What to Read Next

Saga Land - Richard Fidler & Kari Gislason

 
 

 

A gripping blend of family mystery, contemporary stories and the beautiful and bloody Viking tales, set against the starkly stunning landscape of Iceland.

Broadcaster Richard Fidler and author Kari Gislason are good friends.

They share a deep attachment to the sagas of Iceland - the true stories of the first Viking families who settled on that remote island in the Middle Ages.These are tales of blood feuds, of dangerous women, and people who are compelled to kill the ones they love the most.

The sagas are among the greatest stories ever written, but the identity of their authors is largely unknown. Together, Richard and Kari travel across Iceland, to the places where the sagas unfolded a thousand years ago. They cross fields, streams and fjords to immerse themselves in the folklore of this fiercely beautiful island.

And there is another mission: to resolve a longstanding family mystery - a gift from Kari's Icelandic father that might connect him to the greatest of the saga authors.

The Sun and Her Flowers - Rupi Kaur

 
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RRP  $24.99
$21.25

The Sun and Her Flowers

 

From Rupi Kaur, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of milk and honey, comes her long-awaited second collection of poetry.

A vibrant and transcendent journey about growth and healing. Ancestry and honouring one’s roots. Expatriation and rising up to find a home within yourself.

Divided into five chapters and illustrated by Kaur, the sun and her flowers is a journey of wilting, falling, rooting, rising, and blooming.

A celebration of love in all its forms.

Working Class Boy - Jimmy Barnes

Working Class Boy

 

A household name, an Australian rock icon, the elder statesman of Ozrock there isn't an accolade or cliche that doesn't apply to Jimmy Barnes.

But long before Cold Chisel and 'Barnesy', long before the tall tales of success and excess, there was the true story of James Dixon Swan a working class boy whose family made the journey from Scotland to Australia in search of a better life.

Working Class Boy is a powerful reflection on a traumatic and violent childhood, which fuelled the excess and recklessness that would define, but almost destroy, the rock'n'roll legend. This is the story of how James Swan became Jimmy Barnes. It is a memoir burning with the frustration and frenetic energy of teenage sex, drugs, violence and ambition for more than what you have.

Raw, gritty, compassionate, surprising and darkly funny, Jimmy Barnes's childhood memoir is at once the story of migrant dreams fulfilled and dashed. After arriving in Australia in the summer of 1962, things went from bad to worse for the Swan family Dot, Jim and their six kids. The scramble to manage in the tough northern suburbs of Adelaide in the 60s would take its toll on the Swans as dwindling money, too much alcohol and fraying tempers gave way to violence and despair. This is the story of a family's collapse, but also of a young boy's dream to escape the misery of the suburbs with a once-in-a-lifetime chance to join a rock'n'roll band and get out of town for good.

Two Steps Forward - Graeme Simsion & Anne Buist

 
Paperback
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RRP  $29.99
$22.35

Two Steps Forward

 

Two Steps Forward is the feel good novel of the year from Graeme Simsion, author of the Rosie books and his wife, Anne Buist.

Zoe, a sometime artist, is from California. Martin, an engineer, is from Yorkshire. Both have ended up in picturesque Cluny, in central France.

Both are struggling to come to terms with their recent past - for Zoe, the death of her husband; for Martin, a messy divorce. Looking to make a new start, each sets out alone to walk two thousand kilometres from Cluny to Santiago, in northwestern Spain, in the footsteps of pilgrims who have walked the Camino the Way for centuries.

The Camino changes you, it's said. It's a chance to find a new version of yourself. But can these two very different people find each other? In this smart, funny and romantic journey, Martin's and Zoe's stories are told in alternating chapters by husband-and-wife team Graeme Simsion and Anne Buist.

Two Steps Forward is a novel about renewal physical, psychological and spiritual. It's about the challenge of walking an extraordinary distance and of working out where you are going.

And it's about what you decide to keep, what you choose to leave behind and what you rediscover.

Force of Nature - Jane Harper

 
 

 

Lost, Cold, Desperate ... Danger Runs Deep

What has happened to Alice Russell? Five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along the muddy track. Only four come out the other side.

The hike through the rugged Giralang Ranges is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and teach resilience and team building.

