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Lindy Jones
Lindy was awarded the inaugural Australian Bookseller Association Text Publishing Bookseller of the Year in 2011.
Trouble at Home: Georgia and the Dragon #1

Trouble at Home: Georgia and the Dragon #1

Cate Whittle

$9.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Okay, so the young reader in your life has done Tashi, and wants something with more text, that looks like a proper book, is imaginative without being old-fashioned, but still has illustrations. This will fit the bill! Georgia sees her house get stolen by a green dragon. Which is bad enough, but her little brother Godfrey was inside. No-one believes her though, so she sets out to rescue him, with her other brother, Henry. After she's done her research, of course! A delightful story, introducing Trouble the Dragon - there will be more adventures, and I certainly look forward to them! Lindy

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Ages and ages ago about two weeks since next Thursday a giant green dragon stole my baby brother, Godfrey. Well, okay, the giant green dragon actually stole the house. I saw it all happen.The only clues are potato chips and sarsaparilla drink. Can Georgia solve the mystery of the missing family home?
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Timeline: A Visual History of the World

Timeline: A Visual History of the World

Peter Goes

$34.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This large format book is as absorbing as it is beautifully designed. The images flow and curve through the centre of the pages, and are accompanied with facts incorporated into the ilustrations, as well as captions giving an overall summation of the centuries and key civilisations (or decades, as we get into the 20th century). In 70 pages or so, the whole of history is encompassed, from the Big Bang (on the title page) through to the events of 2015. Really is a superb book, and will appeal to kids and adults alike! Lindy

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From the Big Bang to the present day, illustrated scenes tell the history of our planet in one continuous story in a beautiful large-format hardback for young and old.
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Pocket Dogs and the Lost Kitten

Pocket Dogs and the Lost Kitten

Margaret Wild

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It is 15 years since the first book about Pocket Dogs came out, so it a delight to see them return! Biff and Buff are happy with mr Pockets, and when a lost kitten turns up on the doorstep, they all welcome the poor little creature with open hearts. That is, until the two dogs feel Mr Pockets is favouring the new arrival... A gentle tale about sibling rivalry and perceived favouritism, which of course has a reassuring ending. King's illustrations are soft and expressive - a sweet book to share with pre-schoolers. Lindy

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Biff and Buff love riding in the pockets of Mr Pockets very big coat. They love to have Mr Pockets all to themselves, but when a little lost kitten needs a home they might have to learn about sharing.
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Cyclone

Cyclone

Jackie French ,  Bruce Whatley

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Continuing on with their natural hazard series (Fire; Flood) the talented team of French & Whatley turn their attention to the cyclone that stole Christmas from Darwin - Tracey, 1974. Unforced couplets convey the ferocity and terror of living through the cyclone, and then the tremendous effort of rebuilding the city. Pencil and watercolour wash illustrations based on archival photographs are atmospheric accompaniments to the story. Lower to mid-primary. Lindy

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Christmas Eve 1974 is marked indelibly into the Australian psyche, as the night tropical Cyclone Tracy devastated the city of Darwin. Now, over 40 years later, Jackie French's lyrical rhyming text tells the story of a city's indomitable spirit, and Bruce Whatley's sumptuous illustrations bring to life the powerful force of the storm to a whole new generation of readers.
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Hamster Princess: Harriet the Invincible

Hamster Princess: Harriet the Invincible

Ursula Vernon

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- When Harriet was christened, her parents forgot to invite the wicked fairy god-mouse Ratshade. As a result the baby princess was cursed to prick her finger on a hamster wheel when she's 12 and sleep her life away. Harriet grows up to excel in all the things hamster princesses should be able to do, though she never masters deportment and being ethereal. When she's 10, her parents confess she is cursed, which causes Harriet great pleasure. It does mean she's invincible until then, so with her trusty riding quail Mumfrey, she sets off to have adventures, slay dragons and joust on the professional circuit. And when the time comes that the curse takes effect, Harriet has a few tricks up her sleeve… A hilarious tale that subverts the traditional princess role, cleverly integrating witty illustrations throughout. Middle primary readers. Lindy

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Harriet Hamsterbone is not your typical princess. She may be quite stunning in the rodent realm (you'll have to trust her on this one), but she is not so great at trailing around the palace looking ethereal or sighing a lot. She finds the royal life rather... dull. One day, though, Harriet's parents tell her of the curse that a rat placed on her at birth, dooming her to prick her finger on a hamster wheel when she's twelve and fall into a deep sleep. For Harriet, this is most wonderful news: It means she's invincible until she's twelve! After all, no good curse goes to waste. And so begins a grand life of adventure with her trusty riding quail, Mumfrey... until her twelfth birthday arrives and the curse manifests in a most unexpected way.
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Anna and the Swallow Man

Anna and the Swallow Man

Gavriel Savit

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Anna's father is a professor of linguistics at the university in Krakow, and Anna can speak in as many languages as the people around her. One day he leaves her with a friend as he is summoned to a meeting; but when he does not return, Anna is sent home alone. She sees a tall well-dressed man who speaks to birds - a language she doesn't know, so she is instantly drawn to him. Persuading the Swallow Man to let her stay with him is the beginning of her true education… As war tramples the world, Anna and the Swallow Man stay at just the right distance, until his secrets start to overtake them both, and each has to sacrifice something precious and deeply held in order to save the other. At times a desperately sad story, as any set in WWII can be, but it is also a story of resilience and strength and awkward beauty. Ages 12+ Lindy

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Anna and the Swallow Man is a stunning, literary, and wholly original debut novel that tells a new WW2 story. Krakow, 1939, is no place to grow up. There are a million marching soldiers and a thousand barking dogs. And Anna Lania is just seven years old when the Germans take her father and suddenly, she's alone. Then she meets the Swallow Man. He is a mystery, strange and tall. And like Anna's missing father, he has a gift for languages: Polish, Russian, German, Yiddish, even Bird. When he summons a bright, beautiful swallow down to his hand to stop her from crying, Anna is entranced. Over the course of their travels together, Anna and the Swallow Man will dodge bombs, tame soldiers, and even, despite their better judgement, make a friend. But in a world gone mad, everything can prove dangerous...
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Paris Up, Up and Away

Paris Up, Up and Away

Helene Druvert

$26.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The Eiffel Tower is bored with being in one place all the time, and Paris is such an exciting place to explore! So off it goes, sailing over the city, visiting all the other landmarks: the Seine, the Opera House, Notre Dame, department stores and much more. A simple story enlivened by the enchanting illustrations, which are laser cut white on black, adding a beautiful dimension to this finely crafted book. I'm thinking adults will love this even more children, but it is a book to share. Lindy

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The Eiffel Tower is bored today Wouldn't it be nice to fly away? Paris is full of things to do The Tower would like to see them too. The Tower takes off for the day To watch the city work and play...The Eiffel Tower is bored... so it decides to cut loose and fly over Paris! Sailing through the night air, it glides over the Seine; a short hop away, its Opera. It weaves through the crowd and department stores, falls asleep in the sun, and wakes up to the jangling bells of Notre Dame. This beautifully crafted book, full of meticulous lasercuts, is a wonderfully imaginative introduction to Paris for young children.
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Wombat Wins

Wombat Wins

Jackie French ,  Bruce Whatley

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- She's back! Mothball the lovable (if destructive) wombat is bored. She wants carrots, and she wants them now! When she sees a herd of small humans racing past, she decides they are heading for her carrots, so she follows. In the process, she manages to beat all comers in the contest to be first - and the prize: let's just say she finds something even more scrumptious than carrots. As charming as the other books in the series, and a delight to read out loud. Lindy

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Forget Rio and the Olympic Games in 2016; for us it will be about a wombat... winning. Yes, Mothball has become an athlete, albeit a little accidentally. In her never-ending quest for carrots, Mothball stumbles upon children at the local school competing in their school sports. And despite her somewhat limited physique and lack of training, Mothball manages to go home with a gold medal. Why puff and pant when you can eat, sleep and scratch? Ages: 3+
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Australian Kids through the Years

Australian Kids through the Years

Andrew Joyner ,  McCartney, Tania

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This book is a trip through history, and simply explains what generations of Australian children wore, ate, played, read or owned. Readers are introduced to a girl and a boy at a particular time - Pre-European, convict, gold rush, Federation, wartime , then each decade from the 50s to the present. Showing how Australia has always been multi-cultural since white settlement, and how children's lives have changed over the years, this book will be a welcome addition to many shelves (and no doubt, will trigger a little bit of nostalgia on an adult reader's part! Lindy

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Many thousands of years ago, the first people arrived in Australia and made this land their home, but when Europeans arrived in the late 1700s, things changed forever. Now, Australia is home to children of many cultures and backgrounds.  Australian Kids through the Years takes a look at children's lives, from the time of the first children, to the colonial era and Federation, and through the decades of the twentieth century to the present day. For each period, the book introduces a particular girl and a boy who then feature in the following spread. The spreads show what Australian kids liked to eat, the games they played, the clothes they wore and the activities they enjoyed. See how these things have changed through the years. What games did Aboriginal children like Kiah and Mandu once play? How did Meg and William wear their hair in colonial times? What books did Matthew and Ming read during the 1970s? Which toys were huge in the 1990s?
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The Iliad

The Iliad

Gillian Cross ,  Neil Packer

$39.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- In the same vein as the splendid version of the Odyssey that was done by these two collaborators a couple of years ago, this book introduces the great tragedy to young readers. The retelling is powerful and direct and captures the bravery and brutality of what started as an argument between two powerful men, and ended up as a conflict that killed hundreds of heroes and destroyed one of the proudest cities of its time. Illustrations are in muted colours with slashes of startling brightness, and are full of drama - perfect accompaniments to the text. Lindy

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Neil Packer's glorious illustrations and Gillian Cross's brilliant retelling bring to life Homer's Iliad, the greatest war story ever told. The team that produced the Odyssey in 2012 now tell the story of the ten year war that preceded Odysseus's long journey home to Ithaca. This faithful retelling begins with Prince Paris's abduction of Helen of Sparta, and goes on to the quarrel between Agamemnon and Achilles, and the great battles under the walls of Troy towards the end of the siege that result in the deaths of Patroclus, the Trojan hero Hector, and finally Achilles himself. Neil Packer's pictures capture the beauty and remoteness of the setting, and bring a profound humanity to what has been called the finest literary achievement of Greek civilisation.
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As Black as Ebony

As Black as Ebony

Salla Simukka

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is the conclusion of the electrifying Finnish noir trilogy for young adults. Lumikki has a new boyfriend, kind and happy Sampsa, but secretly she still yearns for Blaze. Involved in a play that is a version of Snow White, Lumikki starts to receive strange and disturbing messages. She is being stalked - but who is the secret admirer whose twisted admiration threatens bloodshed? And what is the real secret of Lumikki's life? A satisfying conclusion to what has been a strong trilogy. Lindy

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Lumikki Andersson must uncover a dark personal secret to outwit her bloodthirsty stalker. Lumikki Andersson has a new boyfriend - easygoing, gorgeous Sampsa who adores her. But when her ex Blaze reappears, declaring his devotion, she doesn't know what to feel. She can't deny the chemistry between them, but does he deserve another chance? Then the threatening letters start arriving, from someone who seems to know her intimately. Suddenly Lumikki is more alone than ever, and it's not only her life on the line. To stop the killer, she must uncover a dark secret that has haunted her family for years...
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Dumplin'

Dumplin'

Julie Murphy

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Willowdean is a self-aware and sassy teenager. She happens to be fat, but she's not embarrassed by her size. Her mother might be, but as she runs the small Texan town's beauty pageant, she would be. When something happens that shakes Willowdean's confidence in herself, she decides to take on the preconceptions of a contest based on appearance, the small town bigots, and her loving but hurtful mother. A great story, one that has you cheering for the heroine. Lindy

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Willowdean Dickson (Dumplin', to her mum) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Really, the criteria is simple. Do you have a body? Put a swimsuit on it. But life as Willlow knows it is about to change, and when this happens she suffers an unaccustomed, and unwelcome, attack of self-doubt. In an effort to take back her confidence, she enters into the local Miss Teen Blue Bonner beauty pageant. With starry Texas nights, red candy suckers, Dolly Parton songs and a wildly unforgettable heroine - Dumplin' is guaranteed to steal your heart. And send you out to buy that bikini!
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Visionaries in Suburbia: Griffin Houses in the Sydney Landscape

Visionaries in Suburbia: Griffin Houses in the Sydney Landscape

Anne Watson

$59.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A very handsome and fascinating book, this details the houses that Walter Burley Griffin and his wife Marion Mahony Griffin built or planned to build in Sydney. After the Griffins were  unceremoniously booted from the Canberra project, they turned their considerable talents to the new development, Castlecrag, using their ideas of architecture that was formed and fit into its landscape. Each of these Castlecrag houses (and the handful of others elsewhere) has a dedicated and informative essay complemented by a fabulous array of photographs (black-and-white and colour), including a treasure trove of recently discovered archival photos. The floorplans are shown, while those houses that never made it off the drawing board are also given their own essays . A real credit to the dedicated people of the Walter Burley Griffin Society, and a valuable resource for those interested in architecture, planning, history and design. Lindy

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In 1920, when Walter Burley Griffin's association with the design of Canberra was coming to a frustrating end, he and his architect wife Marion Mahony Griffin began to refocus their creative energies on the development of the Sydney harbour-side suburb that would become known as Castlecrag. It was the re-commencement of a love affair with the city that began when the Griffins sailed into Sydney Harbour from their native Chicago in 1914.

