Books

Yarra Valley Writers Festival to switch to livestream event

March 27, 2020

The Yarra Valley Writers Festival isn’t letting a pandemic get in the way of its inaugural celebrations! Instead, the team have today announced a switch to a digital format, with a series of events streaming live on Saturday 9th May. Festival programmer and playwright Hannie Rayson (Hotel Sorento, Inheritance) said: ‘’The way audiences experience art, […]

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Byron Writers Fest is the latest victim of COVID-19 cancellations

March 27, 2020

Event organisers have confirmed the cancellation of the 2020 Byron Writers Festival. Due to take place in August, tickets had not yet gone on sale. In a statement released today, the festival said: “Regrettably and with a heavy heart we have made the decision to cancel Byron Writers Festival 2020, which was scheduled to run […]

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Interview: Author Helen Scheuerer gives us the lowdown on forthcoming prequel collection Dawn of Mist

March 26, 2020

Soon readers will once more be able to explore the realm of Ellest, in Helen Scheuerer’s prequel collection Dawn of Mist. The anthology reveals more about key characters in The Oremere Chronicles, bringing together sixteen short stories in one volume. Ahead of the book’s release on April 16th, we caught up with Helen to chat […]

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O'Beirne

Book Review: A Couple of Things Before the End is an astonishing debut collection from Sean O’Beirne

March 24, 2020

In the 1950s, a young woman meets Barry Humphries on a ship. Two women text about their difficult, isolated mother. A newly elected hard right politician unleashes upon the press. And as the world burns, a wife from the “better suburbs” begs for a place in an exclusive gated community. These are just a few […]

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Indie Book Awards

2020 Indie Book Award winners announced

March 23, 2020

With Covid-19 causing mass disruption to everyday lives, including the cancellation of the Leading Edge Books Conference, the winners of 2020 Indie Book Awards have been announced online. This is the first time the Indie book Awards have been announced online.  The big winner for 2020 was Favel Parrett, who takes home The Indie Awards […]

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Book Review: Laura Purcell presents another fine Gothic horror with Bone China

March 23, 2020

Hester Why has her share of secrets. Travelling under a false name, on the run from something that – for the time being – remains a mystery, she’s on her way to Morvoren House, an isolated manor on the Cornish coast. Tasked with nursing Morvoren’s aging owner, Miss Louise Pinecroft, Hester joins a household in […]

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2020 ABIAs cancel red carpet event in favour of huge livestream celebration

March 20, 2020

A key fixture of Australia’s literary scene, the Australian Book Industry Awards (ABIAs) celebrates the very best in homegrown literature and publishing. This year, as we collectively navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, the ABIAs team have made the decision to forego their usual awards ceremony. Instead, they’ll be livestreaming the event, turning it from a 500 guest […]

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The Witcher

Book Review: Delve deeper into the world of The Witcher with Andrzej Sapkowski’s The Last Wish

March 20, 2020

Geralt of Rivia is a Witcher. He makes his living travelling from town to town, hunting down the monsters that stalk the land. After a particularly nasty encounter with a striga, he recovers in a secluded temple. While there, he reflects on past assignments and an uncertain future. First published in the early 90s and […]

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Armistead Maupin

Author and LGBT+ Activist Armistead Maupin to tour Australia in July

March 4, 2020

The bestselling and much beloved author and LGBT activist, Armistead Maupin is returning to Australia in July. Tales Of The City with Armistead Maupin will see the author recount his favourite stories from the past five decades, and offer his observations on contemporary society.  Armistead Maupin has been a part of US popular culture since […]

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The Women’s Prize for Fiction announces 2020 longlist

March 3, 2020

The longlist for the 2020 Women’s Prize for Fiction was announced at midnight GMT on March 3rd, with many avid UK booklovers staying up in anticipation of the announcement. Now in its 25th year, the prize was previously known as the Orange Prize for Fiction and until recently was the Bailey’s Prize for Fiction. It […]

