Booktopia Buzz with Caroline Baum
December 2013 | Breaking News
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BUZZ IN BRIEF
Psst... I'm going to let you into a bit of a trade secret: not a lot of great books are published in December. The best ones are scheduled for earlier in the year, when they have time and room to breathe and build momentum.

Of course there are some exceptions:  I've sourced them for you here, but this is also the perfect opportunity to look back at the year and remind you of the truly stand out titles you might have overlooked that you could give yourself or someone you love/like, admire/fancy for Christmas.

Thanks to John Purcell for standing in for me last month. He was very good at being me, though not quite as good as I am. Mind you, I would be hopeless at being him (especially in Movember).

Kind Regards

Caroline Baum
Editorial Director

Booktopia Buzz

Follow me on Twitter: @mscarobaum

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P.S. Our Christmas Gift Guide is full of great gift ideas for all the family - go here to browse the full list

Click here to go to the Booktopia Movember blogP.P.S. Booktopia is taking part in Movember. John, Steve, Chris and Andrew are growing moustaches to raise money for men's health. Click here to go to the Booktopia Movember blog.

You can sponsor Team Booktopia's efforts - here.
BOOK OF THE MONTH
Click here for more details or to order DIRTY LOVE
by Andre Dubus III


Caroline Baum: I find short stories frustrating (with some notable exceptions such as Cate Kennedy, Alice Munro, Karen Hitchcock, Anton Chekhov). No sooner have you got into them than they have finished. This collection is different. The stories are linked, lightly, and are also of a satisfyingly substantial length so that instead of feeling hungry from snacking, you feel nourished.

Set on the east coast of the US outside Boston, they explore the deeper, darker recesses of the mind and the messed up way people sabotage relationships.

Dubus shows great tenderness for his characters, no matter how foolishly they wreck their lives, catching the idioms and tensions of contemporary life in bracingly muscular writing. A really strong, haunting collection.

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AMERICAN FICTION
Click here for more details or to order SOMEONE
by Alice McDermott


Caroline Baum: A deceptively unassuming title for a gem. This is a quiet interior novel about the life of Marie, a young Irish woman living in Brooklyn in the 1930s. It takes you right inside the close knit community, to the stoops where friendships are formed and to the bedsides where life flares and is extinguished. No detail is too small to be loaded with meaning, no word is wasted. This would be a marvellous companion to Colm Toibin's Brooklyn.


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AUSTRALIAN NON-FICTION
Click here for more details or to order YOURS TRULY
by Michaela McGuire


Caroline Baum: Women of Letters events have refocused the spotlight on the art of letter writing, reminding us how much more powerful than an email the real thing can be, especially when cleverly commissioned to themes like 'to the person who told me the truth' and 'to my unfinished business'. Stand-outs including a hilarious double act from Zoe Foster and Hamish Blake, a surprising piece by George Megalogenis to his publisher and Ailsa Piper to the girl still walking in Yamaji country.

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NON-FICTION
Click here for more details or to order ALPHABETICAL
by Michael Rosen


Caroline Baum: An original idea, the kind that makes you think 'how come no one has done this before?' A guided tour of the alphabet we use every day filled with information, history, linguistic quirks, personal anecdotes and wonderful digressions (about the use of OK, for example). A book for everyone who loves words, language and stories about the progress of civilisation.




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IN CASE YOU MISSED THEM:
AUSTRALIAN HISTORY
Click here for more details or to order KIDMAN: THE EXTRAORDINARY LIFE OF SIR SYDNEY KIDMAN
by Christo Reid


Caroline Baum: This handsome publication is a labour of love assembled by a descendant of Sir Sidney Kidman, The Cattle King celebrated in Ion Idriess's novel of that name. Using the format of family album, Christo Reid has sourced previously unpublished photographs to provide a rich visual heritage archive of a man who became a legend of the bush and an icon of the outback. War, strikes, musters, races and rodeos fill these sepia toned pages of photographs, letters and press cuttings offering valuable glimpses into a life that has disappeared. A wonderful gift for lovers of Australian history.

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BOOK OF THE YEAR
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THE SIGNATURE OF ALL THINGS
by Elizabeth Gilbert


Caroline Baum: I've said it more than once, and I will say it again, loudly. I ADORE this book. I don't think it has found the readership it deserves because some people think 'Oh, she wrote Eat Pray Love, I didn't like that or want t Click here for more details or to ordero read that kind of thing so I won't buy this' and others think 'Oh, if it's not like Eat Pray Love I won't like it.' Put your prejudices aside, people!