From Castlecrag to Clifton Gardens, Pymble to Avalon, Visionaries in Suburbia explores the Griffins' 22 surviving Sydney houses as well as their designs for many unbuilt projects. It charts the evolution of their domestic architecture in response to the Sydney landscape, but also brings to life the far-sighted environmental, community, spiritual and creative ideas that propelled their lives and careers.

Today, as Sydney grapples with unprecedented housing, planning and environmental challenges, the Griffins' philosophies, as expressed in the legacy of their surviving work, are of enduring significance.
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In the Quiet

In the Quiet

Eliza Henry-Jones

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- For a debut novel, this is an assured and eloquent read. It packs a lot into what might seem a slight premise. Cate has died, and knows it, but not how, or when. She watches her family as they grieve, and ultimately, heal. Gently wise. Lindy Jones

Cate Carlton has recently died, yet she is able to linger on, watching her three young children and her husband as they come to terms with their life without her on their rural horse property.

As the months pass and her children grow, they cope in different ways, drawn closer and pulled apart by their shared loss. And all Cate can do is watch on helplessly, seeing their grief, how much they miss her and how - heartbreakingly - they begin to heal.

Gradually unfolding to reveal Cate's life, her marriage, and the unhappy secret she shared with one of her children, In the Quiet is compelling, simple, tender, true - heartbreaking and uplifting in equal measure.

In The Quiet by Eliza Henry Jones at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Rest of Us Just Live Here: Limited Edition

The Rest of Us Just Live Here: Limited Edition

Patrick Ness

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I really enjoyed this book! It has a lovely slyness to it and an underlying humour that doesn't take itself too seriously - while, of course, it has some important themes at heart. Each chapter starts with a synopsis of events and characters - a young adult who finds herself in the middle of saving the world, with the obligatory twists and turns of betrayal and budding romance. It's her destiny to be The Chosen One. But the actual chapters follow Mikey, who just wants to survive his dreadful parents, kiss his best friend before she goes off to Africa with her perfect parents, hang around with his best friend (who just happens to have special powers and special secrets) and graduate. That is, if the latest crop of threats to the world, let him. Every few years, something gets in the way of ordinary life - vampires, aliens, zombie deer - and the adults are either oblivious, or just ignoring the dangers. Only children and teenagers know what is really happening, and while Mikey might not be one of the Chosen Ones, he is certainly facing all the everyday problems of life - and learning how to surmount them is every bit as important as saving the world. A real joy! 13+ Lindy

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Award-winning writer Patrick Ness's bold and irreverent novel powerfully asks what if you weren't the Chosen One? The one who's supposed to fight the zombies, or the soul-eating ghosts, or whatever this new thing is, with the blue lights and the death? What if you were like Mikey? Who just wants to graduate and go to prom and maybe finally work up the courage to ask Henna out before someone goes and blows up the high school. Again. Because sometimes there are problems bigger than this week's end of the world and sometimes you just have to find the extraordinary in your ordinary life. Even if your best friend might just be the God of mountain lions... An exceptional novel from the author praised by John Green as an insanely beautiful writer.
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Asking for It

Asking for It

Louise O'Neill

$19.99

It's the beginning of the summer in a small town in Ireland. Emma O'Donovan is eighteen years old, beautiful, happy, confident.

One night, there's a party. Everyone is there. All eyes are on Emma.

The next morning, she wakes on the front porch of her house. She can't remember what happened, she doesn't know how she got there.

She doesn't know why she's in pain.

But everyone else does. Photographs taken at the party show, in explicit detail, what happened to Emma that night.

But sometimes people don't want to believe what is right in front of them, especially when the truth concerns the town's heroes . . .
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Piranhas Don't Eat Bananas

Piranhas Don't Eat Bananas

Aaron Blabey

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Another funny book about food preferences, this time in rhyme and with a fish that refuses to bow down to his fellow piranhas' eating choices. Brian is a vegetarian, but trying to convince the others about the benefit of fruit and veges takes some doing. He isn't going to change, but perhaps with a bit of gentle persuasion he can teach his mates that he doesn't have to - and that they just might like to snack on something different themselves. Great fun indeed! Lindy

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Hey there guys. Would you like a banana? Whats wrong with you. Brian? Youre a Piranha. Brian is a piranha. He is also a vegetarian. But do you think he can convince his family to join him
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I Want Spaghetti!

I Want Spaghetti!

Stephanie Blake ,  Stephanie Blake

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Simon the rabbit with attitude is back! And this time he's not happy about the food his parents want him to eat! It's pretty simple from his point of view - why eat anything that isn't his favourite - spaghetti? Anyone who has struggled with a toddler's eating preferences will smile with wry amusement, and any youngster this is read to will laugh as Simon not only gets his way, but learns to enjoy something else on his plate... Ages 3-6 Lindy

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A picture book for toddlers who might recognise themselves in cheeky Simon, the fussy eater. Once there was a little rabbit who only wanted to eat one thing... spaghetti!
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Alice Through the Looking Glass

Alice Through the Looking Glass

Lewis Carroll ,  Robert Ingpen

$39.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Robert Ingpen has been illustrating his way through a range of children's classics, and this time he turns his considerable talents to the sequel of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Complete and unabridged text with his dreamily exquisite but expressive illustrations in his trademark muted colours and fine draughtmanship, all contained in a beautifully bound book. Who wouldn't enjoy this gorgeous keepsake - and what bookshelf wouldn't be enhanced by it!? Lindy

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Ken Campbell, Windsor Davies, John Bird and John Fortune star in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation. When Alice's wish to visit the Looking Glass world comes true, she can't resist delving deeper and deeper into a land of caustic characters and twisted logic. So begins a game of chess on a grand scale, where the inhabitants of each square have their own set of rules. In her bid to become Queen of the Chess Board, Alice takes advice - and sometimes downright criticism - from such peculiar folk as Humpty Dumpty, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, the Lion and the Unicorn and a very helpful gnat. Even when she has earned her crown the ordeal awaits of dinner with the Red and White Queens - and Alice learns an important lesson about not eating food you've been introduced to...This witty adaptation of Lewis Carroll's enduring children's classic boasts the much-loved Jabberwocky poem amongst its sparkling collection of gems.
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Cloudwish

Cloudwish

Fiona Wood

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Van Uoc Phan is the scholarship girl at her school. She works hard because she wants to please her parents, but she doesn't want to fulfill their wishes and study medicine - not that she's told them that, yet. Her passion is art, Jane Eyre, and Billy Gardiner, the ultra-popular out-of-her-league rowing champion. When a creative writing class leads to her making a wish, it starts coming true in the most unbelievable way: Billy starts to find her irresistible. Van Uoc has to struggle with her better feelings - she doesn't want the boy of her dreams liking her because she wished for it, she's not sure it isn't all a joke on his behalf and she can't believe he might just be noticing how bright and funny she really is - and yet, how can she not enjoy his attention? Characters from Wood's other novels make cameo appearances, and like her other books, deeper emotions and the secrets people carry are all part of the narrative. 14+ Lindy

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For Van Uoc Phan, fantasies fell into two categories: nourishing, or pointless. Daydreaming about Billy Gardiner, for example? Pointless. It always left her feeling sick, as though she'd eaten too much sugar. Van Uoc doesn't believe in fairies, zombies, vampires, Father Christmas - or magic wishes. She believes in keeping a low profile: real life will start when school finishes. But when she attracts the attention of Billy Gardiner, she finds herself in an unwelcome spotlight. Not even Jane Eyre can help her now. Wishes were not a thing. They were not. Correction. Wishes were a thing. Wishes that came true were sometimes a thing. Wishes that came true because of magic were not a thing! Were they?
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Skin Deep

Skin Deep

Gary Kemble

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- After a big night out, Harry wakes up with a strange tattoo on his neck. As he has just split up with his partner, moved house and is keeping his head down at work, he dismisses it as the consequence of alcohol and stress. But then he starts to have extremely vivid nightmares, and after each one he wakes up with a new tattoo. The nightmares seem to be episodes from the life of an SAS soldier, Rob, and they are revealing disturbing things about another operative, who just so happens to be in the frontrunning to be the next Prime Minister. As Harry struggles to keep his sanity, he is drawn to a woman who is herself waking up from nightmares with tattoos, and they piece together a horrifying story… Set in Brisbane, this is a colourful page-turner of a novel, one I found hard to put down! Lindy

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When washed up journalist Harry Hendrick wakes with a hangover and a mysterious tattoo on his neck, he shrugs it off as a bad night out. When more tattoos appear - accompanied by visions of war-torn Afghanistan, bikies, boat people, murder, bar fights and a mysterious woman - he begins to dig a little deeper.

Harry’s search leads him to Jess McGrath. She’s successful, married; they are drawn to each other though they have nothing in common but unwanted tattoos and high definition nightmares. Together, they edge closer to unearthing the truth behind the sinister disappearance of an SAS hero and his girlfriend Kyla.

There’s a federal election looming, with pundits tipping a landslide win for opposition leader Andrew Cardinal. Harry knows there’s a link between these disturbing visions and Cardinal's shadowy past, and is compelled to right wrongs, one way or another.

Skin Deep is the thrilling, layered, genre-bending debut novel of Brisbane author and journalist Gary Kemble.

Skin Deep by Gary Kemble at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Circling the Sun

Circling the Sun

Paula McLain

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- From the author of the tremendous novel The Paris Wife, which brought to life Hemingway's wife, Hadley Richardson and the years they shared in Paris after WWI, comes another brilliantly reconstructed story! This time it is Beryl Markham who is the subject. Beryl grew up in Kenya, became a successful horse trainer, was part of the notorious Happy Valley set (the love of her life was Denys Finch Hatton, Karen Blixen's lover) and was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic from England to America. Scandal followed her her whole life long, but she refused to set store on what others thought, and this makes her a marvellous subject for a novel! With an immediate, fresh and vivid voice, this is a delight to read, and once again McLain restores a fascinating woman and her life and times. Lindy

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ABBEY'S CHOICE AUGUST 2015 ----- As a young girl, Beryl Markham was brought to Kenya from Britain by parents dreaming of a new life. For her mother, the dream quickly turned sour, and she returned home; Beryl was brought up by her father, who switched between indulgence and heavy-handed authority, allowing her first to run wild on their farm, then incarcerating her in the classroom.

The scourge of governesses and serial absconder from boarding school, by the age of sixteen Beryl had been catapulted into a disastrous marriage - but it was in facing up to this reality that she took charge of her own destiny. Scandalizing high society with her errant behaviour, she left her husband and became the first woman ever to hold a professional racehorse trainer's licence.