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Wild Fearless Chests

Book Review: Mandy Beaumont’s Wild Fearless Chests is a visceral tour de force

March 1, 2020

The line between short stories and poetry is thin in Mandy Beaumont’s debut collection, Wild Fearless Chests, which was published earlier in the year by Hachette, off the back of a shortlisting in both the Richell Prize and the Dorothy Hewett Award run by UWA Publishing. The collection readers were promised was a catalogue of […]

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Book Review: Luke Arnold’s The Last Smile in Sunder City is a rollicking introduction to the world of Fetch Phillips

February 17, 2020

Fetch Phillips’ world is just like ours. Well except for the magic, and all that comes with that: chimera, wizards, elves, vampires and more. But, the magic has gone out, leaving the world irrevocably changed. And, our erstwhile “hero” Fetch might have more to do with it than we imagine. The Last Smile in Sunder […]

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Book Review: The Secrets We Kept is a thrilling account of the Zhivago affair

February 12, 2020

According to the end matter in her debut novel, The Secrets We Kept, author Lara Prescott was named for the heroine of Boris Pasternak‘s Nobel Prize winning novel, Doctor Zhivago. It was not until the CIA declassified 99 documents pertaining to the real story behind the publication of the Russian classic, however, that her interest […]

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Bonnie Wynne

Book Review: Dive into a new YA fantasy with Bonnie Wynne’s The Ninth Sorceress

February 6, 2020

Gwyn is in a bad way. Imprisoned in the dungeons of the Clockwork City, visits from interrogators and torturers are becoming routine. But, then a wizard walks in with something she’d thought long lost. A memento from a life left behind. And suddenly the words start coming. Ascepis and his caravan. Lucian, the shapeshifter. Her […]

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Euphoria Kids

Book Review: Alison Evans’ YA fantasy Euphoria Kids is a stunning contemporary fairytale

February 3, 2020

Iris, Babs, and the boy without a name. One from the earth, one made of fire, and one who isn’t quite sure what he’s made of just yet. For this trio, navigating school and family life should have been enough. But there’s trouble brewing. Iris, who counts the faeries and dryads amongst their friends, is […]

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Turn Left At Venus

Book Review: Explore the secret life of an author in Inez Baranay’s Turn Left At Venus

January 30, 2020

Ada is dying. Watched over by her new nurse, Jay, Ada is preparing for the end. Ada has lived all over the world. Sydney, Bali, San Francisco. And the Old World she doesn’t remember, save for the boat journey as a child when she first met Leyla. But, Jay has no interest in Leyla, because […]

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Akin

Book Review: Emma Donoghue’s Akin is a historical story told from the present day

January 28, 2020

Akin is Emma Donoghue’s tenth novel for adults, but only her second set in the modern day. Known by most readers for her 2010 novel, Room, Donoghue has published countless novels which examine little known pockets of history, such as 2014’s Frog Music and 2016’s The Wonder. At first glance, Akin is something entirely different to Donoghue’s back catalogue, including […]

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The Ninth Sorceress

Interview: Author Bonnie Wynne takes us through debut novel The Ninth Sorceress

January 24, 2020

There’s just a few weeks to go until the release of The Ninth Sorceress, the debut novel from author Bonnie Wynne. We were lucky enough to grab five minutes with her in the (very busy) run up to release day! First of all, can you tell us what The Ninth Sorceress is all about? (No […]

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Perth Festival’s 2020 Literature and Ideas program launches with a new curator and a minor revamp

January 18, 2020

Sisonke Msimang, the new curator for Perth Festival’s Literature and Ideas festival, delivered her full program for the late February event on Thursday night to an enthusiastic crowd at the Octagon Theatre. Her program, designed around the concepts of ‘Land, Money, Power, and Sex’ has been curated with a goal of inviting a new intake […]

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Book Review: Amanda Niehaus’ The Breeding Season is an impressive debut about sex, death and darkness

January 3, 2020

It is not often that we see science threaded into popular fiction plots. Even less common is to have this domain accompanied with an exploration of art. But that’s what we find in Dr. Amanda Niehaus’ debut novel, The Breeding Season, and it’s like a breath of fresh air. Niehaus is a scientist by trade. She leans […]