Treat yourself to the most intriguing, refreshing and original female character of the year. Alma Whittacker is a delight: curious, intelligent, carnal. Born in 1800 she lives in an era of great progress, social upheaval and discovery and there is no limit to her thirst for knowledge. Whether she is collecting mosses to feed her passion for botany or exploring the moist undergrowth of her own anatomy for pleasure, Alma is a wonderfully imagined, unforgettable creation - think of her as the cousin or best friend to Middlemarch's Dorothea.

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JANE AUSTEN BICENTENARY
Click here for more details or to order LONGBOURN
by Jo Baker


Caroline Baum: One book trumps Trollope and flattens Fielding. Jo Baker's brilliant retelling of Pride and Prejudice from the point of view of the servants at Longbourn, the Bennett Family home, is the perfect way to mark the bicentenary of that book's birth. So much more than an upstairs downstairs rehash, this is cleverly choreographed to enter the room as the Bennett sisters exit. Rich in period detail, it brings a new dimension to a classic.

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THE MALE MIND
 MY STRUGGLE: A DEATH IN THE FAMILY and A MAN IN LOVE
 by Karl Ove Knausgaard

Caroline Baum: Karl Ove Knausgaard puts himself under the microscope with an honesty that will make you wince, laugh, cry. Unsparing, unflattering bare-bones prose - think of him as a male Scandinavian Helen Garner and you sort of get the idea. Volume One is about his alcoholic father, Volume Two takes a scalpel to his marriage and own experience of fatherhood. His willingness to expose his vulnerabilities and flaws while examining what it means to be a man here and now has the grittiness of a black and white documentary as he tracks his interior malaise, guilt and inadequacy. Despite what some may think, this is not an extended exercise in narcissism (there are four more volumes to be translated into English!) but a really remarkable project, a voyage into the interior full of stark and uncomfortable truths.

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CRIME
Click here for more details or to order DRIVE BY
by Michael Duffy


Caroline baum: Without question the stand out crime novel of the year for me. A grittily atmospheric, topical take on the recent wave of drive by shootings in Western Sydney, it introduces a distinctive Indigenous female policewoman that I look forward to following in future novels. Even more spectacular is Duffy's pitch-perfect Lebanese Australian car mechanic, John Habib, the baby brother in an unsavoury dynasty who just wants to stay out of trouble and tinker with his cars. A complex, layered plot, plausible characters, a strong sense of place: what more could you ask for?

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FOOD/MEMOIR
Click here for more details or to order MASTERING THE ART OF SOVIET COOKING
by Anya Von Bremzen


Caroline Baum: No one wrote a more original or evocative memoir this year than Anya von Bremzen. Her ironically title might have suggested a very slim volume indeed, given that under the Communists, most people had very little to eat most of the time. Instead, von Bremzen presents us with a banquet of memories, tastes and anecdotes about how her family and her comrades endured the harshest privations. Her very Russian sense of the absurd tempers the tragic aspects of Soviet folly and its human cost. This is writing to nourish the mind as much as the belly.

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AUSTRALIAN FICTION
Click here for more details or to order THE BIRDWATCHER
by William McInnes


Caroline Baum: William McInnes has made a career of playing pretty uptight, taciturn types after hitting our screens as a romantic lead in Seachange. But we know he can be very funny and very laid back in his observations of Aussie backyard life and its rituals. Now he transfers his sharp but affectionate eye to this debut novel. It has his trademark laconic larrikin tone and a meandering, slow pace that takes its unhurried rhythm from the careful patience of birdwatchers (of which he is one). This gentle story underlines the way human and bird behaviour share certain characteristics from ruffled feathers to mating rituals.


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PARENTING
Click here for more details or to order TALK LESS, LISTEN MORE
by Michael Hawton


Caroline Baum: If you are the parent of a pre-teen, you need Michael Hawton's calm wisdom to guide you through the bumpy bits. Sensible advice about not over reacting (just who is the child here?) and prioritising what behaviour really needs modifying (pick your battles) to achieve a prolonged ceasefire between skirmishes.




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ROM COM
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by Graeme Simsion


Caroline Baum: When it comes to romance the year belonged to Don Tillman. His quest for a woman to share his rigidly organised life will make an irresistible screwball Hollywood movie if it is cast right but in the meantime, cast it in your own mind. You'd have to be the world's most cynical curmudgeon to resist this story's playful wit and charm.




