Stephen Daisley

Stop Press: 2016: Coming Rain wins the NZ$50,000 Fiction Prize at Ockham NZ Book Awards

Daisley: Coming Rain, cover
Daisley: Coming Rain, cover

The contractor left a letter from their father and a white carton of tailor-made American cigarettes with a big red circle on them. Lucky Strike Toasted plain cut. He would remember his mother holding the carton as she hugged him and told him to do his best. The crinkly sound of the cellophane. The other kids around them like chooks as he tried to say goodbye Mum.

LEWIS McCLEOD has been travelling with Painter Hayes since he was a boy. Shearing, charcoal burning — anything that comes. Painter made him his first pair of shoes. But Lew’s a grown man by the time he and Painter arrive on Drysdale Downs to shear for John Drysdale and his daughter, Clara. And now everything will change.

Stephen Daisley writes in lucid, rippling prose of how things work, and why; of the profound satisfaction in hard work done with care; of love and friendship, and the damage that both contain. Praise for Stephen Daisley’s Traitor:

NZ reviewer Sue Green writes: ‘It is four years since Stephen Daisley’s heartbreakingly beautiful debut novel Traitor. Many of us enjoyed the irony of this Western Australia-based Kiwi winning the $80,000 Australian Prime Minister’s Literary Award for Fiction with what was, at its heart, a very New Zealand story. So it was disconcerting to discover that this much-anticipated second book is wrought by his experience in the harsh environs of rural Western Australia. Shearer, truck driver, sheep and cattle station worker, Daisley, who moved to Australia more than twenty-five years ago, knows and loves this unforgiving country and its people. And it shows. Even such unlovely characters as the violent bigot Painter Hayes are drawn with compassion for a man of his place and time… This is a brutal, unflinching work with moments of shocking violence. Yet it is rendered with the same compassion, the exquisite tenderness and eye for beauty in the harshest places which made Traitor so affecting and memorable.’  — Sue Green, Sunday Star Times, New Zealand

‘One of the best novels I have read in recent years.’ Stephen Romei, Australian

‘A revelation… A rare pleasure.’ Australian Literary Review

daisley-traitor-cvr Gallipolli 1915: A young New Zealand soldier and a Turkish doctor meet in the chaos of battle. When a shell bursts overhead, David and Mahmoud are taken to the same military hospital. There, an unshakeable bond grows between them: naive shepherd and educated Sufi mystic. A bond such that, when the time comes, David will choose to betray his country for his friend.

The savage punishment that follows will break David and make him anew. The compassion he finds within himself will touch the lives of his comrades in the trenches. And later, back in the hill country of New Zealand, it will wrench open the heart of a woman crazed by grief.

Traitor is a story of war, and love how each changes everything, forever. Evoking both brutality and transcendent beauty, Stephen Daisley’s astonishing debut novel will transport the reader heart and soul into another realm.

The author: Stephen Daisley was born in 1955, and grew up in remote parts of the North Island of New Zealand. He served for five years in an infantry battalion of the NZ Army, and has worked on sheep and cattle stations, on oil and gas construction sites and as a truck driver and bartender, among many other jobs. He has university degrees in writing and literature and lives in Western Australia with his wife and five children. Traitor is his first novel.

2011: Traitor has won the Australian Prime Minister’s Prize
2011: Traitor has won the UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing in the New South Wales Premiers’ Prize
2016: Coming Rain wins the NZ$50,000 Fiction Prize at Ockham NZ Book Awards

Rights: Australia and New Zealand.

Eva Cox

High-profile feminist economist, and very much in demand as a public speaker and commentator. She delivered the ABC Boyer Lectures in 1995 and her book Leading Women — an examination of he place of women in the contemporary political economy of Australia — was published by Random House in 1996.

