November 2018

The Other Wife by Michael Robotham

  Reviewed by Angela Marie      “I love this city. Built upon the ruins of the past, every square foot of it has been used, re-used, flattened, bombed, dismantled, rebuilt and flattened again until the layers of history are like sediments of rock that one day will be picked over by future archaeologists and

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A Keeper by Graham Norton

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke The Review section of The Times in September 2018 had the heading: Review: A Keeper by Graham Norton — a celebrity who can actually write. So who is this celebrity and why this statement? Graham Norton (born Graham William Walker) is a well-known Irish television and radio presenter, comedian and actor

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By Sea & Stars by Trent Dalton

Reviewed by Rod McLary It is now almost 231 years since the First Fleet sailed into what is now known as Sydney Harbour on 26 January 1788 to claim the east coast of New Holland for Great Britain – and to establish a penal colony to take the overflow from the British penal system. The

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Christina Rossetti Poetry in Art by Susan Owens and Nicholas Tromans (eds)

Reviewed by Ian Lipke The editors of this book have generated a hard cover, handsome publication of 200-odd pages that is fit to grace the shelves of prince or pauper. It sports a dust cover featuring Christina’s likeness while the text in five chapters appears on very high quality paper supported by lush coloured photographs,

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Smoky the Brave by Damien Lewis

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke The book Smoky the Brave is another biography about war dogs, by Damien Lewis a British author and film maker who spent over twenty years reporting from conflict zones throughout the world. He has produced about twenty films and more than fifteen books which are now read worldwide. He became an

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You Are Awesome by Matthew Syed

Reviewed by Clare Brook Since the early twentieth century self-help books for adults have been busy steering millions of people to the path of success, helping them overcome damaging experiences, to understand negative patterns of thought and behaviour.    So, at last, it is wonderful that Matthew Syed has written a book that will help children

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Catch a Falling Star by Katie M. Little

Reviewed by Ian Lipke Even moreso than Ray Martin or Mike Walsh, Paul Hogan or Dame Edna Everidge, the name Jeanne Little is recognized worldwide. Mention her name and a certain look appears in your conversationalist’s eyes and you wait for an interpretation of Jeanne’s voice that always falls far beneath par or, perhaps there’s

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Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver

Reviewed by Rod McLary Unsheltered is a story of two families who lived in the same house in the small town of Vineland in New Jersey but 145 years apart – the first in 1871 and the second in 2016.  What links the families – apart from the house – is the first family’s neighbour

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Unwell by Mike McRae

Reviewed by Norrie Sanders Unwell covers a lot of ground. In Mike McCrae’s mind, a book on disease can deal with topics as diverse as circumcision, euthanasia, addiction, obesity, embalming, biohacking and elite sport. He challenges our concept of disease by demonstrating how changes in fashion and culture can invent or obliterate medical diagnoses. A

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The Turn of Midnight by Minette Walters

Reviewed by Rod McLary Minette Walters is perhaps better known for her series of crime novels written between 1992 and 2007.  Her first three books won major prizes.  Different from other crime writers – think Agatha Christie, PD James, Ruth Rendell and Ian Rankin – Walters did not create a series character.  This allowed her

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Secrets Between Friends by Fiona Palmer

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke Named among the top ten Australian fiction bestseller writers for September 2018 for her novel Brothers and Sisters, Fiona Palmer is also the author of the novel Secrets Between Friends which was published in 2017. Like many of her previous novels this book is also set in Western Australia, her home

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The tree by Richard Woldendorp

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke In his coffee table book of photographs, the tree, acclaimed landscape photographer, Richard Woldendorp, highlights the individual statements made by trees. He believes that ‘every tree has its own personality – no two trees are the same. Like people, they emerge from the circumstances of their environment’ (9). In a way

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The Magdalene in the Reformation by Margaret Arnold

Reviewed by Ian Lipke Margaret Arnold asserts the view that the Magdalene continued to figure prominently in the tradition of Passion devotion and in the construction of religious identity on all sides of the confessional divide into the eighteenth century (3). In her book she proposes to examine (a) what was the fate of Mary

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