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Margo Lanagan named joint winner of the Barbara Jefferis Award

Margo Lanagan named joint winner of the Barbara Jefferis Award

We are thrilled to announce that Margo Lanagan's Sea Hearts is joint winner, with Fiona McFarlane's The Night Guest, of the 2014 Barbara Jefferis Award!

The Barbara Jefferis Award is offered for 'the best novel written by an Australian author that depicts women and girls in a positive way or otherwise empowers the status of women and girls in society'.

Barbara Jefferis was a feminist, a founding member of the Australian Society of Authors, its first woman President and, in the words of Thomas Keneally, 'a rare being amongst authors, being both a fine writer but also organisationally gifted.'

Congratulations Margo! You can read her acceptance speech here


Spotlight:

The Book of Strange New Things

by Michel Faber

Author of the bestselling The Crimson Petal and the White returns after twelve years with an all-out masterpiece about love and the search for meaning in an unfathomable universe.

Spotlight:

Australians (volume 3)

by Thomas Keneally

In the third volume of Thomas Keneally's unique history of Australia - where he shines a light on the lives and deeds of our countrymen and women, both known and unknown - he takes up the story at the end of the Great War and explores our development as a nation during the tumultuous 20th century.

Spotlight:

Tashi and the Wicked Magician

by Anna Fienberg, Barbara Fienberg illustrated by Geoff Kelly and Kim Gamble

Tashi is bold and clever, and tells the best stories ever! Come with Tashi and his friend Jack on four fabulous adventures of mystery and magic.

Out now
Coming soon
Spotlight:

Crash: Twinmaker 2

by Sean Williams

Praise for Jump: 'A thrilling, existential head-trip' - Alaya Dawn Johnson

If you betrayed a friend, how far would you go to earn their forgiveness?

If someone had saved your life, would you risk your life to save them?

If you could bring someone back from the dead, who would you choose?

Clair and Jesse have barely been reunited when the world is plunged into crisis - the d-mat network is broken. People are trapped, injured and dying, and it's partly Clair's fault.

Peacekeepers enlist Clair to track down Q, the rogue AI - artificial intelligence - who saved her life and is the key to fixing the system. Targeted by dupes and abandoned by her friends, Clair finds powerful allies in the most unlikely places. But who can she trust? Q won't respond to her calls for help, and if Clair finds her, will she be trapping her friend in a life of servitude or sending her to death by erasure?

Caught between pro- and anti-d-mat philosophies, in a world on the brink of all-out war, Clair must decide where she stands - and who she stands with - at the end.

Spotlight:

Mix It Up!

by Herve Tullet

Use your hand to mix up the colours. It's like magic.

Smudge, rub, shake and have fun!

An exuberant invitation to play.

'Irresistible.' - The Wall Street Journal

Spotlight:

Cricket As I See It

by Allan Border

In the twenty years since Allan Border retired as Australian cricket captain he's been one of the game's closest and most astute observers. His views on cricket - based on his experiences as a player, a captain, a selector and a commentator - are fascinating, forthright and informed by more than three decades of involvement at the game's highest level.

In Cricket as I See It he gives us his wisdom and opinions on the game he loves - from epic Tests, the rising power of India, and the Twenty20 revolution, through to his thoughts on captaincy, and the essential arts of batting, bowling and sledging. He reflects on the great players and contests of his generation, as well as controversies such as the underarm bowling affair, the turbulent events that led to him shouldering the captaincy, the rebel tour of South Africa, Steve Waugh's dropping as one-day captain, and the divisive 'Monkeygate' scandal. With cricket, Allan calls it as he sees it, and the result is a book to be savoured and enjoyed by cricket lovers everywhere.

Spotlight:

The Queen, Her Lover and the Most Notorious Spy in History

by Roland Perry

Long before her successful marriage to Prince Albert, Princess Victoria had an affair with the dashing Scottish 13th Lord Elphinstone. After the liaison was exposed, Elphinstone was banished to India, appointed Governor of Madras, which allowed Victoria's mother to engineer a royal union for her with Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg. After five years pining for Elphinstone, Victoria finally gave in and married Albert.

Despite a successful marriage, Victoria never forgot Elphinstone and after a decade in India he returned to her side as Lord-in-Waiting at Court. He only left her to take up the critical role of Governor of Bombay during the Indian Uprising of 1857. Elphinstone died soon after in June 1860 from a fever.

