Books+Publishing Weekly Book Newsletter
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25 January 2023

No Daily tomorrow

Due to the public holiday, there will be no Daily newsletter tomorrow, Thursday, 26 January.
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Daleng leaves Booktopia

Booktopia chief marketing officer (CMO) Steffen Daleng will leave the company as part of a restructure that will see 30–40 redundancies made. Daleng leaves after... Read more


New UQP initiative seeking titles on sustainability x

University of Queensland Press (UQP) has announced Stories for the Future, a new initiative which aims to seek out new titles that advocate for environmental... Read more
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Perth Fest Literature & Ideas program, new ABIA categories, Nichol joins A&U NZ x

Perth Festival has announced the full line-up for its 2023 Literature & Ideas program; three new categories have been added to the 2023 Australian Book Industry Awards; and Tess Nichol has been appointed publisher of Allen & Unwin New Zealand.

Booktopia has announced an organisational restructure involving redundancies; Hachette joins the growing list of publishing houses offering the option to work January 26; and the Australian Library and Information Association has announced the end of the Online Storytime program, which ran from 2022–2022.

In awards news, Seoul-based Australian poet Dan Disney has won the 2023 Peter Porter Poetry Prize, Margretta Sowah and Uppma Virdi are the recipients of the 2023 All About Women of Colour mentorship program, and Abomination by Melbourne-based author Ashley Goldberg has won the 2022 National Jewish Book Award for debut fiction in the US.

Overseas, German book sales were down 2.1% by value in 2022; meanwhile, UK bookselling chain Waterstones has reported increased profit and revenue in the year ending April 2022.



Dominic Smith on ‘Return to Valetto’

Return to Valetto (A&U, March) is Seattle-based Australian expat Dominic Smith’s sixth novel. Set in a fictional semi-abandoned Italian town, the book excavates the town’s mysteries and... Read more
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Dominic Smith recommends x

I was late in coming to Kim Scott’s That Deadman Dance (Picador), which won the Miles Franklin in 2011. I loved it for its ability... Read more


Rights round-up x

Sales Fiction HarperCollins Australia has sold Korean translation rights to Sorrow and Bliss (Meg Mason, Fourth Estate) to Munhakdongne Publishing Group, and Italian translation rights... Read more


‘Spare’ fastest selling memoir in Australia since BookScan records began x

Prince Harry’s highly anticipated book Spare has become the fastest selling memoir in Australia since Nielsen BookScan records began in 2002, debuting at number one... Read more


Everywhen: Australia and the language of deep history  (ed by Ann McGrath, Laura Rademaker & Jakelin Troy, UNSW Press) x

Since the colonisation of Australia, representations of Indigenous peoples and Indigenous worldviews created by anthropologists, archaeologists and historians (among other disciplines) have rendered Indigenous subjectivities... Read more


Fed to Red Birds (Rijn Collins, S&S) x

Rijn Collins’s novel Fed to Red Birds is beguiling and moody. Our heroine, Elva, is an Australian–Icelandic woman in her mid-20s. She’s living in Reykjavik... Read more


Return to Valetto (Dominic Smith, A&U) x

This is the sixth novel from Australian-American author Dominic Smith, perhaps best known locally for his 2017 ABIA-winning novel The Last Painting of Sara de... Read more


Nightbirds (Kate J Armstrong, A&U Children's) x

Magic is illegal in Simta, punishable by death, but that does not mean it does not exist. Matilde, Æsa, and Sayer are nightbirds: privileged girls... Read more


The Rocket-Powered Racing Caravan (C E Hayes, Omnibus Books) x

Endless homework, out-of-touch teachers, imperfect parents, failed first dates and, of course, bullies. Grade Seven is a tough gig! How on earth is Earl Grey... Read more


Vale Gabrielle Williams

Acclaimed YA author, Gab Williams, died on Saturday 21 January after suffering a massive stroke the previous Monday. Williams’s books include Beatle Meets Destiny (Penguin),... Read more


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

The Big Folbigg Mistake—major developments in February

Media attention and controversy is assured when the Inquiry into the Convictions of Kathleen Folbigg reconvenes mid-February, following stunning revelations that Ms Folbigg’s two daughters ‘likely’ died from natural causes after new information, hot from a Danish biochemical/DNA laboratory, was tabled. Bestselling author John Kerr’s new book has the true story.

The Big Folbigg Mistake by John Kerr

Publisher: Kerr Publishing
ISBN: 9781875703524
Price ($AUD RRP): $34.95
Distributor: Woodslane




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