Rights: Australia and New Zealand: Random House Australia, 1996

Ross Coulthart

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‘It’ s a treasure trove. It’ s previously unknown, candid images of our troops just out of the line. Men with the fear and experiences of battle written on their faces.’
— General Sir Peter Cosgrove

Investigative journalist Ross Coulthart, joint winner of the Prime Minister’ s Prize for Australian History 2015, brings together stunning images of Western Front diggers and the amazing stories behind them.

A trove of portraits taken in the tiny French town of Vignacourt just behind the frontlines was found a century later in an ancient metal chest in a French farmhouse.

The collection of detailed glass plates has been hailed as one of the most important First World War discoveries ever made. Haunting images show diggers enjoying a brief respite from the horror of the trenches: having their portraits taken for a lark, for a keepsake or to send to loved ones. For all too many, this would be their only memorial, and to gaze into the eyes of these men is to meet a lost generation.

This fully revised and expanded paperback edition (though warning: it’s large and heavy!) offers a wealth of fresh information including more soldiers newly identified with the aid of their families.

‘These stunning black and white photographs stand as mute, yet eloquent, witness to the courage of soldiers and the horror of war… Remarkably informative, beautifully illustrated and thoroughly researched…’
— Ross Fitzgerald, Sydney Morning Herald

Just released in Britain: The Lost Tommies
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An ancient metal chest in a French farmhouse. A treasure trove of previously unknown, candid photographs of troops just out of the line, many gathered for the Battle of the Somme…
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One of the most important First World War discoveries ever made. A glorious companion to The Lost Diggers: the book that made Ross Coulthart’s name. The Lost Tommies is now at the top of Amazon’s Historial #1 on Amazon.co.uk historical biographies! And here’s part of the Sunday Times (London) notice: ‘But most of what is said about those we euphemistically call “the fallen” seems hollow when placed in proximity to this book. “We will remember them”, for example, is clearly false. They have vanished like melted snow, and but for this astonishing cache of pictures, we should not even know how they once looked. Whatever ideas you have about the Great War, The Lost Tommies will change them.’
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Ross Coulhart (left) looks at the Thullier plates, watched by (L to R) Laurent Mirouze, Christian Thullier and Peter Burness (photo courtesy Brendan Harvey.)
Ross Coulhart (left) looks at the Thullier plates, watched by (L to R) Laurent Mirouze, Christian Thullier and Peter Burness (photo courtesy Brendan Harvey.)


coulthart-bean-cvr-lores
Stop Press: Sixty Minutes journalist Ross Coulthart had shared top prize in the history category at the Prime Minister’s literary awards for his investigative biography of one of Australia’s greatest war correspondents, Charles Bean. Ross shared the prize with David Horner, who wrote an unofficial history of ASIO called The Spy Catchers.

On the eve of the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign comes a long overdue new biography of this iconic Australian war correspondent, C E W Bean. Charles Bean’s wartime reports and photographs mythologised the Australian soldier and spawned the notion that the Anzacs achieved something nation defining on the shores of Gallipoli and the battlefields of western Europe. But did Bean tell the whole story of what he knew? In this new biography, Ross Coulthart explores not only the veracity of Bean’s post-war official history but also how closely his actual experience from his diaries and other first-hand accounts compares with what he actually wrote as a journalist during the conflict. Publisher: HarperCollins Australia.
Rights: World

coulthart-diggers-cvrThe Lost Diggers

“A fascinating and important record of First World War history. There’s an intimacy about these photographs I’ve never seen before… it’s like looking back into time, looking into the eyes of men who’ve just been in battle.” — Australian War Memorial historian and First World War expert Peter Burness. Publisher: HarperCollins Australia.
Rights: World

Dany Chouet with Trish Hobbs: So French

so-french-cvrPérigord-born Dany Chouet brought French cuisine to Australia in the 1970s, starting out at the much-loved restaurant “Upstairs”, before flying solo at “Au Chabrol” and “Cleopatra”.

