That’s a lovely image, Melissa…But could you delete lyn’s email address? Spammers, that’s why.
That’s a lovely image, Melissa…But could you delete lyn’s email address? Spammers, that’s why.
Mark Isaacs went to work inside the Nauru detention centre in 2012. As a Salvation Army employee, he provided humanitarian aid to the men interned in the camp. What he saw there moved him to write this book.
The Undesirables chronicles his time on Nauru, detailing daily life and the stories of the men held there; the self-harm, suicide attempts, and riots; the rare moments of joy; the moments of deep despair. He takes us behind the gates of Nauru and humanises a political debate usually ruled by misleading rhetoric.
In a strange twist of fate, Mark’s father, Professor David Isaacs, travelled to Nauru in December 2014 to investigate how children were treated in detention. This revised edition of The Undesirables reveals the human rights abuses Professor Isaacs discovered on Nauru, and interrogates how little has changed for people in detention.
Mark Isaacs is a writer, a community worker, an adventurer, and a campaigner for social justice. He resigned from the Salvation Army in June 2013 and spoke out publicly against the government’s ‘No Advantage’ policy. After returning from Nauru, Mark worked at an asylum seeker settlement agency in Sydney.
Mark appeared in Eva Orner’s 2016 documentary Chasing Asylum and has written for Foreign Policy, World Policy Journal, Huffington Post, New Internationalist, Mamamia, New Matilda and VICE.
Tamora Pierce is an American writer of fantasy fiction for teenagers, known best for stories featuring young heroines. She made a name for herself with her first book series, The Song of the Lioness (1983–1988), which followed the main character Alanna through the trials and triumphs of training as a knight. Many of her books have feminist themes.
The story of Mary Poppins, the quintessentially English and utterly magical children’s nanny, is remarkable enough. She flew into the lives of the Banks family in a children’s book that is now hailed as a classic, then became a household name when Julie Andrews stepped into the starring role in Disney’s hugely successful film. Now she is a musical sensation all over again in ‘Mary Poppins’, the musical. But the story of Mary Poppins’s creator is just as unexpected and outstanding.
The fabulous nanny was conceived by an Australian, Pamela Lyndon Travers, who in 1924 left Sydney for London, where her career as a writer blossomed.
She travelled in the elite literary circles of the time and, most famously, clashed with Walt Disney over the adaptation of her books into film. Disney accused her of vanity for ‘thinking you know more about Mary Poppins than I do’. This struggle formed the center of the recent movie “Saving Mister Banks”, starring Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson.
Like her mysterious character, Travers remained inscrutable and enigmatic to the end of her ninety-six remarkable years. Valerie Lawson’s illuminating biography provides the only glimpse into the mind of a writer who fervently believed that ‘Everyday life is the miracle’.
In 2006 she completed a new novel Backtracking, set in and around Port Hedland in the inhospitable far North of Australia. This book was published by Allen & Unwin in 2008.
Her latest novel is Harmless:
“With the right kind of mindfulness, William Blake tells us, one can behold infinity in a grain of sand. In the grainy bush tracks of the outer eastern suburbs of Perth, the whole canvas of contemporary Australian life — its ethnic diversity, its violence, its growing divisions of class and economic status, its convoluted history of linkage with South East Asia — is made vivid and visible in this remarkable novella. In sensual prose, van Loon presents a gallery of characters whose lives are as grim as they are compelling, whose small acts of resistance and resilience loom large and beautiful and heroic.”
— Janette Turner Hospital
Photo: Julienne van Loon, 2004.
The Torch Melbourne, 1960: Mrs Blayney and her twelve-year-old son live in South Richmond. At least, they did, until their house burnt down. The prime suspect – one Keith Aloysius Gonzaga Kavanagh, also aged twelve – has mysteriously disappeared. Our narrator, the Blayney kid, sets off on a covert mission to find young Keith, whom he privately dubs ‘Flame Boy’, to save him from the small army of irate locals (not to mention his mother) who want to see him put away.
Flame Boy has not only made himself scarce, but he’s done so with a very important briefcase of secrets, which the kid is keen to get hold of for his grandfather, a shady character who has some secrets of his own. But the kid has got a lot going on: he’s also organising a new gang of kids; coping with the ups and downs of having a girlfriend (who likes to kiss – a lot); trying to avoid Keith’s dangerous prison-escapee father, Fergus Kavanagh, who is suspected of selling secrets to the Russians; and all the while wondering how he can get his hands on the most beautiful object in the world – the Melbourne Olympic Torch.
A madcap, brilliantly shambolic and irresistibly fun novel about loss, discovery and living life to the full, The Torch is a ripper of a ride.
