Weekly Book Newsletter
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3 June 2020


The Fogging

‘A skilfully drawn portrait of a decaying relationship … Like a brewing storm on an oppressive day, it builds towards the thunderclap of its final... Read more
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‘WBN’ published Thursday next week

Please note that, due to the Queen’s Birthday holiday on Monday in all states except Queensland and Western Australia, the next Weekly Book Newsletter will be published... Read more

EWF 2020 program; CWF plans for live events; BWF confirms ‘small online offering’

The program for the 2020 Emerging Writers’ Festival (EWF), which usually takes place in Melbourne but this year will take place entirely online, has been... Read more
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Book industry job ads show sharp decline from mid-April x

Data from Books+Publishing‘s Weekly Book Newsletter (WBN) shows a sharp decline in job advertisements coinciding with the beginning of widespread restrictions related to Covid-19. WBN,... Read more


Readings YA Book Prize 2020 shortlist announced

The shortlist for the 2020 Readings Young Adult Book Prize has been announced. The shortlisted titles are: Devil’s Ballast (Meg Caddy, Text) The Surprising Power... Read more
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S&S acquires two books by Kailas Wild x

Simon & Schuster Australia (S&S) has acquired illustrated book The 99th Koala and an as yet untitled memoir by Kailas Wild, the climbing arborist who... Read more

Australian publishers wait and see on Frankfurt, latest awards and more

The Frankfurt Book Fair is going ahead as scheduled from 14–18 October; however, whether Australian publishers attend the fair or not will depend if overseas travel restrictions are lifted in time for the event. Meanwhile, major international publishers including HarperCollins and Pan Macmillan UK have announced they’ll skip Frankfurt’s physical event.

This year’s National Simultaneous Storytime attracted a record number of participants, as libraries across the country begin to reopen.

Local writer Andrea A Macleod has won the 2020 Commonwealth Short Story Prize in the Pacific category, and Yves Rees has won the ABR’s Calibre Essay Prize. The longlists for this year’s Davitt Awards have been announced, as has the shortlist for the Peter Carey Short Story Award.

Meanwhile, the Copyright Agency has announced an additional $125,000 in emergency funding, and the Australian War Memorial has established a new literary prize in honour of Les Carlyon. Overseas, Sydney chef Josh Niland’s The Whole Fish Cookbook was named the 2020 James Beard Book of the Year, and Brisbane-based writer Jacob P Avila was shortlisted for the Wilbur Smith Adventure Writing Prize for Best Unpublished Manuscript.

In international news, the UK book trade has shown support for the Black Lives Matter movement, while in the US, publishers are suing the Internet Archive for copyright infringement and Jonathan Karp has been appointed CEO of Simon & Schuster, succeeding Carolyn Reidy, who died from a heart attack last month. Meanwhile, British writer and broadcast journalist Johny Pitts was named winner of the Jhalak Prize for black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) writers.

For all the latest localinternational and rights news, sign up to our Daily newsletter here.



Behind closed doors: Victoria Hannan on ‘Kokomo’ x

Kokomo (Hachette, August), the debut novel from Melbourne writer Victoria Hannan, is an intergenerational saga that centres on Mina and her mother Elaine, and their... Read more


Rights round-up x

Acquisitions Fiction Harlequin has acquired world rights to Kathy George’s debut novel Sargasso via Sally Bird of Calidris Literary Agency. MidnightSun Publishing has acquired Irma... Read more


Bestsellers: ‘Hunger Games’ prequel debuts at number one x

Suzanne Collins’ highly anticipated ‘Hunger Games’ prequel The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes has debuted at number one on the Australian bestsellers chart, pushing last... Read more


Into the Suburbs: A migrant's story (Christopher Raja, UQP) x

Christopher Raja’s Into the Suburbs is the author’s first foray into memoir, and documents his migration from Calcutta to Australia in the 80s. Drawn by... Read more


Kokomo (Victoria Hannan, Hachette) x

Since Mina’s dad died, her mum Elaine has not left the house. So when Mina hears that Elaine has been spotted outdoors for the first... Read more


Across the Risen Sea (Bren MacDibble, A&U) x

Across the Risen Sea is the latest thoughtful yet action-packed adventure from Bren MacDibble, the award-winning author of How to Bee and The Dog Runner.... Read more


Loner (Georgina Young, Text) x

Lona has dropped out of art school. She’s working the same job she’s had since high school, letting her only significant friendship drift along and... Read more


Small Town (Phillip Gwynne, illus by Tony Flowers, Puffin) x

Milly, the narrator of this picture book, lives in a small country town called Gong Gong—‘So nice, they named it twice!’ The town is getting... Read more

Dialogue Books publisher Sharmaine Lovegrove on Black Lives Matter

‘To those who just woke up to generations of brutal & systemic racism against Black people realising there’s an issue; to those that are virtue signalling you have a shit tonne of work to do. I look forward to your growth & positive action for change beyond social media posts.’Dialogue Books publisher Sharmaine Lovegrove tweets in response to the killing of unarmed black man George Floyd by police in the US.



Read the latest Publishers weekly x

Books+Publishing is partnering with US trade news magazine Publishers Weekly to provide our subscribers with exclusive access to the weekly digital edition of PW magazine.... Read more

Welbeck Publishing Group now distributed by Allen & Unwin/Murdoch Books

Allen & Unwin would like to remind booksellers that the Welbeck Publishing Group (formerly Carlton Books) and associated imprints is now distributed by Allen & Unwin in Australia and New Zealand. Carlton Books titles invoiced by Harper Entertainment Distribution Services (HEDS) will not be accepted by United Book Distributors (UBD) for return, however, authorised returns relating to orders placed with Hardie Grant Books should be sent to HEDS by 30 June 2020. All orders for Welbeck Publishing Group titles should now be sent to UBD (orders@unitedbookdistributors.com.au) or please contact your Allen & Unwin/Murdoch Books Account Manager.




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Matthia Dempsey

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