After falling in with the notoriously hedonistic and gin-soaked Happy Valley set, Beryl soon became embroiled in a complex love triangle with the writer Karen Blixen and big game-hunter Denys Finch Hatton (immortalized in Blixen's memoir Out of Africa). It was this unhappy affair which set tragedy in motion, while awakening Beryl to her truest self, and to her fate: to fly.
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The Landing

The Landing

Susan Johnson

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Jonathan's wife has left him after many years of marriage - for another woman. Feeling vulnerable and confused, he starts to spend more time at what was their weekender, on one of the Noosa lakes. He's a successful lawyer and certainly not in bad shape for a man in his 50s, and so it seems he constitutes a good catch. He's not too sure if he wants to replace the love of his life, but then again, perhaps he does need someone to fill in the gap. The Landing, where his weekender is, contains a small and close-knit community, and this charming novel keenly observes the variety and connections of people who live there. From the retired Scottish doctor who still has an eye for the ladies, to the put-upon woman caught between her overbearing and impossible mother and her daughter who stole her neighbour's middle-aged husband, to the much-married exotic visitor with a taste for living on someone else's money, to the sadly neglected child who just wants someone to love, this is a modern comedy of manners, and very enjoyable! Lindy

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Jonathan Lott is confused. His wife has left him for a woman and he doesn't like living alone. Is it true that an about-to-be-divorced man in possession of a good fortune is in need of a new wife? Would Penny Collins do, divorced herself, school teacher and frustrated artist? What about beautiful Anna, blown in from who knows where, trailing broken marriages behind her? There's a lot happening at The Landing, where Jonathan has his beach house, and he's about to find out how much love matters... Susan Johnson's stunning new novel, written with her trademark wit and insight, brilliantly observes what it is to be human and to love: the betrayals, the long and the short alliances, the disappointments and the joys. The Landing celebrates all of it with verve and style. 
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The Natural Way of Things

The Natural Way of Things

Charlotte Wood

$29.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE OCTOBER 2015 ----- ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Ten young women find themselves drugged and abducted. They wake to find themselves on an abandoned property miles from anywhere, with two vicious guards and one inept nurse, limited food and being forced to wear degrading uncomfortable clothes and set to pointless hard physical labour. What have they done to be be punished so? It turns out that each one was involved in a sex scandal of some sort or another, whether willingly or not. As they struggle to keep going in the face of harsh rules and lack of any material comforts, their strengths and weaknesses are magnified - and then the food starts to run out, and their guards start to realise they are also prisoners… A strange and compelling novel, one that might leave the reader oddly angry and affected, but all the more worth reading for that very reason alone. Lindy

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The Natural Way of Things is a fascinating and brilliant addition to Charlotte Wood's acclaimed fiction, thematically and stylistically quite a departure for her, but every inch as gripping, insightful and emotionally engaging as her other work. 

This novel is a stark, haunting dystopic work set in a remote women's prison in the middle of a desert, where a handful of women find themselves one day and must piece together their stories to find out how - and why - they got there... and how on earth they are going to get away...

A baffling mystery on one level, a disturbing allegory of female/male relationships and contemporary mores and politics, and a searing psychological study of human beings under pressure, The Natural Way of Things  reads like the best work of Janette Turner Hospital, Ann Patchett and Margaret Atwood...
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The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra: Baby Ganesh #1

The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra: Baby Ganesh #1

Vaseem Khan

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Now, I don’t read a lot of crime, mainly because I like character based stories set firmly in a real landscape (give me a Phryne or Brunetti or Flavia or Precious anyday over the bleak and/or graphically detailed stuff that abounds). I think I've found my next new favourite detective! Due to ill health, Inspector Chopra has to retire from his beloved Mumbai police job, where he has served diligently and honestly for a number of years. On the day he retires, he receives an unexpected bequest from a long-lost uncle - a baby elephant. He also receives the grieving but angry mother of a murdered slum dweller, who knows she will not receive justice, and this is the catalyst for his new life after retirement - something he has to keep from his beloved but somewhat bossy wife. One more thing he is keeping secret from her, it turns out... A charming and delightful debut, with an unlikely hero in Baby Ganesh and a colourful setting in contemporary Mumbai. Lindy

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Mumbai, murder and a baby elephant combine in a charming, joyful mystery for fans of Alexander McCall Smith and Harold Fry. On the day he retires, Inspector Ashwin Chopra inherits two unexpected mysteries. The first is the case of a drowned boy, whose suspicious death no one seems to want solved. And the second is a baby elephant. As his search for clues takes him across the teeming city of Mumbai, from its grand high rises to its sprawling slums and deep into its murky underworld, Chopra begins to suspect that there may be a great deal more to both his last case and his  new ward than he thought. And he soon learns that when the going gets tough, a determined elephant may be exactly what an honest man needs...
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Undermajordomo Minor

Undermajordomo Minor

Patrick deWitt

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Lucien Minor (known as Lucy) is a most frustrating young man, aimless and a compulsive liar, who is given the chance to work for a Baron in a far distant region. It sounds like a good job, but he soon discovers that the forbidding castle harbours secrets and madness. He also meets the beautiful Klara, the daughter of a charming but dangerous thief, who he falls head-over-heels in love with, despite the fact she is involved with a dashing young partisan fighting in an endless and useless war… This is a comedy of manners, black at times, but so delightful to read that you overlook all the examples of human badness set before you! Lindy

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Lucien (Lucy) Minor is the resident odd duck in the bucolic hamlet of Bury. Friendless and loveless, young and aimless, he is a compulsive liar and a melancholy weakling.

When Lucy accepts employment assisting the majordomo of the remote, forbidding castle of the Baron Von Aux he meets thieves, madmen, aristocrats, and a puppy. He also meets Klara, a delicate beauty who is, unfortunately, already involved with an exceptionally handsome partisan soldier.

Thus begins a tale of polite theft, bitter heartbreak, domestic mystery and cold-blooded murder in which every aspect of human behaviour is laid bare for our hero to observe. Lucy must stay safe, and protect his puppy, because someone or something is roaming the corridors of the castle late at night.

Undermajordomo Minor is a triumphant ink-black comedy of manners by the Man Booker-shortlisted author of The Sisters Brothers. It is an adventure story, and a mystery, and a searing portrayal of rural Alpine bad behaviour with a brandy tart, but above all it is a love story.

And Lucy must be careful, for love is a violent thing.
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The First Thing You See

The First Thing You See

Gregoire Delacourt

$24.99

Imagine you are a young mechanic living in a small community in France. You own your own home, and lead a simple life. Then, one evening, you open your front door to find a distraught Hollywood starlet standing in front of you. This is what happens to Arthur Dreyfuss in the village of Long, population 687 inhabitants.

But although feigning an American accent, this woman is not all that she seems. For her name is Jeanine Foucamprez, and her story is very different from the glamorous life of a star. Arthur is not all he seems, either; a lover of poetry with a darker past than one might imagine, he has learnt to see beauty in the mundane.

THE FIRST THING YOU SEE is a warm, witty novel about two fragile souls learning to look beyond the surface - for the first thing you see isn't always what you get!
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The All Saints' Day Lovers

The All Saints' Day Lovers

Juan Gabriel Vasquez ,  Anne McLean

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Seven short stories set in the Ardennes, this collection is suffused with melancholy and quiet lyricism. The stories are usually of men at a certain stage of their life, trying to understand how they got to where they are, trying to make sense of the people around them, and resigned to a certain sort of knowledge that they are stuck. One of the standout stories has a woman as the central character - she is returning to her idealised childhood home after a long absence, only to find reality has altered where her memories have not. Thoughtfully crafted, with a shared landscape, these are stories to make you pause. Lindy

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Achingly sad and beautifully crafted, The All Saints' Day Lovers is a remarkable and intense exploration of relationships, loneliness and cruelty. Set mainly in the starkly beautiful landscape of Belgium's Ardennes, these stories have been compared to Maupassant, Chekhov, John Cheever and Antonio Tabucchi. A Colombian writer is witness to a murder which will mark him forever. A woman sits alone in her house, waiting for her husband to return, while he lies in another woman's bed twenty kilometres away. Through blood-soaked betrayal, a love affair, murder and long-meditated revenge, Vasquez achieves an extraordinary unity of emotion, morality and landscape with these fragmented lives.
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The World Without Us

The World Without Us

Mireille Juchau

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Set in a small community somewhere near the Queensland border, this fine novel follows the Muller family. Stefan, a German backpacker who once washed up at a local commune and Evangeline, who was brought up in it (known as The Hive) live on a farm and follow a self-sufficiency lifestyle. Their oldest daughter Tess has stopped speaking, their middle daughter Meg is struggling with school, and we learn that the youngest daughter, Pip, died from leukaemia - and this has precipitated the family into a grief they cannot escape from. When a newly transferred teacher, Jim, stumbles across Evangeline bathing in a river, he is instantly attracted to her. She is not only immersed in her grief, but has limited memories of her past because of the accident that destroyed The Hive. Counterpointed to this is Stefan's beekeeping, and the mysterious failure of his colonies - and this is set against the environmental and social changes in and around the town. This is a complicated novel in terms of action, but a rather beautifully nuanced novel in terms of characterisation. Highly recommended. Lindy

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Told from the perspective of six, interconnected characters, The World Without Us is a tale of love in all its forms, a mystery and an elegy for a denatured landscape. It is about the ways we become lost to ourselves, and the transformative joys of being found.

After a fire destroys her family's commune home, Evangeline is forced to start afresh in the north coast rainforest town with her child, and partner, Stefan Muller.

Years later, while tending the bees on their farm, Stefan discovers a car wreck, and not far off, human remains. While the locals speculate on who has gone missing from the transient hinterland town, Stefan's daughters Tess and Meg, have a more urgent mystery. Where does their mother go each day, pushing an empty pram and returning wet, muddy and disheveled?

Jim Parker, a Sydney teacher escaping his own troubles arrives in their clannish community. One morning he stumbles upon Evangeline, naked by a river with a hammer and some rope. Their charged encounter propels Evangeline's past into the present and sparks a change in all their lives.

Meanwhile ten year old Tess, mute since the loss of her youngest sister, attempts to escape. Will getting lost help her discover where she belongs?

As the rainy season descends, and each of the family are separated by flood, they realise nothing is what it seems.
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How the Sun Got to Coco's House

How the Sun Got to Coco's House

Bob Graham ,  Bob Graham

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Another sweet picture book from the talented Mr Graham! It starts with a young child being tucked up into bed, and as she sleeps the sun creeps up over a polar landscape far away, and makes its way across the globe to shine on her suburban street. A simple idea beautifully executed: the sun shines on a multitude of people going about their lives, and no matter the superficial differences, everyone shares the sun's light and warmth. Softly coloured and gently expressive illustrations, as you would expect from this artist, make this lovely to share with pre-school age children. Lindy

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From prolific and multi-award winning writer and illustrator Bob Graham comes an enchanting story about the sun, and how it makes its journey from the far side of the world to the home of one small girl. The sun rises up behind a snowy peak and casts its mellow dawn light for the wandering polar bears. It skims across the icy water, touching a fisherman's hat and catching for a moment in the eye of a whale. It beams through the trees of frozen forests and makes shadows in a little girl's footsteps before gliding over cities, darting down lanes and waiting patiently for an old lady to open her window. The sun races through the countryside, greeting snow cats and bears. High over a desert it meets the rain in a halo of colours...The sun leaps whole countries, chasing the night, before bursting at last in a fanfare of warm golden light through Coco's window!
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Platypus

Platypus

Sue Whiting ,  Mark Jackson

$27.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Platypus are the most amazing creatures, and this book will introduce children to their many interesting and unique features. The text follows a platypus through its day, and is complemented with additional sentences (in a differing font) which give pertinent facts. The illustrations are both realistic and beautifully impressionistic, in tones of watery green, brown and blue and very appropriate for the muddy banks and sheltered creeks the platypus frequents. A fine addition to the library shelf! Lindy

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This fantastic new edition to the Nature Storybooks series is about one of Australia's most puzzling and unique animals - the platypus.