The Cartographer: Melbourne, 1959: An 11-year-old boy witnesses a murder as he spies through the window of a strange house. God, whom he no longer counts as a friend, obviously has a pretty screwed-up sense of humour: just one year before, the boy had looked on helplessly as his twin brother, Tom, suffered a violent death.
Now, having been seen by the angry murderer, he is a kid on the run. He takes refuge in the dark drains and grimy tunnels beneath the city, transforming himself into a series of superheroes and creating a rather unreliable map to plot out places where he is unlikely to cross paths with the bogeyman.
Peter Twohig was born in Melbourne in 1948. He survived a Catholic education, and worked in the Australian Public Service until 1992. He then moved to Sydney to become a naturopath and homoeopath. He has degrees in philosophy and complementary medicine. The Cartographer is his first novel.
Australia / New Zealand rights held by Harper Collins/Fourth Estate
Overseas rights available through ALM
Kirsten Tranter, Hold
‘Sensual, spooky, and utterly beguiling: Hold is an enormously powerful work of art, an intimate portrait of grief and betrayal.’ — Ceridwen Dovey, author of Only the Animals
Three years ago, Shelley’s lover, Conrad, died in a surfing accident. Now, still in a state of subdued grief, Shelley has just moved into an old Victorian terrace in Paddington with David, her new partner, trying for a new beginning. At home one morning, Shelley discovers a door to a small intriguing room, which is not on the plans. There is a window, a fireplace and a beautiful chandelier. But nothing else. When Shelley meets a man who seems to be Conrad’s uncanny double, the mysterious room begins to dominate her world, becoming a focus for her secret fantasies and fears, offering an escape which also threatens to become a trap. A waking dream of a novel, Hold is spellbinding, sensual and unsettling.
‘Hold is an uncanny tale and a compelling story of unresolved grief in a structure so perfectly calibrated that it’s like being at the centre of an unfolding flower. Written with great delicacy and restraint, Hold is intensely evocative of Sydney and its disorienting subtropical strangeness.’ — Amanda Lohrey
Praise for The Legacy
‘[Kirsten Tranter’s] first novel, The Legacy, shows her to be a novelist with a commanding talent — a tough plain-stylist who can people her fictional world with characters of great vivacity and vigour … Full of suave and stunning evocations of Sydney and Manhattan, this sparkling and spacious novel captures the smell and sap of young people half in love with everyone they’re vividly aware of, and groping to find themselves… like the answer to an erotic enigma’ — Peter Craven, The Monthly
‘This hypnotic debut from Australian author Tranter pays homage to Henry James’s A Portrait of a Lady while offering a suspenseful story line worthy of Patricia Highsmith… While Tranter’s sedate pacing avoids typical thriller antics and conventional crime plot twists, she raises some wickedly keen questions about art world wheeling and dealing’ — Publishers Weekly
‘An intelligent and engaging novel that is dense, intricate, detailed, acutely observed, and beautifully written in a voice that is measured and consistent from start to finish’ — Debra Adelaide, author of The Household Guide to Dying
‘The Legacy never lacks self-assurance or narrative drive’ — Sydney Morning Herald
‘[Tranter is] an innovative revisionist unafraid of challenge and more than up for the risks, tempering the satisfaction of the known with the surprises of the new … The Legacy is an entertaining literary thriller that skilfully describes the almost pleasurable pain of love and life denied’ — Weekend Australian
They were originally five close friends, bonded in college, still coming together for their annual trip to Las Vegas. This year they are four. Four friends, sharing a common loss: Dylan’s tragic death. A common loss that, upon their arrival in Vegas, will bring with it a common threat: one that will make them question who their departed friend really was, and whether he is even worthy of their grief.
A Common Loss is Kirsten Tranter’s follow-up to her critically acclaimed debut, The Legacy. Yet again, Tranter’s weave of watertight prose and literary sensibilities shows her to be a born writer with a precocious control of storytelling and style.
A Common Loss: Fourth Estate / HarperCollins
The Legacy explores the complex workings of love and friendship, and asks whether it is possible to escape or to transform our scripted fate. Julia Alpers, a young woman from Sydney, travels to New York in August 2002 at the request of her friend Ralph to search for answers about their friend, his cousin Ingrid. Ingrid inherited a fortune when she was twenty-one and married Gil Grey, a charismatic dealer in the New York art world with a teenage daughter, Fleur, a child art prodigy. Ingrid has been missing since September 11, 2001, presumed dead in the destruction of the Twin Towers.
A literary mystery, The Legacy reshapes the plot of Henry James’ novel The Portrait of a Lady into a study of ambivalence and desire, loss and possibility.
‘This is the most satisfying novel I’ve read all year. I can’t wait to see what she does next.’ – Hannah Francis, Australian Bookseller and Publisher
The Legacy was placed on the long list for the Miles Franklin Prize.