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INSPIRATIONAL/MEMOIR
Click here for more details or to order I AM MALALA
by Malala Yousafzai


Caroline Baum: Why she didn't get the Nobel Peace Prize is beyond me. Malala's story, told in the same unwaveringly forthright voice we have become used to hearing her speak in at her many public appearances is a tribute not only to her personal convictions and courage but to those of her remarkable father. It also offers an insight into what daily life under the threat of the Taliban really means and how petty their brutality can be. And still, despite the horror of it all, Malala expresses an acute homesickness for her beloved Swat Valley. 

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AMERICAN FICTION
Click here for more details or to order CARTWHEEL
by Jennifer DuBois


Caroline Baum: An American foreign exchange student arrested for murder. Sound familiar? If you are thinking of the Amanda Knox case, you are on the money - it certainly provides the inspiration for this impressively assured second novel. But the setting is Buenos Aires, not Perugia, and the novel diverges from the Knox case in many significant ways. As for the cartwheel of the title, it refers to the media myth that Knox executed one during her interrogation. While this has proved to be false, it demonstrates perfectly how easily a single gesture can be imagined and damningly interpreted - as we only too well from the Chamberlain case. An elegant, highly intelligent and psychologically gripping novel.

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BUSINESS
Click here for more details or to order THE RISE OF THE NAKED ECONOMY
by Ryan Coonerty, Jeremy Neuner


Caroline Baum: The way we work is changing. Where we work is changing too. Technology has brought us mobility and a certain freedom while tethering us to the expectations of round-the-clock availability. This books analyses the change and predicts where we are heading, citing fascinating case studies of US starts-ups that have taken radical approaches to how they retain their notoriously fickle so-called millennial staff and create a sense of engagement and commitment in successful new model workplaces. Essential and entertaining reading for anyone interested in the future of employment. 
 
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HEALTH
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by Mimi Spencer


Caroline Baum: As someone who is following this method I am only too happy to endorse fasting as more than a fad. The health benefits go beyond weight loss (new brain cells, everybody!) and once you establish a routine, it's easy to stick to without getting bored. If you are jaded about weight loss programs you may find this suits you. It is, despite what you might think, less punitive than other techniques and a manageable, steady way to work towards a specific goal ie a wedding or holiday as well as a long term program to change your habits.

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HUMOUR
Click here for more details or to order SCHOTTENFREUDE
by Ben Schott


Caroline Baum: Ben Schott has done a wonderful thing: he's built hilariously long compound German words to express those moments which define the human condition: feigning sleep to avoid unwanted sexual intimacy, the morbid urge to slow down and stare at a road accident, staring at the refrigerator, hungry but unsure of what to eat, the inability to remember jokes....they're all here, with a helpful pronunciation guide and fabulously erudite footnotes. An eccentric dictionary for anyone who loves language.  

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KIDS
Click here for more details or to order AMAZING BABES
by Eliza Sarlos


Caroline Baum: At last! A terrific kids book featuring drawings and captions that celebrate the unique qualities of inspiring women to give little girls (and boys) examples of female role models of achievement and significance. Included are Miles Franklin, Gloria Steinem, Emma Goldman, Frida Kahlo and many you may not have heard of but should know about. More please!

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FICTION
BLOCKBUSTER FICTION
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THE GODS OF GUILT
by Michael Connelly


Defense attorney Mickey Haller returns with a haunting case - the murder of a former client.

Mickey Haller gets the text, 'Call me ASAP - 187,' and the California penal code for murder immediately gets his attention. Murder cases have the highest stakes and the biggest paydays, and they always mean Haller has to be at Click here for more details or to order the top of his game.

When Mickey learns that the victim was his own former client, a prostitute he thought he had rescued and put on the straight and narrow path, he knows he is on the hook for this one. He soon finds out that she was back in LA and back in the life. Far from saving her, Mickey may have been the one who put her in danger.

Haunted by the ghosts of his past, Mickey must work tirelessly and bring all his skill to bear on a case that could mean his ultimate redemption or proof of his ultimate guilt.

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Click here for more details or to order BELLAGRAND
by Paullina Simons


Love was just the beginning of their journey ...

Gina and Harry have given up everything to be together. But they both want different things: from their marriage, from life, from each other ... and from the shifting world around them.

Gina, independent, compassionate and strong, desperately wants a family. Harry, idealistic and fiercely political, wants to create a better world, a better country. At crossroads and cross-purposes, they pursue their opposing dreams at great cost to themselves and those near to them. Through years of passion and turmoil they rail, rage, and break each other's hearts, only to come face to face with a stark final choice that will forever determine their destiny.

Their journey takes them through four decades and two continents, from extreme poverty to great wealth, from the wooden planks of the troubled, immigrant town of Lawrence to the marble halls and secret doors of a mystical place called ... Bellagrand.