Platypus leaves his burrow in the riverbank and dives into the cool green pool. It is dusk and he is hungry. Platypus is always busy, always moving, looking for his next meal. Follow platypus as he plays, swims, dives and scurries around his riverbank home.
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Bob the Railway Dog

Bob the Railway Dog

Corinne Fenton ,  Andrew McLean

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- At Adelaide Railway Station there is a photograph of a scruffy dog of no determinate breed, labelled Bob, the Railway Dog. This picture book tells his story, starting at Carrietown in South Australia, 1884. A railway guard walks past a cargo carriage full of dogs bound for rabbit hunters in the outback, and one mutt catches his eye… Bob becomes a regular traveller with his master and gradually starts to become a passenger on other trains. He travelled from one end of the state to the other, and was always welcomed. Pencil and watercolour illustrations catch the colours of the landscapes and the joy of the wandering dog. A rather lovely episode in history retold for young primary age readers. Lindy

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In the early days of the railway, when shiny new tracks were opening vast areas of Australia, there was an adventurous dog who was part of it all. As the tracks were being laid he was there on the train - riding in his favourite spot on top of the Yankee engine. Everyone knew him. He was Bob the Railway Dog.
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The Bad Guys: Episode 1

The Bad Guys: Episode 1

Aaron Blabey

$9.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Known for his delightful and off-centre picture books, this is Blabey's first chapter book for newly confident and beginner readers. Mr Wolf is tired of being known as the wicked monster of fairy tale, and sets about rehabilitating his reputation - and that of Mr Shark, Mr Snake and Mr Piranha. They are going to Do Good, like it or not! With black and white line drawings on each page, this funny spoof will have youngsters laughing out loud at the antics and characterisations of these unlikely heroes. Lindy

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They sound like the Bad Guys, they look like the Bad Guys ...and they even smell like the Bad Guys. But Mr Wolf, Mr Piranha, Mr Snake and Mr Shark are about to change all of that! Mr Wolf has a daring plan for the Bad Guys' first good mission. The gang are going to break 200 dogs out of the Maximum Security City Dog Pound. Will Operation Dog Pound go smoothly? Will the Bad Guys become the Good Guys? And will Mr Snake please spit out Mr Piranha?
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In the Skin of a Monster

In the Skin of a Monster

Kathryn Barker

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A few years ago, Alice's identical twin sister took a gun to school in their small Australian town and shot dead seven other students, before turning the gun on herself. Alice, understandably, is not coping with all the guilt and recriminations, and her presence only reminds the community of what was lost. Further exacerbating the situation, a photo was taken that has become the iconic image of evil, a girl in a school uniform smiling over her weapon, and two movies made that exploited the horror of the event. Then one day Alice sees her sister, and that catapults her into another reality, one where the nightmares of the town are dangerously existent. There she meets a monster and a heart-stoppingly handsome boy, and together they have to survive, and help others make their way through, while not revealing the treacherous secrets they each carry. A very interesting premise; my teenage niece enjoyed it! Lindy

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Caught in a dreamscape, mistaken for a killer... will Alice find a way home?. Three years ago, Alice's identical twin sister took a gun to school and killed seven innocent kids; now Alice wears the same face as a monster. She's struggling with her identity, and with life in the small Australian town where everyone was touched by the tragedy. Just as Alice thinks things can't get much worse, she encounters her sister on a deserted highway. But all is not what it seems, and Alice soon discovers that she has stepped into a different reality, a dream world, where she's trapped with the nightmares of everyone in the community. Here Alice is forced to confront the true impact of everything that happened the day her twin sister took a gun to school... and to reveal her own secret to the boy who hates her most.
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A Year of Marvellous Ways

A Year of Marvellous Ways

Sarah Winman

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Back in 2011, one of my favourite books of the year was the debut  When God was a Rabbit . This second novel proves that Winman has a true talent, and I think this will be one of my favourite books of 2015! Marvellous Ways, daughter of a mermaid, is in her 90th year in 1947 when she catches the tail feather of a dream telling her to wait, it's coming. She lives in the deserted Cornish hamlet of St Ophere, living off the land and the sea, and among her many talents is the ability to wait. One bitter night she finds a young man near her gypsy caravan, and nurses him back to health - and eventually back into his life. Drake is haunted by his failures, by the damage of the war and the loss of love and light. These two gentle people are wonderfully drawn characters, and Marvellous is certainly that! A quietly magical and wholly satisfying novel, full of heart and revelations, elevated from the commonplace by the beauty of the writing and the perfection of its imagery. Lindy

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Cornwall, 1947. Marvellous Ways is a ninety-year-old woman who's lived alone in a remote creek for nearly all her life. Recently she's taken to spending her days sitting on a mooring stone by the river with a telescope. She's waiting for something - she's not sure what, but she'll know it when she sees it. Drake is a young soldier left reeling by the war. He's agreed to fulfil a dying man's last wish and hand-deliver a letter to the man's father in Cornwall. But Drake's journey doesn't go to plan, and sees him literally wash up in Marvellous' creek, broken in body and spirit. When Marvellous comes to his aid, an unlikely friendship grows between the two. Can Drake give Marvellous what she needs to say goodbye to the world, and can she give him what he needs to go on?

A Year of Marvellous Ways by Sarah Winman at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney

 

We called it Cyclone Sarah. At the precise moment Sarah Winman stopped by to sign our copies of her new novel, a downpour of biblical proportions fell upon Abbey's. Talk about saturation coverage!
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Because You'll Never Meet Me

Because You'll Never Meet Me

Leah Thomas

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Ollie has spectacular fits if he is exposed to electricity. He and his mother live a no-tech life in an isolated cabin, visited regularly by Ollie's doctor, but with little or no contact with the outside world. When the doctor suggests Ollie write to another young teenager, as a way of overcoming his loneliness, Ollie launches into an excitable correspondence with Moritz. Mo was born without eyes, and has a pacemaker, so the two boys could never meet. Despite this and their obviously contrasting personalities, they become best friends. Each has much to tell the other, and they both learn how to deal with their respective problems, but there is a sinister background to their disabilities. A totally absorbing story for ages 14+ Lindy

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Ollie and Moritz are two teenagers who will never meet. Each of them lives with a life-affecting illness. Contact with electricity sends Ollie into debilitating seizures, while Moritz has a heart defect and is kept alive by an electronic pacemaker. If they did meet, Ollie would seize, but turning off the pacemaker would kill Moritz. Through an exchange of letters, the two boys develop a strong bond of friendship which becomes a lifeline during dark times - until Moritz reveals that he holds the key to their shared, sinister past, and has been keeping it from Ollie all along.
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Risk

Risk

Fleur Ferris

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Sierra is the sort of girl who lights up the room with her vivacity and beauty, but she is also at times unthinking and insensitive to others' feelings. Particularly, it seems, to her best friend Taylor's. When 15yo Sierra meets Jacob on a dating site, she convinces her friends to cover for her so she can spend the weekend with him. The problem is, Taylor met him first, and she is very upset that Sierra has once again taken something from her; so when Sierra doesn't turn up as planned after her rendezvous, Taylor and her friends hide Sierra's absence a bit longer. When she remains missing, life for everyone changes… Written by a former police officer/paramedic, it does contain a salient message, but is also an interesting read. 14+ Lindy

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Best friends Taylor and Sierra meet a hot guy in a chat room online. Both fall for Jacob's charms, but as usual, the more outgoing and vivacious Sierra overshadows Taylor and wins his attention. Taylor's devastated - Sierra already kissed Callum, Taylor's secret crush, over the summer holidays. Life's not fair, especially when Sierra's around. Moving quickly, Sierra sets up a date with Jacob on Friday after school. She asks Taylor and their friends to cover for her. Even though she's upset, Taylor is still Sierra's best friend and agrees to help. But Sierra abuses the favour and calls to say she's going to spend the night with her date. She doesn't come home all weekend, doesn't answer her phone and nobody's heard from her... Taylor is torn. She doesn't want to betray Sierra by telling her parents but at the same time she's concerned for her welfare. Finally, Callum convinces her to tell. The police are called and their worst fears are confirmed when Sierra's body is found miles from Melbourne a week later ...Devastated, Taylor becomes obsessed with finding Sierra's killer. As clues emerge, Taylor races against time to try and save the predator's next victim.
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Kissing in America

Kissing in America

Margo Rabb

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Yes I know, stupid title, but it disguises a wonderful novel! 16yo geeky Eva took to reading romances after her beloved father disappeared in a mid-ocean plane accident. They provide comfort and happy endings, and although her feminist studies lecturer mother despises and belittles the genre, Eva won't give them up. When the boy she has a crush on turns up at their school's tutoring centre and pairs with her to help write his college application, they start to exchange confidences and become friends. Eva thinks the romance novels are going to come true, until Will moves to Los Angeles from New York. She convinces her best friend, the uber-smart Annie, to try out for a reality show, and the two of them catch a bus across the country in pursuit of college funding (Annie) and love (Eva). Along the way, Eva is going to learn what life and love are really about… A fresh and enjoyable voice, with doses of profound wisdom, and dashes of modern poetry - what's not to like? 14+ Lindy

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In the two years since her father died, sixteen-year-old Eva has found comfort in reading romance novels - 118 of them, to be exact - to dull the pain of her loss that's still so present. Her romantic fantasies become a reality when she meets Will, who understands Eva's grief. Unfortunately, after Eva falls head over heels for him, he picks up and moves to California without any warning. Not wanting to lose the only person who has been able to pull her out of sadness - and, perhaps, her shot at real love - Eva and her best friend, Annie, concoct a plan to travel to the West Coast to see Will again. As they road trip across America, Eva and Annie confront the complex truth about love.
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Five Children on the Western Front

Five Children on the Western Front

Kate Saunders

$13.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Normally I detest 'sequels' that weren't written by the original author, but I will make an exception for this gentle and sometimes extremely moving story. The protagonists of E Nesbit's Five Children and It are older, and the world is about to go to war. The children, Cyril, Robert, Jane, Anthea and Lamb, gather to see Cyril go off to fight, and the magical sand-fairy, the Psammead appears for the first time in a decade, summoned by the de-magicking of history. A beautiful weaving of the innocence of childhood and its adventures, with the sorrow of war. Can be read without having known the original, but much more satisfying if Nesbit's book is known. 9-12 Lindy

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This book is an incredible, heart-wrenching sequel to E. Nesbit's Five Children and It, set on the eve of the First World War. The five children have grown up - war will change their lives for ever. Cyril is off to fight, Anthea is at art college, Robert is a Cambridge scholar and Jane is at high school. The Lamb is the grown up age of 11, and he has a little sister, Edith, in tow. The sand fairy has become a creature of stories... until he suddenly reappears. The siblings are pleased to have something to take their minds off the war, but this time the Psammead is here for a reason, and his magic might have a more serious purpose. Before this last adventure ends, all will be changed, and the two younger children will have seen the Great War from every possible viewpoint - factory-workers, soldiers and sailors, nurses and the people left at home, and the war's impact will be felt right at the heart of their family.
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Lara of Newtown

Lara of Newtown

Chris McKimmie

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- McKimmie is the creator of eccentric picture books, with anarchic illustrations and left-of-centre characters. This colourful book tells of a cat looking for her real home. She's been known as Misty, Nigella and Lara, and as she tells the story of her journey from the North Shore to the inner west, as her humans invent the different characters they project upon her, Lara remains true to her inner cat-ness. A wonderfully charming book that will appeal to cat lovers of any age! Lindy

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Nana Banana called me Misty, until she couldn't look after me anymore. Noni Nice of Pymble called me Nigella, but I was only Nigella for a day. When the Kafoops family found me on the streets of Newtown they called me Lara. I knew I had found my home at last. A witty and wonderful story about a cat looking for love from the one and only Chris McKimmie.
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When Dad Showed Me the Universe

When Dad Showed Me the Universe

Ulf Stark ,  Eva Eriksson

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Dad wants to share something amazing with his young son - he wants to show him the universe! But of course, such an expedition calls for appropriate clothing, preparation and supplies. It takes some time to get to where they're going, but maybe, just maybe, the father is going to learn how the journey is as enjoyable and educational as the destination. Heartwarming, but not sentimental; this best-selling Swedish author never condescends to his readers. Ages 6-8 Lindy