The Legacy: Australia/New Zealand rights: Harper Collins Australia
World rights other than Australia/New Zealand rights: Simon and Schuster
US: The Legacy was published in the US under the Atria inprint in 2010
UK: Quercus published The Legacy in the UK in 2011.
Kirsten Tranter completed a PhD in English (on English Renaissance poetry) at Rutgers University and has divided her time between New York, Sydney and Berkeley for the past ten years. You can follow Kirsten’s internet diary at www.kirstentranter.com
Goon of Fortune is one of those games that people cracked out at parties when everyone is already too maggot to realise what a pointless game it is. A bunch of people circle the Hills Hoist and you peg a bladder of cheap wine to the line. People take turns spinning the clothes line and whoever the wine sack lands in front of has to scull for five seconds!
Over the course of one blazing summer, Jez runs a gauntlet of new experiences and discovers the real meaning of home. Filled with humour, brilliant observations and raw revelations, Snake Bite is a contemporary Puberty Blues, the coming-of-age story of a wild teenager in a Canberra you never dreamed existed. It will sink its fangs into you, inject you with its intoxicating venom, and never let you go.
‘There is a rush to reading this novel of suburban youth. The language has a ferocious energy; there is a real kick to it.’ — Christos Tsiolkas, author of The Slap
World Rights: Allen and Unwin
Photo: Christie Thompson
Kerry Stokes came into the world with no advantages. Unlike his rival magnates, he built his empire from nothing. But what has he discarded along the way?
Journalism at the Crossroads
The Australian mainstream press is in crisis, and the future of Australian journalism is uncertain. In response to plunging sales and profitability, and an inexorable increase in online and social-media platforms, the Fairfax and News Limited organisations have embarked on major cost-cutting and restructuring exercises.
World rights: Scribe
Margaret Simons’ first novel The Ruthless Garden won the Angus and Robertson Bookworld prize for new novelists in 1993.
A collection of her gardening columns, titled Wheelbarrows, was published by New Holland in 1999.
Her last novel was The Truth Teller.
Margaret’s investigative book on the inner workings of the parliamentary press gallery in Canberra, Fit to Print, was released in 1999 by UNSW Press.
In 2003 Hodder Headline released The Meeting of the Waters: Secret Women’s Business. Australia is the world’s oldest continent. The Murray is its longest river. The Meeting of the Waters is the story of what happened at the mouth of the Murray, when modern western European culture met older indigenous ways in a dispute about the building of a bridge.
A recent title is Resurrection in a Bucket, a book on the philosophy and implications of composting, published by Allen & Unwin.
Margaret has also completed a Quarterly Essay for Black Inc. on Mark Latham.
Her biography of Malcolm Fraser was published by Melbourne University Press in 2010 and won the Book of the Year award in the 2011 New South Wales Premiers’ awards.
… reveals the echoes between past and present through the story of one ordinary street and its families, from the pre-war innocence of early 1914 to the painful and grim consequences of the Vietnam War.
In only three short generations, working horses and wagons are lost to cars, wood-fired ovens are replaced by electric stoves, and the lessons learned at such cost in the Great War seem forgotten. But despite all the changes, the essential human things remain: there will always be families and friends reaching out for connection; people will always have secrets to keep hidden from view; and desire and love are as inevitable as war and violence.
Christopher Morgan has been a singer in a French restaurant, an artificial tree builder, a kitchen hand, a fire brigade roster clerk and a printing factory storeroom worker. In 1996 Christopher was diagnosed with a brain tumour and found that the only thing that was improved by the tumour was his imagination and decided to put it to good use. His first novel, The Island of Four Rivers, was published in June 2006 by Scribe.
His children’s story Pirates Eat Porridge was published by Allen & Unwin in 2006 with a follow-up story Pirates Drive Buses in 2007.
“I woke with a gasp. And lay in the dark, open-mouthed, holding my breath. That feeling… that feeling was indescribable. For a moment I had felt as if I were falling… falling into bliss.”
All his life, Richard Kline has been haunted by a sense that something is lacking. He envies the ease with which others slip into contented suburban life or the pursuit of wealth. As he moves into middle age, Richard grows angry, cynical, depressed.
But then a strange event awakens him to a different way of life. He finds himself on a quest, almost against his will, to resolve the ‘divine discontent’ he has suffered since childhood. From pharmaceuticals to New Age therapies to finding a guru, Richard’s journey dramatises the search for meaning in today’s world. This audacious novel is an exploration of masculinity, the mystical and our very human yearning for something more. It is hypnotic, nuanced and Amanda Lohrey’s finest offering yet – a pilgrim’s progress for the here and now.