Many attempts were made to bury the memory of Lord Elphinstone, his long-running relationship with the monarch and his grand service for the Empire, but Victoria recorded it in letters to her confidant, her first- born, the Princess Royal: 'Vicky'. The revealing correspondence, like a ticking time-bomb, sat in a German castle attic until 1945 when King George VI, Victoria's great-grandson, sent a courtier, MI5 operative Anthony Blunt, on seven special missions to gather the letters.

Spotlight:

Springtime

by Michelle de Kretser

Picking up her pace, Frances saw a woman in the leaf-hung depths of the garden. She wore a long pink dress and a wide hat, and her skin was a creamy white. There came upon Frances a sensation that sometimes overtook her when she was looking at a painting: space was foreshortened, time stood still.

When Frances met Charlie at a party in Melbourne he was married with a young son.

Now she and Charlie live in Sydney with her rescue dog Rod and an unshakeable sense that they have tipped the world on its axis. They are still getting their bearings - of each other and of their adopted city. Everything is alien, unfamiliar, exotic: haunting, even.

Worlds of meaning spin out of perfectly chosen words in this rare, beguiling and brilliant ghost story by Miles Franklin Literary Award-winning writer Michelle de Kretser.

Spotlight:

Jonah from Tonga

by Chris Lilley, illustrated by Tim Costello

After being expelled from Summer Heights High, Jonah Takalua was banished to Tonga to live with his Uncle Mamafu, but now he is causing more trouble than ever. Sent back to Sydney, Jonah wants to make his family proud, but while Jonah might be in a new school, he is still up to his old tricks: gangs and graffiti, fights and frenemies, breakdancing and law-breaking.

Revisit the antics of Jonah, the teenage Tongan rebel, and meet his Fobba-licious crew in this full-colour graphic novel adaptation of Chris Lilley's hilarious hit television series.

WARNING: contains adult content.

Spotlight:

Based on a True Story

by Elizabeth Renzetti

'...a seriously funny book? National Post

'...by turns hilarious and dark, always riveting, and crammed with satirical observations.' Free Press

I threw in a coin and I closed my eyes and I thought, I hope I've got enough Valium to see me through the week. One of the other mums chucked her coin in, and turned to me. She said, 'Do you think there will ever come a day when we'll make a wish that's about ourselves, and not about our kids?'

A celebrity who's more notorious for her excesses than her famous roles. Her former lover, who's threatening to reveal the truth behind her bestselling autobiography. Her long-lost son, who's escaped from the train wreck of his mother's life and doesn't want to be found.

Absolutely Fabulous meets The Devil Wears Prada in this delicious and addictive novel about a washed-out soap opera diva, her lifetime of secrets, and the innocent young journalist who gets caught in her wake.

Augusta Price (not her real name) is famous for playing a slatternly barmaid on a popular soap opera and for falling down drunk in public. Now, just out of rehab, with no job, no relationship, and a sad shortage of tranquilizers, she is surprised to find that her 'tell all' memoir has become an improbable hit. But how to stop the real truth from being revealed - and how to make up for a long history of neglecting those she really loves?

A funny, poignant and intoxicating novel about fame, love, deception and consequences - about the lies we tell others and the lies we tell ourselves.

'A hell of a lot of fun...made me laugh so hard I cried.' Globe and Mail

Spotlight:

Gemma's Bluff

by Karly Lane

Smart and reliable, Gemma Northcote has always done what's expected of her. So it's not surprising that after uni she defers to her father's wish that she join the family business.

Gemma's best friend, Jasmine, is a different personality altogether. She thrives on spontaneity, is unpredictable and has generally pursued her own path.

When Gemma and Jasmine decide to spend a working holiday on a large rural property, their friends and family are surprised. Neither has any experience of country life (unless you count Jasmine's love of McLeod's Daughters) and they're not exactly farming types.

Away from her family, Gemma feels liberated. The longer she's away the more she questions what she really wants to do with her future. Ultimately, she realises she needs to choose between duty and what's right for her in life - and love.

From the bestselling author of Bridie's Choice and Poppy's Dilemma, this inspirational novel is sure to appeal to anyone who's questioned the direction they should take for true happiness.

Spotlight:

A Short History of Stupid

by Helen Razer and Bernard Keane

How did everything get so dumb?

How did we become hostages to idiocy?