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Country of Origin: Sweden. Sometimes the most important things are right under your nose... Tonight Dad wants to show his son something very special: the universe. Of course, they can't possibly embark on such a daring adventure unprepared, so they wrap up warm, gather their provisions, and then off they go. It's a long walk, but eventually they get there. Along the way, they learn that sometimes the journey is more important than the destination, and sometimes the biggest lessons happen when you least expect them.
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My Name is Lizzie Flynn: A Story of the Rajah Quilt

My Name is Lizzie Flynn: A Story of the Rajah Quilt

Claire Saxby ,  Lizzy Newcomb

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- In 1841, convict women on board the Rajah stitched together a quilt, which was presented to the Governor's wife. Lost for decades, it was rediscovered and now is housed in the National Gallery of Australia. This picturebook tells the story of the quilt through the eyes of Lizzie Flynn, sentenced to seven years transportation for stealing a shawl. Expressive naïve-style illustrations follow her story, as she makes a friend, an enemy and learns to sew. There aren't many picturebooks detailing the convict experience; this is a good one for young primary ages. Lindy

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Lizzie Flynn has nothing but her name when she boards the Rajah, which is bound for the penal colony of Australia. On board the Rajah the convict women were given a "useful bag" containing among other things fabric and needle and thread. The women were taught to sew and together they made the Rajah quilt which is currently housed in the National Library.
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Meet... Weary Dunlop

Meet... Weary Dunlop

Claire Saxby ,  Jeremy Lord

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The next in the successful illustrated non-fiction series introducing famous people of the past to children of the present. Edward 'Weary' Dunlop's early life is sketched over until his war service. While not detailing the atrocities inflicted upon the POWs, the text concentrates on the courage and audacity of this great man as he defied the Japanese guards to protect his men. Illustrated in a style reminiscent of screenprint, with heavy white lines to define the characters, this is a welcome addition to the series. Mid to upper primary. Lindy

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A picture book series about the extraordinary men and women who have shaped Australia's history, including World War II hero Sir Edward 'Weary' Dunlop. Sir Edward 'Weary' Dunlop was an Australian Army surgeon during World War II. This is the story of how Weary's bravery and compassion helped to save the lives and bolster the spirits of fellow prisoners of war on the Thai-Burma Railway. From Ned Kelly to Saint Mary MacKillop, Captain Cook to Banjo Paterson, the Meet a series of picture books tells the exciting stories of the men and women who have shaped Australia's history.
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Where, Oh Where, is Rosie's Chick?

Where, Oh Where, is Rosie's Chick?

Pat Hutchins

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Rosie's Walk has been a longtime favourite, so a sequel that takes 45+ years to come will be celebrated! Done in the same palette of colours - bright yellow/orange-red/green - this will reawaken nostalgia. Rosie has laid an egg and it has hatched, but the chick (showing itself to be a true child of the wandering Rosie) goes walking. And like Rosie, all sorts of threats lurk as both Rosie and her chick go on obliviously! Fresh and bright, a lovely book to share with toddlers. Lindy

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Rosie has lost her baby chick. She looks under the hen house. She looks behind the wheelbarrow. But little baby chick isn't there. But watch out Rosie - there's someone following you, and it's not just your baby chick! The funny sequel to the much-loved and bestselling Rosie's Walk, with the same element of danger and surprise that children so enjoy.
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Flight

Flight

Nadia Wheatley ,  Armin Greder

$25.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A dark and simply told parable, this beautifully executed book tells as much through its images as through its text. A small family gets the message that this is the night they must flee persecution, and so they set off into the desert on a donkey, looking for refuge. With obvious biblical overtones, there are contemporary references (tanks, refugee camps) but there is also hope, that a new life waits in a happier place. Mid-to upper-primary ages. Lindy

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Tonight is the night. The family has to flee. They've been tipped off that the authorities are  after their blood.  Set in biblical times, a small family sets off across a desert in search of refuge from persecution in their own country, and an ancient story becomes a fable for our times. Their journey is beset by heat and thirst, threatening tanks and the loss of their donkey, but eventually they reach a refugee camp where they can wait in safety for asylum in another country.  In this first-time collaboration between multi-award-winning author, Nadia Wheatley, and internationally-renowned illustrator, Armin Greder, words and images blend seamlessly to take readers on a journey they will never forget.
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Sir Lilypad

Sir Lilypad

Anna Kemp ,  Sara Ogilvie

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Somewhere in a deep bog, lives a frog who wants to have adventures. It doesn't matter what the other frogs call him, his ambition to be Sir Lilypad knows no limits. Except one - he needs a kiss from a princess to help transform him into the brave and wise knight he knows he will be. Cue Princess Sue… One of my absolute favourite picture books (and you may have been unlucky enough to have been cornered in the kids' section and made to listen as I read it out loud!) is the subversive The Worst Princess  and it is a great joy to be reunited with the Princess and her Dragon, and read about another creature who will not be limited by others' expectations! A fun book for young and old alike to share. Lindy

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Once upon a time, in a deep dark bog, lived a teeny, tiny speckled frog. Now, he might be tiny (the other frogs call him stuff, like 'weedy pants' and 'sugar puff') but his ambition is great. For he wants to be known henceforth as Sir Lilypad! Sir Lilypad the brave and wise! Slayer of the - er - dragonflies. And all he needs to effect this transformation? A kiss from a willing princess, of course...A new fantastically funny, froggy tale from internationally bestselling picture book duo, Anna Kemp and Sara Ogilvie.
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We All Looked Up

We All Looked Up

Tommy Wallach

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- If you knew there was a high possibility that the world was going to end in two months time, how would you act? When an asteroid named Ardor appears to be on a collision course for Earth, society starts to break down. Told through the viewpoints of a handful of young people in Seattle, this thoughtful novel explores how people react to crisis. There's Peter, the high achiever and athlete, Eliza, the gifted photographer whose reputation he ruined, Andy and his slacker friend Bobo, over-protected Anita who wants to sing but whose parents expect her to be the perfect student - all these teenagers from different backgrounds find themselves connected as all their expectations and dreams are broken by uncertainty. Well written and oddly believable. 14+ Lindy

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Before Ardor, we let ourselves be defined by labels - the athlete, the outcast, the slacker, the overachiever. But then we all looked up and everything changed. They said the asteroid would be here in two months. That gave us two months to leave our labels behind. Two months to become something bigger than what we'd been, something that would last even after the end. Two months to really live.
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Arsenic for Tea: Wells & Wong Mystery #2

Arsenic for Tea: Wells & Wong Mystery #2

Robin Stevens

$16.99

From the author of Murder Most Unladylike. Schoolgirl detectives Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong are at Daisy's home, Fallingford, for the holidays. Daisy's glamorous mother is throwing a tea party for Daisy's birthday, and the whole family is invited, from eccentric Aunt Saskia to dashing Uncle Felix. But it soon becomes clear that this party isn't really about Daisy at all. Naturally, Daisy is furious. Then one of their party falls seriously, mysteriously ill - and everything points to poison. With wild storms preventing anyone from leaving, or the police from arriving, Fallingford suddenly feels like a very dangerous place to be. Not a single person present is what they seem - and everyone has a secret or two. And when someone very close to Daisy looks suspicious, the Detective Society must do everything they can to reveal the truth ...no matter the consequences.
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New Boy

New Boy

Nick Earls

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Herschelle and his family have moved to Australia from Cape Town, mainly to escape the violence in South Africa. He has researched his new country and particularly its slang, but none of that actually prepares him for the reality of trying to fit in. Starting school, he is assigned to Max, an obvious nerd-type and not at all cool, who is to show him around and be his buddy. From linguistic misunderstandings to the general awkwardness of finding his place in a new society that doesn't even have guards patrolling the neighbourhood, Herschelle gradually overcomes the difficulties of being the new boy. Touches on themes of racism, bullying and personal development, but in an understated and accessible manner, leavened with a dash of healthy humour. Ages 9-12 Lindy

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Adjusting to a new country and a new school was never going to be easy  for Herschelle. The food is strange, it's so different to South Africa  and, worst of all, no one understands the Aussie slang he's learnt on  the web.  But it's the similarities that make things really hard.  Herschelle will have to confront racism, bullying and his own past  before Australia can feel like home... A moving, funny new novel by one of Australia's best-loved authors.
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The Greatest Gatsby: A Visual Book of Grammar

The Greatest Gatsby: A Visual Book of Grammar

Tohby Riddle

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- If there is a better book for explaining the fundamentals of grammar in a simpler way, then I don't know what it is! The award-winning illustrator (and collaborator with Ursula Dubosarsky on the successful Word Spy books) uses his idiosyncratic style and quirky illustrations to illuminate grammar. Beginning with defining grammar ("Grammar is…order. Grammar is… structure. Grammar makes sense") he goes on to explain all those fundamentals and tricky bits (I rather enjoyed his explanation of verbs that don't behave like verbs), finishing with the injunctions that the rules of grammar are there to help you communicate and grammar is your friend. Great fun, and great help, and appropriate for anyone who has struggled with understanding the subject (young or old)! Lindy

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Introducing a new, visually engaging way of presenting grammar. Appealing to the senses and the emotions with colour, texture, humour and drama, this book seeks to make the subject of grammar not only more intelligible to more people, but more memorable.
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The Big Book of Australian History

The Big Book of Australian History

Peter Macinnis

$39.99

This is the second edition of The Big Book of Australian History, awarded 'Notable Book' by the Children's Book Council of Australia in 2014. Drawing on the impressive collections of the National Library of Australia, this comprehensive book provides children with an interesting and engaging overview of the history of Australia. It covers many of the main events in the nation's history. Packed with colourful images and interesting facts, The Big Book of Australian History introduces children to the many people and events that have made Australia what it is today. It also encourages them to think about how Australia has evolved as a nation. Author Peter MacInnis' enthusiastic retelling of Australia's story is infectious. Among the big events and the great moments that have shaped the country, MacInnis also includes lesser-known, interesting details that bring Australian history to life. For example, did you know that, in 1934, the ABC developed 'synthetic' cricket, in which radio broadcasters gave a ball-by-ball description of the game, using sound effects to simulate the sound of bat on ball and the applause of the crowd?
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The Chocolate Promise

The Chocolate Promise

Josephine Moon

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Sometimes you just want a simply readable, entertaining and light hearted novel, and this fits the bill! Christmas Livingstone has built up a successful business in a small Tasmanian country town, running a shop called the Chocolate Apothecary. To achieve success she has a list of rules, and the most important of these is 'absolutely no romantic relationships.' Then Lincoln van Luc returns from a stint working as a botanist in South America - and yes, instant attraction, although neither of them want to get involved. And yes, they will eventually... A sweet and enjoyable way to spend a weekend, and you probably won't even need a box of chocolates as the descriptions of Christmas's beautiful creations are delicious enough! Lindy

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Christmas Livingstone has ten rules for happiness, the most important of which is 'absolutely no romantic relationships'.


In The Chocolate Apothecary, her enchanting artisan store in Tasmania, she tempers chocolate and creates handmade delicacies. Surrounded by gifts for the senses, in this shop chocolate isn't just good for you, it's medicine. And then one day a stranger arrives at her front door - a dishevelled botanist seeking her help. She really doesn't need Lincoln van Luc to walk into her life, even if he does have the nicest blue eyes, the loveliest meddling grandmother and a gorgeous newly rescued dog. She really doesn't need any of it. Or does she?

Set across Tasmania, Paris and Provence, this is a glorious novel of a creative woman about to find out how far in life a list of rules will take her, with an enticing tangle of freshly picked herbs, pots of flowers and lashings of chocolate scenting the air.
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Etta and Otto and Russell and James

Etta and Otto and Russell and James

Emma Hooper

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Told in small portions, this gentle story is about a woman and the two men who have loved her deeply for years - one her husband, the other their mutual best friend. Etta has never seen the ocean, and has spent her life on the prairies of Saskatchewan. She is not discontent, but she is full of deep yearning, and one morning leaves her farmhouse with a few supplies, a gun and her best boots, setting off to walk to the sea - 2000 miles away.

