle with Molech Suun, the Clockwork City is in ruins and Gwyn, reluctantly, is one of the figureheads of the movement to rebuild it. But she can’t shake the feeling that her old master Faolan is still alive. And with Scions to destroy and a dangerous […]

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OzAsia Festival announces new writing and ideas program, In Other Words

September 16, 2021

More than 40 Asian and Australian writers will come together for In Other Words, a new writing and ideas program from the OzAsia Festival team. Curated by Laura Kroetsch, Benjamin Law, and Roanna Gonsalves, the program will run from November 5th to 7th, with guests able to attend either in person at the Dunstan Playhouse […]

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Lakesedge

Book Review: Lyndall Clipstone sets the bar high in moody YA fantasy Lakesedge

September 16, 2021

Leta has heard the rumours about Rowan Sylvanan, the monster who drowned his entire family as a boy. But the dangerous young lord of Lakesedge might be the only one who can help her brother Arien, afflicted by a dark and violent magic that threatens to overtake him. But upon entering the grounds of Lakesedge, […]

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Tony Birch

“Whatever you’re writing about, the story has to work. It has to be a good story.”: Author Tony Birch talks about his latest collection Dark As Last Night

September 16, 2021

Professor Tony Birch is the bestselling and award-winning Australian author of The White Girl, Ghost River, Blood, Shadowboxing, Father’s Day, The Promise and Common People. In 2017 he was awarded the Patrick White Literary Award. An activist, historian and essayist, Birch’s latest short story collection Dark As Last Night was released by the University of Queensland Press in August 2021. We caught up […]

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Booker Prize announces 2021 shortlist

September 15, 2021

  This year’s Booker Prize shortlist was released over night, with the prize’s website stating that “as always, the lucky winners will be the readers“. The final six novels, whittled down from a longlist of thirteen, includes previous shortlistees Richard Powers and Damon Galgut, as well as debut novelist Patricia Lockwood and fan favourite Maggie […]

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Small Joys of Real Life

Book Review: Small Joys of Real Life is a deeply moving debut about those moments when life doesn’t go to plan

September 9, 2021

In Small Joys of Real Life, the debut novel by Allee Richards, main character Eva is coming to terms with some big changes in her life. Though she’s moderately successful in her acting career, she’s never felt as passionate about it as she feels perhaps she should. When she confides this information to Pat, a friend of […]

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Hawkins

Book Review: Murder, secrets and a thriller within a thriller on Paula Hawkins’ return

September 2, 2021

Acclaimed author Paula Hawkins (The Girl on the Train, Into the Water) returns with yet another nail-biting thriller. A Slow Fire Burning follows a cast of characters living along the Regent’s Canal in Shoreditch; each of them inextricably linked through events of the last few decades. The murder of Daniel Sutherland inside his canal boat […]

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The Shut Ins

Book Review: Katherine Brabon’s The Shut Ins is a subtle take on a different kind of social isolation

September 1, 2021

The Shut Ins – the second novel from 2016 Vogel Award winner, Katherine Brabon – takes its readers to Japan, pre-pandemic but post tsunami, and is a meditation on the all too timely and relevant themes of loneliness and isolation. Using a frame narrative of an Australian writer travelling Japan and feeling increasingly disconnected from […]

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Book Review: Zoe Deleuil’s The Night Village shows us cousin Rachel, but not as you know her

August 26, 2021

Simone moved to London to become a journalist, but then she met Paul. Now, she’s about to have his child, and nothing is turning out quite like she planned. Having a small human completely dependent on her for survival is terrifying to Simone, whose family are halfway across the world in Perth. Though he’s her […]

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The Liquid Land

Book Review: Raphaela Edelbaur’s The Liquid Land is uncanny and thought-provoking contemporary fiction

August 25, 2021

After her parents die in a car accident, physicist Ruth Schwarz sets off for their hometown of Greater Einland to begin preparations for their funeral. But Greater Einland is a stubborn sort of place, determined to remain hidden from outsiders, with even Austrian officials denying all knowledge of the place. But Ruth is stubborn too […]

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Guest Book Review: Tim Carroll from Holy Holy reviews The Power by Naomi Alderman

August 20, 2021

Today, Holy Holy released their fourth studio album, Hello My Beautiful World. Our reviewer Dylan Marshall, has declared it as “their best album yet”, and it is our Album of the Week. Guitarist and vocalist Tim Carroll is also a voracious reader, and to celebrate this latest release, Tim has written for the AU, a […]

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Dark As Last Night

Book Review: Tony Birch explores pivotal decisions in everyday moments in Dark As Last Night

August 19, 2021

Tony Birch once again proves he is the master of short fiction in Dark As Last Night, a collection of sixteen slice of life short stories that range in time, tone and focus. In his trademark style, which brings the world to life with vivid but simple descriptions, Birch explores the various chances we’re given […]

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Sistersong

Book Review: Lucy Holland’s Sistersong is a compelling folkoric fantasy, perfect for fans of Circe

August 12, 2021

The Romans have left Britain, abandoning it to warring tribes and the invading Saxons. Already set to inherit a land torn asunder, the children of King Cador and Queen Enica watch as their parents bend increasingly to the will of Gildas, an influential and dangerous Christian leader. Under his often cruel guidance, the people of […]

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The Eighth Wonder

Book Review: The Eighth Wonder is an engrossing and original work of historical fiction

August 5, 2021

There is something about a book with a circus in it that promises the spectacular. Touted as Suffragette meets The Greatest Showman, Australian author Tania Farrelly‘s debut novel The Eighth Wonder is the story of Rose Kingsbury Smith, a young woman living in the privileged neighbourhood of the Upper East Side in New York at the turn of […]

