Booktopia Buzz
April 2009 | Edition 9
 
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THE BUZZ IN BRIEF
Welcome, welcome, welcome.
As usual, Booktopia Buzz is bursting at the seams with wonderful new titles, great bargains and more. And as usual, I am brimming with enthusiasms. Where to start?
My book of the month for April is David Malouf's Ransom. I can't imagine reading anything better this year. You may also be interested in the interview he gave me last night. We have signed copies  for sale as well as a very special Malouf give-away.
Have a look at Black Saturday, a commemorative book about the Victorian bushfires. The entire proceeds of the sale of this important book go to the bushfire appeal.
We have signed copies of Feed Me Now, Bill Granger's fabulous new cookbook, Anzac day titles for all ages plus a chance for one lucky person to win a collection of Once Upon a Time Books (suitable for girls 11 - 14).
All this, as they say, and more.
Until the next edition (in two weeks time with all our great Mother's Day suggestions), happy reading!
Toni Whitmont
Booktopia Buzz Editor
BOOKTOPIA BUZZ PRESENTS....
BLACK SATURDAY: STORIES OF LOVE, LOSS AND COURAGE FROM THE VICTORIAN BUSHFIRES by John McGoughty

This is a very special book. Not only is it an account of the recent Victorian bushfires and a tribute to those affected by them, it is a wonderful opportunity to support The Salvation Army Victorian Bushfire Appeal.

The publisher, Harper Collins Australia, is donating the entire cost of the production and print run to the appeal, while booksellers selling it on to the public at cost. With a retail price of $24.99, each book sold raises $22.50 for the appeal (the difference being GST).

Black Saturday is a collection of individual stories from the Victorian bushfires‚ featuring deeply personal contributions from people directly affected, their friends and relatives,  the people who came to their aid, accounts from journalists on the scene and those involved in coordinating the response.

Arranged town−by−town‚ with introductions detailing the scope and impact of the fires on each community, the book features pictures from News Ltd′s photographers‚ printed on stock‚ throughout each chapter. A roll of honour‚ listing those who perished in the fires‚ is included.

This is both a tribute, and a fitting fund raiser, a book that every Australian family will want to own.

Click here to buy this book.

FEED ME NOW! by Bill Granger
*SPECIAL OFFER - LIMITED STOCKS AVAILABLE*

We have a fabulous deal lined up for Mother's Day this year, with signed copies of Bill Granger's latest release Feed Me Now! available for $44.95 (down from the retail price of $49.95) and, just to sweeten the deal, we will throw in Susan Loomis' On Rue Tatin (valued at $24.95). This little treasure is a classic collection of recipes and stories written whilst  Loomis was living and teaching cooking classes  in regional France.

If anyone knows how to please a crowd its Bill Granger, the man behind Sydney's  landmark Bill's restaurants. Bill's food is fresh, simple, healthy and delicious. It is food for people who love to eat but are short of time to cook - people with too much to do to fuss in the kitchen, and at the table, people with families and friends to feed - people just like you. Divided into quick reference chapters so you can find the meals which best suit you, Feed Me Now! is Bill Granger's seventh cookbook and gives you new ideas for breakfasts for which Bill is world famous, lunches and dinners, food for two, food for more, meals on a budget, snacks and nibbles, and meals you can freeze now, eat later. Recipes are accompanied by beautiful photography and handy kitchen tips. Destined to become a kitchen essential Feed Me Now! is Bill Granger at his best, bringing you real food you can enjoy every day.

Click here to buy this special offer
.
TONI'S BOOK OF THE MONTH
RANSOM by David Malouf

IN STOCK

I don't know how to convey the strength and worth of this exceptional book. For a start, Malouf has put his mark on a story that was first told nearly three thousand years ago, and that has been re-told in many versions by countless storytellers and word smiths ever since. Clearly it is a story with enormous, universal appeal that transcends ages and cultures. Malouf however approaches his subject with grace and ease of prose that leaves the reader gasping at the shimmering beauty of the words on the page.
The focus of Malouf's welcome return to the novel is on a small section of Homer's Iliad, itself the epic poem that tracks the ten year war between the city of Troy (or Ilios) and the combined Greek city states.  In this version, we are presented with Troy's King Priam travelling to the enemy Greek encampment to beg the warrior Achilles to release the body of Hector, Priam's son, whom Achilles has killed out of revenge for the death of his own friend Patroclus.
Malouf shifts the view point backwards and forwards between Priam (whose name comes from "priatos" or "he who is ransomed") and Achilles. Achilles is the warrior son of a water nymph and a human. Priam, himself partly descendant from the gods, although ruling Troy through having been ransomed or rescued by his sister, decides to cast off his majesty and approach his implacable enemy simply as a man wanting to ransom the body of his son in order to give him an honourable burial.
Ransom is a novel whose focus is almost the briefest 24 hours, and yet in it there are timeless themes - love, war, chance, destiny, fate and above all,  the relationship between men. It is a great pleasure to read. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

David Malouf of course has had a long fascination with the classics, with An Imaginary Life being the fictional retelling of the life of the Roman poet Ovid.
In the meantime, this Queensland born writer, who has won many, many awards in many, many countries, has written on subjects as diverse as post-war Brisbane (Johnno and 12 Edmondstone Street), the contrast between a Queensland bird sanctuary and the horrors of the WWI (Fly Away Peter IN STOCK),  Australians imprisoned by the Japanese in WWII (The Great World), a community of Scottish immigrant farmers in the northern Australian bush in the 1850s (Remembering Babylon) and the relationship between an illiterate Irish convict and the police officer sent to hang him (Conversations at Curlow Creek).
He has also written librettos, plays, short stories and poetry.

We have limited numbers of signed editions of Ransom in stock now.

Click here to buy this book.

We also have one hardback signed edition of David Malouf: The Complete Stories (worth $45.00 before signing) to give away to one lucky purchaser of Ransom.
Click here or email me at toniw@booktopia.com.au to go into the draw for this terrific promotion. Please include your order number in your email.

Best of all, you can hear David Malouf himself:
Click here to hear Booktopia's David Malouf interview.
Click here to hear David Malouf reading from Ransom.