At least that is what the corporate retreat website advertises. Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a particularly keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing bushwalker. Alice Russell is the whistleblower in his latest case.

She knows all the secrets: about the company she works for and the people she works with. Far from the hike encouraging teamwork, the women tell Falk a tale of violence and disintegrating trust.

And as he delves into the disappearance, it seems some dangers run far deeper than anyone knew.

Extinctions - Josephine Wilson

 
Paperback
 
$34.08

Extinctions

 

He hated the word ‘retirement’, but not as much as he hated the word ‘village’, as if ageing made you a peasant or a fool.

Herein lives the village idiot. Professor Frederick Lothian, retired engineer, world expert on concrete and connoisseur of modernist design, has quarantined himself from life by moving to a retirement village.

His wife, Martha, is dead and his two adult children are lost to him in their own ways. Surrounded and obstructed by the debris of his life – objects he has collected over many years and tells himself he is keeping for his daughter – he is determined to be miserable, but is tired of his existence and of the life he has chosen. When a series of unfortunate incidents forces him and his neighbour, Jan, together, he begins to realise the damage done by the accumulation of a lifetime’s secrets and lies, and to comprehend his own shortcomings.

Finally, Frederick Lothian has the opportunity to build something meaningful for the ones he loves. Humorous, poignant and galvanising by turns, Extinctions is a novel about all kinds of extinction – natural, racial, national and personal – and what we can do to prevent them.

Every Lie I've Ever Told - Rosie Waterland

 
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$24.25

Every Lie I've Ever Told

 

I'm okay! The bestselling author of The Anti-Cool Girl returns with a devastating, heartbreaking, brilliant, brave and laugh-out-loud funny memoir of telling lies and being on the brink...

'I had made it! All my dreams had come true. I had an operating fridge, I was doing brilliantly, and I had written the memoir to prove it. I even had online haters. I had conquered life at 30 and nothing was ever going to go wrong again!'

It was all going so well for Rosie Waterland. Until it wasn't. Until, shockingly, something awful happened and Rosie went into agonising free fall. Until late one evening she found herself in a hospital emergency bed, trembling and hooked to a drip.

Over the course of that long, painful night, she kept thinking about how ironic it was, that right in the middle of writing a book about lies, she'd ended up telling the most significant lie of all.

A raw, beautiful, sad, shocking and very, very funny memoir of all the lies we tell others and the lies we tell ourselves.

The Red Coast - Di Morrissey

 
Hardback
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RRP  $34.99
$29.25

The Red Coast

 

A New Story in an Ancient Landscape From Australia's Favourite Storyteller.

In The Red Coast, Di Morrissey returns to the red earth of the Kimberley with a passionate story of resistance and resilience under its soaring blue skies.

After the upheaval which separated Jacqui Bouchard from her beloved son, she has finally settled in Broome, a magical remote town on the northwest coast of Australia.

But when a proposed mining development is unveiled, the town begins to tear itself apart.

Rifts run deep, as friends, families and lovers are faced with a battle that could change their lives irrevocably.

As everyone takes sides, Jacqui confronts her own dilemma: to stay or leave? Who to trust . . . Who to love?

A Column of Fire - Ken Follett

A Column of Fire

 

The saga that has enthralled the millions of readers of The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End now continues with Ken Follett's magnificent, gripping A Column of Fire.

Christmas 1558, and young Ned Willard returns home to Kingsbridge to find his world has changed.

The ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn by religious hatred. Europe is in turmoil as high principles clash bloodily with friendship, loyalty and love, and Ned soon finds himself on the opposite side from the girl he longs to marry, Margery Fitzgerald.

Then Elizabeth Tudor becomes queen and all of Europe turns against England. The shrewd, determined young monarch immediately sets up the country's first secret service to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions and invasion plans. Elizabeth knows that alluring, headstrong Mary Queen of Scots lies in wait in Paris. Part of a brutally ambitious French family, Mary has been proclaimed the rightful ruler of England, with her own supporters scheming to get rid of the new queen.

Over a turbulent half-century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed, as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. With Elizabeth clinging precariously to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents, it becomes clear that the real enemies - then as now - are not the rival religions.

The true battle pitches those who believe in tolerance and compromise against the tyrants who would impose their ideas on everyone else - no matter the cost.

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