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Book Review: Gary Janetti’s Do You Mind If I Cancel? will make starry-eyed dreamers laugh like it’s 1989

January 1, 2020

The latest book from Gary Janetti, Do You Mind If I Cancel? might be a small one, but it contains some big laughs. This collection of essays recalls Janetti’s time as a twenty-something year old living in New York City. It is a book that will appeal to fans of David Sedaris and his colourful and […]

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Book Review: Lynne Truss’ The Man That Got Away is a quirky comedy starring some bumbling Bobbies

December 29, 2019

Lynne Truss is an author with many feathers to her (detective’s) cap. She is the renowned grammarian who wrote Eats, Shoots & Leaves as well as a journalist by trade. Her latest release is The Man That Got Away, her second crime novel. It’s another offbeat book starring some bumbling Bobbies, Brighton Belles and British bandits. […]

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Book Review: Christine Féret-Fleury’s The Girl Who Reads on the Metro fails to adequately celebrate the magical power of books

December 27, 2019

For a book that attempts to celebrate the magical power of the medium, The Girl Who Reads on the Metro is certainly underwhelming. Although written by a prolific French author, the results appear lost in translation. What could have been an exciting and energetic meditation on the restorative power of these delightful things, is instead, […]

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Book Review: Stoned by Jo Wood captures a unique time and a side to the Stones that’s rarely seen

December 23, 2019

Stoned, is a collection of images that have never been seen before by the general public. Consisting of over five hundred photographs, notes, artwork, newspaper clippings and other ephemera put together by Jo Wood documenting life behind the scenes of The Rolling Stones. Photographer and hoarder (thankfully) Jo Wood has kept thousands of polaroids and […]

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Book Review: Helen Garner’s Yellow Notebook is an exhilarating look inside the writer’s mind

December 23, 2019

Helen Garner is a Virginia Woolf fan. This is especially apparent in her latest release, Yellow Notebook: Diaries Volume 1 1978-1987. Woolf once said, “Examine for a moment an ordinary mind on an ordinary day. The mind receives a myriad impressions – trivial, fantastic, evanescent, or engraved with a sharpness of steel.” This quote amply […]

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The 16 Best Books of 2019

December 19, 2019

2019 you’re done. It might not have all gone to plan, and you might’ve been a bit of a trash fire politically, but there’s no denying you’ve produced the goods books wise. It’s been another big year in publishing, with thousands of books being published, read and enjoyed. We’ve also had quite a few literary heavyweights […]

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Book Review: Kathy O’Shaughnessy’s new work a novel approach to a biography of George Eliot

December 17, 2019

Kathy O’Shaughnessy‘s In Love with George Eliot is subtitled ‘A Novel’. Thank goodness for that, because if not, booksellers and librarians probably would not know where to shelve it. While readable and intensely interesting, the book reads more like a bibliomemoir, more akin to previous George Eliot studies like The Road to Middlemarch and last year’s […]

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Book Review: Terry O’Neill’s Elton John: The Definitive Portrait documents a long and successful career

December 16, 2019

Elton John and photographer Terry O’Neill first collaborated in 1972. Since then, O’Neill has taken around five thousand photographs of the star across the decades that followed. Recently, when going through his collection, O’Neill recognised the special nature of these photographs and wanted to share them with Elton’s legion of fans. Elton John: The Definitive […]

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Book Review: Mary Costello’s The River Capture is an ambitious ode to James Joyce

December 15, 2019

Mary Costello’s first novel, Academy Street, was shortlisted for a number of awards, and won the Irish Book of the Year Award in 2014. It also shares a lot thematically with her latest work. However, in her second novel, The River Capture, Costello has used a very different narrative style, and although providing some real […]

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Eberron: Rising from the Last War revives a beloved D&D setting

December 9, 2019

Eberron is one of Dungeons & Dragons greatest settings. A world still sifting through the wreckage of a recent global war, a place where sorcery and ambition have created technological marvels. The second major campaign setting for D&D 5th Edition is a palate cleanser, a very different flavour to the game’s traditional home in the […]

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