Click here to browse other books by David Malouf.
APRIL MEANS ANZAC DAY
HELL'S HEROES
  THE DONKEY WHO CARRIED THE WOUNDED
The Forgotten Story of the Worst POW Camp in Japan

Roger Maynard

What happens to men who are surrounded by death day in, day out?
Of the 300 Australians that spent three years of their lives in Japan's notorious camp 4-B during World War Two, sixty died in captivity. With the atrocities going largely unreported at the time, these blokes had to endure extremes of deprivation and discomfort. How did they keep their hope alive?
Long-time writer and journalist Roger Maynard draws on the diaries and memories of those who survived in this compelling and chilling account of those terrifying times. At a time of year when our thoughts go to those who have served Australia in war, Hell's Heroes is a story that begs to be told, and told again.

Click here to buy this book.
  Jackie French

IN STOCK

Jackie French is a particularly prolific Australian writer for young people. One of her interests is the re-telling of episodes of Australian history for  school aged children, episodes in which an animal has played a prominent role.
In The Donkey who Carried the Wounded, French retells the well known story of Simpson and his donkey, adding less familiar details like how the donkey came to be on that fabled Turkish peninsula and what happened to it after Simpson was killed.
French approaches her subject with her usual exhaustive research and wonderfully digestible writing style. The result brings alive the message of the Anzacs to children aged 8 - 14.

Click here to buy this book.


GALLIPOLI: RECKLESS VALOUR
Nicolas Brasch

They were young men full of practical jokes and hell-bent on having a good time. Their English commanding officers were in despair. But when the Anzac soldiers landed at Gallipoli in 1915, they were bold and brave, loyal and daring.
Gallipoli: Reckless Valour uses time charts, photos, breakout boxes and maps to explain in clear detail all about the ill-fated campaign. With a glossary and index, this book has just about everything a young person needs to know.
Click here to buy this book.
FICTION...MAINSTREAM
ROADSIDE SISTERS
  ZULU HART
  THE COMMON LAWYER
Wendy Harmer

IN STOCK

Anyone who has read Farewell My Ovaries or Love and Punishment will be keen to go back for another dose of Harmer.
In her latest book, Roadside Sisters, Harmer turns her considerable wit and storytelling talent to the subject of female friendship,  in this case seen through the sardonic and slightly hysterical eyes of three old friends who are thrown together again for the road trip of all road trips - the trip to Byron Bay to attend the wedding of a daughter.
Harmer is, as ever, funny, warm and wise - not to mention very, very irreverent.

To read an extract, click here.

Click here to buy to book.
  Saul David

IN STOCK

Bullied at school for his suspiciously dark skin and lack of a father, George Hart soon learns to fight - and win. At eighteen, his world is shaken by his mother's revelation that his anonymous father is willing to give him a vast inheritance - provided he can prove himself worthy of the prize as an officer in the King's Dragoon Guards. At a time when racism and prejudice are rife in Victorian society, Hart struggles to come to terms with his identity. Forced to leave the army, he decides to head to South Africa, where he is caught between two fierce and unyielding forces as Britain drives towards war with the Zulus.
Saul David is  a broadcaster and author of several critically acclaimed non-fiction titles. Zulu Hart  is his first work of fiction and it has heavy weights like Conn Iggulden and  Bernard Cornwell backing it to the hilt.
Zulu Hart comes with the publisher's money back guarantee.

Click here to browse other books by Saul David.

Click here to buy this book.
  Mark Gimenez

IN STOCK

Andy Prescott is the most laid-back young lawyer in Austin, Texas. Specialising in traffic law, he operates from a small room above a ramshackle tattoo parlour. He rides a trail bike and spends way too much time drinking beer in the sunshine. Ambition has never been Andy's strong point - he prefers to take it easy. That is, until one of Texas's wealthiest men walks into his office.
On the spot, billionaire Russell Reeves retains Andy as his lawyer and, in exchange for some easy legal work, pays him more money than he has ever earned before. Andy's life is transformed. But nothing comes for free. Russell is a desperate man whose sole aim is to save his eight-year-old son, Zach, who is dying from leukemia. He is prepared to do anything - even if it means putting Andy's life in danger.
Mark Gimenez has been hailed as the new John Grisham. As far as legal-thrillers go, you won't read better.

Click here to browse other books by Mark Gimenez, including IN STOCK and SALE items.

Click here to buy this book.
LONG LOST
  THE LOST BOYS
  ANARCHY AND OLD DOGS
Harlan Coben

Three years to wait for a new  Myron Bolitar novel is too long, but fans have been rewarded in spades.
Myron hasn't heard from Terese Collins since their affair abruptly ended years ago, so her call catches him off guard. She's in Paris, she is in trouble and her ex-husband is circling malevolently.  At least he was, until he was murdered and she became the number on suspect.
 Caught in a foreign landscape where nothing is as it seems, Bolitar must tear apart the city looking for anwers. Be prepared for Bolitar like you have never seen him before.

Click here to browse other books by Harlan Coben.

Click here to buy this book.
  Sam de Brito

Melbourne Age writer Sam de Brito's writes a daily blog which tracks the pulse of Aussie manhood. In The Lost Boys, de Brito tells the story of Ned, a hedonistic loser for whom not much has changed in the twenty years since he was 15 and hanging out amongst the surfers chasing drugs and chicks (in that order) on Sydney's Maroubra beach. Dark and funny, The Lost Boys is about what happens when life passes you by.

Click here to buy this book.

  Colin Cotterill

IN STOCK

Dr Siri Paiboun is Laos' reluctant and only coroner. He also happens to be a psychic. The quirky hero from Colin Cotterill's superb mystery series (he of Disco for the Departed fame) is back again, this time looking into a case of a blind, retired dentist who is the victim of a hit and run killer. Or is there something more sinister afoot - a plot perhaps to overthrow the government?
Colin Cotterill writes with the comic charm of  Alexander McCall Smith and his Number One Ladies Detective Agency series. His plots however are much more meaty.

Click here to browse other books by Colin Cotterill.