Amanda Lohrey’s Reading Madame Bovary is her first collection of short fiction. A woman finds her everyday life engulfed by vivid fantasies, a businessman explores new ways to deal with his rage, a young woman is stuck on a boat with a bunch of delinquents, a diary is discovered, a commune goes wrong…
World rights: Black Ink. Contact: Sophy Williams http://www.blackincbooks.com/
Vertigo: This beautifull written novella tells the story of Luke and Anna, who decide they no longer want to live in the city and seek refuge in a sleepy settlement on the coast. There they build a new life amid the beauty and danger of the natural world. But the country is not what it seems from a distance as they begin to realise once they are faced with the dangers of the environment.
World rights: Black Ink. Contact: Sophy Williams http://www.blackincbooks.com/
In 1995 Amanda’s novel Camille’s Bread was published to high critical acclaim by HarperCollins. It won the Victorian Premier’s Prize for Fiction and the Gold Medal of the Australian Literature Society, and has remained in print since publication.
‘A novel about love and noodles, dreams and responsibilities. A contemplative, wry and tender book.’ — Philippa Hawker, Marie Claire
Her 2004 novel The Philosopher’s Doll focuses on a modern dilemma: a married couple have to choose whether they should have children, and if so when? In a short but complex novel about the timeless conundrum of free will, Amanda explores the postmodern condition of hi-tech affluence where there is such a thing as too much choice. Or is it only the illusion of choice?
Amanda Lohrey is one of Australias leading literary fiction writers. She has published five novels: The Morality of Gentlemen, The Reading Group, Camille’s Bread (which won the Australian Literature Society’s Gold Medal), The Philosopher’s Doll (Penguin, 2004) and Vertigo. She has also written two Quarterly Essays, Groundswell and Voting for Jesus. In 2012 she was awarded the PAtrick White Literary Award.
Failed writer Frank Cole can barely remember Lettah. When his family left Zimbabwe, their beloved servant was gradually forgotten. Now, forty years on, Frank has been set a mysterious task in his mother’s will: he must find Lettah and deliver her bequest. As he pieces together Lettah’s fate, Frank begins to see the new Zimbabwe – and himself – in the delicate chemistry between meaning and hope.
Graham Lang was born in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. He is the author of Clouds Like Black Dogs and Place of Birth, which was longlisted for the Sunday Times Prize, South Africa’s premier literary award.
An accomplished artist, he has exhibited widely and taught art in both Australia and South Africa. Graham has lived in Australia since 1990.
His website: http://www.grahamlang.webs.com
Susan is an award-winning travel editor and columnist at The Australian newspaper.
Her debut novel Coronation Talkies was published by Penguin in 2004. This is a rollicking story set in India and featuring the indefatigable Mrs Banerjee, whose obsession with the glamorous age of Hollywood has left her just a little divorced from the real world.
A hilarious over-the-top novel, full of lies, lust and seduction, that will entrance all those who are interested in the British Raj.
A UK edition was released in 2007.
Susan is currently working on a sequel to this book, which is also contracted to Penguin.
Rights available: US and translation.
This is the story of John Wonder, a man with three families, each one kept secret from the other, each one containing two children, a boy and a girl. As he travels from family to family in different cities, he works as an Authenticator, verifying world records, confirming facts, setting things straight, while his own life is a teetering tower of astonishing lies and betrayals. The Wonder Lover is a stunning novel that again and magnificently confirms Malcolm Knox as one of our brightest stars, an imaginative tour de force that ranks alongside the best work of Nabokov, Amis, Ireland and Carey.
‘It is a compulsive and thrilling read, a dazzling achievement. There is a word that should be used very rarely but I believe is absolutely right for this book: The Wonder Lover is superb.’ — Christos Tsiolkas, author of The Slap.
Bradman’s War told how the 1948 invincibles turned the cricket pitch into a battlefield. The Australian and English Test cricketers who fought and survived together in World War II came home knowing the difference between sport and war. They planned to resume the Ashes in a new spirit of friendship. Australia’s legendary captain had something else in mind.
World Rights: Penguin Australia
Now bloated and paranoid, former champion surfer and legend Dennis Keith is holed up in a retirement village, shuffling to the shop for an ice lolly every day, barely existing behind his aviator sunnies and crazy OCD rules, and trying not to think about the waves he’d made his own and the breaks he once ruled like a god. Out of the blue, a young would-be biographer comes knocking and stirs up memories he thought he’d buried. It takes Dennis a while to realise that she’s not there to write his story at all. The Life has been published by Allen and Unwin in Australia and Allen and Unwin/ Atlantic Books in the UK.
