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Reviews

 

Adult fiction

The Rabbits (Sophie Overett, Vintage)
Catch Us the Foxes (Nicola West, S&S)
The Other Half of You (Michael Mohammed Ahmad, Hachette)
We Were Not Men (Campbell Mattinson, Fourth Estate)
The Covered Wife (Lisa Emanuel, Pantera Press)
One Hundred Days (Alice Pung, Black Inc.)
Echolalia (Briohny Doyle, Vintage)
Gunk Baby (Jamie Marina Lau, Hachette)
Dear Ibis (Kate Liston-Mills, Spineless Wonders)
Bila Yarrudhanggalangdhuray (River of Dreams) (Anita Heiss, S&S)

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The Rabbits (Sophie Overett, Vintage)

Released July 2021

The Rabbits is a tense suburban drama that probes the limits of family bonds and human potential. Sophie Overett, who won the 2020 Penguin Literary Prize for the manuscript, has crafted a novel that dips comfortably into multiple genres, blending elements of magic realism and crime thrillers into a taut literary narrative. Set in Queensland… Read more

Most viewed adult fiction

  1. All Our Shimmering Skies (Trent Dalton, HarperCollins)
  2. Rural Dreams (Margaret Hickey, MidnightSun)
  3. The Hunted (Gabriel Bergmoser, HarperCollins)
  4. A Lonely Girl is a Dangerous Thing (Jessie Tu, A&U)
  5. It’s Been a Pleasure, Noni Blake (Claire Christian, Text)
  6. New Animal (Ella Baxter, A&U)
  7. Love Objects (Emily Maguire, A&U)
  8. Infinite Splendours (Sofie Laguna, A&U)
  9. The Women and the Girls (Laura Bloom, A&U)
  10. Man in Armour (Siobhan McKenna, Fourth Estate)
 

Adult nonfiction

The Nordic Edge: Policy possibilities for Australia (ed by Andrew Scott & Rod Campbell, MUP)
Everything Harder Than Everyone Else (Jenny Valentish, Black Inc.)
The School (Brendan James Murray, Picador)
Who Gets to be Smart (Bri Lee, A&U)
A Paper Inheritance (Dymphna Stella Rees, UQP)
As Beautiful As Any Other (Kaya Wilson, Picador)
The Three Burials of Lotty Kneen (Krissy Kneen, Text)
Artificial Intimacy (Rob Brooks, NewSouth)
The Shape of Sound (Fiona Murphy, Text)
No Document (Anwen Crawford, Giramondo)

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The Nordic Edge: Policy possibilities for Australia (ed by Andrew Scott & Rod Campbell, MUP)

Released July 2021

What can Australia learn from Nordic countries Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Norway and Iceland? Quite a lot, according to editors Andrew Scott and Rod Campbell. Marshalling an array of Australian and Nordic writers and thinkers, The Nordic Edge examines the most pressing policy questions confronting Australia today. There is much received economic wisdom that Australians swallow… Read more

Most viewed adult nonfiction

  1. Soar: A life freed by dance (David McAllister, Thames & Hudson)
  2. Boy on Fire: The young Nick Cave (Mark Mordue, Fourth Estate)
  3. Just Money: Misadventures in the great Australian debt trap (Royce Kurmelovs, UQP)
  4. Loss Adjustment (Linda Collins, Awa Press)
  5. Into the Suburbs: A migrant’s story (Christopher Raja, UQP)
  6. How to Win an Election (Chris Wallace, NewSouth)
  7. Who Gets to be Smart (Bri Lee, A&U)
  8. Under the Rainbow: The life and times of E W Cole (Richard Broinowski, MUP)
  9. Living on Stolen Land (Ambelin Kwaymullina, Magabala)
  10. Buried Not Dead (Fiona McGregor, Giramondo)
 