From internationally bestselling author Paullina Simons comes another compelling saga of heartbreak and redemption, and the devastating love story that led to The Bronze Horseman.

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SUMMER AT THE LAKE
by Erica James
  THE BOURNE RETRIBUTION
by Eric Van Lustbader
  SINS OF THE FLESH
by Colleen McCullough
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AUSTRALIAN FICTION
POPPY'S DILEMMA
by Karly Lane
  ESSIE'S WAY
by Pamela Cook
  GIRL OF SHADOWS
by Deborah Challinor
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ONE MORE SLIP
by Marion Von Adlerstein
  THE SPY
by James Phelan
  THE RUMOUR MILL
by Roxy Jacenko
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ACTION THRILLER
Click here for more details or to order COMMAND AUTHORITY
by Tom Clancy


Decades ago, when he was a young CIA analyst, President Jack Ryan, Sr. was sent on what was supposed to be a simple support mission to investigate the death of an operative who had been looking into suspicious banking activities at a Swiss bank. Ryan's dogged tenacity uncovered not only financial deceit, but also the existence of a KGB assassin, code-named Zenith. He was never able to find the killer.

But in the shadow world of covert operations, nothing stays hidden for ever.

In the present, a new strongman has emerged in the ever-chaotic Russian republic - the enigmatic President Valeri Volodin. His rise to power was meteoric, but shrouded in deception and treachery. The foundations of his personal empire are built on a bloody secret from his past, and he will eliminate anyone who comes close to that truth. For he has set in motion a plot to return Russia to its former glory and might, with the rest of the world once again trembling in fear of the mighty bear.

When an old friend of the Ryans is poisoned by a radioactive agent, the trail leads to Russia. And Jack Ryan Jr. - aided by his compatriots John Clark and the covert warriors of the secretive Campus - must delve into an international conflict thirty years in the making, and finish what his father started.

With President Ryan fighting a desperate campaign to thwart Russian aggression, and his son fighting a silent war against a ruthless foe, the chances for global conflict grow ever greater - and the possibility of survival may soon be lost for all...

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CRIME
Click here for more details or to order COCKROACHES
by Jo Nesbo


Detective Harry Hole arrives in a steaming hot Bangkok. But it's work not pleasure. The Norwegian ambassador has been found dead in a seedy motel room, and no witnesses have come forward. The ambassador had close ties to the Norwegian Prime Minister, and to avoid a scandal Harry is sent there to hush up the case.

But he quickly discovers that there is much more going on behind the scenes and very few people willing to talk. When Harry lays hands on some CCTV footage that will help him unravel what happened that night, things only get more complicated. The man who gave him the tape goes missing, and Harry realises that failing to solve a murder case is by no means the only danger in Bangkok.

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SPECIAL EDITION
Click here for more details or to order THE LIGHT BETWEEN OCEANS
by M. L. Stedman


They break the rules and follow their hearts. What happens next will break yours.

1926. Tom Sherbourne is a young lighthouse keeper on a remote island off Western Australia. The only inhabitants of Janus Rock, he and his wife Isabel live a quiet life, cocooned from the rest of the world.

Then one April morning a boat washes ashore carrying a dead man and a crying infant - and the path of the couple's lives hits an unthinkable crossroads.

Only years later do they discover the devastating consequences of the decision they made that day - as the baby's real story unfolds...

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LITERATURE
Click here for more details or to order PETIT MAL
by D. B. C. Pierre


If rape or arson, poison or the knife has wove no pleasing patterns in the stuff of this drab canvas we accept as life -It is because we are not bold enough! Charles Baudelaire. If you are familiar with the explosive End Times Trilogy (Vernon God Little, Ludmila's Broken English, Lights Out in Wonderland) by DBC Pierre, you will be well-acclimatised to the heady heights traversed in this collection. Drawing on memoir and a life lived in pursuit of sensation, but always ignited by the flame of fiction, Petit Mallegories take us further into the imagination of one of the most radically original prose stylists of the past decade. Accompanied by dozens of illustrations and photographic 'evidence', the stories here inhabit worlds defined by appetite, excess and transcendence. Whether through food, drink, sex, drugs, or a fantastic cocktail of all four, the impulse in this book is towards epiphany. And the inevitable hangover that follows. But even that (or those) in the world of DBC Pierre can be nourishing.

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EROTICA
Click here for more details or to order GABRIEL'S REDEMPTION
by Sylvain Reynard


Professor Gabriel Emerson has left his position at the University of Toronto to embark on a new life with his beloved Julianne. Together, he's confident that they can face any challenge. And he's eager to become a father.

