Booktopia Buzz with Caroline Baum
November 2013 | Breaking News
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BUZZ IN BRIEF
Being Caroline Baum. This isn't the name of a new film. It is a reality for me. While the real Caroline Baum is holidaying in Europe I, John Purcell, am Caroline Baum. Which is a pretty good gig, I must say.

This last week I have filmed two long interviews while seated in Caroline's chair - one with Jackie Collins and one with Christos Tsiolkas. Two very different authors - two extraordinary experiences for me... commonplace for the Baum, however (did you see her interview with Donna Tartt in the paper?).

And then there was this, the BUZZ. I read like a man possessed and still wasn't able to read and review as many books as the Baum does each month. The woman is a reading'n'reviewing machine.

In short, being Baum has been fun (if exhausting), I highly recommend it. Five stars.

Kind Regards

Caroline Baum (AKA THIS MONTH, JOHN PURCELL)
Editorial Director

Booktopia Buzz

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P.S. if you love reading Caroline's BUZZ let your email know by adding the newsletter to your contacts. That way you'll never miss a word.

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THE MAN CAN DO NO WRONG
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THE TOURNAMENT
by Matthew Reilly


John Purcell: Bestselling author Matthew Reilly is one of Australia's most reliable writers. Every couple of years he delivers his fans quality popular fiction and every couple of years he can be counted on to break Australian sales records.  But till now, all of his successes, Ice Station, Seven Ancient Wonders, Temple, The Five Greatest Warriors, Scarecrow, to name just a few, have one thing in common, the breakneck speed of their narrative.

The Tournament is a departure for Reilly, gone is his trademark breakneck speed. Instead we find a narrative with gravitational pull. Enter The Tournament's orbit and you cannot escape, you must read on to the final page.

That said this book still jogs along. You don't get to where Reilly is without learning a trick or two. He has chosen a point in time, 1546. He has given us a narrator, Queen Elizabeth I, no less. He has booked a stage, a chess tournament in Constantinople held by Sulleiman the Magnificent, Sultan of the Ottoman Empire. And hired only the best talent to walk his boards, St Ignatius Loyola, Michelangelo, Ivan the Terrible, and a 13 year old Elizabeth Tudor, who is accompanied by her teacher, Roger Ascham, the real hero of the story, a Renaissance Sherlock Holmes.

Before the first page there is a warning from Matthew Reilly stating that this is most definitely an adult book with adult content. And what I think he means is that there is sex in it. Because sex was the only thing missing from his other books, all which contain violence aplenty. In The Tournament the sex is illustrative, designed to show the decadence of the Sultan's court and we, the readers, are observers only, never participants as is the case with erotic fiction. Any 15 year old with an iPhone has seen much, much worse. And besides, the sex and violence are the carrot which keeps us turning the pages. The Tournament is essentially a didactic tale, with lots of discussions about morality, religion, philosophy, history and politics. Ascham is the future queen's teacher and he is convinced that she must know of the world to rule it well. Matthew Reilly, a great fan of Star Wars, has created a pair to rival, Obe Wan and Luke Skywalker.

This is a book which will entertain thousands of Australian readers this summer holidays. It is not too heavy, not too light, just right.


Australian author
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SURE TO BE TALKED ABOUT
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BARRACUDA
by Christos Tsiolkas


John Purcell: This is a difficult book to write about. It has a personality rather than a plot. It is built upon emotion rather than reason. It is all shouts and whispers and nothing in between.

As a boy Danny Kelly wants only one thing - toClick here for more details or to order be the greatest swimmer of all time. And his dream isn't farfetched. His coach believes he can do it. His mother is behind him, waking early and driving him to the pool. And his peers think he can do it, though they resent him for his talent.
Every waking moment of Danny Kelly's life is lived in pursuit of that single goal - which makes him a bit of a shit.

Christos Tsiolkas doesn't deliver Danny's story in sequence. Because Danny's life isn't linear. There is one central event, one devastating moment in Danny's life and all other moments are either before or after it. He has no past, present, or future.  Everything races towards and circles back to that event. If we want to understand Danny we need to understand this.

Barracuda questions our obsession with winning and winners. It examines failure, shame and regret. It asks whether we can ever be truly forgiven for our sins. And it does so in naked fearless prose. This is not an uplifting book, but unlike Eyrie, there is love and there is hope. And it suggests we are only as isolated from others as we allow ourselves to be.


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Click here for more details or to orderPONTING: AT THE CLOSE OF PLAY
by Ricky Ponting



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Andrew Cattanach: I'm so happy to say Ricky Ponting's At the Close of Play, is a great read.

The years Ponting has spent writing his Captain's Diaries have served him well, allowing him to write calmly and confidently about the life he has led, an extraordinary life that requires few embellishments. At times he is full of nostalgia, others he is brutally honest, not taking backward step in writing about things I thought he'd never address. His stories of a working-class childhood in Launceston gained my trust and I was hooked to the ride to the very end.

Ponting's relationship with the world of cricket, even his own fans, has been tough. His will to win has been condemned as much as applauded. But it was only in reading that I realised how much he felt it. He felt every bead of sweat, every blow, every bad headline. He writes with joy at his finest moments, but also with sorrow at his lowest, both on and off the field, in his public life and his private life. This is not a sad book mind you, it's filled with pure happiness at the life he has been privileged to have led, but introspective enough to see the potholes along the journey.

At the Close of Play
is a wonderful character study of what happens when you are thrust into a world you dreamt of being a part of, a world you must one day leave behind forever. 



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PULLS NO PUNCHES
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by Tim Winton


John Purcell: While reading Tim Winton's latest novel, Eyrie, I couldn't help thinking about Charlotte Wood's Animal People, Zadie Smith's NW and to a lesser extent, Julian Barnes' Sense of an Ending.  All four books have been published in the last five years.  Each chronicles the lives of people making do within a society they have inherited. Each book is despairing of the turn the western world has taken. Each searches for some sign that all is not lost. 

Eyrie takes things one step further. All is lost in Tim Winton's book. There is no hope whatsoever. The backdrop to Winton's despair is the West Australian government's acquiescence to the needs of mining companies. His protagonist Tom Keely, a onetime prominent local environmentalist, is a defeated man.  The tide of his life is out and all is exposed to the unforgiving sun. But it is at this moment someone from the forgotten past enters his life. She is all life has to offer him now. There are no easy choices. The route back to life promises to be unforgiving and without reward. Can Tom Keely pull himself together one last time?
 
The lesson here is, if there is a lesson, "ashes or diamonds, foe or friend, we're all equal in the end".
 

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HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
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SHAME AND THE CAPTIVES
by Tom Keneally


John Purcell: One of the drawbacks of living in a society obsessed with the new is that we fail to recognise the simple fact that many things get better with time. There is just no story in 'Author Gains Wisdom by Living a Long Interesting Life:  Talking, Travelling, Reading and Writing'. But there should be. Someone gaining wisdom should be news. It so seldom happens.

Click here for more details or to orderTom Keneally should be news. His last two books are a direct challenge to the more newsworthy overnight success authors. Both are the result of fifty years of writing both fiction and non-fiction. And it shows.  Both Daughters of Mars and his latest novel Shame and the Captives give younger writers a lesson in writing.

At its most basic, Shame and the Captives is a retelling of the Cowra breakout. Something which was long overdue. But it is much more than that. Keneally cleverly (and effortlessly) divides his story into many sub stories and embeds his reader into each one. We mingle with Japanese POWs, hear their stories, feel their shame and share their frustrations; we are sent out to the farms as labourers with the Italian POWs; we wait out the war far from the frontlines with the British and Australian camp guards and officers; we share in the guilt and confusion of a woman who's trying to remember her captured husband's face whilst an attractive Italian POW labours away for her father-in-law in the sun outside her window.

