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Archive Discoveries

  • The changing moral code and shift in gender roes of World War II provide the backdrop for JENNIFER RYAN's debut novel The Chilbury Ladies' Choir. She tells MAUREEN EPPEN about the people and events that inspired the story. Read on >
  • Stretching across generations and set on the Atherton Tablelands where she lives, the latest novel from prolific Australian author BARBARA HANNAY is a saga of loss, love, secrets and salvation. She tells MAUREEN EPPEN 
about her writing life, and how The Grazier's Wife evolved.   Read on >
  • Following on from her two-million-selling historical novel Orphan Train, CHRISTINA BAKER KLINE has delved into the backstory of a famous painting by Andrew Wyeth to write her new novel, A Piece of the World. ANGUS DALTON talks with the author.  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 >
  • Biographies have long fascinated readers, serving as guides for how to live our own lives or often just giving us an intriguing peek into the world of extraordinary people. In this round-up we look at a comedian with a disability, a magician with a learning disorder, the real man behind Walter White of Breaking Bad and more. But we’re bending the biography rules a bit by also including a book by a philosopher that will prompt you to think about living a better life, a book about Aussies at war and an account of Queensland police leading lives of corruption. Read on >
  • Aristotle said that metaphor consists in giving a thing a name that belongs to something else. Shakespeare used metaphor when he wrote ‘All the world’s a stage’, drawing parallels between the planet and a theatrical performance space so that we might more easily understand what the world is like. Metaphors, by likening one thing to another, help us to understand things, or aspects of them, that might otherwise be difficult to comprehend. In Metaphors Be With You, DR MARDY GROTHE takes a historical look at how metaphors have been used to understand a huge range of topics, from adversity, beauty and curiosity through to love, war and vanity. 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 >
  • 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 >
  • 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 >
  • 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 >
  • Writer MIKE LUCAS and illustrator JENNIFER HARRISON tell gr about Olivia’s Voice, a new picture book about a deaf girl. Read on >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • Each of these stories is a sweet snack – a jalebi for instance – and combine as a whole to give a radiance to the daily life of the (monetarily) poor in Mumbai. They were written from the 1980s to 2000s but without the attendant dates, you might not realise that. So little changes over time. With the sublime nature of these stories, it makes you wonder what else you might be missing out on with English as a mother tongue. Read on >

  • This quietly cerebral, emotional and atmospheric story is a gift of hope at a time when so many are struggling with seemingly insurmountable challenges. Read on >

  • This thought-provoking novel uses Egyptian history and archaeology, quantum physics, parallel universes and philosophy to examine questions of life, death, love, loss, choices and missed opportunities. A fascinating and profound read. Read on >

  • Graham Norton’s third novel is full of surprises. There are a confusing number of names and relatives in the first few chapters but the narrative soon settles down as we accompany Connor in his search for identity. Straight and gay characters interweave; shame and sadness give way to pride and contentment; and loneliness and longing are conquered. A thoughtful, accomplished saga of a community in crisis and the power of resilience. Read on >

  • Donald Trump goes to Florida Disneyworld to inspect the animatronic figure the Imagineers make for the Hall of Presidents attraction. He’s so impressed he orders them to make another for his personal amusement, and he feels so close to it they end up sleeping together, all while he protests he’s not gay. And that’s not even the weirdest idea in screenwriter Charlie Kaufman’s novel. Not everyone will respond to the way Kaufman’s mind works and the way he expresses himself, but you might just find yourself on board and swept along despite your suspicions. Read on >

  • This is a really interesting book; a musical novel in composition and emotional intent. It’s an ambitious novel and, much like a complex jazz album, through tone and texture it tells a story that ends up being far more than the sum of its parts. Read on >

  • It’s about a woman – a millennial in her 30s – at a crossroads in her life. While those around her are marrying and having children, she doesn’t want to have kids. Read on >

  • This is an intriguing mystery, but a deeper layer is added by the well-drawn characters and their relationships. In a small town where everyone knows each other, suspicions are easily aroused. We care as much about what happens to the characters as we do about solving the crime. Like in her previous books, the setting is so strong that it’s almost a character in itself. For fans like me, a new Harper book is a treat and this is another cracking read. Read on >

  • We find out who Roald Dahl really was: a photographer, a fighter pilot, a medical inventor and even a spy! He was a toilet-seat warmer at boarding school and really did put a dead mouse in a sweets jar. We find out when his birthday was and how he tested chocolate for Cadbury’s when he was at school. Lots of pages have something to do with Roald Dahl’s fantastic stories. Read on >

  • Although I found the quick interchange of perspectives hard to follow at times, None Shall Sleep has a masterfully brilliant storyline and is definitely worth reading. It is not for the faint-hearted, but a refreshing extension into a more mature genre for teens. Chilling, captivating and suspenseful, it kept me in a constant state of alert. Read on >

See all Book Reviews for this Issue

Books for Boys