Click here to buy this book.
FICTION...QUALITY
THE NAKED NAME OF LOVE
  CITY OF THIEVES
  THE LOST LIFE
Sanjida O'Connell

In 1865, as Darwin’s new theory of evolution begins to sweep aside old certainties, a young Jesuit priest and plant-hunter sets out into an unknown world. He is driven by twin passions: for science and for his faith. Travelling across the eastern steppes of Mongolia in the company of a Buddhist monk and a local horseman, Joseph’s journey is fraught with danger, both physical and spiritual. But it is Namuunaa, the gifted shaman woman who saves his life and offers a greater challenge: she teaches him what it is to love.
A story of East meeting West and of a love that transcends culture, faith and, ultimately, tragedy, this is both an epic novel and an astonishingly intimate story.
Sanjida O'Connell has written five books. Born in Karachi, Pakistan, she works as a TV presenter in the UK. She also has a PhD in chimpanzee psychology, all of which makes her just about as fascinating as the stories she weaves.

Click here to buy this book.
  David Benioff

Some books  just have a buzz about them and City of Thieves is one of them.  Benioff, who wrote the screen plays for X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Troy and  The Kite Runner, has written a both elegant and dramatic tale of the absurdity of war. His  device is the unlikely coming together of an Lev, a 17 year old looter and Kolya an aristocratic soldier arrested for desertion while his canvas is the desperately cold winter of World War Two's  Leningrad seige.
The City of Thieves had a small but devoted band of fans when it was first published nearly a year ago, but the opportunity to purchase it now at a lower price, makes it definitely worthy of attention.

Click here to browse other books by David Benioff.

Click here to buy this book.

  Steven Carroll

IN STOCK

Carroll goes from strength to strength in The Lost Life, the story of TS Eliot, his muse, Emily, and two young people embarking on their first (and apparently all consuming) love.
Set in England in the shadow of the Depression, this is a lyrically written novel about second chances, from the winner of the 2008 Miles Franklin Award. The edition is beautifully presented with a gatefold cover and jacket.

Click here to buy this book.


THE BOOK OF EMMETT

THEM   REVOLUTIONARY ROAD
Deborah Forster

 A first novel from Melbourne writer Deborah Forster, The Book of Emmett is  about the unravelling lives of four adults who come together as their tyrannical father lies dying.
According to everyone who has read the review copies, Forster writes with enormous strength and insight.
From Susan Duncan (Salvation Creek):
"Brilliant. A story of such gently savage emotional intensity it stays with you long after you've turned the last page."
From Kaz Cooke:
"Deborah Forster is a writer in a class of her own. When a book makes you breathless with fear and love for the characters, and says a Kombi van "handles like a dog on lino" you know it's wonderful. Deborah Forster has used an angel's phrasebook to make a story that's as beautiful as hope, as real as truth and as Australian as 50-50 cordial and Tic Toc biccies."

Click here to buy this book.

  Nathan McCall

On Auburn Avenue, downtown Atlanta, you can buy groceries, get your teeth fixed or cop a vial of crack cocaine. You can get a seven-dollar haircut, a good game of nine-ball and a partner for the night, all on the same block. But things are changing, for white people are moving into the historically black neighbourhood, threatening to price-out the local residents, and Barlowe Reed, a single, forty-something African American, is not happy at all.
When Sean and Sandy Gilmore, a young white couple move in next door to his ramshackle rented home, Barlowe and Sandy develop a reluctant friendship. But fear and suspicion build all around them as more and more white people move in and it's only a matter of time before someone gets really hurt.
To see a clip of Nathan McCall in the neighbourhood in which he has set the book, click here.
Them would make a great book club choice. To read topics for discussion, click here.

Click here to buy this book.
  Richard Yates

IN STOCK

The big screen has brought alive Richard Yates' classic tale of the unravelling of the American dream, with its stellar performances by Leonardo diCaprio and more particularly, Kate Winslet.
Hailed as a masterpiece from the moment of its first publication, Revolutionary Road is the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a bright, beautiful, and talented couple whose empty suburban life is held together by the dream that greatness is only just round the corner. With heartbreaking compassion and clarity, Richard Yates shows how Frank and April mortgage their hopes and ideals, betraying in the end not only each other, but their own best selves.

Click here to see the movie trailer.

Click here to buy this book.



NON-FICTION: THE BIG THREE
JOURNEY TO THE EDGE OF THE WORLD by Billy Connolly

What can I say? It's Billy Connolly. It's a journey through the North West Passage (now possible because of the melting of the Arctic.) It's completely visually captivating. Billy Connolly is our personal guide through the vast wilderness of the Arctic and into the lives of some weird and wonderful people. This book charts Connolly's journey through one of the most dramatic and unknown landscapes on the planet.
Click here to see some footage from that trip.

Click here to browse other books by Billy Connolly.

Click here to buy this book.


A LION CALLED CHRISTIAN by Anthony Bourke & John Rendall

London at the tail end of the swinging sixties when anything goes. Two Australians living on the Kings Road, Anthony Bourke and John Rendall, take pity on a fifth generation captive lion cub up for sale in a department store. They bought Christian and for a time raised him in their flat exercising him in a walled church garden. When Christian became too big to be a pet, they took him to George Adamson in Kenya (of Born Free fame) who introduced him to the wild.
A year late Bourke and Rendall visited the reserve for a remarkable and extraordinary reunion with the animal. The heart warming story of Christan the lion has been out of print since 1971. It has been completely revised and updated and is now available again.
Click here to see some footage of Christian as a cub and then again at the reunion. It is guaranteed to make you smile.

Click here to buy this book.

Click here to buy the children's edition of A Lion Called Christian.


RICH BROTHER, RICH SISTER by Emi Kiyosaki and Robert Kiyosaki

This is a dual autobiography of a brother and sister: the brother is Robert Kiyosaki, best-selling author on personal finance (and extremely well known to  Booktopia customers). The sister is Emi Kiyosaki, aka Bhikshuni Tenzin Kacho, an ordained Buddhist nun in the Tibetan tradition. Sister has a master degree in Tibetan from Naropa and works closely with the Dalai Lama. Brother runs seminars on how to get rich by investing. While she met  Chogyam Trungpa in Colorado, at Shambhala Mountain Center during her hippy spiritual wanderings in the 70s,  her brother Robert was a Marine in Vietnam.
Robert and Emi's paths started to diverge when their childhood home of Christmas Island was the site of a US atomic bomb blast in 1962. From that moment, Robert and Emi found themselves on distinctly different paths toward God, money an happiness. Robert became a world famous entrepreneur, author and teacher of all things financial. Emi became a highly devout Buddhist nun, author and teacher of all things spiritual
Rich Brother, Rich Sister starts from the premise that both protagonists have wealth; one material, one spiritual.  What it ends with is a curious and no doubt appealing blend of Western business acumen and Eastern spirituality.
The Kiyosakis will be in Australia for a whirlwind book tour at the end of May. In the meantime, click here to read about what the LA Times says about this very unconventional sibling couple.