But Julianne's graduate program threatens Gabriel's plans, as the pressures of being a student become all-consuming. When she is given the honor of presenting an academic lecture at Oxford, Gabriel is forced to confront Julianne about the subject of her presentation - research that conflicts with his own. And while there, several individuals from their past appear, including an old nemesis intent on humiliating Julianne and exposing one of Gabriel's darkest secrets.

In an effort to confront his remaining demons, Gabriel begins a quest to discover more about his biological parents, sparking a chain of events that has startling repercussions for himself, Julianne, and his hope of having a family.

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SHORT STORIES
Click here for more details or to order THE GREAT UNKNOWN
edited by Angela Meyer


In this anthology, our editor, Angela Meyer, pays tribute to the undeniable cultural influence that American TV programs such as Twilight Zone and Outer Limits have had on our lives down under.

These TV dramas, Meyer says, were often metaphors for equality, justice, the nuclear threat and more. Though they were just as often pure, spooky fun.

Meyer has selected short stories and microfiction which range from the fantastical and macabre to the absurd. In Paddy O'Reilly's Reality TV, a guest is confronted with her husband's infidelity in front of a live audience and Ali Alizedah's Truth and Reconciliation satirizes American celebrity television. Chris Flynn's Sealer's Cove has a nudist caught in a time slip. Carmel Bird evokes Edgar Allan Poe when over-sized hares incite the good folk of rural Victoria to commit criminal acts and in Sticks and Stones, Ryan O'Neill has an academic attacked by a demonic alphabet.

Contributors include established and emerging writers such as Marion Halligan, Krissy Kneen as well as new talents.

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FOR THE YOUNG AND THE YOUNG AT HEART

BABIES
COZY CLASSICS: JANE EYRE
by Jack and Holman Wang
  COZY CLASSICS: OLIVER TWIST
by Jack and Holman Wang
  COZY CLASSICS: EMMA
by Jack and Holman Wang
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CHILDREN
HARRY POTTER: THE MAGICAL ADVENTURE BEGINS
by J. K. Rowling
  MARY POPPINS: THE COMPLETE COLLECTION
by P. L. Travers
  OUR LAND: A PUZZLE BOOK OF AUSTRALIAN INDIGENOUS ART
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YOUNG ADULT
Click here for more details or to order DAYLIGHTERS
by Rachel Caine


The final book in the bestselling Morganville Vampires series.

Although Morganville, Texas, is often a troubled town, Claire Danvers and her friends are looking forward to coming home. But the Morganville they return to isn't the one they know; it's become a different place - a deadly one . . .

Something drastic has happened in Morganville while Claire and her friends were away. The town looks cleaner and happier than they've ever seen it before, but when their incoming group is arrested and separated - vampires from humans - they realise that the changes definitely aren't for the better. It seems that an organisation called the Daylight Foundation has offered the population of Morganville something they've never had: hope of a vampire-free future. And while it sounds like salvation - even for the vampires themselves - the truth is far more sinister and deadly.

Now Claire, Shane and Eve need to find a way to break their friends out of Daylighter custody, before the vampires of Morganville meet their untimely end...

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Click here for more details or to order WORLD AFTER
by Susan Ee


In this sequel to the bestselling fantasy thriller, Angelfall, the survivors of the angel apocalypse begin to scrape back together what's left of the modern world. When a group of people capture Penryn's sister Paige, thinking she's a monster, the situation ends in a massacre. Paige disappears. Humans are terrified. Mom is heartbroken.

Penryn drives through the streets of San Francisco looking for Paige. But why are the streets so empty? Where is everybody? Her search leads her into the heart of the angels' secret plans, where she catches a glimpse of their motivations, and learns the horrifying extent to which the angels are willing to go.

Meanwhile, Raffe hunts for his wings. Without them, he can't rejoin the angels, can't take his rightful place as one of their leaders. When faced with recapturing his wings or helping Penryn survive, which will he choose?

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THESE BROKEN STARS
by Amie Kaufman
  CITY OF LOST DREAMS
by Magnus Flyte
  SHOWDOWN
by Remy Locroix
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NON-FICTION
SPORT
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GAME 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 day-8 night match - you'll be sitting with Paul McNamee!

Click here for more details or to order- 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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AUSTRALIA'S CENTURY OF SURF
by Tim Baker
  BILLY SLATER
NUMBER ONE
  MESSI
by Guillem Balague
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POSITIVE THINKING
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EMPOWER YOURSELF
by Miranda Kerr


Following the overwhelming response to Treasure Yourself, Miranda continues to explore similar themes in her latest title, providing insight on what she believes it means for young, modern women to be empowered in all areas of life and how this can be achieved.