‘(his) new novel, The Life, is alternately evocative and lacerating, tender and unflinching, a gloriously honest, brutal and moving story of a man who was at the top of his game and then pissed it all away… Malcolm Knox is one of the best novelists writing in the world today.’ — Christos Tsiolkas
‘Funny, heartbreaking and humane, The Life confirms what the Literary Review has known all along — Knox is, quite simply a fabulous writer’.
Malcolm was named as one of 2001’s Best Young Novelists by the Sydney Morning Herald for his first novel, Summerland, which was published by Random House in 2004 and sold into the U.K. and U.S.A by Picador. It was published in Germany, Italy, Argentina and The Netherlands.
He is the author of eleven previous books including the novels Summerland, Adult Book, winner of a Ned Kelly Award, and Jamaica (Random House Australia, 2007) winner of the Colin Roderick Award. His nonfiction books include Secrets of the Jury Room and Scattered: The Inside Story of Ice in Australia. Formerly literary editor of The Sydney Morning Herald, he has twice won Walkley awards for journalism and been runner-up for the Australian Journalist of the Year award. He lives in Sydney with his wife and two children.
“As a remembrance of things past, Knox’s novel is exquisite, blending a lyricism and exuberance of language with subtle undertones that point towards the denouement… Summerland works on many levels and Knox is, quite simply, a fabulous writer.” — Literary Review, UK
Scattered, the terrifying story of ‘ice’ or “speed” in Australia, was published by Allen and Unwin in 2008.
Cricket in the early years was fraught with often violent Australian-English rivalry, gambling, match-fixing, cheating and bitter politics. It was cricket in the raw. Full of colourful characters and with a genuine affection for the legends of the day — players like WG Grace, Fred Spofforth and Victor Trumper are among those finely drawn by Malcolm Knox — Never a Gentlemen’s Game brings to life the crusades against chucking; the short and often tragic lives of many of the early Test cricketers; the riots on the field, and fisticuffs behind the scenes; and the lust for money on all sides.
World Rights: Hardie Grant
It is narrated by the seamstress GoGo Sligo, who is one of the funniest, wisest observers of all time — with a unique and spellbinding voice. As GoGo listens and sews, she is also helping her fellow citizens cheat and lie to their husbands and wives. She’s covering their tracks so they won’t be found out.
Rights: US; UK/Translation: c/- Wenona Byrne at http://www.allenandunwin.com/.
Anne Kennedy’s first novel was an experimental work titled 100 Traditional Smiles (Victoria University Press 1988). She then went on to write Musica Ficta (UQP 1993) and A Boy and His Uncle (Picador Australia 1998). Her most recent work was the screenplay for The Monkey’s Mask, a highly successful film based on Dorothy Porter’s verse novel. Anne is also a well known and award winning poet.
Lyn’s fourth novel, Flock (HarperCollins Australia, 2011), takes as its background the world of wallpaper, as it interweaves the story of the talented Sprigge family with that of four young conservators who come together to restore an historic house and find themselves in turn restored. Flock ranges freely between the French Revolution, Victorian England and the Blue Mountains.
Lyn’s earlier novel The Bright House (Random House, 2000) is set in South Africa, and explores the devastation caused by a passion that crosses the borders of racial segregation and the trauma following the stillbirth of a child.
Her first two novels were The Factory (1990), shortlisted for the National Book Council’s New Writers’ Award, and One-Way Mirrors (1993).
Lyn was born in Wales in 1952, and spent eighteen years in South Africa before settling in Australia in 1982.
You can visit her web site here: http://www.lynhughes.com.au/.
Martin and Maggie, a judge and an artist, have forged a life together for thirty-seven years. They have a son who is a successful lawyer and a grandson to dote on. Life is good, comfortable, familiar.
But one day Martin leaves a family lunch and drives to a suburb miles away, to a particular house in a particular street, where an accident triggers a chain of events…
World Rights: Allen and Unwin
Sarah’s novel Speak to Me was released by Penguin in May 2010. Michael, a psychiatrist, is trying to put his life together after a brain tumour. His lawyer wife Elizabeth is wrestling with her new role as breadwinner. Their children are acting out the chaos their parents refuse to confront. This is the story of a troubled daughter who cannot talk to her mother, a mother who does not know how to listen, a father who listens but cannot see, and a son who will only talk to God.
The Crimes of Billy Fish: Billy Fish is granted parole. After serving three years for a violent robbery he walks out of the prison gates. His life has revolved around drugs, crime and custody, while his sister Rose has lived a structured existence working and caring for her son. When Rose’s life unravels after a tragic accident, it is up to Billy to leave his crimes behind him and to find the strength to save his sister.
Sarah Hopkins has worked in the area of social justice and prisoner rights for 15 years. She is currently working as a lawyer with the Aboriginal Legal Service in Sydney.