Click here to buy this book (available at the end of April, to coincide with the Kiyosakis' Australian book tour).

NON FICTION...THE PEOPLE
ESCOBAR   THE CHOIR MAN
The Inside Story of Pablo Escobar, the World's Most Powerful Criminal

Roberto Escobar

IN STOCK

To this day, Roberto Escobar remains slightly in awe of his brother Pablo, who was gunned down by the authorities in 1993, in what for many was a fitting end to his violent life.
Raised on the streets of what was then the quiet provincial Colombian town of Medellin, Pablo put together a drug syndicate which, according to Forbes Magazine in 1989, made him the seventh richest man in the world with an $25 billion empire dominating 80% of the world's cocaine traffic.
Roberto's role was to head up a team of ten accountants. Quickly exhausting the world's capacity for secure, numbered bank accounts through which to launder their profits, Roberto oversaw the storage of the proceeds in warehouses, ranch buildings, buried chambers and secret compartments in the walls of gang members' homes. They spent, according to Roberto, an estimated $2,500 a month on rubber bands to hold stacks of bills together. Ultimately, rodents and mould took such a toll on their holdings that they simply wrote off 10% per year as spoilage.
Meanwhile, the smuggling and the murders numbering in the thousands continued, Pablo's ambition as boundless as his violence.
Pablo Escobar has been described as a murderer and a philanthropist, a devil and a saint. To Roberto, who served 14 years in jail where he was maimed by a letter bomb and now lives under permanent house arrest, Pablo will always be brother. Escobar is a major definitive biography of a remarkable criminal life and it is told in cool, jaw-dropping detail by the man who was there every step of the way.

Click here to buy this book.
  Jonathon Welch

Lots of people know Jonathon Welch as the successful opera singer who launched The Choir of Hard Knocks in Australia,. The choir comprises a group of homeless and disadvantaged people who have since become a national phenomenon and part of a hit television documentary. Fewer people know about Welch's own tough experiences growing up and how they have made him an advocate of the underprivileged.
In his memoir, Welch tells his story about growing up in Australia, becoming an opera singer, touring with some of the world's biggest stars, and then negotiating a crisis which helped change his life and that of countless other people.
His story is poignant, moving and intensely human.
Welch is considered one of the finest tenors of his generation and his credits are numerous and varied. He has performed with Dame Joan Sutherland, K. D. Lang, Baz Luhrman and Graeme Murphy among many others.

To see Welch in action with the Choir of Hard Knocks, click here. I challenge you to remain unmoved.

Click here to buy this book.




LITTLE DAUGHTER
  BREAKING THE SPELL
Zoya Phan with Damien Lewis

Zoya Phan is caught between two worlds. Ethnically Karen, she is  refugee from Burma living in Britain under the sinister watchful eye of the Burmese military who monitor all of her movements.
Phan is 27 years old. She is the public face of a global campaign to free the people of Burma. She is high profile and inspirational.
Little Daughter is Zoya's gripping, dramatic true story - raised by her mother, herself a guerilla soldier, and her father a freedom activist, her earliest memories are of living in the jungle. She spent two years on the run in her early teens before turning up  in a Thai refugee camp and finally being granted asylum in Britain. Phan has become the face of a nation enslaved.

Click here to buy this book.
  My life as a Rajneeshee and the long journey back to freedom
Jane Stork

In  2006 a US court sentenced a former follower of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh to five years' probation for her role in an aborted 1985 murder plot to kill Charles Turner, the former U.S. Attorney in Oregon. Catherine Jane Stork, a West Australian by birth, was then 60 years old. She was once a top lieutenant within the Rajneesh compound in Central Oregon, which operated from 1981 to 1985. She was the last of seven cult members indicted in the murder conspiracy.
Breaking the Spell is Stork's extraordinary life story. Moving and disturbing, she chronicles the rise and fall of the religion Rajneeshism and the Rolls Royce guru. It is the story of a spiritual journey, a descent into madness and the true meaning of redemption, self determination and forgiveness.

Click here to buy this book.
THROUGH A GLASS DARKLY
  THE HORSE BOY: A FATHER'S STORY
A Journey of Love and Grief with My Father

Caroline Jones

IN STOCK

'I've been given the wisdom of so many people's stories, their real life struggles; I have committed them to memory and treasured them in my heart. And I suppose that is why I am expected not to grieve or even recover quickly from my loss.'
These are Caroline Jones' opening words to this moving and deeply personal diary. It was written over several years as she watched her dearly beloved father suffer, and eventually pass away.
It is a diary from the heart of this most highly respected radio/television journalist and presenter and it chronicles a very difficult seven years of her life. Yet in time she grew through her grief. She developed a more profound perspective on life, a new depth of spiritual maturity, and a heightened awareness of the suffering of others.
Caroline Jones AO is one of Australia’s most respected broadcasters. She has won a number of awards for her contribution to radio and television journalism, several Media Peace Prize Gold Citations, and in the 1988 Queen’s Birthday Honours List, Caroline was made an Officer of the Order of Australia, A.O.
In 1997 Caroline was voted one of Australia’s 100 National Living Treasures.
An Authentic Life: Finding Meaning and Spirituality in Everyday Life is her best known book.

Click here to buy Through a Glass Darkly.
  Rupert Isaacson

IN STOCK

When his son Rowan was diagnosed with autism Rupert Isaacson was devastated, fearing he would never be able to communicate with his child. Then two things happened. Rowan made an unlikely connection with a group of visiting traditional healers and Rupert, a lifelong horseman, went riding with his son.
The improvement each time was so striking that Rupert Isaacson came up with a crazy idea. There is one place, one culture, in the world where horses and shamanic healing intersect. Mongolia. Why not take Rowan there?
The Horse Boy is the dramatic story of that impossible adventure. In Mongolia, the family found undreamed of landscapes and people, unbearable setbacks, and advances beyond their wildest dreams. This is a deeply moving, truly one-of-a-kind story — of a family willing to go to the ends of the earth to help their son, and of a boy learning to connect with the world for the first time.

