August 2019

Down and Out in Paradise by Luke Williams

Reviewed by Rod McLary The sub-title of this book by Luke Williams is East West Sex Death which offers the reader a good indication of what is inside the book.  And what is inside is a fascinating and intriguing story of one man’s search for some sense of purpose to his life.  While that may

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The Club by Leo Damrosch

Reviewed by Norrie Sanders What would you make of a club that is exclusively male, meets in a common tavern, shuns a supporter for marrying a Catholic, and admits adulterers, pornographers, infidels and scoundrels? Many would predict few members and a short life. The former is true but certainly not the latter. This particular club

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My Unicorn Farts Glitter by Suzanne Barton

Reviewed by Antonella Townsend Let’s face it, with the title, My Unicorn Farts Glitter, this big pink, glittery book is assured of success.  Among many others, grandparents will buy it to delight grandchildren with added bonus of annoying fussy parents.  There is little point in asking young children what they think about it – they

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Monuments by Will Kostakis

Reviewed by Antonella Townsend I love young adult novels.  And, yes, I am a tad (decades) outside the demographic.  A diverse range of characters carrying an ethical and compassionate message has populated the ones I have read to date.   Most refreshing in this time of global discontent!  Monuments by Will Kostakis is no exception. Loaded

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Wolfe Island by Lucy Treloar

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke There was only one permanent resident on Wolfe Island until a storm brought with it a skiff with a girl at the tiller, two young men and a dark-haired child.                 ‘You,’ I said to the big girl.                ‘Yes,’ she said. ‘Kitty Hawke, right?’                  ‘Yes.’                ‘Then you’re my

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The Partisan Heart by Gordon Kerr

Reviewed by Ian Lipke It is affirming to open the mail and find a book by a novelist who really knows how to create a piece of art out of his writing. I had never read any of Kerr’s work until now when I had the pleasure of reading The Partisan Heart. A reader’s decision

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A Lucky Man by Jamel Brinkley

Reviewed by Rod McLary Short stories are a challenge to write and to read.  The ‘rules’ regarding novels do not always apply – the dictionary definition of a short story is ‘an invented prose narrative shorter than a novel usually dealing with a few characters and aiming at unity of effect and often concentrating on

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Castaway by Robert Macklin

Reviewed by Rod McLary Robert Macklin is the author of 29 books – a number of which address the history of Australia.  In his most recent book – Castaway – he has written a critical examination of the ‘Frontier Wars’ which took place in the 19th century between the advancing European settlers and the Aboriginal

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Dear Dad edited by Samuel Johnson OAM

Reviewed by Gerald Healy A great collection of letters from a diverse group of Australians to their dads. In the vast majority of cases these are positive tributes to the man who inspired and nurtured them while growing up. In some cases, these dads have provided the role model for their own parenting attempts. The

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Griffith Review 65: Crimes and Punishments

Reviewed by E.B.Heath Pamela M Lombard, banking executive, For charging fees upon the dead, Shall be exhumed before her time And her head garlanded with worms. Adjudged Philip Dean Griffith Review 65: Crimes and Punishments features multi-faceted issues of crime and changing ideas of justice. The diverse contributions of essay, memoir, reportage, poetry and fiction,

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The Chain by Adrian McKinty

Reviewed by Rod McLary Most of us – at some time in our lives – would have received what was known as a ‘chain letter’.  They were letters which, if you did not follow the instructions in the letter, threatened to cause some harm – often just described as ‘bad luck’ or ‘misfortune’.  Some chain

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The Library Window by Margaret Oliphant

Reviewed by Ian Lipke I had not heard of Margaret Oliphant before I delved into The Library Window and the thoughts or imaginings of a young woman who sits each day at her window gazing across the street to what some say is a window and some say is not. I’m told that Oliphant was

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out of time by Steve Hawke

Reviewed by Wendy Lipke When one reads the words ‘out of time’ the mind switches immediately to finishing a test or project, rushing to be at a certain place at a certain time, the parking meter or maybe something even more sinister. In Steve Hawke’s novel, ‘out of time’ refers to Joe, an older man

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The New Kid: Very Popular Me by James O'Loghlin

Reviewed by Antonella Townsend and Willow James O’Loghlin’s latest book The New Kid: Very Popular Me is an easy and most amusing read for 8-11 year olds.   Should older readers leaf through, they will probably get hooked and feel as though, sentence by sentence, they are walking through a weird time warp tunnel back to

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