What must we do to be freed from a captor whose ransom note simply reads, 'D'oh'?

The deteriorating quality of our public debate and the dwindling of common sense in media, politics and culture can drive you to despair and rage. It certainly drove writers Helen Razer and Bernard Keane to a desperate act: befriending each other for long enough to write a book.

Join forces with these uneasy allies to fight against a world that has lost its reason. Explore what's behind the remorseless spread of idiocy, and why there's just so much damn Stupid around you.

Stupid isn't just ignorance; it's not just laziness. Worse than the absence of thought, Stupid is a virus that drains our productivity and leaves us sick and diminished. And Stupid has a long, complex and terrible past, one we need to understand in order to defeat it.

A Short History of Stupid traces the origins of this maddening ill, examining the different ways in which we've been afflicted over the last three thousand years. It damns those who have spread Stupid and celebrates the brave few who resisted. It shows how Stupid tightens the grubby grip of the foolish around our throats.

Hilarious, smart, unpleasant, infuriating and rude, A Short History of Stupid is at once a provocation and a comfort. It will spark debate, soothe the terminally frustrated and outrage the righteously Stupid. It is a book whose Stupid time has come.

Spotlight:

Working Stiff

by Dr Judy Melinek and T.J. Mitchell

'Far from the magic we see on TV, Working Stiff describes forensic pathology in the real world. The book is a compelling and absorbing read.' Kathy Reichs, New York Times bestselling author

'engrossing . . . pulls back the sheet to show readers just what goes on after someone dies . . . Armchair detectives and would-be forensic pathologists will find Melinek's well- written account to be inspiring and engaging.' Publishers Weekly

Dr Judy Melinek has made a career out of working with dead bodies. As a forensic pathologist, she has probed and prodded corpses for clues that may reveal murder, suicide, a medical accident or a rare genetic WC disease This fearless memoir tells the gripping story of the young doctor's 'rookie season' as a forensic pathologist, and the cases-hair-raising and heartbreaking and impossibly complex- that shaped her as both a physician and a mother.

Just two months before the September 11 terrorist attacks, Dr Melinek began her training as a New York City forensic pathologist. With her husband T.J. and their toddler Daniel holding down the home front, Judy threw herself into the fascinating world of death investigation-performing autopsies, investigating death scenes, and counselling grieving relatives.

Lively, action-packed, and loaded with mordant wit, Working Stiff offers a firsthand account of daily life in one of the modern world's most arduous professions, and the unexpected challenges of shuttling between the domains of the living and the dead. Dr Melinek lays bare the truth behind the glamorised depictions of autopsy work on shows like CSI and Law & Order to reveal the secret story of the real morgue and what really goes on behind the police tape.

'Melinek's enthusiasm for her calling is always apparent, and her writing is unselfconsciously bouncy, absorbed and mordant (though not caustic) . . . A transfixing account of death, from the mundane to the oddly hair-raising.' Kirkus Reviews

'Working Stiff is the grossest book you'll ever love. But it is also so much more than that: Seamlessly fusing memoir, science journalism, riveting whodunit mysteries, and light humour about a dark topic . . . a relentlessly fascinating and informative book from the first page to the last.' Scott Stossel, author of the New York Times Bestseller My Age of Anxiety

Spotlight:

Russell Brand's Trickster Tales: The Pied Piper of Hamelin

by Russell Brand, illustrated by Chris Riddell

'Once upon a time, a mysterious time that exists through a window in your mind, a time that seemed, to those present, exactly like now does to us, except their teeth weren't so clean and more things were wooden, there was a town called Hamelin . . .'

In the first in his series of Trickster Tales, Russell Brand retells the classic children's story The Pied Piper of Hamelin. You'll be enchanted and revolted in equal measure by the host of characters you meet along the way: the anarchic rats, the arrogant townspeople, sharp-eyed Sam and of course the Pied Piper himself, all brought to life in Brand's inimitable style and with the illustrations of Costa Award-winner Chris Riddell.

Spotlight:

This Shattered World

by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the planet's rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Flynn is leading the rebellion against the powerful conglomerate that rules Avon. These corporations terraform uninhabitable planets across the universe and recruit colonists with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon.

Desperate for any advantage, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape together.

The stunning second novel in the Starbound trilogy is an unforgettable story of love and forgiveness in a world torn apart by war.

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