Books+Publishing Weekly Book Newsletter
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21 February 2024


The Love Interest

A swoony, hilarious and heartfelt YA romcom with a satirical twist on the conventions of the superhero-verse. This original, speculative debut will be backed by... Read more
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Perth Writers Weekend programming remains unchanged, despite open letter x

Perth Writers Weekend, which will run from this Friday, 23 February until Sunday, 25 February, is taking place amid controversy due to the programming of... Read more

Canberra Writers Festival logo


Canberra Writers Festival moves to October x

The 2024 Canberra Writers Festival will run from 23–27 October. With the new dates occurring late in the year, organisers said that the 2024 festival... Read more
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An image of authors Kelly Gardiner and Sharmini Kumar.


HarperCollins acquires Gardiner, Kumar cosy crime x

HarperCollins has acquired world rights to Miss Caroline Bingley, Private Detective, a forthcoming cosy crime novel from Kelly Gardiner and Sharmini Kumar, via Danielle Binks... Read more

UK indies struggling to find distribution post-Grantham

In the UK, independent publishers are finding distribution ‘particularly challenging’ following last year’s announcement that Grantham Book Services (GBS) will close in 2025, reported the... Read more
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Kroetsch appointed Writers SA CEO, Cultural Fund grants for literary orgs, Funder on inaugural Women's Prize for Nonfiction longlist x

In this week’s news, the Copyright Agency has announced the recipients of the latest round of Cultural Fund grants, among which are many literary organisations and projects, as well as nine writers’ festivals; Writers SA has appointed Laura Kroetsch as its new CEO; Blak & Bright Festival has announced its 2024 program; and BookPeople has announced that Helen Garner and Tim Winton will be guest speakers at its 100th anniversary gala dinner and awards night.

In awards news, Anna Funder is longlisted for the inaugural Women’s Prize for Nonfiction for her book Wifedom: Mrs Orwell’s invisible life (Hamish Hamilton); the shortlists for the inaugural DANZ (Diversity in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand) Children’s Book Award have been announced; and Spencer M F Rodrick has won the inaugural Pearl Prize, presented by queer arts and cultural organisation Midsumma.

Overseas, the chair of the Glasgow Worldcon has promised transparency following the release of a report on censorship at the 2023 Hugo Awards; and in the United States, Barnes & Noble has announced plans to open five new bookshops in the Chicago area, angering local independent bookstore Volumes.


a person holds a red pen in front of a blank page


Can ChatGPT edit fiction? Four editors put it to the test

Editors Rose Michael, Sharon Mullins, Renée Otmar and Katherine Day have previously explored how AI tools might work, or be made to work, for editorial.... Read more


Rights round-up x

Sales Fiction Giramondo has sold Italian rights to Alexis Wright’s Praiseworthy and Carpentaria to Il Saggiatore, via Casanovas & Lynch. Pan Macmillan has sold simplified Chinese rights to Prima... Read more

Cover of House of Flame and Shadow


Maas holds onto top spot x

Top 10 bestsellers House of Flame and Shadow (Sarah J Maas, Bloomsbury) If Only I Had Told Her (Laura Nowlin, Sourcebooks Fire) Bride (Ali Hazelwood, Hachette)... Read more


Black Silk & Sympathy (Deborah Challinor, HarperCollins, April) x

Deborah Challinor’s latest offering, Black Silk & Sympathy, sweeps readers away to the intriguing world of Victorian funeral customs in 1860s Sydney. In this expertly... Read more


The Glass House (Anne Buist & Graeme Simsion, Hachette, April) x

Graeme Simsion is well-known for The Rosie Project, and Anne Buist for her crime novels. Partners in real life, their new collaboration, The Glass House, showcases their talent... Read more


Italian Coastal (Amber Guinness, T&H, April) x

Amber Guinness’s Italian Coastal: Recipes and stories from where the land meets the sea takes readers on a tour of the seven Italian regions that... Read more


It Takes a Town (Aoife Clifford, Ultimo, April) x

Aoife Clifford’s latest crime novel, It Takes a Town, is set in the fictional town of Welcome. This small town produced a superstar talent, Vanessa... Read more


The Most Famous Boy in Town (Bel Schenk, Espresso, April) x

Bel Schenk’s latest work and her fourth publication, The Most Famous Boy in Town, delves into the intricate relationship dynamics in Charlotte Bay, a coastal... Read more


Deep Is the Fen (Lili Wilkinson, A&U Children's, April) x

Lili Wilkinson’s latest fantasy novel is set in the same magical world as her Victorian Premier’s Literary Award–winning novel, A Hunger of Thorns. It’s a... Read more


Frog Squad: Dessert Disaster (Kate Temple & Jol Temple, illus Shiloh Gordon, HarperCollins, April) x

Prepare yourselves, Bin Chicken and Underdogs fans (among others): the unstoppable force that is Kate and Jol Temple (That Bird Has Arms) has a new... Read more


Happy All Over (Emma Quay, ABC Books, April) x

Happy All Over is exactly that. Emma Quay’s capacity to capture miniatures of joy, through both word and image, will bring a smile to even... Read more


Jerry's Window (Y K Willemse, Wombat Books, April) x

In the spirit of Dennis the Menace, 10-year-old Jerry Ronden is a notorious nightmare. His parents are at a loss as he torments his school... Read more

Vale Tom Whitton

Jodie Dalglish, owner of Megalong Books, writes: We are very sad to report that we have lost a member of our Megalong Books family. Tom... Read more

Rowland joins Booksellers Aotearoa NZ x

Booksellers Aotearoa NZ has appointed Renée Rowland to the role of association manager. Rowland is the former owner-operator of The Twizel Bookshop and Timaru Booksellers.... Read more

Text Publishing welcomes two new staff

Text has appointed Zara Olifent to the role of Production Coordinator, beginning 18 March. Olifent has previously worked at Te Papa Press in Wellington. She will be contactable at:

Cora Roberts will rejoin the company in the role of Senior Publicist after previously working in publicity at Scribe and (over a decade ago) at Text. From 26 February Roberts will be contactable at:


Voss Literary Prize 2024

The Australian University Heads of English and the estate of Vivian Robert de Vaux Voss are pleased to call for nominations to the tenth annual Voss Literary Prize. The prize, for the best novel published in Australia in 2023, carries a cash prize and will be presented at the AUHE AGM in November 2024. A nomination form and details of entry can be found at Entries must be received by COB, 5 April 2024.


Thames & Hudson Australia relocates head office

Thames & Hudson Australia has relocated their head office to Cremorne, Melbourne.

Thames & Hudson Australia
Wurundjeri Country
132A Gwynne Street
VIC 3121

All other contact information, including phone numbers and email addresses, remain unchanged.

T&H Managing Director Dan Watts says, ‘We’re delighted to be in vibrant Cremorne – the new office gives us more space and premises that better represent our growing status as a creative publishing hub. We’re looking forward to welcoming authors, retail partners, and all friends of T&H to our lovely space.’

The office features interior design by award-winning agency Wildflower.




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