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They say good things come in small packages, but what happens when it’s the opposite? That’s right – evil giants! Whether giant humans, monsters or something in between, they might not all be evil, but they have certainly captured our imaginations for hundreds of years. How many giant stories do you know?
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Articles in this issue

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Archive Discoveries

  • UK journalist and editor MARINA BENJAMIN looks at the joys, losses and opportunities of middle age in her new book, The Middlepause. In this extract she writes about the secret misogynistic history of HRT.   Read on >
  • RICHARD ROXBURGH has been extraordinarily versatile over the
decades of his acting career. The Albury-born actor has played both Sherlock Holmes and his nemesis, Professor Moriarty, appeared as Count Dracula in the 2004 movie Van Helsing and played the lead role in Rake, a TV show he co-created. But he’s just as talented
on the page as he is on screen and stage; Roxburgh has written and illustrated a new kids’ book, Artie and the Grime Wave. We asked him about his influences and what lead him to this new project. Read on >
  • I switched on to watch ABC TV’s The Drum one evening and discovered Jodi Picoult sitting on the panel discussion.What a great performer she is – not only an impressive writer but also an impressive speaker.The discussion at the table was raging around whether a white author has the right, or could even have the understanding, to write about black characters. As a white woman, how could she really know what’s it’s like to be a black woman, let alone a black man? How could she write black characters and make them authentic without knowing how they feel? Read on >
  • When she was 16, MADELAINE DICKIE went to Denpasar, the capital 
of Bali, on a language exchange program.
 Since then she has been fascinated with Indonesia; she has lived and studied in our northern neighbour for three years and
 she speaks Indonesian fluently. Her first novel, Troppo, tells the story of Penny, an Australian expat who flees from her career- minded boyfriend in Perth to a seemingly carefree 
life of surfing in Indonesia. Madelaine tells us how she came to write the novel. Read on >
  • He has worked as a wilderness guide, a ranch hand and a dogsled musher – and he’s also a skilled marksman. But ERIK STOREY, a lover of the great outdoors, has come in out of the wild for long enough to turn out his first novel, Nothing Short of Dying. A thriller set in the mountainous landscape of western Colorado, it features Clyde Barr, a man with a military past who is fresh out of prison. We talked with Erik recently about dealing with rejection, the lure of western Colorado and his number-one tip for surviving in the wild. Read on >
  • While researching for a non-fiction book about the botanical history of some of the world’s most popular alcoholic drinks, US author AMY STEWART stumbled across a gin smuggler’s altercation with an officious woman named Constance Kopp. This discovery catalysed her historical crime-fiction series, set in New Jersey in 1915, based on Constance and her two sisters. As the second instalment in the series, Lady Cop Makes Trouble, is released, ANGUS DALTON finds out more. Read on >
  • 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 >
  • 'Books, and lovers or friends, mark and change us. And we, in turn, mark and change them.' Melbourne novelist CATH CROWLEY writes about her longtime love of secondhand bookshops, and how the histories she found and imagined there led her to write Words in Deep Blue. Read on >
  • Meet the author who won the ABIA General Fiction Book of the Year 2015, and find out about her latest title, The Art of Keeping Secrets. 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 >
  • 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 >

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 >

  • 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 >

  • The illustrator, Heidi Cooper Smith, has made Garbage Guts such an incredible beast with all sorts of rubbish making up his huge body, that you could feel a little sorry for him. It really isn’t his fault that he’s so full of rubbish as we humans keep feeding him. But, being a children’s book, there’s a happy ending, and a clever one, as a monster full of trash can always be changed into lots of different things. A fun book with an important message, and a big poster of this scary monster for the bedroom wall. Read on >

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