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Tim Flannery is a mammalogist, palaeontologist, environmentalist, conservationist, explorer, and public scientist. He is one of Australia’s leading writers on climate change and was named Australian of the Year in 2007.  JENNIFER SOMERVILLE revisits his remarkable book that was originally published over two decades ago, Throwim Way Leg.

Articles in this issue

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Archive Discoveries

  • Adelaide writer STEPHEN 
ORR, whose book The Hands
 was longlisted for the 2016 
Miles Franklin Award, likes to
travel the world inspecting
 sites of literary interest – when 
he’s not writing about cattle 
stations and small towns. Here 
he recounts a recent journey to
 the British Isles and Germany on 
which he visited the homes and
 haunts of some of the world’s best known authors. Read on >
  • The 1970s and 80s saw DAVE WARNER lead two influential punk-rock bands. His demanding musician’s lifestyle left little time for writing anything but his next single. Nowadays Dave is a full-time screenwriter, novelist and playwright, but he still takes to the stage every so often for a good old-fashioned rock-out. ANGUS DALTON finds out more about Dave’s life and his latest crime novel, Before It Breaks. Read on >
  • American author and hairdresser DEBORAH RODRIGUEZ lived in the Afghan capital of Kabul for five years, and in that time she founded her own beauty salon and coffee shop. On her return to the US, she wrote a bestselling novel based on the bustling cafe, and now she’s taking us back to Afghanistan in Return to the Little Coffee Shop of Kabul. ANGUS DALTON reports. Read on >
  • JIM OBERGEFELL led a class action in the US Supreme Court that established marriage equality nationwide for Americans. Love Wins, co-written with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist DEBBIE CENZIPER, is the story of the love that inspired the fight for justice. ANGUS DALTON reports. Read on >
  • For some women, bad men cast an irresistibly magnetic spell. Melbourne-based author LAURA ELIZABETH WOOLLETT examines this often fatal attraction in  The Love of a Bad Man, a collection of 12 stories based on the lives of real women who sought the love of criminals. In this extract from ‘Eva’, the author imagines the post-coital thoughts of Eva Braun, who met Adolf Hitler when she was 17. Read on >
  • Marine biologist SHANNON LEONE FOWLER was embracing her fiancé, Sean, in the ocean off the coast of Thailand when a box jellyfish stung and killed him.Thai authorities tried to dismiss his death as a drunk drowning. Traveling with Ghosts follows the months Shannon spent on a strange trajectory through Eastern Europe, fleeing from the ocean and from grief. She tells us how her memoir came to be, 14 years after Sean’s death. Read on >
  • AOIFE CLIFFORD is the winner of the Scarlet Stiletto Award for one of her crime stories, but All These Perfect Strangers is her first novel. The Melbourne-based crime novelist talks with us about New Year’s resolutions, her Irish poet grandfather and the similarities between writing a novel and creating a papier-mâché puppet.  Read on >
  • Australian film director BRUCE BERESFORD (Driving Miss Daisy, Paradise Road) and film producer SUE MILLIKEN (Black Robe and Sirens) have collaborated on several films over their long careers. Their new book, There’s a Fax from Bruce: Edited correspondence between Bruce Beresford & Sue Milliken 1989- 1996, collects the communications – full of industry gossip, news and thoughts on books and films – from a pre-email era between these two filmmaking luminaries. They tell us here about the books that have influenced them. Read on >
  • Ed Yong – science reporter for The Atlantic and blogger for National Geographic – has just published his first book, I Contain Multitudes: The microbes within us and a grander view of life. We asked him to tell us about his reading life.   What are you
reading now?
 Patient H.M. by 
Luke Dittrich, because 
my editor for my own 
book sent me a galley
 copy! I’m glad she
 did. Henry Molaison 
was arguably the most
influential patient in
all of neuroscience.
 After an operation to
cure his epilepsy, he lost the ability to form new memories – think Memento – and so taught us much about how our memories work. Dittrich is the grandson of the surgeon who operated on Molaison, and he brings a deeply personal flavor to the incisive reporting and colourful writing that characterise this book. What are your three favourite books?
 The Song of the Dodo: Island biogeography in the age of extinctions by David Quammen is natural history writing at its finest – a witty, insightful tour of the planet’s islands and what they tell us about our increasingly fragmented world. The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell offers genre-hopping stories but delivers a deep fable about hope and nihilism; I stared silently out a window for the longest time when I finished 
it. Being Wrong: Adventures in the margin of error by Kathryn Schulz is a wondrous study of human error that blends literature, science and philosophy. Read on >
  • ABC journalist and science writer IAN TOWNSEND cut his teeth as a novelist in 2007 with Affection, which told the story of a plague outbreak in 1900. His next novel, The Devil’s Eye, was longlisted for the Miles Franklin Award in 2009. Now with Line of Fire, he turns his pen to narrative non-fiction to tell the story of Richard Manson, an 11-year-old boy who was accused of espionage and shot by the Japanese during World War II in New Guinea. Read on >
  • The town of Sorrento in southern Italy sits high on a clff above the Tyrrhenian Sea, whose waters are sobuoyant and warm that you can doze off while floating on its surface. But as author KATE FURNIVALL found, the nearby city of Naples is steeped in a history of danger and wartime poverty. The UK author tells gr her latest novel, The Liberation, was inspired by the secret tunnels, mafia strongholds and the of child street gangs she encountered on a recent visit to the Bay of Naples. Read on >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • This beautifully illustrated book is quite a deep read. It has made me realise the importance of telling our stories to our families, whether they be ones we are proud of or others we would prefer to forget. Our stories will be different from any other generation’s and will help those who follow us to understand us and respect us for who we are. Read on >

