July 2022

Frank Chalmers – author of Conviction – an interview

An Interview with Frank Chalmers Frank Chalmers has a UQ bachelor’s degree in Philosophy & Maths, MA(Qual.) in Philosophy, and is a graduate of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School. He has taught high school and at university in Science, Philosophy, Communication Design and Writing. He began a forty-year professional writing career on scripts

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Children

Backyard Buddies by Andy Geppert

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve This book of backyard buddies, delightfully depicted in just twenty pages, could soon be regarded as an historic document, as grandparents are known to bemoan the changes that have occurred in their lifetimes when their yards were once visited by a great variety of creatures, including grasshoppers, beetles, butterflies and lizards.

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Crime/Mystery

The Wrong Woman by J. P. Pomare

Reviewed by Rod McLary J P Pomare has had – and continues to have – an interesting writing career.  His first novel – Call Me Evie – was published in 2018 and was awarded the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best First Novel.  Three more books followed and now The Wrong Woman has now been published. 

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Crime/Mystery

The Accomplice by Steve Cavanagh

Reviewed by Ian Lipke Steve Cavanagh’s The Accomplice is a smorgasbord of crime fiction in which leading characters are killed primarily for effect and in which the reader can be taught the intricacies of conducting a criminal trial. There is little laying out of preliminary events. The author introduces his story with an American female

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Crime/Mystery

The Pride by Tony Park

Reviewed by Ian Lipke Given Tony Park’s interest in the animals and people of Africa, one could be pardoned for believing that this will be a story that is centred on lions. After all, they do live in a pride. The comment on the cover, “A lioness will kill to protect her own”, reinforces the

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Memoir/Biography

The All-Rounder by Dan Christian with Gideon Haigh

Reviewed by Richard Tutin What sets this book by international cricketer Dan Christian apart from the many cricketing books that are currently available? Surely the sport, like many other codes, has been well covered while every retiring cricketer seems to produce a memoir or autobiography soon after the conclusion of their playing career. The main

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Crime/Mystery

Hidden Pictures by Jason Rekulak

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve A writer’s debut novel is always an interesting, even exciting, prospect.  Jason Rekulak’s Hidden Pictures has been well received, praised by the very successful Stephen King. Besides this intriguing title, it has a recovering drug addict, Mallory, nanny to a charming, bright four-year-old boy, Teddy. The background is luxury suburban, not

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Miles Franklin Literary Award 2022

Miles Franklin Award winner Jennifer Down has won the 2022 Miles Franklin Literary Award, worth $60,000, for her second novel Bodies of Light (Text). At 31 years old, Down is one of the youngest authors to win the award in its 65-year history, with the youngest being 23-year-old Randolph Stow for To the Islands in 1958. Chosen from a shortlist of

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General Fiction

Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley

Reviewed by E. B. Heath Nightcrawling by Leila Mottley was the subject of a bidding war between publishers both in America and Europe.  This is unusual, particularly for a debut novel, and for one written by a seventeen-year-old.  Leila Mottley is also a poet of some note, awarded the 2018 Oakland Youth Poet Laureate.  With

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Non-Fiction

Stolen Focus by Johann Hari

Reviewed by E. B. Heath Apparently, human brains are drowning in an ocean of distraction; our focus is being commandeered by modern technology.  For this reason, Johann Hari completely unhitched himself from the rigging of his digital life and sailed off to Provincetown, Cape Cod, to live as a pre-cyber-age man.  His goal was to

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Children

August & Jones by Pip Harry

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve Children’s books are responsible for some of the best writing available today.  Such is their quality that many which were published decades ago (Harry the Dirty Dog is just one example) are still very much loved today.  One that is bound to join the group is the recently published August &

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Memoir/Biography

Old Rage by Sheila Hancock

Reviewed by Gail McDonald Sheila Hancock is one of Britain’s most highly regarded and popular actors. Sheila received a Damehood for services to drama and charity in 2021; and only following the death of her husband John Thaw in 2002 took up writing.  A memoir of their marriage The Two of Us was a number

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Non-Fiction

All the Living and the Dead by Hayley Campbell

Reviewed by Richard Tutin It is said that there are two certainties in life – death and taxes. While we are able to navigate to a certain extent the mysteries of the Tax Office, we are less knowledgeable about death. As a society we fear death even though it is part of how life is

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Crime/Mystery

Conviction by Frank Chalmers

Reviewed by Rod McLary Many older readers would readily recall the 1970s and 1980s in Queensland.  Corruption seemed to be everywhere despite university students – and others – marching and protesting.  Who can forget the sight of a police officer striking a young protester on the head during a street march in Brisbane?  Who can

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Crime/Mystery

The Murder Rule by Dervla McTiernan

Reviewed by Patricia Simms-Reeve The Murder Rule, which follows Dervla McTiernan’s previous three crime novels, is likely to enthrall her many fans.  This novel is different however from The Ruin, The Scholar and The Good Turn in that it is set in Virginia, U.S.A. and winds its way convincingly through a background of American law.

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