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She is Haunted

Book Review: Paige Clark’s debut collection She is Haunted might just be one of the best books of the year

July 29, 2021

A mother cuts her daughter’s hair because her own starts falling out. A woman leaves her boyfriend because he reminds her of a corpse; another undergoes brain surgery to try to live more comfortably in higher temperatures. A widow physically transforms into her husband so that she does not have to grieve. This is She […]

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Booker Prize announces 2021 longlist

July 27, 2021

The Booker Prize, one of the industry’s most prestigious awards, has today announced it’s 13 strong longlist. To be considered for the Booker, nominated fiction works must be written in English, and published/slated to be published in the UK and Ireland between October 2020 and September 2021. Taking on the daunting task of narrowing the […]

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Locust Summer

Book Review: Grief and nostalgia reign in David Allan-Petale’s Locust Summer

July 22, 2021

Locust Summer, the debut novel by WA writer David Allan-Petale, has been a long time coming. Shortlisted for the 2017 Australian/Vogel Literary Award administered by Allen and Unwin, the book was released this July by Fremantle Press in the midst of Perth’s latest lockdown. The postponement of a book launch due to circumstances beyond the […]

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The Therapist

Book Review: Helene Flood is a new voice in Nordic noir with translated work The Therapist

July 21, 2021

Translated from the Norwegian by Alison McCullough, Helene Flood’s debut adult novel follows Sara, a Norwegian therapist, in the aftermath of her husband’s disappearance. Initially, Sigurd lies about his whereabouts in a voicemail left for Sara. Soon she uncovers a web of deceit that ultimately puts her in harm’s way. Originally published in 2019, English-speaking […]

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Felicity Castagna

Win a copy of Girls In Boys’ Cars by Felicity Castagna

July 21, 2021

Thanks to our friends at Pan Macmillan Australia we have two copies of Felicity Castagna’s forthcoming book Girls In Boys’ Cars to giveaway.  Girls In Boys’ Cars tells the story of a complicated friendship; of a road trip through NSW in a stolen car; of two funny, sharp and adventurous young women who refuse to […]

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A Lair of Bones

Book Review: Helen Scheuerer kicks off a dark new fantasy series with A Lair of Bones

July 15, 2021

Roh is a cyren, living in the lowest levels of Saddoriel, the cavernous, labyrinthine fortress home of her people. The daughter of an infamous criminal, she works as a lowly bone-cleaner, out of sight and out of mind, far away from the upper class cyrens who remember her mother’s crimes all too well. One day, […]

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Palace of the Drowned

Book Review: Palace of the Drowned wrestles with second novel syndrome in more ways than one

July 14, 2021

It feels strange to be writing a review of a novel in which the catalyst is a negative book review. In Palace of the Drowned, Christine Mangan (Tangerine) returns to the literary thriller genre with a story of writers block and obsession. It follows Frankie Croy, a career author whose first book was one of those […]

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Anticipated Books

The AU’s Most Anticipated Books of 2021: Jul – Sep

July 9, 2021

We’re over halfway through the year. How are your 2021 reading goals going? Have all the mini snap lockdowns around the country had you turning to a good book? We’re back to take a look at a handful of the new titles coming out across the next couple of months. With so many books published each […]

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Reading Australian Writer

Book Review: Reading Like an Australian Writer updates the syllabus for Australian literary studies

July 8, 2021

How do we define an Australian writer? What is Australian literature? New South Books’ latest collection of essays, Reading Like An Australian Writer doesn’t seek to answer these questions definitively. Instead, using as its source material a line-up of well-known Australian literary figures and their books, it offers up a round table of discussions on […]

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Book Review: Trek the Pennine Way with Anita Sethi in new memoir I Belong Here

July 7, 2021

After being subjected to a racist attack on a TransPennine Express train, Anita Sethi decided enough was enough. With no one on the train willing to step in and stop her abuser on his vicious tirade, she reached out to train staff and police herself, choosing to speak up for herself in a way she […]

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Anita Heiss

Book Review: Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray is an exquisite piece of historical fiction from Anita Heiss

July 1, 2021

When the Murrumbidgee River bursts its banks and sweeps into the fledgling town of Gundgai, it is Wagadhaany’s father, Yarri, and other Wiradjuri men who come to the rescue of the trapped townsfolk. Now an indentured servant to the Bradleys – a family who, years ago, ignored her father’s pleading not to build on the […]

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Yarra Valley Writers Festival returns with a blended online and in-person program

June 25, 2021

The Yarra Valley Writers Festival will once again welcome readers, thinkers, and wine-lovers to Warburton, Victoria in mid-July. Boasting a fantastic line-up, including Kate Holden, Helen Garner, Tony Birch, Kate Mildenhall, Nardi Simpson, Stuart Coupe, Rick Morton, Jessie Tu, Louise Milligan, and more, the festival’s program will be accessible both in-person and online. Rather than […]

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Little Boat Trusting Lane

Book Review: Mel Hall’s The Little Boat on Trusting Lane is a compassionate story of complex relationships

June 24, 2021

Mel Hall’s debut novel, The Little Boat on Trusting Lane, is a tender and thoughtful reflection on the power of community in the process of healing. The Little Mother Earth Ship is an alternative healing centre based out of a houseboat aboard stilts in the middle of a scrapyard on Trusting Lane. Richard, who runs […]

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Author Interview: Helen Scheuerer on A Lair of Bones, second series jitters, and building her very own fantasy universe

June 22, 2021

It’s been a little over a year since Helen Scheuerer officially closed out The Oremere Chronicles with short story collection Dawn of Mist. Now, the indie author is prepping for the launch of an all new dark fantasy series, Curse of the Cyren Queen. It all kicks off on July 15th with A Lair of […]

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