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Archive Discoveries

  • 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 >
  • Best known to TV audiences as Goliath fromthequiz show The Chase, MATT PARKINSON was also one half of the Empty Pockets comedy duo. He cleaned up as a champion on Sale of the Century in the 1990s and since then he has served as the brains trust on ABC TV’s The Einstein Factor. We asked this big man (he’s nearly two metres tall) with a big brain about the books that have made him the brainiac that he is.  Read on >
  • ARMANDO LUCAS CORREA is the Editor-in-Chief of People En Espanol,  the top-selling Hispanic magazine in the U.S. Here he writes of his personal connection to a group of Jewish refugees that departed from Hamburg, Germany in 1939 seeking refuge in Cuba. His novel The German Girl is a fictional account of the doomed voyage. 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 >
  • After reading a few thrillers lately I got to thinking about writers in the crime and thriller genres and the research they need to do to make their books seem real. Research can be an exciting part of writing any book. Determining how a killer might think and how their victim could become entrapped is one thing, but I can’t imagine looking at dead people or reading detailed reports of the methods that serial killers use to stalk and murder their prey.That’s the sort of awful stuff police deal with and psychologically struggle with for the rest of their lives. But could even researching this sort of thing affect a writer?  Read on >
  • ANGUS DALTON meets British historian, journalist and author L S HILTON as she publicises the most hotly anticipated thriller of 2016, Maestra. Read on >
  • Former pop-punk rocker LEN VLAHOS tells Good Reading about his new YA novel, Life in a Fishbowl, and how Marcus Zusak inspired him to write from the perspective of a brain tumour. Read on >
  • We talk with PATRICK HOLLAND, a longlist nominee for the 2011 Miles Franklin Award for his novel The Mary Smokes Boys, about his new novel, One, which tells the story of the real-life Kenniff brothers. These two late-19th-century Queenslanders were Australia’s last bushrangers, and vPatrick questions the extent of their supposed villainy. Read on >
  • Kit, only 19 years old, works for Shen Corporation
as a phenomenaut – a person who projects their consciousness into the bodies of animals bred for research purposes. This is the strange and intriguing premise of The Many Selves of Katherine North. ANGUS DALTON puts some questions to EMMA GEEN, author of this new novel. Read on >
  • Serious social issues, including the plight of unwed mothers, domestic violence and the place of women in Australia's history are wrapped up in poignant romace in VICTORIA PURMAN's new novel, The Three Miss Allens. She spekas with MAUREEN EPPEN about the inspiration behind the family saga set on the South Australian coast. Read on >
  • Think of the typical problem drinker, and we usually imagine alcoholics, drink-drivers, underage drinkers and the perpetrators of one-punch attacks. The brother of Brisbane writer ELSPETH MUIR was none of these things. But three days after a heavy night of drinking, he was found dead in the Brisbane River – his blood alcohol level was 0.25 at his time of death. Elspeth tells us about her memoir, Wasted, an investigation into Australia’s drinking culture, and what might have been done to prevent Alexander’s death.  Read on >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • In 1997, Sara Morgan was brutally murdered in the woods near her college at the hands of her boyfriend, Blake Campbell. But Blake is acquitted, after being declared temporarily insane. The whole community has been impacted by the crime, many seeking justice, revenge, forgiveness, the need for complete answers or just the desire to move on. Nothing Can Hurt You is a beautiful but unnerving thriller, that goes to the heart of violence and its impacts. Read on >

  • Goldin does a good job weaving the two stories together, as Rachael covers the rape trial but is simultaneously compelled to investigate the past death of Jenny Stills. The subject matter is tough, being that of rape, which makes it an emotional read but it is a solid thriller. I was expecting the book to start off at a faster pace, but it builds as you head towards the middle and, although the ending was not unexpected, it was vivid writing and I was compelled to get to the very last page. Read on >

  • The Daddy Animal Book is all about Daddies and their babies. Every page has a daddy and one adorable little baby, and sometimes more, especially when it’s a daddy turkey or daddy goose. We probably know that a daddy goose is a gander and his baby is a gosling but did you know that a daddy turkey is a gobbler and his baby is a poult? There are lovely stories about how the Daddies protect their families. My favourite is how the Daddy Penguin balances his egg on his toes next to his tummy and away from the cold ice, while his mate goes out to look for food. This is another perfect little book for the littlies, or maybe a fun present for a dad? Read on >

  • This is a very important book about a serious subject but the author and illustrator, Thomas Mayor and Blak Douglas, have written it so simply and illustrated it so beautifully that it should speak to the hearts of all of our children. Hopefully it will find its way into the hands of every child.  Read on >

  • This is an intriguing and entertaining, magical adventure. At first, it seems the children have no possible way out of their dilemma. The spell on the house has strict rules, which make it even more difficult for them and yet they find ways to circumvent those restrictions. Children are often good at finding ways to get around the rules. Williams draws the reader into the story and makes even the most preposterous ideas seem utterly plausible. It’s a wild ride with plenty of tension and surprising twists, and with a very satisfying ending. Read on >

  • This long novel may look daunting for the average reader. However, there’s plenty of action to keep the pages turning and the excellent artwork adds to the Edwardian ambience of the tale. The reader is taken on an adventure around London, and to Paris, with its Eiffel Tower, the mausoleum of Bonaparte and the catacombs, full of old bones. The only jarring note is the age of the children. Teenagers wouldn’t still share a nursery. They vacillate between behaving as young children, to being the age the author gives them, in an era when most 14 year olds worked for a living. Otherwise, it’s a gripping historical fantasy that steam-punkers, in particular, will love. Read on >

  • The Republic of Birds is an amazing tale of risk and adventure. I think Olga’s character is what makes this story so special, as her relationship with her father, stepmother and sister is something everyone can understand. I would specifically recommend this story to teen and pre-teen girls, or to anyone who enjoys an easy and compelling read. Read on >

  • Cultural differences can mask the fact that, beneath it all, we’re much the same. Lochie’s family’s problems aren’t because they’re Australian but because of the way they handle life. Fusillo shows us that the things that matter – the things we all need – are love, respect, understanding and compassion. Hopefully, this story will help young readers look past the things that make us different and recognise the things we share, and to see that our country is the richer for the diversity and colour that newer Australians bring. Read on >

  • That it would all end badly was fairly obvious, but the Ribbon Boys, as they called themselves, being younger than the rebel Ribbonmen of Ireland, had some fine old adventures on the way. It’s a ripping read. Read on >

  • The Space Between nails a perfect balance of being thought-provoking and enlightening as well as hilarious.  Read on >

See all Book Reviews for this Issue

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