Fresh and new and full of shocking beauty, Karen Hitchcock’s debut collection of thirteen short stories Little White Slips was published by Pan MacMillan in 2010 and was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Literary Award (Glenda Adams Award for new writing) and for the Dobbie Award for a first published work by a woman author of “life writing”.
Karen’s stories are painful to read in their honesty, and yet they are also at times hilarious and crazy. The narrative moves at an exhilarating pace and just when you think it will spin out, deftly turns a corner and becomes quietly gratifying and beautiful.
Australia and New Zealand rights: Pan Macmillan
Karen is a medical registrar at the John Hunter Hospital and a lecturer in Medicine at the University of Newcastle, and has also completed her PhD in English/Creative Writing at the University of Newcastle. Her intelligent, wry and frequently surprising stories often draw on her background as a doctor, giving her work idiosyncratic insights that make for compelling reading.
Margaret Harris held positions in the Department of English, University of Sydney, including the Challis Chair of English Literature, from 1969 to 2007. Since 2007, she has been Director of Research Development, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, at the University of Sydney.
Her major research projects have in common intensive investigation of the manuscripts of creative writers. Her research in Victorian fiction has established new interpretations of the careers of two major authors, George Eliot and George Meredith, based on original analysis of their unpublished writings such as notebooks and diaries, and knowledgeable and imaginative commentary on their novels. These contributions to the field were put into circulation initially in scholarly editions of previously unpublished writings, as well as of editions of each writer’s novels. Both The Journals of George Eliot (1998, with Judith Johnston) and The Notebooks of George Meredith (1983, with Gillian Beer) expand the published corpus of the work of the author, and provide insight into the creation and production of the work.
Professor Harris has published also on Australian authors, notably Christina Stead, in articles and a major collection of letters, Dearest Munx: The Letters of Christina Stead and William J. Blake (2005). She is currently engaged in an ARC-funded project on Patrick White in collaboration with Elizabeth Webby, which includes an edition of his working notebooks and publication of an unfinished novel, The Hanging Garden, in 2012, the centenary of White’s birth.
The French Perfumer
by Amanda Hampson
‘Shorthand typist required by English speaker in the South of France. Live-in, full board plus salary commensurate with experience.’
Iris Turner, an unworldly young Englishwoman, arrives in the French Riviera to take up a secretarial role for the mysterious Hammond Brooke. Living in a small, exclusive hotel among eccentric and unpredictable aristocrats and struggling to gain her employer’s trust, she soon realises that nothing is as it seems.
Initiated into the mysterious world of perfume, she finds herself entangled in a web of intrigue and deception. Gradually discovering the truth, she gains a new understanding of the meaning of love, loyalty and betrayal.
By the bestselling author of The Olive Sisters, this is a captivating and evocative novel full of surprising twists and turns.
Praise for Amanda Hampson:
‘Perfect pacing and well-drawn characters make this novel an engaging and moving read.’ — New Idea
‘You won’t want to put it down so make sure you have plenty of time to sit, relax and enjoy.’ — Italianicious
‘A warm, richly told story…a lovely heart-warming read’ — Manly Daily
The Olive Sisters
Two For the Road
“I open the gate and walk into the field… As the sun pours a river of light down this valley, I realise there are hundreds and hundreds of trees and I’ve seen those silver leaves before, not here in Australia, but shimmering in the groves that grace the terraced hillsides of Tuscany!”
When Adrienne’s marketing company goes down, her lifestyle does too. She retreats from the city to the beautiful, abandoned olive grove once owned by her Italian grandparents. A ‘tree change’ isn’t what Adrienne has in mind, however, and life in the country delivers some surprises as she confronts the past and learns the secrets of the Olive Sisters…
Old loves, new loves, warm toast and rich traditions are all part of the delicious blend of this absorbing story.
You can read an excerpt from the book on Amanda’s Internet site at http://www.amandahampson.com/, as well as a Q&A with Amanda, and a discussion for reading groups.
The Olive Sisters was published by Penguin in 2006 and has been contracted to Heyne in Germany.
When Cassie Munrow fled her hometown of Bilkara to follow the charismatic Dan to the other side of the world, she never expected to return. Now, devastated by revelations of Dan’s betrayal and the news of a brutal attack on her father, she returns home with nothing left to lose.
Against her better judgement, she finds herself battling to save the family business. In the midst of her struggle, Cassie is reunited with her first love, Mack, who forces her to confront a guilty secret and the tragic past they share.
HarperCollins Australia published her translation of Gao Xingjian’s novel Soul Mountain in June 2000. It won the NSW Premier’s Prize for Translation in 2001. HarperCollins released Soul Mountain in hardcover in the US and printed 85,000 copies to meet demand in the first two months of publication. HarperCollins UK released their edition early in 2001.