All the while trouble brews. We know the story of the Cowra breakout. We have never had it told like this.

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REDISCOVERED GEM
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by Kenneth MacKenzie


John Purcell: There is nothing so seductive and yet elusive as the memories of our first experiences in love. We can recall the actions - shared glances, a sweet paralysis, then the first touch, perhaps a chaste kiss - but this is not what we desire. We want to feel again the fear, the pleasure, the tremors and the foreign breath. But it is this that eludes us.

Unless we stumble across an artist who can recreate these feelings for us.

Recently Text Publishing sent me a copy of The Young Desire It by Kenneth Mackenzie. Published to acclaim in 1937 and virtually lost to us since Mackenzie's early death in 1955, The Young Desire It is another great find and perfect fit for the Text Classics collection.

This is very much the work of a young novelist. Recounting a home schooled adolescent's experiences after he is sent to boarding school, there is very little story beyond this transformational transition from boy to man. Mackenzie was just seventeen when he started writing the novel and twenty-five when it was published. He was as close to the subject as any artist can hope to be and within these pages Mackenzie has captured for all time the sensation of first love. For which we must all be thankful though some may find the poetical prose hard going.


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THIS IS POWERFUL STUFF
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by Hubert Mingarelli


John Purcell: This is a novella. You can read it in a night. But it punches well above its weight.

A Meal in Winter, I am told, will be published as a gorgeous little hardcover but I read the proof, a very drab looking proof is was too, and for some reason, even before I read a page, I had the notion that this was a rediscovered work, much like the work of Irène Némirovsky.  To further compound my assumption, as I read, I was reminded of Primo Levi, of Beckett, of Camus.

But this is not a rediscovered work. Though it is set in WWII and reads like it was written during or shortly after the war, A Meal in Winter was written in the last few years and is now available in English having been translated from the French. And this fact alone would make it an astonishing work. But this is just the start. In 144 pages, author Hubert Mingarelli strips the Second World War down so that it stands before us shivering in its underwear.  And what is surprising, even though he has reduced something so unimaginably huge and complicated into something so small and finely wrought, he manages to avoid trivialising the horrors of that awful period by his reduction.

We accompany three German soldiers as they journey out into the sub-zero Polish winter in search of fugitive Jews. We are privy to their conversation. We take part in their attempts to remain alive, and sane. We are forced to accept their humanity. And because of this, when they do manage to capture a hiding Jew, we are brought uncomfortably close to a truth we all try hard to avoid.
 

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INTERVIEW: JACKIE COLLINS UNLEASHED
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by Jackie Collins


Buy Confessions of a Wild Child before November 30th 2013 for your chance to win an incredible backlist prize pack - 29 books all signed by Jackie Collins herself! Woo!

I had the unique honour of interviewing a legend last week.

Her new novel can be read as an introductory essay on the world of Lucky Santangelo, her most loved character.

Watch the interview and discover what I discovered... that Jackie Collins is a most extraordinary woman.

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BEAUTIFULLY STRANGE?
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by Shaun Tan


John Purcell: How do you review a Shaun Tan book? Each time I open Rules of Summer I find a different book. I remember my excitement on being offered a sneak peek a few months ago. I was left feeling a little bewildered. Did I like it? I don't think I did on that first look. Then a few months later I was given an advance copy. I flicked through the pages and found a completely new book. Or so I thought. But no, the preview was exactly the same as the finished copy. Had I changed? I read through it time and time again. The book bewitched me. I then stood it on my desk in the office so that I could look at it during the day.

Rules of Summer is dark comedy. Or tragedy. It is a self-help book. It is a graphic novel. A child's picture book. A nightmare. A warning. A guide. A fun way to pass half an hour. Ten minutes. A minute. It is art. It is entertainment. What the hell is it? It's a bizarre thing. I love it. Shaun Tan's Rules of Summer is something you must own.

Australian author
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DON'T PASS ME BY
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by Alain De Botton, John Armstrong


John Purcell:Alain de Botton's early successes How Proust Can Change Your Life and The Consolations of Philosophy attempted to teach us that literature and philosophy are not rarefied artefacts to be shut between leather binding, studied and venerated but are instead practical, useful guides to living well.

In his new book, Art as Therapy, de Botton joins forces with philosopher John Armstrong to remake our relationship with art:

"This book proposes that art (a category that includes works of design, architecture and craft) is a therapeutic medium that can help guide, exhort and console its viewer, enabling them to become better versions of themselves."

Some may call this approach naïve, but I believe any attempt to strip art from the hallowed walls of the world's galleries where it is invariably viewed through the befuddling mist of conscious appreciation must be lauded. I agree that art is more valuable to us than we are lead to believe. So a new approach should be given consideration.

But beyond these concerns on a purely aesthetic level, the publisher Phaidon has produced a beautiful book filled with gorgeous reproductions of world art. So if the treatise does not please you the pictures will.


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I THOUGHT THIS DESERVED ANOTHER RUN
Click here for more details or to order THE GOLDFINCH
by Donna Tartt


Caroline Baum: Few works of literary fiction will have been anticipated more than this hefty novel by an author already mythologised before she turned thirty thanks to her cult debut The Secret History.

It's been more than ten years since her second novel, The Little Friend. Since then, she's been off the radar. Rumours have swirled, deadlines have slipped.

Now Tartt is back and back in fine form, writing a dense, intelligent, complex and dark story about a small jewel of a painting that goes missing from the Metropolitan Museum following a bomb attack.

Its fate is told by a young unreliable narrator, Theo Decker- thirteen when we meet him - who has lost his mother in the museum explosion and attended the dying moments of an old man, prompting him, irrationally, to take the small painting and keep it hidden through the ensuing turmoil of his life: first with the marvellously preppy uptown Barbour family who take him in and then in the  squalid chaos of Vegas, where he lives for a brief moment with his hopeless gambler father and his new girlfriend Xandra, (a piece of work who gives Tartt the opportunity to deploy her considerable comic skills )

When Theo moves back to New York, he learns the antiques trade from the gentle Hobie, a true craftsman with no head for business. There are brilliant set pieces and a cast of characters who echo Dickens, and Henry James, pinpointing every nuance of social standing with forensic detail. Boris, a shady Russian who befriends Theo in Vegas, is the book's most memorable scene stealer, navigating the underworld and a druggy twilight zone with Slavic charm.  

The book is really a love letter to New York, uptown and downtown, and to the opaque and often dubious world of antiques and their collectors. It's long and demanding and its pace is frustratingly languid at times but as a stylist, Tartt has such mastery that she keeps you in her thrall till the narrative picks up momentum.

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FICTION

AUSTRALIAN FICTION

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Click here for more details or to orderTHE WINTER SEA
by Di Morrissey


Di Morrissey, Australia's favourite author, returns with the spellbinding story of a family secret spanning generations.

Escaping an unhappy marriage and an unsatisfactory job, Cassie Holloway moves to the little NSW coastal town of Whitby Point.

Here she meets the Aquino family, whose fishing business was founded by their ancestor, Giuseppe, an immigrant Italian, some ninety years before. Life for Cassie on the south coast is sweet as she sets up a successful restaurant and falls in love with Giuseppe's great grandson Michael.

But when the family patriarch dies a devastating family secret is revealed which threatens to destroy her dreams. Cassie's future happiness now rests with her quest for the truth.