Click here to buy this book.
NON FICTION...THE ISSUES
The Accidental Guerrilla: Fighting Small Wars in the Midst of a Big One by David Kilcullen

Kilcullen is an Australian military strategist who has been on the ground in Iraq and Afghanistan and has the ear of the power brokers in the US. Kilcullen has some very definite ideas about modern warfare.
In The Accidental Guerrilla, Kilcullen provides a remarkably fresh perspective on the War on Terror. He takes us "on the ground" to uncover the face of modern warfare, illuminating both the big global war (the "War on Terrorism") and its relation to the associated "small wars" across the globe: Iraq, Afghanistan, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Chechnya, Pakistan and North Africa. Kilcullen sees today's conflicts as a complex pairing of contrasting trends: local social networks vs. worldwide movements, traditional vs. postmodern culture, local insurgencies seeking autonomy vs. a broader pan-Islamic campaign.
Kilcullen writes well. His ideas will change the way you think about war.

Click here to buy this book.
THE PLEASURES AND SORROWS OF WORK
  THE FACE ON YOUR PLATE
  ABOUT TIME: GROWING OLD DISGRACEFULLY
Alain de Botton

The Pleasures and Sorrows of Work is an exploration of the joys and perils of the modern workplace, beautifully evoking what other people get up to all day – and all night – to make the frenzied contemporary world function.  With a philosophical eye and his characteristic combination of wit and wisdom, Alain de Botton leads us on a journey around a deliberately eclectic range of occupations, from rocket science to biscuit manufacturing, accountancy to art – in the name of exploring what makes our jobs either fulfilling or soul-destroying.
Along the way de Botton skilfully raises the big questions we all tend to ask of our work: What should I do with my life?  How can I combine earning money with attaining fulfilment?  What will I have achieved by the end of my career?

Alain de Boton will be a guest of the Sydney Writers' Festival in May.

This book is also available as an audio CD.

Click here to browse other books by Alain de Botton.

Click here to buy this book.
  Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson

IN STOCK

New Zealand based writer and academic Jeff Masson has long been interested in animals and emotions. Two of his previous books, When Elephants Weep and Dogs Never Lie About Love have been best sellers. Masson, who  isn't afraid to pack a punch, now turns his attention to  food, animals and ethics - more particularly, how food affects our moral selves, our health, and the environment. He raises questions to make us conscious of the decisions behind every bite we take. Be warned - this book will affect you in the  stuff of your daily life.

This book is also available as an audiobook.

Click here to browse other books by Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson.

Click here to buy this book.


  Irma Kurtz

A sobering fact: In ten years time, 60% of us will be over 55.
The first agony aunt of the then brand-new magazine Cosmopolitan, Irma Kurtz  is a fearless investigator  of the art of growing old - its pleasures and its griefs - carrying with her the ony tool that sharpens with age: lifelong curiosity.
About Time is a  frank, funny and compelling treatise on ageing. Kurtz charts the territory through her own, and others' experiences.

Click here to browse Kurtz' other books.

Click here to buy this book.
THE WONDERFUL WORLD OF BARBIE

Toy Monster: The Big Bad World of Mattel

Jerry Oppenheimer

IN STOCK

New York Times bestselling author Jerry Oppenheimer places the House of Barbie under a journalistic microscope, and exposes the hidden side of toy land behind the famous brands. Published to coincide with Barbie's 50th birthday, Toy Monster takes  readers back to the earliest days of Mattel to reveal a viciously competitive corporate culture populated by an over-the-top cast of characters. As one former executive describes the “shark pond” that has been Mattel: “You throw people in and see if they can swim fast enough to stay alive.”

Click here to read an extract.

Click here to buy this book.
FOR THE RIGHT PERSON
Guinness World Records 2009 - GAMER'S EDITION

IN STOCK

This book will definitely hit the mark with the console aficionado. A definitive almanac of all things games, with so much information you can't possibly take it all in, this is fast becoming the gamer's Bible. Hardware, record-breaking games of various genres, banned and controversial games, gadgets and gizmos, console games, twin galaxies....it's all there waiting for the right person.

Click here to buy this book.
MARXISM: A GRAPHIC GUIDE
  RELATIVITY: A GRAPHIC GUIDE
Rupert Woodfin & Oscar Zarate

IN STOCK

An entertaining and informative comic-style book on Karl Marx,  his ideas, his influence and the direction of world history over the past 150 years. And so much easier than reading The Communist Manifesto!

Click here to buy this book.
  Bruce Bassett & Ralph Edney

IN STOCK

At last - relativity in an explicable form (ie with pictures). Newton, Einstein, Hawking - and the possibility of comprehension!

Click here to buy this book.


A WELCOME RETURN OF BOOKTOPIA'S FAVOURITE AUTHORS
This month The Booktopia Buzz features some titles by authors that we know you already love as well as a couple of more obscure ones that will work for just that certain person.

WILD TEA COSIES by Loani Prior

IN STOCK

Back in print again and a favourite of our knitters, Wild Tea Cosies is too divine. Loani Prior is not just another knitter. She intends to die with a stash of wool in her cupboard, bigger by far than every other woman's. When Loani is not knitting for pleasure or gardening for solitude, she runs her own business. She lives in Queensland and is adamant that a good pot of tea is a well dressed pot of tea. Check out her creations here and take the granny out of tea cosies.

Click here to see some sample pages.

Click here to buy this book.


LEROY GRANNIS: SURF PHOTOGRAPHY OF THE 1960s AND 1970s by Jim Hermann

This book of iconic surf photos is now back in stock. If you have anyone who is interested in surfing and its history, this is THE book. Here is how Men's Vogue describes the book:
In this book the myth of sun-soaked California is spun out in elegiac Technicolor: A hot-dogging Miki Dora, one of the sport's great pioneers, catches a tube. A stack of amber-hued boards at Greg Noll's surf shop in Hermosa glows like honey. The dewy-fresh surf model Marsha Bainer poses next to a longboard twice her height and the towering green wall of Hawaii's Pipeline tumbles with apocalyptic fury. Grannis's motto was ‘Shoot it now or you`ll never get it back.` In this dappled monograph, the period that Grannis documented—California at maximum stokage, surfing evolving from fad to ethos—appears much like a wave itself, as evanescent as it was indelible.