Mabel’s translation of Gao’s next novel, One Man’s Bible, was published by HarperCollins in the US, UK and Australia in 2002.
Buying a Fishing Rod for my Grandfather, a beautiful collection of Gao’s short stories, was translated by Mabel and published by HarperCollins in Australia, the U.K. and the U.S.A. in 2004.
Nobel Prize for Literature 2000
Gao Xingjian was born in China but now lives in France. It was there that his novel La Montagne de L’ame or Soul Mountain was originally published and became a best-seller, going into three editions. Mabel Lee’s English language translation of the novel was first published by HarperCollins Publishers Australia in July 2000 (see below).
Mabel Lee is represented by Australian Literary Management, and ALM is the lead agent for the English language translation of Soul Mountain.
Following links from the SAMPLES page above, you can read the first chapter of Soul Mountain on this website, as well as Mabel’s perceptive and informative Introduction to the book, and the Swedish Academy’s bibliographical note published on the occasion of the 2000 Nobel Prize.
“On the traveller’s journey to Soul Mountain he visits a nature reserve, listens to toothless old men and women squatting along the river banks, hears atrocious stories which make up the history of the country: women violated by outlaws of the Red Army, women who know how to embroider but who have guns hidden under their clothes, women with flashing eyes hungry for love, young women singing for the festival of the boat dragons, women who threaten their unfaithful lovers with a knife. Portraits of these admirable women punctuate the journey in the form of temptations towards drunkenness, nostalgias and violent sexuality.” (Le Figaro, 11/1/96)
Gao’s second novel One Man’s Bible focuses the political horrors of the twentieth century through the lens of desire and memory. It has received rave reviews in the US.
Gao has also released a beautiful collection of short stories Buying a Fishing Rod for my Grandfather, HarperCollins 2004.
The Case for Literature, a collection of Gao Xingjian’s essays, including his Nobel Laureate address, was released by HarperCollins Australia in 2006 and has been contracted to Yale University Press.
ALM represents the English language translations of Gao’s novels internationally.
Gao Xingjian is also known as a painter with a strong yet subtle style. You can view some of his watercolors on the website of the Art Gallery La Tour des Cardinaux in France, at http://www.cardinaux.com/site_eng/gao_eng.htm
The novel opens with Annie and Marc driving through the pouring rain. They are having a row and have decided the best solution would be to separate. When they arrive home they hear their son upstairs on the computer. The door bell rings and the son, Charlie, races downstairs to answer it.
A policeman is standing in the doorway. He tells the boy there has been a car accident and both his parents are dead. And so begins a journey back in time to see if the course of their lives can be changed.
Susan Fraser trained as a lawyer. She taught French and English in Sydney and later in Paris. She now lives in Northern France with her son and her French husband. Déjà Vu has been sold into Germany, Russia and Turkey.
‘Dessaix is one of perhaps three Australian writers whose
every appearance in print is a not-to-be-missed event’
— Sydney Morning Herald
‘Dessaix is some kind of national treasure because he represents with a kind of Helpmann-like elegance and virtuosity
the side of our sensibilities we publicly repress’
— Peter Craven, Australian Book Review
‘Dessaix writes with great elegance, with passion,
compassion and sly wit’ — John Banville
One Sunday night in Sydney, Robert Dessaix collapses on a Darlinghurst pavement, and is helped to his hotel by a kind young man wearing a T-shirt that says FUCK YOU. What follows are weeks in hospital, tubes and cannulae puncturing his body, as he recovers from the heart attack threatening daily to kill him. While lying in the hospital bed, Robert chances upon Philip Larkin’s poem ‘Days’.
What, he muses, have his days been for?
What and whom has he loved – and why?
This is vintage Robert Dessaix.
His often surprisingly funny recollections range over topics as eclectic as intimacy, travel, spirituality, enchantment, language and childhood, all woven through with a heightened sense of mortality.
“The pleasure and elegance of all Dessaix’s writing is in the language, the erudition, the delicate, often unexpected and lovely connections, and the intimate, conversational voice. Anyone who listened to him during his decade as presenter of the ABC’s Books and Writing program will immediately ‘hear’ him.
“What Days are For is an illuminating companion to A Mother’s Disgrace (1994), which recounted Dessaix’s childhood as a much-loved adopted son, his early studies and travels, but mainly his sense of emptiness until he finds his birth mother and a new identity. He notes: ‘I would like to move hearts, not just minds.’ And he does.”
— Agnes Nieuwenhuizen, in The Australian
After teaching Russian language and literature in the 1970s and ’80s, and presenting the ABC’s Books and Writing program for ten years, he became a full-time writer in 1995. He lives in Hobart.