For Miranda, one of the most powerful tools to facilitate change, both in her own life, and in the lives of others, is the use of positive affirmations. Here, she has written over 250 personal affirmations that can be used to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle, harmonious relationships, fulfilling career and happiness.

Click here for more details or to orderWhen we have the courage to speak our truth, no matter how difficult that may be, we tap into the infinite power that lies within us. Miranda Kerr

Come with me on a nurturing journey. I believe we all have a responsibility to bring peace and harmony into our lives and to share these experiences with others. My wish is that the thoughts and affirmations in this book will help you to focus on the positive, leading you to a life of greater self-care and joy. To be your best you have to do your best. And when you continually look with optimistic eyes, you empower yourself! Miranda Kerr

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POLITICS
Click here for more details or to order LAZARUS RISING
by John Howard


John Howard's autobiography, Lazarus Rising, is the biggest-selling political memoir Australia has seen.

In it he talks about his love for his family, his rollercoaster ride to the Lodge and how - as prime minister - he managed a strongly growing Australian economy and led Australia's war on terrorism.

Drawing on his deep interest in history, he paints a fascinating picture of a changing Australia.

In this edition, fully updated to take into account the return of the Liberal National Party to government after the 2013 election, Howard analyses the crucial years between the 2010 election which gave rise to the minority government of Julia Gillard, and the consequent unprecedented and destabilising leadership struggles within the Labor party.

He discusses the significance of Tony Abbott's achievements in defeating the Labor Government in 2013, and provides a masterful summary of legacy of the Rudd/Gillard years for Australia.

Lazarus Rising is essential reading for all followers of politics.

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AUSTRALIAN STORIES
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by David Whish-Wilson


David Whish-Wilson's Perth is a place of surprising beauty, of sand-swept peace and brilliant light, yet a place where the deeper historical currents are never too far beneath the surface. Like the Swan River that flows in two directions at once at certain times, with the fresh water flowing seawards above the salty water flowing in beneath it, Perth strikes perfect harmony with the city's contradictions and eccentricities.

We look beyond shiny glass facades and boosterish talk of mining booms to the richness of the natural world and the trailblazers, the rebels, the occasional ghost and the ordinary people that bring Australia's remotest city to life.

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PERSONALLY
by Nikki Gemmell

AN AVERAGE JOE
by Joe Hildebrand
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Nikki Gemmell's columns in the AUSTRALIAN WEEKEND MAGAZINE have proved to be hugely popular, shrewdly observed and provocative. In PERSONALLY, she tackles a variety of subjects ranging from female bullying, tenderness, the urge to apologise and becoming an embarrassing parent, to celibacy and the tyranny of technology. Packed full of Nikki's trademark blistering honesty, insight and humour, this collection of columns and exclusive new essays will make you nod in recognition, disagree vehemently, laugh out loud and, above all, think.

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Joe Hildebrand is the man you see on TV, the man you read in the Daily Telegraph, the man you might follow on Twitter (where he's rated as one of the Top Ten most influential Tweeters in Australia), the man with an opinion on everything and anything, especially the dire straits of the current political landscape. But who is he? Where did he come from?

In this, his first book, you can meet the man behind the man; his highly unconventional family and more...

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BOGANAIRE: THE RISE AND FALL OF NATHAN TINKLER
by Paddy Manning
  THE BEST AUSTRALIAN YARNS
by Jim Haynes
  EVERY MAN AND HIS DOG
by David Darcy
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ANIMALS
Click here for more details or to order PURE JOY
by Danielle Steel


In this funny, moving memoir, Danielle Steel tells the story of how she met a dog the size of a mouse, with a personality that could light up an entire room. From Minnie's arrival at home in San Francisco to clothes shopping jaunts in Paris, her adventures provide the perfect backdrop for a heartfelt look at the magic that dogs bring to our lives, and how they become part of the family.

We meet Steel's childhood pug, James, and Elmer, the basset hound who was steadfast at her side in her struggling days as a young writer, Sweet Pea-unveiled in a Tiffany box for a dog-loving husband-and all those lucky dogs who shared a household of nine children, other canines, and one pot-bellied pig. As she reflects on the beloved pets who have brought joy, and sometimes chaos, to her home through the years, Steel also shares her thoughts on the trials and tribulations of bringing a new dog into a household, the challenges of housebreaking and compatibility, the losses we feel forever.

