Book Buzz
Image. Advertisement:
Book Buzz is a promotional newsletter supported by the publishers.




Layla Karimi has been cursed by the evil eye.

Well, that’s what Layla’s superstitious grandmother tells her. And Layla reckons it makes sense as she’s sort of Australian and sort of Lebanese: a ‘halfie’ who doesn’t really fit into either world.

And when all hell breaks loose at the first beach party of the summer, Layla finds herself caught between her friends and the Lebanese kids who call themselves ‘the Cedar Army’ (of which her cousin Sufia is the Queen Bee). One group has been wrongfully accused and Layla knows the truth that could help clear them.

But will she speak up?

From the winner of the inaugural Matilda Prize comes a heartwarming coming-of-age story about growing up in Australia when you’re caught between two cultures.



Dear Reader,

Half My Luck is a story very close to my heart …

Although having experienced the same angst as my protagonist, Layla, about cultural identity during my own teen years, it’s a topic I never thought I would write about. But Layla was relentless in her pursuit – a character who kept cropping up whenever I sat down to write.

I gave in and decided to give her a voice. And I’m definitely glad I did. It’s an honest story that I hope resonates with any young adult who has ever felt the need to hide from their own differences.

Layla is on a journey that isn’t unfamiliar to many young Australians. She lives in a world that is relatable and identifiable; it’s one that she’s struggling to find her place in thanks to her mixed cultural background.

So, I hope Half My Luck makes you laugh. And I hope it warms your heart to watch Layla ultimately discover that she’s not so unlucky after all.

Happy reading,




For your chance to receive one of 10 advance reading copies of Half My Luck, please email HarperCollins.




Contact us


Kelsey Oldham

Digital editor
Brad Jefferies

Acting editor, Daily
Matthia Dempsey

Editorial assistant
Anthea Yang

Classifieds, jobs and notices

Display advertising

Select newsletters

Select which newsletters you’d like to receive here.
Unsubscribe from individual newsletters here.
Or unsubscribe from all newsletters here.

View articles

Purchase a subscription to Books+Publishing to view all articles on the website.

If you need help with your subscription, please email the Subscriptions team.