As she walks, her husband Otto waits for her return, learning to bake, writing letters, creating a menagerie. Russell is frustrated by Otto's response to Etta's disappearance, and sets off on his own quest. Etta meanwhile is accompanied by a wolf, and although she had forgotten many things, her journey will bring them back piecemeal. A strangely beguiling story, mysterious and haunting. Lindy

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I've gone. I've never seen the water, so I've gone there. I will try to remember to come back.

Etta's greatest unfulfilled wish, living in the rolling farmland of Saskatchewan, is to see the sea. And so, at the age of eighty-two she gets up very early one morning, takes a rifle, some chocolate, and her best boots, and begins walking the 2,000 miles to water. Meanwhile her husband Otto waits patiently at home, left only with his memories. Their neighbour Russell remembers too, but differently - and he still loves Etta as much as he did more than fifty years ago, before she married Otto.
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A Reunion of Ghosts

A Reunion of Ghosts

Judith Claire Mitchell

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Lady, Vee and Delph Alter are the descendants of Lorenz Otto Alter, the Jewish-German inventor of the chemical processes that led to fertiliser and the gases used in the Nazi concentration camps. They feel that their whole family has been cursed ever since by their brilliant great-grandfather's legacy. Proof is that most of their family members have committed suicide, and that their own lives have been blighted by tragedy. However they have each other, and in the closing months of 1999, they live in the flat they grew up in, and intend to die in. Their suicide note takes the form of a joint memoir and family history, as they explain why they feel compelled to end their lives. This rich and poignant novel is full of trenchant humour, and is a wonderfully involving read. Lindy

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Three wickedly funny sisters. One family's extraordinary legacy. A single suicide note that spans a century. A heartbreaking, compulsively readable literary masterpiece.

Meet the Alter sisters: Lady, Vee and Delph. These three mordantly witty, complex women share their family's apartment on Manhattan's Upper West Side. They love each other fiercely, but being an Alter isn't easy. Bad luck is in their genes, passed down through the generations. Yet no matter what life throws at these siblings, they always have a wisecrack - and each other.

In the waning days of 1999, the sisters decide it's time to close the circle of the Alter curse. But first, as the world counts down to the dawn of a new millennium, Lady, Vee and Delph must write the final chapter of a saga generations in the making - one that is inexorably intertwined with that of the twentieth century itself. Unspooling threads of history, personal memory and family lore, they weave a mesmerising account of their lives that stretches back decades to their great-grandfather, a brilliant scientist whose professional triumph became the sinister legacy that defines them.

Magnificent and heartbreaking, this is an epic novel about three unforgettable women, bound to each other and their remarkable family through the blessings and the burdens bestowed by blood.
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Goodbye Sweetheart

Goodbye Sweetheart

Marion Halligan

$29.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE APRIL 2015 ----- Halligan is one of our finest writers, and this is as perfect a novel as any she has ever written. William - successful, cultured, convivial - dies of a heart attack in a pool. The business of burying and mourning him is complicated by his past - two ex-wives, one of whom is still bitter at his desertion, a current wife, the child he had with each, the lover no-one suspected him of having, the friends and business partners, his brother. As they come together, it seems that not one of them knew everything about the man he was, although they hold pieces of the whole. As they grieve in their different ways, they also struggle with the lives they lead, the frustrations and insecurities and fears of everyday existence. But they also have their joys and triumphs and small transcendent moments. Halligan has a keen eye for the human condition, for relationships and connections, and this insightful and tightly crafted novel is full of finely drawn characters. Her prose is sharp yet elegant (a description of people in a gym as tortoise faces growing out of dolphins has stuck with me!), her sympathies carefully placed, and the inevitable messiness of living and loving is beautifully rendered. Utterly satisfying. Lindy

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A successful lawyer, bon vivant, loving husband and father, has a heart attack and dies while swimming in the local pool. A man apparently happily married, yet, with two divorces behind him and three puzzled children. In death it seems that he is not the person everyone thought.

As his extended family gathers to mourn, secrets and lies unfold uncomfortably around them. Those pornographic images on his laptop? An unexpected lover - is he still philandering? But somewhere in the turmoil of mourning each of them has to find an answer to the question - who was this man really? What mysteries has he taken to the grave with him?

Goodbye Sweetheart is a powerful novel of love, the desire for understanding, and the inevitable messiness of life. 
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The Whispering Trees: Thickety #2

The Whispering Trees: Thickety #2

J. A. White ,  Andrea Offermann

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The first book , Thickety, was brilliantly realised and definitely one of my favourite reads last year! Now we follow the brave and resourceful Kara and her brother Taff as they try to make their way through the snares and snarls of the threatening Thickety. As they try to elude the dark ruler of the forest, they meet up with many perils of other sorts, not least an uneasy alliance with a witch who claims she seeks the redemption that can only come from helping Kara deal with her magical abilities. But Mary Kettle may have ulterior motives, and other creatures in the realm may be less unpredictable - or are they? In a place where trust is easily misplaced, and Sordyr sees all, what are Kara and Taff to do? As with Thickety, this book turns out to have twists and surprises, and is every bit as fabulous and enthralling! Lindy

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For fans of Neil Gaiman, The Whispering Trees, book two in the Thickety series by J. A. White. It is the story of a good witch, a bad witch, and a forest demon, trapped together in a world that is both enchanting and dangerous.After Kara Westfall's village turns on her for practicing witchcraft, she and her brother, Taff, flee to the one place they know they won't be followed: the Thickety. Only this time the Forest Demon, Sordyr, is intent on keeping them there. Sordyr is not the Thickety's only danger: unknown magic lurks behind every twist and shadow of the path.And then they discover Mary Kettle, an infamous witch with a horrifying past. She offers to lead them out of the Thickety while teaching Kara how to cast spells without a grimoire. The children are hesitant to trust her... but this could be their only chance to escape.Or the first step down a dark and wicked path.
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As Red As Blood

As Red As Blood

Salla Simukka

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- These have been runaway bestsellers in Europe, and Finland where they originate from (there is a third to come, not translated yet). Lumikki Andersson is in highschool, living alone and minding her own business. She doesn't let people close, and as the stories unfold the reader learns Lumikki was subjected to cruel and awful bullying as a younger student in her home town. In the first book, Lumikki is drawn in unwittingly, when she discovers a large amount of bloodstained money and realises the popular kids are hiding something… In the second, she has persuaded her parents to let her go to Prague for a holiday break, where she is approached by a slightly older girl who claims to be her unknown sister.  Atmospheric, taut, intriguing and well plotted, these are Scandi noir for young adult readers. Lindy

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Seventeen-year-old Lumikki Andersson is hardly your average teenager. She lives by herself in the city of Tampere, Finland, and has a firm rule to mind nobody's business but her own. But that rule is put to the test when she happens upon five hundred washed euro notes hanging up to dry in her school's darkroom, and it is shattered once Lumikki realises who owns them.

Caught in an increasingly tangled web of deception, corruption and danger, Lumikki finds herself navigating the Tampere's dark underbelly in the search to expose its shocking connection to the international drugs trade. Lumikki is smart, but is she smarter than a master criminal? Can she bring down the famous 'Polar Bear' - or will she become another one of his victims?

The first of a thrilling new Nordic crime series, this book will have you on the edge of your seat until the last page is turned... and then some. 
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Atlas of Adventures: A Collection of Natural Wonders, Exciting Experiences and Fun Festivities from the Four Corners of the Globe

Atlas of Adventures: A Collection of Natural Wonders, Exciting Experiences and Fun Festivities from the Four Corners of the Globe

Lucy Letherland

$35.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a large and cheerful book, celebrating the diversity of the world. Each section starts with a simplified map of a continent, marked with state boundaries and images that represent an aspect of that country. Within the sections are adventures - sleep under the northern lights in Finland, ski on the Bavarian Alps, meet monarch butterflies in Mexico, shower with an elephant in Thailand, cross the Sahara by camel, snorkel the Great Barrier Reef and so on, and these colourful  pages are full of interesting facts scattered throughout the double page spread. There are also a couple of adventurers to follow as they make their way around the world. Lots of fun, and educational to boot! Lindy

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Set your spirit of adventure free with this lavishly illustrated trip around the world. Explore seven continent maps, packed with hundred of activities and challenges to inspire armchair travellers of any age. Whether you're visiting the penguins of Antarctica, joining the Carnival in Brazil or a canoe safari down the Zambezi River, this book brings together epic adventures from the remotest corners of the globe and discoveries to made on your own doorstep. Follow one boy and one girl as they travel to over 30 destinations and discover hundreds of things to spot and facts to learn on every page.
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We're All Australians Now

We're All Australians Now

A.B. (Banjo) Paterson ,  Mark Wilson

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- In 1915 Banjo Paterson wrote a poem as an open letter to the troops. Now perhaps it might seem jingoistic, but it captures the flavour of those early war years in a way that present-day writers cannot. Today we forget that the nation was fairly newly formed, and that the men who fought in WWI would have thought of themselves as Victorians or Tasmanians or Queenslanders before they considered themselves Australians. It might not be the best poem Banjo wrote, but it is certainly heartfelt. However it is the quality of the illustrations by Mark Wilson which make this a book worth having. Wilson has taken images from the time and beautifully rendered them using pen and ink, pencil, and acrylic paint, and these tell a story way beyond the poem. Middle primary and up. Lindy

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We're All Australians Now follows the tradition of A & R children's classics such as Mulga's Bill Bicycle and Click Go the Shears. A.B. 'Banjo' Paterson's poem is illustrated by the award-winning Mark Wilson and is a timely contribution to our WWI Centenary publishing program. In 1915 Banjo Paterson wrote as an open letter to the troops a poem he titled 'We're All Australians Now' 'Australia takes her pen in hand, To write a line to you, To let you fellows understand, How proud we are of you.'
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My Gallipoli

My Gallipoli

Ruth Starke ,  Robert Hannaford

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- There are many books to mark the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign, and this one is both informative and moving. Each double page spread - finely illustrated by Robert Hannaford in charcoal and watercolour - gives a brief impression of the character's experience of Gallipoli. Beginning with a Turkish shepherd in 1914 and finishing with an Australian backpacker in 1990, they tell what Gallipoli is to them. Some are based on real people - soldiers, including an indigenous Australian and other ethnicities, Charles Bean, George Lambert, Mustafa Kemal - and some are fictitious representations of the people who would have been there. A well rounded presentation of a place that meant different things to different people, but who in the end are all united by stories of courage and loss. Lindy

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My Gallipoli looks at the history of Gallipoli from the months immediately before the landing at Anzac Cove in April 1915 through to the Allied retreat and the aftermath of the first World War, and beyond to the present day pilgrimages and commemoration ceremonies at the site of this historic campaign.

Stories of courage, valour, despair and loss are told through the eyes of many different participants, including the young Turkish shepherd recruited to fight for his country and the British seaman who towed the first boats onto the shores of Anzac Cove in the dawn of 25 April, to the Ghurkas, Afghans and Sikhs who fought in the British Indian Army and the soldiers of the Auckland and the Wellington Battalions who took part in the decisive battle of Chunuk Bair. Direct accounts from real participants such as the Australian war correspondent C.E.W.  Bean, Turkish commander Mustafa Kemal, Anzac war scout Harry Freame and sniper Billy Sing, mingle with factually based descriptions from a host of characters including the exhausted nurse aboard HMS Gascon on the night of 25 April, the devastated mother seeing her wounded son for the first time after the war, and the old Turkish man visiting his brother's grave at Gallipoli 70 years after his death.