Children's picture books

Coco, the Fish with Hands: Endangered Animal Tales 1 (Aleesah Darlison, illus by Mel Matthews, Puffin)
Walking in Gagudju Country: Exploring the monsoon forest (Diane Lucas and Ben Tyler, illus by Emma Long, A&U Children’s)
Kunyi (Kunyi June Anne McInerney, Magabala)
A Pair of Pears and an Orange (Anna McGregor, Scribble)
Frizzle and Me (Ellie Royce, illus by Andrew McLean, Ford St)
Why Do Tigers Have Whiskers? (ed by Sunanda Creagh, Thames & Hudson)
A Human for Kingsley (Gabriel Evans, Little Hare)
Bear and Rat (Christopher Cheng, illus by Stephen Michael King, Puffin)
Common Wealth (Gregg Dreise, Scholastic)
The Katha Chest (Radhiah Chowdhury, illus by Lavanya Naidu, A&U)

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Coco, the Fish with Hands: Endangered Animal Tales 1 (Aleesah Darlison, illus by Mel Matthews, Puffin)

Released June 2021

Coco, the Fish with Hands is a simple book that reads almost like a souvenir from a conservation habitat visit. Its story is practical and streamlined, introducing an individual handfish, Coco, accompanied by a collection of facts helping kids build a knowledge bank about this endangered species. The information (where spotted handfish live; what they… Read more

Most viewed children's picture book

  1. Wolfred (Nick Bland, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  2. Found (Bruce Pascoe, illus by Charmaine Ledden-Lewis, Magabala)
  3. Piper Picks the Perfect Pet (Caroline Tuohey, illus by Nicky Johnston, Ford St)
  4. Wonder Earth (Zanni Louise & Tiff Bollhorn, illus by Sophy Louise Smith, Five Mile)
  5. With a Little Kelp from Our Friends (Mathew Bate, illus by Liz Rowland, Thames & Hudson)
  6. The Snowman’s Wish (Sophie Masson, illus by Ronak Taher, Dirt Lane Press)
  7. Dog (Shaun Tan, A&U)
  8. Main Abija My Grandad (Karen Rogers, A&U)
  9. Mama Ocean (Jane Jolly, illus by Sally Heinrich, MidnightSun)
  10. Scary Bird (Michel Streich, Scholastic)
 

Younger readers

The Story of Australia: For the young (and the curious) (Don Watson, Black Inc.)
Marlow Brown, Magician in the Making (Kesta Fleming, illus by Marjory Gardner, Celapene Press)
A Glasshouse of Stars (Shirley Marr, Puffin)
Elsewhere Girls (Emily Gale & Nova Weetman, Text)
Fil & Harry (Jenny Blackford, illus by Kristin Devine, Christmas Press)
You’ve Let Them In (Lois Murphy, Transit Lounge)
Tish (Edwina Wyatt, illus by Odette Barberousse, Berbay)
Huda and Me (H Hayek, A&U)
Paws (Kate Foster, Walker Books)
The Edge of Thirteen (Nova Weetman, UQP)

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The Story of Australia: For the young (and the curious) (Don Watson, Black Inc.)

Released July 2021

After being out of print for 20 years, Don Watson’s The Story of Australia has been given a new life, a new target demographic and a new subtitle. Now targeted at primary school–aged children, The Story of Australia: For the young (and the curious) explores the history of the country, from Gondwanaland to the present… Read more

Most viewed younger readers

  1. Bindi (Kirli Saunders, illus by Dub Leffler, Magabala)
  2. Lola Online: #TheSecretUpstairsFanClubParty (Shannan & Tayla Stedman, Omnibus)
  3. The Tunnel of Dreams (Bernard Beckett, Text)
  4. Aussie STEM Stars: Fiona Wood (Cristy Burne, Wild Dingo Press)
  5. The Lost Soul Atlas (Zana Fraillon, Lothian)
  6. The Odds (Matt Stanton, ABC Books)
  7. Tricky Nick (Nicholas J Johnson, illus by Russell Jeffery, Pan)
  8. We Are Wolves (Katrina Nannestad, ABC Books)
  9. Footprints on the Moon (Lorraine Marwood, UQP)
  10. The Detective’s Guide to Ocean Travel (Nicki Greenberg, Affirm)
 