Australian author
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THE TAILOR'S GIRL
by Fiona McIntosh

ELIANNE
by Judy Nunn
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A humble soldier, known only as 'Jones', wakes in hospital with no recollection of his past. The few fleeting fragments of memory he glimpses are horrifying moments from the battlefield at Ypres. His very identity becomes a puzzle he must solve.

Then Eden Valentine comes gliding into his world, a stunning tailoress who has a dream of her own business in high fashion but whose duty to her family may never permit her to fulfil. Her fiancé resents the intrusion of the disarming Jones who is in desperate need of her help to unravel his past.

Surrounding the mystery is Alex Wynter, the influential heir to an industrial empire and country manor Larksfell Hall. With his aristocratic family still reeling from a recent tragedy, he brings more...

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Judy Nunn has sold over one million books worldwide. Elianne, her new bestseller, is a sweeping story of wealth, power, privilege and betrayal, set on a grand sugar cane plantation in Queensland.

In the tough world of Queensland sugar mills, it's not only cane that is crushed ...

In 1881 'Big Jim' Durham, an English soldier of fortune and profiteer, ruthlessly creates for Elianne Desmarais, his young French wife, the finest of the great sugar mills of the Southern Queensland cane fields, and names it in her honour.

The massive estate becomes a self-sufficient fortress, a cane-consuming monster and home to hundreds of workers, but more...

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THE BIRDWATCHER
by William McInnes

THE PREY
by Tony Park
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A novel about love and twitchers, and about learning to trust

There is magic in the sky. Birds flying and floating above and around us, often unnoticed. Sometimes, when you least expect it, their magic will touch you.

This is a story about a bloke who's losing his hearing; a bird that can't fly but likes being read to; and a teenage daughter who doesn't know who to be angry at.

It's about a woman living with the echo of illness finding out how much fun it can be to trust someone; a man called Murph who has a secret; and Perry Como.

It's part love story, part Hot Diggity moments of discovery, whether they happen in a rainforest of more...

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Deep underground in the Eureka mine, South Africa's zama zamas illegally hunt for gold.

King of this brutal underworld is Wellington Shumba - a man who rules his pirate miners through fear of torture and death. Running Eureka's legitimate operation is former recce commando Cameron McMurtrie.

When one of his engineers is taken hostage, Cameron does not hesitate to mastermind a dramatic rescue - and finish it off with a manhunt for Wellington. That is until corporate interference from the mine's Australian head office, in the shape of ambitious high-flyer Kylie Hamilton, gets in his way.

Doctor Hamilton is visiting South Africa supposedly to finalise a new mine on the border of more...

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BLOCKBUSTERS
TATIANA
by Martin Cruz Smith

IDENTICAL
by Scott Turow
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In his groundbreaking Gorky Park, Martin Cruz Smith created one of the iconic investigators of contemporary fiction, Arkady Renko. In Tatiana, Smith delivers his most ambitious and politically daring novel since. When the brilliant and fearless young reporter Tatiana Petrovna falls to her death from a sixth-floor window in Moscow in the same week that notorious mob billionaire Grisha Grigorenko is shot in the back of the head, Renko finds himself on the trail of a mystery as complex and dangerous more...

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The Gianis's and the Kronons. Two families entangled in a long and complex history of love and deceit... Twenty five years ago, after a society picnic held by businessman and politician Zeus Kronon, Zeus' headstrong daughter Dita was found murdered. Her boyfriend, Cass Gianis, confessed to the crime. Now Cass has been released from prison into the care of his twin, Mayoral candidate Paul Gianis, who is in the middle of a high profile political campaign. But Dita's brother Hal is convinced more...

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CRIME - EXCLUSIVE TO BOOKTOPIA

Click here for more details or to order SYCAMORE ROW: TRUNK EDITION
by
John Grisham

Only 5000 Printed Worldwide: Includes Exclusive Short Story

Booktopia has a very limited number. Pre-order now or you will miss out.

To celebrate the publication of the thrilling new sequel to A Time to Kill, the first edition of Sycamore Row is limited to only 5,000 copies. This Trunk Edition also contains an exclusive short story and a facsimile of the author's signature.

Sycamore Row is the spectacular sequel to John Grisham's A Time to Kill.

When A Time to Kill was published in 1989, the first - and, at the time, the only - print run was a mere 5,000 copies. John Grisham was so worried that they wouldn't find buyers that he bought all 5,000 and sold them out of the trunk of his car. The rest is history.

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*Sorry, no extra discount on this special edition.
Click here for more details or to order SYCAMORE ROW (Standard Edition)
by
John Grisham

Does not include extra short story.


For almost a quarter of a century, John Grisham's A Time to Kill has captivated readers with its raw exploration of race, retribution, and justice. Now, its hero, Jake Brigance, returns to the courtroom in a dramatic showdown as Ford County again confronts its tortured history.

Filled with the intrigue, suspense and plot twists that are the hallmarks of the world's favourite storyteller, Sycamore Row is the thrilling story of the elusive search for justice in a small American town.


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SAINTS OF THE SHADOW BIBLE
by Ian Rankin

GENTLEMEN FORMERLY DRESSED
by Sulari Gentill
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Rebus is back on the force, albeit with a demotion and a chip on his shoulder. A thirty-year-old case is being reopened, and Rebus's team from back then is suspected of foul play. With Malcolm Fox as the investigating officer are the past and present about to collide in a shocking and murderous fashion? And does Rebus have anything to hide?

His colleagues back then called themselves 'the Saints', and swore a bond on something called 'the Shadow Bible'. But times have more...

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Saints of the Shadow Bible

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After narrowly escaping Nazi terror, Rowland Sinclair and his companions land in London, believing they are safe.

But they are wrong. A bizarre murder plunges the hapless Australians into a queer world of British aristocracy, Fascist Blackshirts, illicit love, scandal and spies.

A world where gentlemen are not always what they are dressed up to be.
  

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Gentlemen Formerly Dressed

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INTERNATIONAL LITERATURE

Click here for more details or to order SENSE AND SENSIBILITY
by Joanna Trollope


When Fanny Dashwood descends on Norland Park with her Romanian nanny and her mood boards, Belle Dashwood′s three daughters, Elinor, Marianne and Margaret must face the reality of life without their father, their home, or their money.

As they come to terms with life without the status of their country house, or the comfort of an inheritance, Elinor and Marianne are also confronted by the cold hard realities of a world where sometimes people′s attitudes can change as drastically as your circumstances.

With her sparkling wit, Joanna Trollope casts her clever satirical eye on the tales of Elinor and Marianne Dashwood. By casting Sense And Sensibility in an elegant and fresh new light what might appear to the modern eye to be all romance, bonnets and betrothals becomes a wonderfully witty coming-of-age story about the stuff that really makes the world go around, and how when it comes to money, some things never change...

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Click here for details or to orderTHE VALLEY OF AMAZEMENT
by Amy Tan


A new novel from the internationally bestselling author of The Joy Luck Club.

In fin de siecle Shanghai, Violet Minturn grows up at Hidden Jade Path, the city's most exclusive courtesan house. But when revolution comes, she is separated from her mother and forced to become a "virgin courtesan."

Both Chinese and American, Violet moves between these cultural worlds, becoming a shrewd businesswoman who deals in seduction and illusion. But her successes belie her private turmoil. Violet's need for answers propels her on a quest of discovery: a journey to make sense of her life, to right the wrongs of the past - to find love requited. Spanning fifty years and two continents, The Valley of Amazement dramatises the collapse of China's imperial dynasty and the secret life of the courtesan house.