The rich panoply of voices in Ruth Starke's text offers upper primary and lower secondary students a broad understanding of the Anzac Campaign and the current views of those engaged in the war as well as those at home. Its wide sweep will provide many entry points for discussion and reflection. The strong, visceral artwork of renowned fine artist Robert Hannaford captures the landscape of Gallipoli and the characters and mood of each account with the arresting intensity of a would-be war artist. Like Ruth's text his work will provide art students with a great deal to study and examine.
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Lest We Forget

Lest We Forget

Kerry Brown ,  Isobel Knowles ,  Benjamin Portas

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a very simple but effective book for young readers. The illustration is naïve rather than realistic, which makes it more suitable for the younger audience it plans to reach. A boy tells of significant happenings, because his granddad has told him there are two types of days - those you want to remember and those you want to forget. Alternate double pages tell two stories - the boy in his every day life, and his granddad as a young man going to war. So the boy tells of being afraid at starting school, and over the page (wordlessly) a young man leaves for the war; or tells of his pet dog dying, followed by the wordless illustrations of a telegram being haned over and a woman wiping tears as she reads it. A good book for discussing large themes. Lindy

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'My granddad says there are two types of days: those you want to remember and those you want to forget.'


A young boy visits his granddad and thinks about the important days in his life: his first day of school, playing soccer with his team, the day his baby sister was born. Yet through the illustrations the reader sees a parallel story of the grandfather's experiences at war: wearing his brand-new soldier's uniform, with his fellow diggers in the field, looking at a photo of the baby he's never met.

With illustrations from two extraordinary new talents, Isobel Knowles and Benjamin Portas, this powerful story from author Kerry Brown will help even young children understand the significance and importance of our national days of remembrance.

Timed for the centenary of the Gallipoli landing, this powerful story about a boy and his grandfather will help even the very young understand the significance of ANZAC Day.
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Eventual Poppy Day

Eventual Poppy Day

Libby Hathorn

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- In 1914, when Maurice is 17, the war that breaks out overseas seems like a grand adventure. His older brothers and many of the other lads in his small country town and district have already enlisted, and despite his parents' objections, as soon as he is able, he also joins up. In 2012, Oliver, who is 17, is having a lot of trouble with his family, school and his girlfriend. His grandmother is starting to get dementia, and his little sister Poppy has been unable to speak since their father left and she contracted meningitis. Oliver wants to do the right thing by everyone, but his frustration and anger get in the way of sensible thinking. When his grandmother leads him to the diary of her older brother who did not return from WWI, Oliver sees parallels in the past with his unknown grand-uncle's life and starts to see other ways through his problems. Based on family diaries, this is well researched and has a lot of heart. Readers 14+ Lindy

Respected YA author Libby Hathorn has drawn on family history and done extensive research to write a fascinating book that profiles two young protagonists, both seventeen years of age, who are related: Maurice, who went to Gallipoli and the Western Front and his great-great nephew, Oliver, who is trying to deal with difficult family circumstances but whose discovery of Maurice's WW1 diary changes the way he sees the world. The balance of the historical and contemporary points of view makes this title perfect for use in the classroom, but also appealing to the YA reader.

Painstakingly researched and extremely well written, this is a novel that moves deftly and easily from one time period to another and yet still allows the novel to retain an overall sense of cohesion. 
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I Was Here

I Was Here

Gayle Forman

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- From the bestselling author of If I Stay comes another exploration of what makes life worth living. Cody and Meg have been inseparable up to the time Meg wins a prestigious scholarship based in Seattle. Cody has to wait before she can escape their small hometown, and while the two girls keep in touch, they do start to drift apart. But it isn't until Meg shockingly commits suicide, that Cody realises just how much Meg was concealing from her. When Cody further investigates, she meets the boyfriend Meg never told her about, and then discovers Meg was supported in her decision to die. A harrowing topic, but handled sensitively and in a manner that is quite page-turning. 15+ Lindy

A brand-new, heartwrenching novel from the bestselling author of If I Stay, Gayle Forman. This characteristically powerful novel follows eighteen-year-old Cody Reynolds in the months following her best friend's shocking suicide.  As Cody numbly searches for answers as to why Meg took her own life, she begins a journey of self-discovery which takes her to a terrifying precipice, and forces her to question not only her relationship with the Meg she thought she knew, but her own understanding of life, love, death and forgiveness.
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Do You Love Dogs?

Do You Love Dogs?

Clair Hume

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a lovely book for any child (and probably many an adult!) who likes dogs. Full of colourful photographs and remarkable facts, this delightful book explains what a dog is, why it does what it does, the best ways to look after your dog. It also tells stories about famous dogs and helps the reader understand more about our faithful canine companions. The author is Australian, and part of the royalties go to a pet rescue charity. Lindy

Do dogs dream? Does tail-wagging always show that a dog is happy? Is a pug really related to a wolf? Can a dog be trained to ride a horse? For thousands of years, dogs have been our best friends. They've kept us company, entertained us and even saved our lives. In this fun and fascinating book, Clair Hume (with the help of her dog, Dave) explores all sorts of remarkable facts and stories about dogs. Do You Love Dogs? will help you understand more about the wonderful world of our canine companions. You'll probably end up looking at them in a completely different way!
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This is Captain Cook

This is Captain Cook

Christina Booth ,  McCartney, Tania

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a truly delightful picture book! It tells the story of James Cook, but in a highly original way - via a school play! We see the children of Miss Batts' class (and the class pet chook) present Cook's life as a mariner, father and adventurer, with all the little asides that anyone who has sat through an amateur production can relate to, but we also see the front rows of the auditorium and the little dramas that are playing out there. Charmingly illustrated, it also makes use of the National Library's collection of Cook memorabilia and gives links to the NLA's website. Lindy

Captain James Cook loved to sail. He loved making maps (he was very good at it, too) and he particularly loved shiny buttons. In this charming picture book, little ones can celebrate the life of a great mariner and true adventurer.  Join Miss Batts and her class as they tell the story of Captain Cook with a humorous and whimsical school play that's sure to engage the very young. We see the class act out the story of Cook: as a boy watching ships on the horizon, sailing to Canada, then to Tahiti and on to New South Wales and New Zealand (spot the escaping chicken in each of the scenes!). Kids will discover that Captain Cook was the first European to cross the Antarctic Circle and they'll also learn that on his final journey, he never came home again.  Parents, carers and teachers will smile at the familiar set-up of the chaotic school play and the inventive props, and enjoy eavesdropping on the audience as they interact with the performance. At the back of the book, walk through 'Cook's Gallery' and see real life paintings of Cook, his ship and his travels. Age range 3+ 
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Red: A Crayon's Story

Red: A Crayon's Story

Michael Hall

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A rather heartwarming picture book about a little crayon wrapped in a red label. He just can't do the things a red crayon should - his teacher tries to get him to draw strawberries, his mother sends him out to play with a yellow crayon to make orange, scissors snip off his label to give him room to breathe. But nothing works - because, as the reader knows, little Red is actually blue! It takes a new friend with a different way of looking at Red to help him believe in himself. A sweetly poignant tale that looks beyond the usual cliches, but nonetheless contains an important message. Lindy

A blue crayon mistakenly labeled as  red  suffers an identity crisis.

Red has a bright red label, but he is, in fact, blue. His teacher tries to help him be red (let's draw strawberries!), his mother tries to help him be red by sending him out on a playdate with a yellow classmate (go draw a nice orange!), and the scissors try to help him be red by snipping his label so that he has room to breathe. But Red is miserable. He just can't be red, no matter how hard he tries!

Finally, a brand-new friend offers a brand-new perspective, and Red discovers what readers have known all along. He's blue!

This funny, heartwarming, colorful picture book about finding the courage to be true to your inner self can be read on multiple levels, and it offers something for everyone!
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The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Gabrielle Zevin

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Previously published as The Collected Works of A J Fikry last year, this engaging and delightful novel relates the story of a grumpy bookseller. AJ Fikry owns a bookshop on Alice Island; his business is failing, his health is precarious, his wife died not too long ago, and the only thing of value he owned has been stolen (and it wasn't insured…)

Into his life steps the vivacious Amelia, a publisher's rep, who has to make her way past his defences (both literary, and literally!) Nor is that the only change - a baby girl has been abandoned in his shop, and somehow AJ finds himself responsible for her.

Each chapter opens with a short synopsis and critique of a short story, there is a cast of quirky and eccentric characters, and the gradual thawing of AJ and his re-engagement with life, makes for a charming and heart-warmingly clever read. Lindy

Originally published as The Collected Works of A. J. Fikry. A.J. Fikry owns a failing bookshop. His wife has just died, in tragic circumstances. His rare and valuable first edition has been stolen. His life is a wreck. Amelia is a book rep, with a big heart, and a lonely life Maya is the baby who ends up on A.J.'s bookshop floor with a note. What happens in the bookshop that changes the lives of these seemingly normal but extraordinary characters? This is the story of how unexpected love can rescue you and bring you back to real life, in a world that you won't want to leave, with characters that you will come to love.
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See How Small

See How Small

Scott Blackwood

$24.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JANUARY 2015 ----- One night in a small town in Texas, an atrocious crime is committed. The victims are three teenage girls - two sisters and their close friend - and their murder is never solved. Years have passed and the impact of the crime has never stopped rippling through the community. The parents are obviously dreadfully affected, but so too is the fireman who first stumbled across the girls' bodies when responding to the fire set in the shop they were working in.

Told in various voices - the drug-addled accomplice to the crime, a journalist who has never stopped trying to solve it, the fireman who has lost his way and his daughter's respect, the parents in their dreadful grief and guilt, the returned serviceman grappling with demons real and imagined, and the girls themselves, who watch and remember and try to connect. A truly haunting novel of unexpected beauty. Lindy

One late autumn evening in a Texas town, two strangers walk into an ice cream shop shortly before closing time. They bind up the three teenage girls who are working the counter, set fire to the shop, and disappear.

'See How Small' tells the stories of the survivors - family, witnesses, and suspects - who must endure in the wake of atrocity. Justice remains elusive in their world, human connection tenuous. Hovering above the aftermath of their deaths are the three girls. They watch over the town and make occasional visitations, trying to connect with and prod to life those they left behind. See how small a thing it is that keeps us apart,  they say.

A master of compression and lyrical precision, Scott Blackwood has surpassed himself with this haunting, beautiful, and enormously powerful new novel.
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We are All Completely Beside Ourselves

We are All Completely Beside Ourselves

Karen Joy Fowler

$22.99

MAN BOOKER SHORTLIST 2014 ----- This won the 2014 Pen/Faulkner Award for Fiction, and is an intelligent novel of sibling love and rivalry.

Rosemary tells the story of her family, but she starts in the middle with the impact of one day coming home and finding her older sister - with whom she had a slightly troubled but mostly accepting relationship with -  has been sent away. She details her betrayal and utter incomprehension, and it is only somewhere towards the middle of the book that the reader learns why Fern left.

The only other person Rosemary feels understands her is her brother Lowell, but it's been years since she last saw him. It turns out their childhood was actually a long-running experiment conducted by her scientist parents and neither Lowell nor Rosemary can forgive the betrayal of being 'subjects' rather than children. To move past that, Rosemary has to discover the truth about Fern's whereabouts…

An oddly compelling novel, surprising and assured. Lindy

Rosemary's young, just at college, and she's decided not to tell anyone a thing about her family. So we're not going to tell you too much either: you'll have to find out for yourselves, round about page 77, what it is that makes her unhappy family unlike any other. Rosemary is now an only child, but she used to have a sister the same age as her, and an older brother. Both are now gone - vanished from her life. 

There's something unique about Rosemary's sister, Fern. And it was this decision, made by her parents, to give Rosemary a sister like no other, that began all of Rosemary's trouble. So now she's telling her story: full of hilarious asides and brilliantly spiky lines, it's a looping narrative that begins towards the end, and then goes back to the beginning. Twice.

It's funny, clever, intimate, honest, analytical and swirling with ideas that will come back to bite you. We hope you enjoy it, and if, when you're telling a friend about it, you do decide to spill the beans about Fern - it's pretty hard to resist - don't worry. One of the few studies Rosemary doesn't quote says that spoilers actually enhance reading.
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Mothers Grimm

Mothers Grimm

Danielle Wood

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ---- 'Why do stepmothers get a bad reputation? they're just ordinary people having to put up with life. Sometimes it's the real mothers who belong in fairytales... Five brilliant short stories that turn well-known Grimm tales on their head! Lindy

You make deals with God. You make deals with the Devil. You're not fussy. But as a wise man once said: "It's the saying you don't care what you get what gets you jiggered." So you say it, and you're jiggered, but what you give birth to is a hedgehog. It's prickly and its cry is a noise so terrible that you wish someone would scrape fingernails on a blackboard to give you some relief.