Now, in her first book, So French, Dany shares the fascinating story of her life in food and hospitality as well as more than 60 recipes. These include signature dishes from her restaurants and timeless provincial favourites such as pissaladière, cassoulet, and apricot soufflé tart. Complemented by stunning images taken at her home in the South-West of France, this is truly a book to treasure.

Dany’s memoir/ cookbook begins its journey around Bordeaux in the fifties with a picture of a childhood in provincial France filled with tradition and the memories of a way of life which has largely disappeared. From Bordeaux she travelled to Paris and then on to Australia. Dany started up the first real French bistro in Sydney in 1970 called “Upstairs”. The more chic “Au Chabrol” followed in Darlinghurst, and then “Glenella” in the Blue Mountains, the first guest house praised for its great food. Then came “Cleopatra”, a guest house hailed not only for its outstanding food but for its beautiful interiors, becoming a pilgrimage site for foodies.

After a highly successful seventeen-year reign at “Cleopatra” Dany  returned to rural France, the gastronomic centre of Europe, to continue her life-long love affair with sensational cooking.

Both a cookbook and a memoir (and a work of art), Dany Chouet’s So French is beautifully published by Murdoch books.

Rights: World: Murdoch Books

Helen Caldicott

caldicott-nuclear-cvrDoctor, anti-nuclear activist, and author of three books on nuclear energy and the environment, Helen Caldicott is the founder of Physicians for Social Responsibility.

Her autobiography A Passionate Life was published by Random House in 1996.

She is writing a new book on the continuing nuclear arms race and the dangers of the anti-ballistic missile system now proposed for the United States. The New Nuclear Danger was published by Simon & Schuster in the United States and Scribe Publications in Australia in 2002.

Her latest work Nuclear Power is Not the Answer was released by Melbourne University Press in 2006.

Martin Sheen says ‘In a world where dark and dangerous forces are threatening our planet, Helen Caldicott shines a powerful light. This much-needed book reveals truths that confirm that we must take positive action now if we are to make a difference.’

Rights: various

John Bryson

John BrysonJohn lectures in law, literary journalism, and fiction, acts on advisory panels to government, NGOs, and universities, and on literary judging panels. At the end of the millennium, a Schools of Journalism panel included him in ‘The 100 Journalists of the Century’. He was awarded the Order of Australia in 2014.

John Bryson achieved international acclaim with Evil Angels, his celebrated book on the disappearance of Azaria Chamberlain. It was also released as a major film starring Meryl Streep and Sam Neill. Hodder Headline Australia released a new edition of Evil Angels in 2000.

chamberlain-and-photoWhen John followed the Azaria Chamberlain case through the early eighties, the moment of greatest shock for him came at the conclusion of the trial. Weeks of detailed evidence from the Defence had conclusively demonstrated the profound errors of procedure that the police forensic scientists had committed. However, the jury utterly ignored the facts, and found Lindy Chamberlain guilty of murdering her baby. It was this triumph of prejudice over truth, so nakedly revealed in the jury’s decision, that spurred John on to write the book Evil Angels. It became a turning point in public opinion. Not merely exposing the flaws in the conviction, it above all demonstrated that despite Australians’ belief in their sense of fairness, prejudice can overwhelm us. [Photo: the Chamberlains with a photo of Lindy and her baby.]

John Bryson’s novel, To the Death, Amic, was published by Viking/Penguin in Australia and the UK in 1994.

His Whoring Around was published by Penguin in 1981.

A collection of reportage, Backstage at the Revolution and Twelve Other Reports, was published by Penguin in 1988.

He originated the production and wrote the courtroom scenario for the TV special Secrets of the Jury Room for SBSTV 2004.

Rights: various

Colin Bisset: Not Always to Plan (ebook only)

bisset-plan-cvrDeath and marriage, money and love: this family is about to find out what happens when their lives collide with the unexpected.