Unfolding old family secrets, this novel returns readers to the compelling territory of The Joy Luck Club. With her characteristic wisdom, grace and humour, she conjures a story of the inheritance of love, its mysteries and betrayals, and its illusions and truths.

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THE LIVES OF STELLA BAIN
by Anita Shreve

WE ARE WATER
by Wally Lamb
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From bestselling author Anita Shreve: an epic story, set against the backdrop of World War I, of a woman searching for the secret of her identity.

When an American woman, Stella Bain, is found suffering from severe shell shock in an exclusive garden in London, surgeon August Bridge and his wife selflessly agree to take her in.

A gesture of goodwill turns into something more as Bridge quickly develops a clinical interest in his houseguest. Stella had been working as a nurse's aide near the front, but she can't remember anything prior to four months earlier when she was found wounded on more...

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The Lives of Stella Bain

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As her wedding day approaches, Annie Oh finds herself one morning staring at a bed covered in Vera Wang wedding dresses, at the mercy of hopes and fears about the momentous change on the horizon. This is not Annie's first walk down the aisle. She has just emerged from a twenty-seven year marriage to Orion Oh, which produced three children, twins Andrew and Ariane and daughter Marisa. Annie has been trying to reach her ex-husband, as she wants to make sure that he is all right. Orion, a psychologist with a crippling need to help others, keeps assuring everyone that he is fine. But how can he be? Annie, a self-taught artist, is about to marry a woman named Viveca, the more...

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HUMOUR
Click here for more details or to order JEEVES AND THE WEDDING BELLS
by Sebastian Faulks


A gloriously witty novel from Sebastian Faulks using P.G. Wodehouse's much-loved characters, Jeeves and Wooster, fully authorised by the Wodehouse estate.

Bertie Wooster, recently returned from a very pleasurable soujourn in Cannes, finds himself at the stately home of Sir Henry Hackwood in Dorset. Bertie is more than familiar with the country house set-up: he is a veteran of the cocktail hour and, thanks to Jeeves, his gentleman's personal gentleman, is never less than immaculately dressed.

On this occasion, however, it is Jeeves who is to be seen in the drawing room while Bertie finds himself below stairs - and he doesn't care for it at all.

Love, as so often, is at the root of the confusion. Bertie, you see, has met Georgiana on the Côte d'Azur. And though she is clever and he has more...

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UNUSUAL FICTION
Click here for more details or to order S.
by J. J. Abrams, Doug Dorst


J.J. Abrams and acclaimed novelist Doug Dorst create a reading experience like no other: at the core of this multi-layered literary puzzle of love and adventure is a book of mysterious provenance.

One book. Two readers. A world of mystery, menace and desire.

A young woman picks up a book left behind by a stranger. Inside it are his margin notes, which reveal a reader entranced by the story and by its mysterious author. She responds with notes of her own, leaving the book for the stranger, and so begins an unlikely conversation that plunges them both into the unknown.

THE BOOK: Ship of Theseus, the final novel by a prolific but enigmatic writer named V. M. Straka, in which a man with no past is shanghaied onto a strange ship with a monstrous crew and launched on a disorienting and perilous journey.

THE WRITER: Straka, the incendiary and secretive subject of one of the world's greatest mysteries, a revolutionary about whom the world knows nothing apart from the words he wrote and the rumours that swirl around him.

THE READERS: Jennifer and Eric, a college senior and a disgraced grad student, both facing crucial decisions about who they are, who they might become, and how much they're willing to trust another person with their passions, hurts and fears.

S., conceived by filmmaker J.J. Abrams and written by award-winning novelist Doug Dorst, is the chronicle of two readers finding each other in the margins of a book and enmeshing themselves in a deadly struggle between forces they don't understand. It is also Abrams and Dorst's love letter to the written word.

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FOR THE YOUNG AND YOUNG AT HEART 

BABIES

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by Mem Fox and Emma Quay


A lullaby to babies everywhere, Baby Bedtime is a lyrical tribute to the love inspired by the little people in our lives.

This enchanting read-aloud story combines the talents of Australia's premier picture-book writer, Mem Fox, author of Possum Magic and Where is the Green Sheep?, and acclaimed illustrator Emma Quay, creator of Rudie Nudie and Not a Cloud in the Sky.

Australian author
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MY FIRST ANIMALIA
by Graeme Base

THE PIRATE WHO HAD TO PEE
by Tim Miller
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Within the pages of this book, you may discover, if you look, beyond the spell of written words, a hidden land of beast and birds.

But there's so much to find and name - Let's start off with a smaller game. Just four for now - some big, some small. Now off you go to find them all!

Animalia was first published in 1986, immediately capturing the imagination of children and adults around the world. It has now achieved classic status with global sales of over three million copies.

My First Animalia celebrates the magic of Animalia in a playful introductory format for the more...


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Pirate Pete had to pee

As he sailed across the ocean...

The toilet is broken onboard Captain Bones′ ship and Pirate Pete needs to pee!

It′s a race back to town across a vast amount of water.

But with all the splashing, dripping and swirling, will Pete be able to hang on?

Another fabulously funny picture book from the creators of There Is A Monster Under My Bed Who Farts. Guaranteed to make little ones wet their pants with laughter!'

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The Pirate Who Had to Pee

Australian author
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CHILDREN

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by Lindsay Knight


Can you name Australia's longest-serving prime minister?

Which Australian sportsman is the only cricketer to have received a knighthood from the Queen?

What important scientific discovery is Howard Florey famous for?

In Australia's Greatest People and their Achievements, you will learn the answers to these questions and discover many more stories about great Australians who have helped shaped our nation.

Australia is a young country, but in the short time since our recorded history began we have achieved remarkable wealth and prosperity across many areas of life. From business to science, politics to sport , science to the arts, and entertainment to social justice, we are more...
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Click here for details or to orderHARD LUCK
Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Book 8
by Jeff Kinney

Jeff Kinney's 8th book of this hilarious and highly successful series, and Greg Heffley and his friends now have a whole new set of adventures.

Greg Heffley's on a losing streak. His best friend, Rowley Jefferson, has ditched him, and finding new friends in middle school is proving to be a tough task. To change his fortunes, Greg decides to take a leap of faith and turn his decisions over to chance. Will a roll of the dice turn things around, or is Greg's life destined to be just another hard-luck story?

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SUPPORT MOVEMBER

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by Roger Hargreaves


Mr Mo has been the ambassador for Movember for the last three years, and now finally has his own story!

In collaboration with the Movember cause, this new title has been penned to raise awareness and money for Men's Health issues, with 20% of each copy sold being donated to Movember.


Mr Mo is one of the nicest and most helpful residents in all of Dillydale. Then one day, he visits the barber for his regular snip, and falls fast asleep in the chair. When he wakes he discovers his mo is long gone - and so too are his manners. All of Dillydale is thrown off kilter, but as Mr Mo's moustache starts to grow back, the balance is restored.

Booktopia price: $4.95
THE KENSINGTON REPTILARIUM
by N. J. Gemmell

THE NANNY PIGGINS GUIDE TO CONQUERING CHRISTMAS
by R. A. Spratt
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A most unexpected adventure into a world unknown. Enter if you dare . . .

The Caddy kids are home alone and they're having the best time ever. Until a stranger arrives with news . . .

This is the story of how four loud, grubby urchins from the Australian outback find themselves in London for the first peacetime Christmas after years of war.

But their new guardian hates more...



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The Kensington Reptilarium

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 Watch out Santa, Nanny Piggins is coming to town this Christmas!