Filled with colorful characters (human and otherwise), delightful photographs, practical wisdom drawn from long experience, and brimming with warmth and insight on every page, Pure Joy is a love letter to this special relationship-and one of the most charming books yet from the incomparable Danielle Steel.

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FILM
Click here for more details or to order A STORY LATELY TOLD
by Angelica Huston


Anjelica Huston's life, once she turned 15 and moved to London, is a who's who of popular culture from the Rolling Stones in late '60s London to the Chelsea Hotel in New York when she was modelling in the early '70s, to Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty in '70s and '80s Los Angeles, to Hunter Thompson in Aspen. She is a force who has won every possible acting award, working with some of the greatest directors of her time, and a friend to many of the greatest artists, writers, actors and musicians. One could say it was a charmed life, an enviable life, and she would agree. But it is a life also full of so much tragedy and sadness, and Huston writes about both triumph and hardship with extraordinary eloquence and depth. A stunning achievement, her memoir ranks among the best in the genre.

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HEALTH
GET REAL
by Michelle Bridges

DON'T QUIT SUGAR
by Cassie Platt
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Lose weight • Reach goals • Feel fantastic

The Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation has already helped Australians lose over 700,000 kilos!

Now you can go behind the scenes and hear 75 people's amazing life-changing success stories. From the mother and daughter who each lost more than 60 kilos to the bushfire survivor who discovered her 'inner mongrel'; from the 'big guy' dad who lost 45 kilos so he could enjoy being with his kids to the woman who wanted to get fit before 50 and then achieved a personal best in a marathon - these 12WBTers bare all to inspire others to stop making excuses and work their way towards being the best version of themselves.

Alongside these journeys, more...

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Convinced quitting sugar is the key to health? Think again!

Sugar is CRITICAL for minimising stress, supporting thyroid function and optimising metabolism. Eliminating all sugars from your diet WILL do you harm.

In Don't Quit Sugar, Sydney-based nutritionist Cassie Platt (M. Hum. Nutr.):

-explains the very real and serious risks of quitting sugar
-debunks the major anti-sugar myths
-offers a practical guide to integrating the RIGHT sugars into your diet for long-lasting and REAL whole-body health.

Don't Quit Sugar is the book that proves once and for all that it's not only possible but in fact NECESSARY to live more...

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HISTORY
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by Mark Dapin


Others have written the myth, but the Anzacs themselves wrote their stories.

Around the country, bronze soldiers in slouch hats stand silently at attention. It is the Anzacs' remarkable writing that reveals the lives behind the national legend. From the Trenches is a collection of gripping, awe-inspiring and sometimes terrifying accounts of life at the front, recorded by those who lived through the fighting.

Drawn from diaries, memoirs and letters, as well as poetry, reportage and prose, this coolection reminds us that the Anzac legend is rooted in real and tragic circumstances on a heartbreakingly human scale. Belying the common perception of the laconic digger, these compelling voices convey the range of wartime experience, from the desolation and horror to the unbridled excitement and camaraderie. Through it all runs the bleak toll on young lives.

Author and journalist Mark Dapin has selected writing from those on the frontlines as well as behind the scenes, from officers and soldiers to nurses, engineers and reporters, to create a volume that will be regarded as the definitive record of the personal experiences that forged the emerging national identities of Australia and New Zealand.

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DANGEROUS DAYS
by Terry Deary
  EMPIRES OF THE DEAD
by David Crane
  HISTORY'S NAUGHTY BITS
by Karen Dolby
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ON READING
READING IN THE WILD
by Donalyn Miller
  ON REREADING
by Patricia Meyer Spacks
  SLOW READING IN A HURRIED AGE
by David Mikics
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A READER'S BOOK OF DAYS
by Tom Nissley

A  READER'S BOOK OF DAYS
by John Sutherland
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At once a love letter to literature and a charming guide to the books most worth reading, A Reader's Book of Days features bite-size accounts of events in the lives of great authors for every day of the year.

Here is Marcel Proust starting In Search of Lost Time and Virginia Woolf scribbling in the margin of her own writing, "Is it nonsense, or is it brilliance?"

Fictional events that take place within beloved books are also included: the birth of Harry Potter's enemy Draco Malfoy, the blood-soaked prom in Stephen King's Carrie.

A Reader's Book of Days is filled with memorable and surprising tales from the lives and more...

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A Reader's Book of Days

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This 'little history' tackles a very big subject: the glorious span of literature from Greek myth to graphic novels, from The Epic of Gilgamesh to Harry Potter.