The Dorman family lives a humdrum existence in a surfing suburb of Sydney until they are rocked by upheaval. Change is inevitable, but is it welcome? All that is certain is that each member of the family will have to confront new truths about themselves, some less comfortable than others. Set against a backdrop of Sydney’s stunning beaches, the architecture of Europe and the enchanting beauty of southern India, this warmly humorous book tackles what happens when life doesn’t go exactly to plan.

Colin Bisset was born in the UK and studied History of Art at the University of East Anglia. Since moving to Australia in 1996, he has discovered a love for astonishingly noisy bird life, brilliant sunshine and ocean breezes while never quite shaking off that British ability to find fault in absolutely everything.

Would you like to buy the book? Try any of these: A Momentum e-book, available from: Amazon (Kindle), Amazon UK (Kindle), Booki.sh (Any connected device including Kindle), iBookstore (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch), and Kobo (All devices except Kindle). family / general fiction / women’s fiction; ISBN 9781743342053; Release Date: 1 April 2013, Ebook RRP $4.99 AUD

Rights: World: various (ebook only)

Scott Bennett: Pozières: The ANZAC Story

bennett-scott-pozieres-cvrIn 1916, one million men fought in the first battle of the Somme. Victory hinged on their ability to capture a small village called Pozières, perched on the highest ridge of the battlefield. After five attempts to seize it, the British called in the Anzacs to complete this seemingly impossible task.

At midnight on 23 July 1916, thousands of Australians stormed and took Pozières. Forty-five days later they were relieved, having suffered 23,000 casualties to gain a few miles of barren, lunar landscape.

Despite the toll, the capture of Pozières was heralded as a stunning tactical victory. Yet for the exhausted survivors, the war-weary public, and the families of the dead and maimed, victory came at such terrible cost it seemed indistinguishable from defeat.

Genre: History

Rights: World: Scribe at http://www.scribepublications.com.au/

Katrina Beikoff

Katrina Beikoff

May Tang: A New Australian
May Tang cover

Born in the Year of the Snake, May Tang is like flowing water when she should have more fire. A dreamer, she will never be sensible and obedient like her elder sister Jie Jie or clever like her brother Peter, studying in Australia. But her parents are worried by rumoured events in China, and May finds herself on her way to a new life in Sydney. It is so different that May wonders if she will ever be able to love this new country.

Genre: Young Adults

Rights: Australia and New Zealand: Scholastic.


No Chopsticks Required:
‘Do they have spaghetti in Shanghai?’ I asked. ‘Do they have olive oil, cereal or nappies?’

In 2008, award-winning journalist Katrina Beikoff accepted a one-year job on the English language newspaper the Shanghai Daily. Katrina, her partner and their young family dived into a bustling Shanghai without a plan or, frankly, a clue as to what to expect. No Chopsticks Required is Katrina’s account of her startling year in contemporary China and her best efforts to forge a life as a foreigner.

beikoff-chopsticksIn what would prove to be a tumultuous year Katrina witnessed a range of major events: a massive, once-in-a-lifetime snow storm, a devastating earthquake which killed over 80,000 people, the Tibetan uprising, the Beijing Olympics, the melamine-tainted milk scandal, government censorship of the media and the Chinese response to the beginnings of the global financial crisis.

Alongside these international news-making events Katrina describes her attempts to look after her family while overcoming a multitude of quirky and unusual occurrences that made up Shanghai daily life. Katrina’s personal observations of China and its people are as insightful and amusing as they are fascinating.

Katrina Beikoff is a Walkley-award winning journalist, columnist, communications consultant and mother of two. In 2000 she won Australia’s top journalism award for exposing CJ Hunter, America’s world shot-put champion and the husband of disgraced sprint champ Marion Jones, as a drug cheat. She now lives with her family on Queensland’s Gold Coast writing for various publications not owned by the Chinese Communist Party

Genre: memoir

Rights: Australia and New Zealand: Finch Publishing at http://www.finch.com.au/