This is not a survival guide to Christmas. This is a guide to conquering the Yuletide season! That's right, it is time to take a stand - don't suffer through another year of brussels sprouts, gift-wrapped socks and slobbery kisses from great aunts who forget to put their teeth in.

Take control of your Christmas and put the happy back in your holiday, using the handy hints, games and inspiring stories within this book.  

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FYRE
by Angie Sage
  CODE BREAKER
by Sally Rippin
  DARK SUN
by Robert Muchamore
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TRULY TAN, SPOOKED!
by Jen Storer
  ROALD DAHL'S HEROES AND VILLAINS
by Roald Dahl
  ZAC POWER 4 COPY SLIPCASE WITH WALLET
by H. I. Larry
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Australian author
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YOUNG ADULT

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by Cody Simpson


He′s young, he′s hot and he′s set to become our next global popstar. Discovered on YouTube - now with over 150 million views - Australia′s Cody Simpson has been signed to Justin Bieber′s management and is currently supporting him on a worldwide tour.

In his first official book, Cody reveals all about his meteoric rise to fame, from the beaches of the Gold Coast to touring the world. Jam-packed with never-before-seen photos and exclusive gossip about life on and off stage, this book charts Cody′s journey from ordinary lad to superstar. It′s a story of sacrifice, risk-taking and believing in yourself, even when the odds are stacked against you.

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Click here for more details or to order ALLEGIANT
by Veronica Roth


What if your whole world was a lie?
What if a single revelation - like a single choice - changed everything?
What if love and loyalty made you do things you never expected?

The faction-based society that Tris Prior once believed in is shattered - fractured by violence and power struggles and scarred by loss and betrayal. So when offered a chance to explore the world past the limits she's known, Tris is ready. Perhaps beyond the fence, she and Tobias will find a simple new life together, free from complicated lies, tangled loyalties, and painful memories.

But Tris's new reality is even more alarming than the one she left behind. Old discoveries are quickly rendered meaningless. Explosive new truths change the hearts of those she loves. And once again, Tris must battle to comprehend the complexities of human nature - and of herself - while facing impossible choices about courage, allegiance, sacrifice and love.

Told from a riveting dual perspective, Allegiant, by #1 New York Times best-selling author Veronica Roth, brings the Divergent series to a powerful conclusion while revealing the secrets of the dystopian world that has captivated millions of readers in Divergent and Insurgent.

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Click here for more details or to order THE FIERY HEART
by Richelle Mead


Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets - and human lives.

In The Indigo Spell, Sydney was torn between the Alchemist way of life, and what her heart and gut were telling her to do. And in one breathtaking moment that Richelle Mead fans will never forget, she made a decision that shocked even her . . .

But the struggle isn't over for Sydney. As she navigates the aftermath of her life-changing decision, she still finds herself pulled in too many directions at once. Her sister Zoe has arrived, and while Sydney longs to grow closer to her, there's still so much she must keep secret. Working with Marcus has changed the way she views the Alchemists, and Sydney must tread a careful path - or risk being sent to re-education. Her skill with magic is growing in ways she never imagined - but that doesn't stop the near-constant threat of evil magic users, Vampire Hunters, and Strigoi from growing ever closer.

Pulses will race throughout this thrilling fourth installment in the New York Times bestselling Bloodlines series, and nothing is what it seems.


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REVEALED
by P.C. Cast, Kristin Cast

JUMP
by Sean Williams
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Drastically altered after her fall at the end of Hidden, Neferet is now more dangerous than ever - and her quest for vengeance will wreak havoc on humans as well as Zoey and her friends. Chaos is loosed in Tulsa and the House of Night is blamed. Can Zoey stop Neferet in time to keep her anger from escalating to full-on war? Or will someone else have to step in to take the fall? 

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If you could be anywhere in a moment, where would you go? If you could change your appearance in a minute, what would you choose? If you discovered something was very wrong with this perfect world, what would you do? Action and danger fuel this near-future thriller in a fresh take on technology, identity, and the lengths one girl will go to save her best friend.
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Australian author
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NON-FICTION 

AUSTRALIAN STORIES

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NED KELLY
by
Peter Fitzsimons

Love him or loathe him, Ned Kelly has been at the heart of Australian culture and identity since he and his gang were tracked down in bushland by the Victorian police and came out fighting, dressed in bulletproof iron armour made from farmers' ploughs.

Click here for more details or to order Historians still disagree over virtually every aspect of the eldest Kelly boy's brushes with the law. Did he or did he not shoot Constable Fitzpatrick at their family home? Was he a lawless thug or a noble Robin Hood, a remorseless killer or a crusader against oppression and discrimination? Was he even a political revolutionary, an Australian republican channelling the spirit of Eureka?

Peter FitzSimons, bestselling chronicler of many of the great defining moments and people of this nation's history, is the perfect person to tell this most iconic of all Australian stories. From Kelly's early days in Beveridge, Victoria, in the mid-1800s, to the Felons' Apprehension Act, which made it possible for anyone to shoot the Kelly gang, to Ned's appearance in his now-famous armour, prompting the shocked and bewildered police to exclaim 'He is the devil!' and 'He is the bunyip!', FitzSimons brings the history of Ned Kelly and his gang exuberantly to life, weighing in on all of the myths, legends and controversies generated by this compelling and divisive Irish-Australian rebel.

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Australian author
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A SINGULAR VISION
by Helen O'Neill

KANGAROO DUNDEE
by Chris Barns

Harry Seidler, a stylish, decisive and highly opinionated man, was a key figure in international modern architecture and in the establishment of post-war modern design in Australia. He emerged as Australia′s preeminent architect, the man who effectively shaped the look of modern, urban Australia.

While many know his buildings, few know his fascinating story. Born in Austria to an affluent Jewish family, his world fell apart when as a young boy he had to flee the looming Nazi threat. Without family and without a word of English, he escaped to England. Later, cruelly, he was interned as an enemy alien during the war, and sent to Canada. During his time in the Canadian camp, he virtually taught himself more...


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Australian author
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Brolga (aka Chris Barns) is the 6ft 7in strong but sensitive Aussie star of the extraordinary BBC series Kangaroo Dundee. Brolga lives in a simple tin shed in the outback where he raises orphaned baby kangaroos. It is a sad fact of life that kangaroo mothers are at the mercy of speeding cars in this part of the world - killed on the road, their young still tucked up in their pouches. These young joeys holding on to life, have been given a second chance thanks to the kindness and dedication of Brolga, who carefully retrieves them and nurses them back to health.

Brolga has been rescuing these special creatures for years, slowly and painstakingly creating a kangaroo sanctuary for the many kangaroos he has more...

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Australian author
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FASHION

Click here for more details or to order OBSESSIVE CREATIVE
by
Collette Dinnigan

In this much-anticipated book from Collette Dinnigan, the Australian designer and fashion icon provides an intimate insight into her life and work.

For the first time, this intensely private woman opens up about what makes her tick. What inspires her to create clothes worn by the most glamorous women in the world, from film stars to royalty? How has her bohemian childhood shaped her? What has made her so successful? What drives her creativity and her famed attention to detail? How does she unwind? How does she juggle the roles of mother and businesswoman?

Obsessive Creative takes you behind the scenes of the world of high fashion, from the studio where Collette's sublimely beautiful clothes are made, to backstage at the Paris shows, from the red carpet to a beading factory in India. Lavishly illustrated with photographs from top international fashion photographers and from Collette's own family albums, this is an intensely
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Australian author
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There is also a gorgeous Limited Edition. Each copy will be numbered and signed. Each will have a unique illustrated cover and will be accompanied by a limited edition Collette Dinnigan silk scarf designed especially for the book. More details here.
ENVIRONMENT
WHITE BEECH
by Germaine Greer

THE REEF
by Iain McCalman
Greer describes herself as an old dog who succeeded in learning a load of new tricks, inspired and rejuvenated by her passionate love of Australia and of Earth, most exuberant of small planets.