Click here to buy this book.


The Secret Speech by Tom Robb Smith

Long listed for the Man Booker Prize last year, winner of the Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award and shortlisted for the Best First Novel in the 2008 Costa (formerly Whitbread) Awards,  Tom Robb Smith's Child 44 has found a willing audience with Booktopia customers. In fact, it was one of our top fiction titles of the summer. In The Secret Speech, Smith takes us forward a few years to 1956. Stalin has died but machinations in the Kremlin make life even more dangerous. From the Siberian gulags to the Hungarian uprising, Tom Rob Smith delivers another stunning thriller.

Read an excerpt here.

Click here to buy this book.

 
         
   
DIET AND HEALTH
THE GABRIEL METHOD
 
The Revolutionary Diet-Free Way to Lose Weight

Jon Gabriel

We have sold truck-loads of this originally self-published book, now available from a major supplier.
Jon Gabriel lost over 103 kilos without dieting or surgery and his body shows almost no sign of ever having been morbidly obese. The Gabriel  Method is backed by solid research and four years of full-time investigation into the roles of biochemistry, neurobiology and human consciousness in weight-loss. His ideas have been featured on many popular talk shows both in Australia and overseas. The Gabriel Method makes for a fascinating, and potentially life-changing, read.

Click here to buy this book.
 
CROSS OVER TITLES: FROM TEENS TO ADULTS
TWILIGHT: DIRECTOR'S NOTEBOOK
  THE TWILIGHT COMPANION
Catherine Hardwicke

IN STOCK

Catherine Hardwicke has received massive acclaim from critics and fans alike for producing a brilliant and faithful interpretation of Stephenie Meyer's best seller as well as achieving the highest debut ($70 million) ever for a female director. As the Los Angeles Times said, "Hardwicke has connected so intensely to the Meyer novel that it's hard to imagine anyone else making a better version."  This book takes you inside the mind of this visionary director and is a gorgeous and entertaining insight to the world of Twilight as well as the art of film making.
(The DVD of Twilight is being released this month).

Click here to buy this book.
  Louise H Gresh

It seems the Twilight craze is unstoppable. Consider the following. More than 1.6 million copies of Meyer's series have been sold in Australia alone, with all four of the books in the top ten bestsellers for the last seven years.  There is now a special website (www.twilightmoms.com) especially dedicated to fans over the age of 25. It has more than 200,000 posts). Clearly, the series is no longer the preserve of teenagers.
In The Twilight Companion, Louise Gresh has put together the definitive (if unofficial) guide on all things Edward. Legends, lore, myths and a ton of insight into the four book series, you can't go better for the true aficionado.

Click here to buy this book (available mid-April).
EXPOSURE   TUCK
Mal Peet

IN STOCK

Exposure is Mal Peet's third novel featuring Paul Faustino.
In Exposure, there is a sniff of revenge in the air. Revered as a national hero,  married to the desirable Desmerelda, cherished by the media,  soccer star, Otello, has it all. But a sensational club transfer sparks a media frenzy, and when he is wrongly implicated in a scandal, the footballer’s life turns into a tragic spiral of destruction. South America’s top sports journalist, Paul Faustino, witnesses the power of the media in making and breaking people's lives.
Mal Peet is a master of fiction for young people and he will be a guest of the Sydney Writers' Festival in May, at which time he will be speaking directly to you via Booktopia Buzz.

Click here to browse Mal Peet's other books.

Click here to buy this book.
  The Raven Trilogy (3)

Stephen Lawhead

IN STOCK

First there was Hood, then came Scarlet and now we have Tuck. Writer of historical fantasy, Stephen Lawhead has re-imagined Robin Hood as no one has before. Eerie, earthy and elemental, this is a terrific series for anyone 13 to adult.
I've road tested these and got the "thumbs up" from eveyone.
For chapter samplers, readers' questions and pronunciation guides - click here.

Click here to browse the previous two books in the Raven Trilogy.

Click here to buy this book.

LOVE IS HELL
  AUSLANDER   GONE
Scott Westerfield (et al)

Five stories of love gone supernaturally wrong. Big teen authors such as Scott Westerfield (Specials), Gabrielle Zevin (Elsewhere), Melissa Marr (Wicked Lovely).
From two students who let the power of attraction guide them to break the hard-and-fast rules of their world to the girl who falls hard for a good-looking ghost with a score to settle - the clever, quirky characters in this exciting collection will break your heart, then leave you believing in love more than ever.

Click here to buy this book.
  Paul Dowswell

Having brought the naval adventures of Powder Monkey, Prison Ship and Battleship to young adult readers in recent years, Dowswell now stretches them further with this taut, tight thriller set in Berlin in WWII.
Peter is a Polish orphan in disguise in Germany but he is real trouble once his cover as a Hitler Youth member starts to unravel. This one has been road tested in my household. Nail biting stuff.
Ages 14 to adult.

Click here to browse other books by Dowswell.

Click here to buy this book.
  Michael Grant

What do you do when authority figures are gone? What do you do when everyone over the age of 15 is gone? Do you step up and shoulder the burden? This is the question that faces 14 year old Sam who lives in a small southern Californian town where in the blink of an eye, the adults disappear and chaos rules the streets.
Michael Grant has written an absolute page turner. To hear about him talking about it, click here.

Click here to buy this book.