Young adult

Henry Hamlet’s Heart (Rhiannon Wilde, UQP)
Echo in the Memory (Cameron Nunn, Walker Books)
100 Remarkable Feats of Xander Maze (Clayton Zane Comber, HarperCollins)
Can’t Say it Went to Plan (Gabrielle Tozer, HarperCollins)
The Prison Healer (Lynette Noni, Penguin)
Waking Romeo (Kathryn Barker, A&U)
The Gaps (Leanne Hall, Text)
The Ghost Squad (Sophie Masson, MidnightSun)
The Boy From the Mish (Gary Lonesborough, A&U)
Tiger Daughter (Rebecca Lim, A&U)

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Henry Hamlet’s Heart (Rhiannon Wilde, UQP)

Released July 2021

Henry Hamlet lives in his head, and his head is full of worries—will he ever get a girlfriend and lose his virginity? Will he pass his year 12 exams? What should he apply to study at uni? Henry wishes he could be more like his best friend, Len, who is charming, confident and social. But… Read more

Most viewed young adult

  1. This One is Ours (Kate O’Donnell, UQP)
  2. The Ghost Squad (Sophie Masson, MidnightSun)
  3. The Boy From the Mish (Gary Lonesborough, A&U)
  4. Future Girl (Asphyxia, A&U)
  5. The F Team (Rawah Arja, Giramondo)
  6. Indigo Owl (Charlie Archbold, Wakefield)
  7. Metal Fish, Falling Snow (Cath Moore, Text)
  8. Loner (Georgina Young, Text)
  9. Stars Like Us (Frances Chapman, Hardie Grant Egmont)
  10. The Erasure Initiative (Lili Wilkinson, A&U)
 

Recently released titles

Fil & Harry (Jenny Blackford, illus by Kristin Devine, Christmas Press)
Common Wealth (Gregg Dreise, Scholastic)
Artificial Intimacy (Rob Brooks, NewSouth)
The Little Boat on Trusting Lane (Mel Hall, Fremantle Press)
The Three Burials of Lotty Kneen (Krissy Kneen, Text)
Flock: First Nations stories then and now (ed by Ellen van Neerven, UQP)
Two-Week Wait: An IVF story (Luke C Jackson & Kelly Jackson, illus by Mara Wild, Scribe)
Can’t Say it Went to Plan (Gabrielle Tozer, HarperCollins)
Before You Knew My Name (Jacqueline Bublitz, A&U)
Bear and Rat (Christopher Cheng, illus by Stephen Michael King, Puffin)

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Fil & Harry (Jenny Blackford, illus by Kristin Devine, Christmas Press)

Released May 2021

This charming novel is the first book in a new list from Christmas Press aimed at that tricky age between picture books and middle fiction. Written by Jenny Blackford, whose debut book The Girl in the Mirror won the 2020 Davitt Award for Best Children’s Crime Novel, Fil & Harry also includes whimsical illustrations by… Read more

Most viewed reviews of all time

  1. Barracuda (Christos Tsiolkas, A&U)
  2. The Feather (Margaret Wild, illus by Freya Blackwood, Little Hare)
  3. Ten Doors Down: The story of an extraordinary adoption reunion (Robert Tickner, Scribe)
  4. Deadly Kerfuffle (Tony Martin, Affirm)
  5. Whisper (Lynette Noni, Pantera Press)
  6. Room on Our Rock (Kate and Jol Temple, illus by Terri Rose Baynton, Scholastic)
  7. Three (Stephen Michael King, Scholastic)
  8. The Medicine: A doctor’s notes (Karen Hitchcock, Black Inc.)
  9. The Amulet of Athlone: The Chronicles of Jack McCool Book One (R E Devine, Bauer Media)
  10. Excuse Me! (Dave Hughes & Holly Ife, illus by Philip Bunting, Scholastic)