'For years I had wandered Australia with an aching heart. Everywhere I had ever travelled across the vast expanse of the fabulous country where I was born I had seen devastation, denuded hills, eroded slopes, weeds from all over the world, feral animals, open-cut mines as big as cities, salt rivers, salt earth, abandoned townships, whole beaches made of beer cans...'

One bright day in December 2001, sixty-two-year-old Germaine Greer found herself confronted by an irresistible challenge in the shape of more...

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Australian author
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Click here to order the eBook edition

Equal parts gifted storyteller and acclaimed historian, McCalman brings to life the people who've shaped our knowledge and perception of this World Heritage-listed site. Arguing that the Barrier Reef is a product of human as much as natural history, created by minds as well as corals, McCalman describes encounters between peoples and places, ideas and environments, over the past two centuries and more.

Where today the Reef is known for its astonishing underwater beauty and diversity, once it was notorious for the shipwrecks in its treacherous waters. Navigators struggled to chart a safe passage through, and scientists later theorised about the creation of this massive structure - the largest marine environment on the planet. Quixotic individuals spent years more...

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Australian author
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FOOD

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Click here for more details or to orderTHE AGRARIAN KITCHEN
by
Rodney Dunn


*Order The Agrarian Kitchen from Booktopia by 30th November 2013 to go into the draw to win an Agrarian Experience class for 2 people, worth $700 (flights and accommodation not included).

The Agrarian Experience

The Agrarian Experience is a celebration of the seasons. The day begins with guests donning gumboots and foraging in the garden for the ripest fruit and vegetables, other ingredients are sourced from local farmers and producers.

Once harvesting is complete we continue in the kitchen preparing and cooking together a seasonal feast. Central to the experience is the Alan Scott-designed wood-fired oven. 6 to 7 dishes are usually prepared and the day will culminate with lunch including premium Tasmanian wines and artisanal ales. Read More

Australian author
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THE NEW CLASSICS
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by Donna Hay

This is Donna Hay′s biggest and best cook book yet.

For Isabella Beeton in 1861 it was Mrs Beeton′s Book of Household Management, for Stephanie Alexander in 1996 it was The Cook′s Companion and for Maggie Beer in 2007 it was Maggie′s Harvest. These books went onto become bestsellers, staples in every home; they were the one-stop recipe books that defined these authors′ work and became essential everyday reference books for their time.

Now in 2013, Australia′s leading cookbook author Donna Hay reveals her landmark book, The New Classics. This is the ultimate, completely definitive Donna Hay cookbook, the book that has everything that you ever wanted to know how to cook. Absolutely up to the minute, it contains all our old family favourites as well as new delights, everything from beef and ale pies to dulce de leche, from mac n′ cheese to macarons, it′s exactly the food that we want to cook and eat NOW, all written in Donna′s trademark simple, clear and easy way.


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Australian author
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Click here for more details or to order LOVE TO COOK
by
Valli Little

Sharing good food with family and friends is one of life′s great pleasures, but it′s easy to become stuck in the daily routine and lose your passion.

Love To Cook is designed to help you discover (or rediscover) the joy of spending time in the kitchen and at the table. Inside, you′ll find more than 140 recipes - themed by ingredient for easy reference - that will take you from quick weekday dinners with a clever twist to impressive ideas for entertaining. Love To Cook is the eighth book from bestselling author and food director Valli Little, with the team behind one of Australia′s leading food magazines, ABC delicious. Each recipe is brought to life with stunning images created by food photographer Jeremy Simons and noted food stylist David Morgan.

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Australian author
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SIMPLY GOOD FOOD
by Neil Perry

LOVE ITALY
by Guy Grossi
In Simply Good Food , renowned Australian chef Neil Perry presents a collection of the simple, produce-driven recipes he likes to cook for friends and family. The featured dishes are influenced by many different cuisines, but they are all an expression of Neil Perry's belief in cooking with top-quality, sustainably produced, seasonal ingredients. The recipes illustrate just how easy and enjoyable it is to cook fresh, healthy food at home.

In this evocatively photographed and elegantly styled book you will find a dish for any kind of gathering, from an intimate family meal to a dinner party. Many of the recipes can be prepared either as more...

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Join Guy Grossi as he travels around the gastronomic paradise that is Italy, tasting the best of Italian food and meeting the passionate artisans who produce it.

All the quintessential Italian ingredients are here, from parmesan to prosciutto, balsamic vinegar to buffalo mozzarella. Discover the wonderful characters behind the ingredients, and the traditional artisan methods that have been passed down through the generations.

Then cook your way through 150 recipes, including Slow-cooked veal shoulder with more...


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MY LITTLE FRENCH KITCHEN
by Rachel Khoo
  CLEAN LIVING
by Luke Hines, Scott Gooding
  ITALIAN FOOD SAFARI
by Maeve O'Meara, Guy Grossi
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GARDENING

Click here for more details or to order EDIBLE GARDEN DESIGN
by Jamie Durie


Practical and inspiring, Jamie Durie's Edible Garden Design is a book for our times. As more and more of us recognise the environmental, financial and health benefits of growing our own food, all over the country flower beds are being transformed into vegie patches and empty windowsills into flourishing windowboxes.

Here Jamie shows you how to create productive edible gardens that look great. He gives you the lowdown on the design function of each plant, and reveals how to incorporate edibles into even the smallest of outdoor spaces without sacrificing style.

Be inspired by real-life case studies in Australia and the US, from Jamie's mum's beloved vegie patch and kids' community plots in Chicago to Matt Moran's classic kitchen garden in Sydney and New York's buzzing green produce markets.
 

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Australian author
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HISTORY

Click here for more details or to order COOK
by
Rob Mundle

Captain James Cook is one of the greatest maritime explorers of all time -- only the acclaimed fifteenth-century explorers, Christopher Columbus and Vasco da Gama, can stand with him. Bestselling author of Fatal Storm, Bligh and Flinders, Rob Mundle explores the life and travels of James Cook in a major new biography for lovers of adventure and the romance of sail.

Over three remarkable voyages of discovery into the Pacific in the latter part of the eighteenth century, Cook unravelled the centuries-old mystery surrounding the existence of the great south land, Terra Australis Incognita; became the first explorer to circumnavigate New Zealand and prove it comprised two main islands; discovered the Hawaiian Islands; and much more. Cook was a man who pursued a teenager's dream that evolved from a chance encounter in a small seafront village on the east coast of England.

It was a dream that became a reality and transported him to legendary status among all who mapped the world, on land and sea. Through the combination of hard-won skills as a seafarer, the talents of a self-taught navigator and surveyor, and an exceptional ability to lead and care for his men, Cook contributed to changing the shape of the world map more than anyone else.
 

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Australian author
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HORRIE THE WAR DOG
by Roland Perry

THE MEN WHO UNITED THE STATES
by Simon Winchester
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In the harsh Libyan desert in the middle of the second world war, Private Jim Moody, a signaller with the First Australian Machine Gun Battalion, found a starving puppy on a sand dune. Moody called the dog Horrie. Much more than a mascot, Horrie's exceptional hearing picked up the whine of enemy aircraft two minutes before his human counterparts and repeatedly saved the lives of the thousand-strong contingent. The little Egyptian Terrier's ritual of sitting, barking, then dashing for the trenches, had the gunners running for cover before their camp was strafed and bombed.