His autobiography, A Mother’s Disgrace, was published by HarperCollins in 1994.
Robert’s best-selling novel Night Letters was published to great success in Australia, U.K. and the U.S.A. as well as being translated into German, French, Italian, Dutch, Finnish and Portuguese. This was followed by Corfu, released by Scribners in the UK in 2001 and in the Netherlands by Muelenhoff.
Twilight of Love followed, which highlighted Robert’s fascination with Russia and in particular Russian writers. He is a fluent Russian speaker and his doctoral thesis was as study of the author Ivan Turgenev. In Twilight of Love he revisits the Europe he experienced more than twenty years ago and follows the footsteps of Turgenev. Robert weaves together Turgenev’s time in the nineteenth century, his own Soviet experience, and Russia as it is today. Released at the Melbourne Writers’ Week in 2004 by Pan Macmillan, it was also published in the UK by Simon and Schuster and in the US by Shoemaker and Hoard.
Robert’s next book (Pan Macmillan 2008) was Arabesques, based on the life and travels of Nobel Prize winning author André Gide. Part travel, part memoir, Arabesques explores Robert’s fascination with Gide’s attempt to find a balance between his homosexual desires and an almost puritanical core.
Robert’s recent collection of non-fiction, As I was Saying, is a swirling conversation with the reader on everything from travel to dogs and cats, from sport and swearing to the pleasures of idleness.
Is it better not to know?
Thirty-five-year-old Wren Fox lives with his mother, Bernie, in a run-down house in country Victoria. They’ve always led a simple life, unperturbed by the knowledge that others find them eccentric.
When Wren stumbles across an explicit blog page belonging to his employer’s sister, Madeline Stanley, his straightforward view of life is thrown into turmoil. Wren quickly becomes obsessed with Madeline’s two online journals and, upon discovering that a stalker is involved, finds himself behaving in unexpected ways.
With the knowledge he has covertly gained, he is eventually forced out of his shell and into action in ways he never could have anticipated — ways that will decide his own future and that of the Stanleys.
Rights: World: HarperCollins / Fourth Estate, 2013
The Pepper Gate
For successful artist Mallory Smith, painting has always been an escape — from his lonely childhood, his turbulent relationships with his three wives, and the birth of a daughter with a severe disability. But art is failing him now. The Pepper Gate is a compelling and unpredictable novel about building relationships and deconstructing the past.
Rights: Australia and New Zealand: University of Queensland Press, 2007
Stop Press: 2016: Coming Rain wins the NZ$50,000 Fiction Prize at Ockham NZ Book Awards
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
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.
Catherine Cole is Professor of Creative Writing, Creative Arts, University of Wollongong. She has published the novels The Grave at Thu Le, Skin Deep and Dry Dock, a memoir about A.D. Hope titled The Poet Who Forgot, and the non-fiction book Private Dicks and Feisty Chicks, an interrogation of crime fiction.
She also edited The Perfume River: Writing from Vietnam and Fashion in Fiction with Karaminas and McNeil. Her short fiction and poetry have appeared in national journals and collections including Best Australian Stories.
She has been a member of the Australian Research Council’s ERA committee for Humanities and Creative Arts, has judged some of Australia’s leading literary awards, and has received international writing residencies in Paris and Hanoi.
John 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.
When 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.
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)
Artist Elizabeth Gould spent her life capturing the sublime beauty of birds the world had never seen before. But her legacy was eclipsed by the fame of her husband, John Gould. The Birdman’s Wife at last gives voice to a passionate and adventurous spirit who was so much more than the woman behind the man.
Elizabeth was a woman ahead of her time, juggling the demands of her artistic life with her roles as wife, lover, helpmate, and mother to an evergrowing brood of children. In a golden age of discovery, her artistry breathed wondrous life into hundreds of exotic new species, including Charles Darwin’s famous Galapagos finches.
In The Birdmans Wife, the naïive young girl who falls in love with a demanding and ambitious genius comes into her own as a woman, an artist and a bold adventurer who defies convention by embarking on a trailblazing expedition to collect and illustrate Australia’s ‘curious’ birdlife.
In this indelible portrait, an extraordinary woman overshadowed by history steps back into the light where she belongs.
Melissa Ashley is a writer, poet, birder and academic who tutors in poetry and creative writing at the University of Queensland. She has published a collection of poems, Hospital for Dolls, short stories, essays and articles. What started out as research for a PhD dissertation on Elizabeth Gould became a labour of love and her first novel, The Birdman’s Wife. Inspired by her heroine, she studied taxidermy as a volunteer at the Queensland Museum. Melissa lives in Brisbane.