ONCE UPON A TIME...THERE WAS A GREAT BOOK COLLECTION TO WIN
Once Upon a Time is a series aimed at girls aged 11 - 14, each book being by a different author and each book being a retelling of a fairy tale. They are all beautifully jacketed and well written, each one being a stand-alone story.
In Wild Orchid, by Cameron Dokey, the story of Mulan is re-visited. Wielding a sword as deftly as an embroidery needle, Mulan is unlike any other girl in China. When the emperor summons a great army, each family must send a male to fight. Tomboyish Mulan is determined to spare her aging father and bring her family honour, so she disguises herself and answers the call. But Mulan never expects to find a friend, let alone a soul mate, in the commander of her division, Prince Jian. For all of Mulan's courage with a bow and arrow, is she brave enough to share her true identity and feelings with Prince Jian?
There are fifteen great titles in the series, including:
 The Rose Bride (The White Bride and the Black Bride) by Nancy Holder
 Golden (Rapunzel) by Cameron Dokey
 The Crimson Thread (Rumpelstiltskin) by Suzanne Weyn
 Water Song (The Frog Prince) by Suzanne Weyn
 Beauty Sleep (Sleeping Beauty) by Cameron Dokey

We have a special competition for all purchasers of Wild Orchid. Email me at toniw@booktopia.com.au with your order number to go into the draw to win the rest of the series. Click here to enter the competition - don't forget to give me your Wild Orchid order number.

Click here to browse more titles in the Once Upon a Time Series.

Click here to buy Wild Orchid.
CHILDREN'S FICTION  - THE NEXT INSTALMENT
SKULDUGGERY PLEASANT (3)
  SAMURAI KIDS (3)
Faceless Ones

Derek Landy


Magician, trick master, detective and mentor of 12 year old Stephanie Edgley, Skulduggery Pleasant is certainly unusual. The most remarkable thing about him however, is that he is dead.  Skulduggery Pleasant is a roller coaster ride of laughs and thrills for children ten - 13. To get the feel for his world, click here.
In the meantime, click on any of the titles below to order:

Skulduggery Pleasant (1)  IN STOCK
Playing with Fire (2)
The Faceless Ones (3)
  White Crane

Sandy Fussell


IN STOCK

The Samurai era is endlessly fascinating for 8 to 12 year olds, especially when presented with humour that gets behind the manga stereotypes. Sandy Fussell has written a terrific little series for both boys and girls, with feisty characters and great plot lines, strong enough to hook in the most reluctant of readers.
To see Fussell explaining the series, click here.
In the meantime, click on a title below to order the book:
White Crane (1)
Owl Ninja (2)
Shaolin Tiger (3)
SILAS AND THE WINTERBOTTOMS
Stephen M Giles

This is the beginning of a new series for 9 - 11 year olds and there certainly is a lot of buzz about it, especially in the post-Lemony Snickett department.
This is a rather fabulous gothic tale of three young cousins who are summoned by their evil Uncle Silas to spend the summer with him at Sommerset at his grand estate perched on a mysterious island surrounded by an alligator-infested swamp.
Silas Winterbottom, who has had virtually no contact with his extended family for decades is dying and it is his intention to select an heir from among his nieces and nephew – Isabella Winterbottom (13), Adele Fester-Winterbottom (12) and Milo Winterbottom (12). For their part, the Winterbottom children have very different backgrounds but each of them have motive for accepting Silas' invitation: One of them believes Uncle Silas is a murderer, two of them will do anything to win his favour and his fortune, and only one of  them can be chosen.

Click here to buy this book.
NON FICTION FOR KIDS
BLAST LAB: WITH OVER 30 REALLY COOL EXPERIMENTS

  TEN THINGS I CAN DO TO HELP MY WORLD
 
Richard Hammond

IN STOCK

Top Gear's Richard Hammond has another life and that is the host of an entertaining and anarchic studio-based science program called Blast Lab. Here is the book from the series - 30 experiments, all cool, all fun and yes, kids, you can try this at home.

To visit Richard Hammond's Blast Lab website, click here.

Click here to buy this book.
  Melanie Walsh

This book sold out in hardback and it is no surprise why. Made from 100% recyclable materials, it is a gorgeous, interactive picture book with flaps for littlies giving them very positive, easily understood messages about conserving the world. This has been written for pre-schoolers but has a message for everyone.
Ages 3 - 6.

Click here to buy this book.
 
WORD WORKS
  EXCEL WORKS
Here is a great idea. This is a basic step-by-step guide introducing young people to Microsoft Word, explaining the steps to checking spelling, paragraphs structure and a whole lot more.

Click here to buy this book.
  The perfect way to get through the those school projects. This easy book introduces Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, explaining the creation of formulas, successful grids and more.

Click here to buy this book.
PICTURE BOOK OF THE MONTH
Ballyhoo Bay by Judy Sierra, illustrated by Derek Anderson

'Every Saturday Morning on Ballyhoo Beach
Mira Bella, the artist, had classes to teach.
She taught etching and sketching to grannies and kids,
And undersea sculpture to swordfish and squids.
All the beach was abuzz with fantastic creations:
The seagulls' collages were trash-art sensations.'

Mira Bella and the gang face more than they bargained for when Ballyhoo Beach's Art Fair is interrupted by the impending construction of penthouse apartments 'for $9 zillion each, a parking garage where there once was a beach, a crsytal casino as high as a cloud! PS no children or wildlife allowed.'
Ballyhoo Bay
comes up trumps in all aspects.
  • Bright, exuberant pictures full of colour and movement? Tick.
  • Quirky characters and an original storyline? Tick.
  • Rollicking, rhyming text that is great fun to read out loud? Tick.
  • A marvellous cast of goodies and baddies? Tick.
  • Just the right ending? Tick.
Fun, optimistic and a great message for 5 - 8 year olds.

Click here and here to see two internal page spreads.

Click here to buy this book (available mid-April).
MY ANIMALS
  DOGS
Xavier Deneux

IN STOCK

A board book full of black and white animals with occasional splashes of colour, this little gem comes alive with its clever use of peep through holes which introduce the very young to the concept of animals.
Ages 0 - 3.

Click here to buy this book.
  Emily Gravett

Gravett  has the golden touch when it comes to picture books and this introduction to dog breeds is certainly no exception.

Click here to browse Gravett's other books.

Click here to buy this book.

I CAN EAT A RAINBOW: A FUN LOOK AT FRUIT & VEGETABLES
  THUMP QUACK MOO: A WHACKY ADVENTURE
Annabel Karmel

IN STOCK

This little board book is a delight. Lots of bright photographic images on a white background, all aimed at making fruit and vegetables fun. This is perfect for turning fussy eaters into  littlies who munch through anything fresh!