Where Moody went, Horrie went too, through the battle zones of the more...
 

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Horrie the War Dog

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How did America become one single nation? What unified a growing number of disparate states into the modern country we recognise today? In this monumental history, Simon Winchester addresses these questions, examining the breathtaking achievements that helped forge and unify both the citizens and the geography of America.

Winchester follows in the footsteps of America′s most essential explorers, thinkers, and innovators, including Lewis and Clark and their Corps of Discovery Expedition to the Pacific Coast, the builders of the first transcontinental telegraph, and the powerful civil engineer behind the Interstate Highway System. Some of these men will be familiar, some forgotten, some more...

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The Men Who United the States
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 Click here for more details or to order THE CAMBRIDGE HISTORY OF AUSTRALIA
by Alison Bashford


The Cambridge History of Australia offers a comprehensive view of Australian history from its pre-European origins to the present day. Over two volumes, this major work of reference tells the nation's social, political and cultural story.

Volume 1: examines Australia's indigenous and colonial history through to the Federation of the colonies in 1901.

Volume 2: opens with the birth of the twentieth century, tracing developments in the nation through to the present day. Each volume is divided into two parts. The first part offers a chronological treatment of the period, while the second examines the period in light of key themes, such as law, religion, the economy and the environment. Both volumes feature detailed maps, chronologies and lists of further reading.

This is a lively and systematic account of Australia's history, incorporating the work of more than sixty leading historians. It is the ideal work of reference for students, scholars and general readers.

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The Cambridge History of Australia

Australian author
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HOLLYWOOD

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Click here for more details or to orderLAST NIGHT AT THE VIPER ROOM
by
Gavin Edwards

A teenaged River Phoenix came to the world′s attention in the 80s with an acclaimed performance in the classic film Stand By Me, and soon followed up with an Oscar nomination for Running on Empty. Praised by his peers as the most talented actor of his generation, River came-of-age in the spotlight- first a child star, then a teen idol on the fast-track to Hollywood royalty. Yet at the age of 23, he died of a drug overdose in front of West Hollywood′s storied Viper Room, shocking fans all over the world and shattering his clean-living image.

Interspersed with an exploration of 80s and 90s Hollywood, this detailed biography examines both River′s life and his career, revealing the true story of a young man whose private life was far more complex than his public teen idol persona.

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ADVENTURE
 Click here for more details or to order SHACKLETON'S EPIC
by Tim Jarvis


It's been called the greatest survival story of all time. In 1916, Ernest Shackleton's ship the Endurance was trapped in pack ice, his supplies running were out, his men were exhausted, cold and desperate. Shackleton faced a horrible quandary; should he and the crew stay on a tiny inhospitable stretch of Antarctic island with the winter setting in or make what was almost certainly a doomed journey, sailing in a lifeboat across miles of the world's wildest ocean and then trekking over unmapped glaciers to reach help?

Showing astonishing courage Shackleton and a small band of men set off in their boat. They faced monstrous seas, icebergs, storms and vile seasickness. Even more astonishingly, they survived.

In 2013, explorer Tim Jarvis and a crew of five, set out to replicate Shackletom's journey, using the same equipment, eating the same more...

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Australian author
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SPORT

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Click here for more details or to orderUNDISPUTED TRUTH: MY AUTOBIOGRAPHY by Mike Tyson



Love him or loathe him, 'Iron' Mike Tyson is an icon and one of the most fascinating sporting figures of our time. In this no-holds-barred autobiography, Tyson lays bare his demons and tells his story: from poverty to stardom to hell and back again In this, his first, autobiography, 'Iron' Mike Tyson pulls no punches and lays bare the story of his remarkable life and career.

Co-written with Larry Sloman, author of Antony Keidis's best-selling memoir Scar Tissue, this is a visceral, and unputdown-able story of a man born and raised to brutality, who reached the heights of stardom before falling to crime, substance abuse and infamy.

Full of all the controversy and complexity that you would expect from a man who delighted as much as he shocked, this is a book that will surprise people and reveal a fascinating character beneath the exterior of violence. If you think you know all about Mike Tyson, read this book and think again.

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BLACK CAVIAR
by Gerard Whateley



This is the complete story behind Australian turf's most glorious statistic: 25 starts for 25 wins. Revered for her unparalleled speed, perfectly complemented by a champion's heart and courage, Black Caviar has returned racing to its glory days and secured a reputation that will echo for as long as horses are sent out to race.

Now with three new chapters documenting a magnificent sporting comeback and the emotional events leading to Black Caviar's shock retirement this full-colour edition celebrates her immortal achievements.

With exclusive access to those at the heart of the events and written by acclaimed journalist and broadcaster Gerard Whateley, Black Caviar documents the career of the racehorse who transcended the track to become an Australian icon.
 

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Australian author
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SPORT - CRICKET
THE ASHES DIARY
by Michael Clarke

TONY GREIG
by Joyce Greig, Mark Greig
In his role as Australian captain, Michael Clarke has introduced a very different dynamic into the traditions of captaincy. Open, inclusive and articulate, Clarke is a refreshing change from the often gruff and monosyllabic leaders of the past. 2013 has produced his greatest challenge to date - leading an Australian team of uncertain quality against the might of a resurgent England. But underperforming players have not been his only problem, as the sacking of Australian coach Mickey Arthur just days before the First Test at Trent Bridge created shockwaves in the team.

Clarke's Ashes Diaries give us a real behind-the-scenes view of the Australian team and the incredible more...


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Tony Greig was a fearless cricketer, a born entertainer, a stalwart friend and a loving son and father. His death in December 2012 was met with an outpouring of grief from friends, family, fans and colleagues alike. Summer in Australia will never be the same.

This enthralling memoir begins in Tony's birthplace, South Africa, as his mother Joyce embarks on an extraordinary war time love affair with a man not her husband, Sandy Greig. Tony's life encompassed more than half a century of cricket, from school boy cricket in his beloved South Africa, to his early days in Sussex, through to his captaincy of England. Whether he was loved or hated, on or off the field, all respected the big man's courageous spirit and skills as an all-rounder. Through his controversial friendship with more...

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SPORT - TENNIS
ROD LAVER: A MEMOIR

ANDY MURRAY: SEVENTY-SEVEN
The 1960s and '70s was an era of Australian tennis giants - Roy Emerson, Fred Stolle, Neale Fraser, Lew Hoad, John Newcombe, Ken Rosewall - but Rod Laver stood head and shoulders above them all.

A diminutive, left-handed, red-headed country boy from Rockhampton, Rod Laver is one of Australia's greatest ever sporting champions and arguably the best tennis player the world has ever seen. He is the only male player to have won the Grand Slam - all four major titles in the same calendar year - in the Open era, and he is the only player to have won two Grand Slams. He was the dominant force in world tennis for almost more...

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Rod Laver: A Memoir

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Andy Murray is one of Britain's best loved athletes. On the 7th July 2013 he became the first British man to lift the Wimbledon trophy for 77 years.

His new book, Andy Murray: Seventy-Seven , will take us on a personal journey through his career. Focusing on the last two dramatic years, he will share with us his thoughts on the pivotal moments of his playing career and allow us a glimpse into his world - his intense training regime, his close-knit team and his mental and physical battle to get to the very top.

This beautiful and very personal book will be a stunning celebration of Andy's career so far.

