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CARLY FINDLAY is a writer, speaker, appearance activist and huge fan of the ’90s bands Savage Garden and Southern Sons. She has appeared on the ABC’s You Can’t Ask That, and is currently editing the anthology Growing Up Disabled in Australia. We asked her about her favourite books, the concept of #OwnVoices, living with a rare skin condition and her new book, Say Hello: How I became my own fangirl; a memoir and manifesto on difference, acceptance, selflove and belief.
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Articles in this issue

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Archive Discoveries

  • SABRINA HAHN has been WA’s go-to dispenser of green-thumb advice to radio listeners for more than 20 years. Now, in Sabrina’s Dirty Deeds, she shows you what to do in your garden and when to do it. In this extract she outlines how to encourage good predatory insects. Read on >
  • gr highlights cookbooks to buy for the discerning foodies in your life. Read on >
  • Perth crime writer David Whish-Wilson reveals how the history of organised crime in WA and his many encounters with criminals, from teaching writing to inmates to meeting biker gangs, has influenced his novels.  Read on >
  • Sydney-based novelist LAUREN SAMS, author of She’s Having Her Baby, has worked for magazines such as Marie Claire, Elle and Cosmopolitan. Her new book, Crazy Busy Guilty, reprises the heroine Georgie Henderson, who tries frantically to juggle work and family. We spoke recently with Lauren, who talked about the US election, writer’s block and wacky parenting strategies.  Read on >
  • As a teenager, GAYLE FORMAN was so obsessed with ‘80s movie star Molly Ringwald that she started to imitate the actress’s trademark nervous lip bite – and now she has a permanent scar. After seven bestselling YA novels and a successful movie adaption of one of her books, she talks with ANGUS DALTON about her first book for adults, Leave Me. Read on >
  • The BBC released a survey earlier this year in which they asked readers to name the books they had lied about having read. You can see the list below. I think I have read around half, as some I may have read in my youth that I’ve forgotten about (more about that later). How many of them have you read? The truth, please! Read on >
  • When she’s not training her inquisitorial blowtorch on politicians and other people who have questions to answer, ABC reporter and presenter SARAH FERGUSON loves to delve into a book. Her new book, The Killing Season Uncut, recounts the behind-the-scenes tales of the television program about the tumultuous Rudd–Gillard years. We asked the multi-award winning Four Corners reporter to tell us about the books that have influenced her. Read on >
  • It’s 100 years since
 Roald Dahl’s birth on 13 September 1916. For many years now, 13 September has been celebrated as Roald Dahl Day.  I love all of Roald Dahl’s books. I love the naughty antics his characters get up to in so many of his stories. I love reading about the fascinating life he led – especially his wartime flying exploits – and I really loved how he made the nasty grandmother in George’s Marvellous Medicine just go ‘pop’ and disappear. I think we all have someone in our life we’d like that to happen to occasionally. If you are yet to read his memoirs – Boy and Going Solo – I can’t recommend them highly enough. Read on >
  • Alison Evans is a genderqueer writer, lover of bad movies, and co-founder of the zine Concrete Queers. Here Alison tells us about her new spec-fic novel, Ida, and non-binary identities in YA fiction. Read on >
  • RITU MENON loves to travel and she loves to sample the local fare of the places her journeys take her to.Her new book, Loitering with Intent: Diary of a happy traveller, is derived from over a decade of travel journal writing. Here she recounts how she came to write the book and recalls a couple of fabulous Italian feasts. Read on >
  • Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre has inspired all kinds of fan fiction and adaptations, such as the 1966 prequel Wide Sargasso Sea. But in this new novel by Sydney resident JENNIFER LIVETT, the lives of Jane Eyre characters become entwined with those of real 19th-century Tasmanians, including doomed Arctic explorer Sir John Franklin. Here Jennifer tells us how she came up with the idea for Wild Island. Read on >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • Atmospheric and aspirational – imagine sailing to Bermuda with John Lennon – I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it. Read on >

  • The landscape descriptions are stunning, vividly evoking the majesty of old-growth forests. Read on >

  • This is a gentle but sad book of family loyalty, love, challenges and above all, the sea, the sea, the sea. Read on >

  • What a sweet, thoughtful novel this is, originally written in Japanese and translated by Meredith McKinney.  Read on >

  • ... this is an entertaining read, and if you liked the first ‘Vindolanda’ novel you will enjoy the same combination of strict historical accuracy and strong storytelling in this sequel. Read on >

  • This is an interesting tale of one of the lesser-known villains of the Nazi regime, although the novel is weakened by sparse character development and, at times, simplistic narration. It is, however, a timely reminder that personal ambition can trump all else. Read on >

  • This book was too long and too focused on the domestic detail of what appears to ultimately be an unsatisfactory relationship. Read on >

  • This is a book of pure escapism, taking readers from the modern world to the ancient myths and complicated bloodlines of the Greek gods and mortal heroes. His notes on almost every page are informative and full of down-to-earth humour. Read on >

  • I wanted so much to love this book, but I didn’t. The narrative chops and changes between timelines, and I found it occasionally confusing. Read on >

  • By the end of the collection, Schweblin’s writing will leave you with the feeling of a hot, sticky night spent dipping in and out of dreams, restless and prickling with dread. Read on >

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