John Sutherland is perfectly suited to the task, having researched, taught and written on every area of literature. His infectious passion for books and reading has defined his own life. Now he guides young readers and adults on an entertaining journey revealing how literature from across the world can transport us and help us to make sense of what it means to be human.

Sutherland introduces great classics in his own irresistible way, enlivening his offerings with humour as well as learning: Beowulf, Shakespeare, Don Quixote, the more...

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A Little History of Literature

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PUZZLES
Click here for more details or to order PUZZLES AND WORDS 2
by David Astle


Puzzles and Words 2 is the second pocket-sized puzzle book from Australia's best known puzzle-maker and word nerd, David Astle.

There are over 175 original puzzles from anagrams to riddles and quizzes for all ages and all levels. Accompanying these are some 250 of David's entertaining word stories-What does zemblanity mean? How does cosmic link to cosmetic? Where does a seahorse sleep each night with an almond?

Puzzles and Words 2 will keep your brain active and entertained for hours.

As the Dictionary Guy on Letters and Numbers, and DA in the world of crosswords, David Astle's mania shines in his weekly Wordplay column in The Sydney Morning Herald, and in his cultish blog at www.davidastle.com. His latest book, Cluetopia, celebrates 100 years of the crossword.

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RELIGION/ATHEISM
Click here for more details or to order 50 GREAT MYTHS ABOUT ATHEISM
by Russell Blackford


Tackling a host of myths and prejudices commonly leveled at atheism, this captivating volume bursts with sparkling, eloquent arguments on every page. The authors rebut claims that range from atheism being just another religion to the alleged atrocities committed in its name.

- An accessible yet scholarly commentary on hot-button issues in the debate over religious belief
- Teaches critical thinking skills through detailed, rational argument
- Objectively considers each myth on its merits
- Includes a history of atheism and its advocates, an appendix detailing atheist organizations, and an extensive bibliography
- Explains the differences between atheism and related concepts such as agnosticism and naturalism

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TRAVEL AUSTRALIA
THE BEST OF AUSTRALIA

AUSTRALIA'S COAST 2ND EDITION
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The Best of Australia presents stunning photography of our country's iconic landscapes and unique wildlife in this large-format and hardback book. Divided into themes such as 'Ancient stories', 'From above', 'Heat and dust', 'Remarkable rocks', 'Shores' and 'Under the sea', the photos will literally take your breath away. The book draws on the Auscape Photo Library's extensive collection and features works by nature photographers Jean-Paul Ferrero, Jean-Marc La Roque, Jaime Plaza van Roon, Nick Rains, Becca Saunders and Dr Mark Spencer.

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The Best of Australia

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  The second edition of Explore Australia's Coast is a captivating guide to the Australian coast - its renowned hotspots and the experiences there which make them such a favourite destination for travellers worldwide. Featuring over 400 beautiful images from Australian Geographic, the book is divided by state and highlights the best beaches and coastal areas to visit. An extended introduction also focuses on coastal icons - lighthouses, shipwrecks, whales, coral, tropical islands - and the myriad coastal activities such as surfing, fishing and diving. Explore more...

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Australia's Coast 2nd Edition

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HUMOUR
Click here for more details or to order KAMA SUTRA DOT-TO-DOT

For consenting adults only, this wickedly witty book only exposes its 30 exotic positions to the most persistent hands. Put a little lead in your pencil and get stuck in. It's almost definitely the most fun you can have with your clothes on! (Partner not included. Do try this at home).

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COOL STUFF
Click here for more details or to order DO NOT OPEN THIS BOX
by Keri Smith


This brand new, deluxe box set contains one copy each of Wreck This Journal,This Is Not a Book, Mess, and now The Pocket Scavenger. It has been specially designed by Keri herself.

Smith invites you to reimagine what a book can be (a secret message, a recording device, an instrument). Poke holes in the pages. Paint them with coffee. Bring the book in the shower. Let loose and make a mess.

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Click here to view our Bolinda audiobooks

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In This Issue

Book of the Month

Fiction

Blockbuster Fiction

Australian Fiction

Action Thriller

Crime

Special Edition

Literature

Erotica

Short Stories

Babies, Children, Teens

Non-fiction

Sport

Positive Thinking

Politics

Australian Stories

Animals

Film

Health

History

On Reading

Puzzles

Religion/Atheism

Travel Australia

Humour

Cool Stuff
 
FICTION
BESTSELLERS
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NON-FICTION
BESTSELLERS
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GREAT SUMMER READING IN CHEAPER EDITIONS
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AUSTRALIAN CLASSICS IN GORGEOUS LITTLE HARDCOVERS
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