  • This is a story with heart, celebrating the wonderful world of imagination, with age as no barrier. And the soft, fantastical illustrations will draw you and the children into Mabel’s wonderful world. Read on >

  • This book is not only a riot of fun but a hearty thank you from Mr Chicken to all the boys and girls who write to him. Many of their letters cover the inside front and back covers of this book and I can imagine how thrilling it would be for the children if Mr Chicken writes about their town where they live. Read on >

  • Gregory Goose is on the loose and this time he’s off to the moon. But how will he get there? Will he catch a rocket or maybe a falling star? We don’t really know where he is or how he’s going to go that far, but if we turn the pages and look very carefully we might find him hiding somewhere. Maybe he might be in his space balloon or visiting Mars. Read on >

  • Golden Unicorn is the first in ‘The Rise of the Mythix’ series, another created by Anh Do, an accomplished and multifaceted author. This engaging story is easy and enjoyable to read even for reluctant readers. The story is supported by graphic novel style, black-and-white illustrations from Chris Wahl. It would have been enhanced if some of the illustrations were in colour, especially when colour features importantly in the story. Read on >

  • The ‘Yinti’ series is an insightful collaboration between Jimmy Pike and his wife, Pat Lowe. The stories are ones that Jimmy recalls from his childhood and gives a rare insight into the traditional life and culture of First Nations people. Read on >

  • This book is for all those train buffs out there, whether you are four or 24; whether you love the smell of a coal-fired steam train, the speed of your intercity train or dream of the luxury of those trains you haven’t travelled on yet. It’s a story of the first steam engine replacing the horse-drawn trains in the English and Welsh coalmines. The Rocket built by father and son, George and Robert Stephenson, the first passenger train, setting a speed record of 47 kph. Read on >

  • The book is colour coded by continents, making it a breeze to find a specific country, or to simply flip through and marvel at all the history behind these flags. Read on >

  • Illuminightmare is an utterly unique historical picture book with a supernatural twist. It explores the most haunted places in the world, such as Salem in America, Bran Castle in Romania, and even Picton in Australia, sharing facts, urban legends and ghost stories from these unique places. For a child or even an adult not too faint of heart, Illuminightmare is a fascinating way to learn the history of some of the world’s most fascinating places. You could spend hours peering through the pages to find what’s hidden within. Read on >

  • This Is My World is a fascinating book that gives kids an insight into what it’s like to be a child in another country. There are 84 kids from over 70 different countries packed into the book, each with colourful pages where they describe their day-to-day life and what they want to be when they grow up. Readers can flick through the book at their leisure and learn about a unique child on every page. There’s also a map at the front of the book that will let them search for specific countries, colour coded by continent. Read on >

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The Paris Collaborator