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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 >
  • 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 >
  • 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 >
  • 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 >
  • Born in London, retired doctor TONY ATKINSON spent the first years of his life in a cage dangling out of a window. But he went on to serve the Queen and Winston Churchill during his early career as a footman and waiter, which he recalls in hilarious stories in he memoir, A Prescribed Life. Read on >
  • The author of The Woman Who Changed Her Brain: And other inspiring stories of pioneering brain transformation, busts long-held conceptions about how our minds function. 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 >
  • 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 >
  • Most of us think of Australia as a sunny land filled with straightforward, open and candid people. But in ANNA ROMER’s version of the country, it’s a place filled with secrets and people who will do anything to keep them concealed. She talks with ALEX HENDERSON about her new book, Beyond the Orchard, Victoria’s haunted Otway Coast and the power of fear. 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 >

Book Reviews in this issue

  • My favourite part of the novel is the wonderful characters that Maguire has written. Read on >

  • His characters Stevie Fracasso (former rock star) and his younger brother, Rick McLennan (music journalist) leap off the page and burrow their way into the reader’s consciousness. Read on >

  • This is powerful writing.  Read on >

  • Baxter provides an informative and perceptive account of the kink subculture and highlights that while in the right setting it can be empowering for some, the culture’s lack of regulation is a source of much contention. Read on >

  • Taylor, a Nyoongar elder in Western Australia renowned as a poet and storyteller, recalls his childhood at the New Norcia Mission, north of Perth, in the 1950–60 period. This autobiography ranges from angry and accusatory to thoughtful and sardonic. Read on >

  • For anyone with the slightest interest in Australian literature, this book gives a wonderfully insightful glimpse behind the curtains of our publishing industry.  Read on >

  • Truth-Telling is a sophisticated argument for why non-Indigenous Australia should be interested in a treaty with the first nations. In making the argument Reynolds reminds us of the many uncomfortable truths about how we got to where we are.  Read on >

  • A Secret Australia is collection of essays, primarily by journalists and lawyers which forcefully plead the case for Julian Assange being a man most grievously wronged. Assange’s fate remains unclear. Read A Secret Australia and you won’t be indifferent to what that fate is. Read on >

  • I highly recommend Wonderscape. Once I picked the book up, I could not put it down. And it’s a great read for anyone in love with history. Read on >

  • Chasing the McCubbin is about searching for the thing of high value among the lesser things. Perhaps it’s found in friendship and the sense of belonging. It’s worth following the emotional, inspiring chase with Ron and Joseph.    Read on >

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The Paris Collaborator