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Andy Murry: Seventy-Seven

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SPECTACULAR PRIZE
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Click here for more details or to orderGAME CHANGER
by Paul McNamee


WIN THIS INCREDIBLE PRIZE THANKS TO OUR FRIENDS AT TEXT PUBLISHING: Order Game Changer before 24th December 2013 to go in the draw to win:
  • Two courtside tickets to a 2014 Australian Open quarter-final - you'll be sitting with Paul McNamee!
     
  • Return flights to Melbourne from any Australian capital city
  • A night at a 5-star hotel.
How does that sound? You have to be in it to win it. Order Game Changer now.

Blurb: Paul McNamee is a legendary figure in Australian tennis. From his early days as a talented Melbourne teenager, McNamee became a top international player, conquering Wimbledon and the Australian Open with his doubles partner, Peter McNamara. Along the way he shared a court with such luminaries as Rod Laver, Martina Navratilova, John McEnroe and Bjorn Borg.

Just as important have been his contributions to the evolution of the sport: as the driving force behind the Hopman Cup and the reinvention of the Australian Open, and as a coach. This is his story-candid, compelling and insightful-of an ever-changing life in tennis.

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Australian author
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DANCE
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by Stephen Page, Greg Barrett


2014 marks Bangarra Dance Theatre's twenty-fifth year. Clan honours this milestone and those people who have inspired Bangarra over the years. By having its feet in both worlds of old and modern, Bangarra creates contemporary theatrical experiences that are influenced by timeless stories and customs. The land shapes the people, the people shape the language, the language shapes the songs, and the songs then determine the dance - and the spirit flows through it all. This is the Bangarra Dance Theatre.

Dancers communicate so profoundly with the mere flex of a foot or hand, a shift of focus, the roll of a head, the transfer of weight within their body. As the dancers move in and out of the space and light there is a momentum and energy, even with the smallest of steps. Greg Barrett and Stephen Page in a unique collaboration have beautifully and skilfully given shape to, and recorded, these magical, ephemeral moments. Clan's intimate and dramatic collection of photographs capture the personal, the professional and the sacred moments of artistic expression.


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Australian author
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ESSAYS
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by Geoffrey Robertson


An incisive and witty collection of Geoffrey Robertson's best writing

Christopher Hitchens described Geoffrey Robertson as 'the greatest living Australian' and the satirical magazine Private Eye calls him 'an Australian who has had a vowel transplant'. Just before he was to cross-examine Princess Diana, the London Times complained that he was 'anti-establishment, republican and Australian' - in ascending order of horror.

Internationally recognised as one of the world's leading human rights lawyers and as an intellectual inspiration for the global justice movement, he regularly boomerangs back from leading Europe's largest civil liberties practice to the land of his birth and his youth. Just as his Hypotheticals dazzled television audiences, so the speeches and essays collected in this book provoke, disturb and entertain.

Here you will find new heroes in our history, such as the schoolteacher who stopped Ned Kelly's planned more...

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Australian author
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MEMOIRS
COURTNEY LOVE: MY STORY

JOHNNY CASH
by Robert Hilburn
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Alternatively criticized and vilified, embraced and idolized, Courtney Love has been polarizing opinion from the moment she stormed her way onto the music scene over twenty years ago. Yet everything we know about her has come from the media or her music; she has never before shared the whole story of her life.

From her rocky relationship with her hippy parents and her days spent stripping to make ends meet to the truth behind her drug abuse and recovery, this is a riveting story, too crazy not to be true. Beginning in the San Francisco counter-culture, maturing within the world of punk and grunge in the 80s and 90s, the book reveals an artist at the epicentre of alternative culture. Nothing is off limits, not her relationship with more...

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Courtney Love: My Story

Australian author
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The definitive, intimate, no-holds-barred biography of Johnny Cash.

People don't just listen to Johnny Cash: they believe in him.

Although part of his life has been told on film, there are many compelling layers to his story that have remained hidden - until now. Robert Hilburn tells the unvarnished truth about a musical icon whose personal life was far more troubled and his artistry much more profound than even his most devoted fans have realised. As music critic for the Los Angeles Times, Hilburn knew Cash well throughout his life - he was the only music journalist at the legendary Folsom Prison concert in 1968, and he interviewed him extensively just before Cash's death in 2003. Drawing upon more...

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READING
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by Nick Hornby


'Read what you enjoy, not what bores you,' Nick Hornby tells us. And in this new collection of his columns from the Believer magazine he shows us how it's done.

Or at least, how he does it: whether plunging into a biography of Dickens whilst his children are destroying something in the room next door or devouring a whole series of children's books whilst on holiday. Hornby is the intelligent, committed but sceptical reader we'd all like to be. Admiring Ian McEwan's On Chesil Beach, he points out a surprising anachronism. Reading Cormac McCarthy's The Road, he wonders why 'unflinching' is a term of praise among critics. And who but Nick Hornby could successfully juxtapose a discussion of a book on Bob Dylan's backing group, The Band, with one on the Stasi?

These accounts of one reader's experience of buying and reading, and sometimes not reading, books differ from all other reviews or critical appreciations - they take into account the role that books actually play in the lives of readers. They are rich, witty, inspiring - and classic Hornby.

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SHOPPING
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by Chloe Quigley, Daniel Pollock, Michi Girl


From bestselling Michi authors, Chloe Quigley and Daniel Pollock, comes the coolest, most accessible guide to French fashion - so that you too can shop and dress like a local.

There's no denying that French women know how to dress. And this book tells you where they shop. Michi and her friends have scoured the streets of Paris to bring you the coolest, the chicest, the very best shops in this fashionable city. This is a guide to the best shops in Paris - for fabulous, accessible fashion. Here is pure shopping gold: names, addresses, opening hours and website details of over 100 places for clothes, bags, shoes, flea markets, department stores and vintage goods. These are shops that many of us won't have heard of but they are established and well-regarded brands in France.

The most chic and cute cafes and food stops are also included, to break up the shopping day. The authors have such fun with their 'Sit and Sip' suggestions. You'll even find out where to more...

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Australian authors
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BOOK OF QUOTES
Click here for more details or to order THE ILLUSTRATED DICTIONARY OF SNARK
by Lawrence Dorfman


What do Dorothy Parker, Groucho Marx, H. L. Mencken, Oscar Wilde, Robert Benchley, George Bernard Shaw, Jules Feiffer, Bill Hicks, Bill Maher, Phyllis Diller, Edith Piaf, W. C. Fields, Mark Twain, Voltaire, Charles Bukowski, and countless others have in common? Not a thing, other than each had brilliantly snarky wit and all are included in this compendium of the original snark handbooks.

Snark is the humor of the twenty-first century. Columnists are snarky. Politicians are snarky. And parents and teens are snarky with each other every day. For the snarkiest person in your life, here is the biggest book of snark ever done. It will make any lover of snark chuckle, guffaw, titter, groan, and belly laugh as he or she dips in and out of the great minds in literature, comedy, movies, politics, and music.

The Illustrated Dictionary of Snark
has everything that your wiseass needs to get through life. For example: Do you need an inappropriate sexual innuendo for your dinner party? Bingo; Do you need to insult your bully's mother's girth? Perfect; Do you need to piss off your right-winged neighbor? Jackpot; and Do you need to rip your boss a new one? We got you. With hilarious illustrations, the giftiest of humor books is your one-stop source of humor. If you or your friend, lover, father, mother, wife, or husband has a tongue that's a little too sharp, this is the book for them. To paraphrase Dorothy Parker, if you don't have something nice to say, come and sit by me-and bring your The Illustrated Dictionary of Snark!


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The Illustrated Dictionary of Snark

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NON-FICTION FILM TIE IN TITLES
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