Click here to buy this book.
  Doreen Cronin

IN STOCK

If you haven't discovered Doreen Cronin's world yet, you are in for a treat. The latest in her picture book series for 4 - 6 year olds, she is a treat for both kids and adults alike.
'Once again, Cronin & Lewin get everything right, from the perfectly paced deadpan narrative, to the amusing characterisations, to the vibrant brush and watercolour cartoons that play off and extend the text's humour.' - School Library Journal.

Click here to buy this book.
ILLUSTRATED CLASSICS
There is always a space on the bookshelf for timeless stories beautifully put together. This new series from Walker Books brings together some of the best-loved stories ever told, illustrated by some of today's finest artists. These sturdy paperbacks have matching spines and French flaps and will certainly become much loved family treasures.

Click on the title below to order:

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll Illustrated by Helen Oxenbury     IN STOCK

Alice Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll
Illustrated by Helen Oxenbury    IN STOCK

The Secret Garden by Francis Hodgson Burnette
Illustrated by Inga Moore    IN STOCK


   
 
Booktopia.com.au
Author Interviews
Audio Books
Archives
Why Booktopia?
LINKS
Nielsen Top Sellers
Google Books
Good Reading Magazine
FanFiction.net
LibraryThing
The Romance Buzz
The Food & Drink Buzz
ABA 
Member Hitwise Top 10 Bargain Books
IN THIS ISSUE

The Buzz in Brief

Booktopia Presents

Toni's Book of the month

Anzac Day

Fiction - mainstream

Fiction - quality

Non-Fiction - the big
three

Non-Fiction - The People

Non-Fiction - The Issues

The Wonderful World of Barbie

For the Right Person

Booktopia's Favourite Authors

Diet and Health

From Teens to Adults

Once Upon a Time

Children's Fiction

Non-Fiction for Kids

Picture Book of the Month

Picture Books and Board Books

Children's Classics


COMING UP IN MAY

A recently discovered never-before-published Tolkein, the biography of the remarkable Lauren Huxley, the tour de force of fiction which is TS Spivet, and a new AS Byatt are among the highlights of May's Booktopia Buzz.

Can't wait? Then pre-order by clicking on the titles below.


THE LEGEND OF SIGURD AND GUDREN
JRR Tolkein
THE ADAMANTINE PALACE
Stephen Deas
THE COLLECTED WORKS OF TS SPIVET
Reif Larsen
THE CHILDREN'S BOOK
AS Byatt
THE WEIGHT OF SILENCE
Cathereine Therese
THE WRITING ON MY FOREHEAD
Nafisa Haji
TRUE COLOURS: LAUREN HUXLEY AND HER FAMILY
Lisa Davies


COMPETITIONS, GIVE-AWAYS AND TEMPTATIONS

David Malouf's Ransom:
Booktopia has 25 signed copies.
Buy Ransom and win a signed hard-back edition of The Complete Stories.

Cameron Dokey's Wild Orchid:
Buy this book to enter a draw to win the entire Once Upon a Time series.
 

MILES FRANKLIN AWARD LONG-LIST

Of the 55 novels submitted for Australia's most prestigious fiction prize, the following have made the long-list. A short-list will be announced this month, with the winner being announced in June.
Click on the title to order.

BREATH
Tim Winton
IN STOCK
A FRACTION OF THE WHOLE
Steve Toltz
THE DEVIL'S EYE
Ian Townsend
ICE
Louis Nowra
ADDITION
Toni Jordan
FUGITIVE BLUE
Clare Thomas
ONE FOOT WRONG
Sophie Laguna
THE PAGES
Murray Bail
THE SLAP
Christos Tsiolkas
IN STOCK
WANTING
Richard Flanagan
IN STOCK
AndA
MORE CAPS FOR AUSTRALIAN AUTHORS

Two Australian authors have been long-listed for this year's Orange Prize for Fiction, awarded to the best full length novel written in English by a woman.
They include Deborah Adelaide - The  Household Guide to Dying (IN STOCK) and Michelle de KresterThe Lost Dog.
The short-list is announced later this month with the winner to be announced in June.


BEST SELLERS FROM LAST MONTH'S BOOKTOPIA BUZZ

These are the titles that keeping walking out the door. Click to order.
THE SEX DIARIES
Bettina Arndt
IN STOCK
THE HUNGER GAMES
Suzanne Collins
IN STOCK
THE AUSTRALIAN KIDS' HEALTH BOOK
Jonny Taitz
IN STOCK
WHAT-THE-DICKENS: THE STORY OF A ROGUE TOOTH FAIRY
Gregory Maguire
IN STOCK
CATCHING THE WOLF OF WALL STREET
Jordan Belfort
IN STOCK
THE MORTAL INSTRUMENTS SERIES
Cassandra Clare
STILL ALICE
Lisa Genova
IN STOCK
AN EQUAL STILLNESS
Francesca Kay
IN STOCK
DRINK, PLAY, F@#K
Andrew Gottlieb
IN STOCK
THE PARIS ENIGMA
Pablo de Santis
IN STOCK

WORTH MAKING A FUSS ABOUT

Two very special books, for two very different sorts of readers

Earth Blue
A magnificent once-in-a-life time atlas and compendium of facts and features, Earth Blue is a limited edition volume that is delivered to your door complete with a plinth on which to display this tome which opens to 2 metres wide and weighs 30 kgs. Earth Blue now retails for $6,000. Booktopia's price is $4499.

Handle with Care by Jodie Picoult
IN STOCK
A return to form by Jodie Picoult who has just the knack of personalising very complex social and moral questions. A full review will appear in The Mother's Day Buzz in mid April.


WHAT'S HOT IN THE BOOK WORLD
The most mentioned books in the media last week were:
DOG BOY
Eva Hornung (Sallis)
RANSOM
David Malouf
CRIMS IN GRASS CASTLES: THE TRUE STORY OF ROBERT TRIMBOLE, MR ASIA AND THE DISAPPEARANCE OF DONALD McKAY
Keith Moor
A MOST IMMORAL WOMAN
Linda Jaivan
SKIN AND BONES
Tom Bale





WHAT'S ON IN APRIL


Bangkok International Book Fair
March 26 - April 6

Ten Days on the Island, Tasmania
March 27 - April 5

Kuala Lumpur International Book Fair
April 17 - April 26

London Book Fair
April 20 - 22

 

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