In a fairytale, the only good mother is six feet under. All the others are bad news. A fairytale mother will exchange her first-born child for a handful of leafy greens. And if times get tough, she'll walk her babes into the woods and leave them there. But mothers of today do no such things. Do they?

In this collection of heart-breakingly honest stories, the mothers of the Brothers Grimm are brought - with wit, subversiveness and lyrical prose - into the here and now. Danielle Wood turns four fairytales on their heads and makes them exquisitely her own.

Mothers Grimm by Danielle Wood at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Pilot and the Little Prince: The Life Story of Antoine de Saint Exupery

The Pilot and the Little Prince: The Life Story of Antoine de Saint Exupery

Peter Sis

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICKS ----- The award-winning illustrator tells the story of the life of Antoine de Saint Exupery, the creator of the beloved classic The Little Prince.  Dreamily beautiful illustrations in muted tones of blue and brown (apart from the vivid and startling pages that depict the outbreak of WWII) convey the sense of a man who only felt at home in the sky. From Saint Exupery's earliest days, to his disappearance in 1944, Sis makes the point that however many times the pilot crashed, he always flew again. Full of factual information about the early days of aviation, the pages also contain tiny parcels of biography. A visually stunning book and a homage to a lost soul, this will intrigue readers of any age. Lindy

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Antoine de Saint-Exupery was born in France in 1900, when aeroplanes were just being invented. He always dreamt of flying, and when he became a pilot as a young man, his adventures truly began. He was one of the first pilots to deliver mail by plane and, along with his fellow pilots, helped to create new routes to faraway places. Antoine flew over mountains and deserts, battled winds and storms, and even tried to break aviation records. He also crashed a number of times. From his plane he reflected on life on the earth and in the skies, and this inspired him to write about his experiences. Peter Sis's remarkable biography celebrates the author of The Little Prince, one of the world's most beloved books.
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Les Miserables

Les Miserables

Marcia Williams

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICKS ----- If anyone can reduce Victor Hugo's collossal masterpiece into a condensed form suitable for young readers, it is Marcia Williams! Using her trademark comic-strip style which simplifies without reducing to insipidity, and with additional text drawn from the book (in English translation, not the original French!) this highly coloured and accessible version retells the stories and struggles of the convict Jean Valjean, his adopted daughter Cosette, and his nemesis Police Inspector Javert. An enjoyable introduction for ages 8-11 Lindy

-----

Marcia Williams retells one of the greatest novels of all time in her trademark accessible, highly illustrated style. A wonderful introduction to Victor Hugo's epic tale of injustice, love and heroism in 19th century France. The story follows Jean Valjean, an ex-convict, as he tries to put his criminal past behind him. Will he manage to escape from the ruthless Police Inspector Javert, who is determined to see him behind bars again? Can he build a life with Cosette, an orphaned girl he has rescued from poverty and neglect? When Cosette grows up and falls in love with the handsome Marius Pontmercy, will Jean Valjean let Cosette go? Or will the revolution that is sweeping through the streets of Paris tear all their lives apart?
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Lennie the Legend

Lennie the Legend

Stephanie Owen Reeder

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICKS ----- Lennie Gwyther lived on a farm in the Gippsland area of Victoria. When his father, a Great War veteran, was hospitalised for a broken leg, Lennie completed the ploughing for him and was rewarded by being allowed to travel to the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. On horseback. At the age of 9! His story is presented in this handsome volume, fully illustrated with archival material from the National Library, fictionalised to make for interesting reading, but interspersed with contextual material for historical authenticity. Lennie became a hero, the newspapers of the day following his journey, providing readers with an inspirational story in a time of economic uncertainty. His story certainly deserves retelling! Ages 9-12. Lindy

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Age range 7 and over. This is the inspiring true story of nine-year-old Lennie Gwyther who, at the height of the Great Depression in 1932, rode his pony from his home town of Leongatha in rural Victoria to Sydney to witness the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Lennie's 1,000-kilometre solo journey captured the imagination of the nation, and his determination and courage provided hope to many at a difficult time in Australia's history.  Lennie the Legend begins with a terrible accident on the family farm, when Lennie, remarkably at such a young age, takes on the responsibility for the ploughing. Lennie is obsessed with the marvel of the Sydney Harbour Bridge and, as a reward for saving the farm from missing the planting season, his parents grant him his wish to ride on his own to Sydney for the opening of the bridge. Lennie has all sorts of adventures along the way-a thief lurking in the bush in the dead of night, a raging bushfire, surprise appearances, celebrations in his honour, being the star of a newsreel, and meeting the Prime Minister.
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And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda

And the Band Played Waltzing Matilda

Eric Bogle ,  Bruce Whatley

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICKS ----- Based on the lyrics of the powerful and moving anti-war anthem, this book is illustrated by Bruce Whatley in a muted palette of sepia toned hues. The futility of war has rarely been presented so plainly and heart-breakingly as in Bogle's most famous song, and it is a timely book explaining the cost of warfare on the participants and onlookers. Whatley's sensitive and evocative illustrations do the words justice. Any age from middle primary up. Lindy

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But the band played 'Waltzing Matilda' when we stopped to bury our slain. We buried ours, and the Turks buried theirs; then we started all over again.  Eric Bogle's famous and familiar Australian song about the Battle of Gallipoli explores the futility of war with haunting power. Now Bruce Whatley's evocative illustrations bring a heart-rending sense of reality to the tale. A timely story for every generation to share.
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The Door That Led to Where

The Door That Led to Where

Sally Gardner

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICKS ----- AJ has a pretty toxic relationship with his mother, who has never told him anything about his father. The only adult who looks out for him is old Elsie, who lost her son many years ago. When AJ finishes school with only one pass (in English) his mother gives him an ultimatum. Forced to attend an interview with a legal firm, much to his surprise he is offered a job; but even more to his surprise, he finds a key in the firm's archives, marked with his name and date of birth. The key opens a mysterious door - and on the other side is London of the 19th century. As he passes back and forth, and introduces his only real friends (both neglected boys like himself) to 1830s London, they find that there isn't really much difference - or is there? The time-travel element is weak, but the characterisation and storyline are strong and the plot absorbing. Ages 13+ Lindy

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When the present offers no hope for the future, the answers may lie in the past. AJ Flynn has just failed all but one of his GCSEs, and his future is looking far from rosy. So when he is offered a junior position at a London law firm he hopes his life is about to change - but he could never have imagined how much. Tidying up the archive one day, AJ finds an old key, mysteriously labelled with his name and date of birth - and he becomes determined to find the door that fits the key. And so begins an amazing journey to a very real and tangible past - 1830, to be precise - where the streets of modern Clerkenwell are replaced with cobbles and carts, and the law can be twisted to suit a villain's means. Although life in 1830 is cheap, AJ and his friends quickly find that their own lives have much more value. They've gone from sad youth statistics to young men with purpose - and at the heart of everything lies a crime that only they can solve. But with enemies all around, can they unravel the mysteries of the past, before it unravels them? A fast-paced mystery novel by one of the UK's finest writers, The Door That Led to Where will delight, surprise and mesmerise all those who read it.
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All the Bright Places

All the Bright Places

Jennifer Niven

$17.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JANUARY 2015 ----- Theodore Finch is known as a freak in his school; talented and out-there and someone to acknowledge and envy, but not someone to befriend. Violet Markey is one of the it-girls, popular and pretty and a successful blogger, but she's struggling since the death of her sister in a car accident that Violet survived. When Violet and Finch meet one lunchtime in the bell tower of their school, where both have gone to contemplate suicide, only they know who saved whom. When their geography teacher sets the class a project to discover the sights of Indiana, Finch and Violet team up together, and discover that even seemingly unremarkable places have their own brightness. But as Violet learns to re-embrace life, Finch is spiralling deeper into undiagnosed bipolar disease… A tender love story, a celebration of life in the midst of tragedy (and after it), a lively narrative style all combine to make this a thoroughly recommended novel - and not just for older teens. Lindy

-----

The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park. All the Bright Places is a compelling and beautiful story about a girl who learns to live from a boy who intends to die.

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him. Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister's recent death. When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it's unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the 'natural wonders' of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It's only with Violet that Finch can be himself - a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who's not such a freak after all. And it's only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet's world grows, Finch's begins to shrink. How far will Violet go to save the boy she has come to love?

An intense, gripping YA novel, perfect for fans of John Green, Jay Asher, Rainbow Rowell, Gayle Forman and Jenny Downham.
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Sam and Julia at the Circus: Mouse Mansion #3

Sam and Julia at the Circus: Mouse Mansion #3

Karina Schaapman

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Julia and Sam live in the fabulous Mouse Mansion, and in this the third book detailing their adventures and day-to-day life, they discover life in a circus. Told in snippets, the story explores life and community and the small happenings when the circus comes to town. While the story is charming, the real delight is in the accompanying photographs. Schaapman has designed and built a real Mouse Mansion, using recycled and found objects, and also constructed a complete circus in miniature. These intricate creations give hours of wonder and browsing pleasure! Story for pre-schoolers, illustrations for everyone! Lindy

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Sam and Julia live in a wonderful place called Mouse Mansion. Sam is SUPER shy and VERY well behaved, while Julia is SUPER curious and VERY stubborn. The two mice couldn't be more different, but they are the best of friends. One summer holidays, Julia and her mum join the circus! Julia writes to Sam about her exciting adventures with her new circus friends, and Sam writes back with all his news about life at Mouse Mansion.
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A is for Australia

A is for Australia

Frane Lessac

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- An alphabet book that tours Australia, from Bondi to Taronga Zoo. The entries are unusual  and often not what you would expect, as Lessac will illuminate a letter with a little-known place. Each brightly coloured page contains a sprinkling of interesting facts and is illustrated in a highly decorative and naif style. Lindy

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A factastic tour of Australia from A to Z with award-wining author and illustrator Frane Lessac. What is the Fremantle Doctor? Where is Qui Qui? And why are some islands named after days of the week? You'll uncover these exciting facts when you explore the A to Z of Australia - from Bondi to Kakadu and all the way to Taronga Zoo. Discover why Australia is one of the most amazing countries in the world!
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Springtime: A Ghost Story

Springtime: A Ghost Story

Michelle de Kretser

$14.99

Picking up her pace, Frances saw a woman in the leaf-hung depths of the garden. She wore a long pink dress and a wide hat, and her skin was a creamy white. There came upon Frances a sensation that sometimes overtook her when she was looking at a painting: space was foreshortened, time stood still. When Frances met Charlie at a party in Melbourne he was married with a young son. Now she and Charlie live in Sydney with her rescue dog Rod and an unshakeable sense that they have tipped the world on its axis. They are still getting their bearings - of each other and of their adopted city. Everything is alien, unfamiliar, exotic: haunting, even. Worlds of meaning spin out of perfectly chosen words in this rare, beguiling and brilliant ghost story by Miles Franklin Literary Award-winning writer Michelle de Kretser.
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Before After

Before After

Anne-Margot Ramstein ,  Matthias Aregui

$27.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This wordless picture book is most eloquent! On one page an image morphs into another stage on the opposite page (or occasionally the next double spread). Obvious things like: a bud opening into a waterlily, or a caterpillar into a butterfly, or an egg into a chicken (and back into an egg again). Less obvious things like: a cacoa pod into a block of chocolate, or a squid followed by a bottle of ink, or a pile of bricks into a wall. And even more subtle things like: a pigeon in flight followed by an aerogram marked with a stamp depicting a pigeon, or a pumpkin followed by a coach. As you turn the pages and enjoy the finely delineated drawings though, an even more subtle story unfolds… Works on many levels, and interesting on them all! Lindy

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This is a beautiful, smart and graphic picture book that explores the theme of before and after. Everyone knows that a tiny acorn into a mighty oak grows, and a caterpillar emerges into a butterfly. But in this clever, visually enchanting volume, it's also true that a cow can result in both a bottle of milk and a painting of a cow, and an ape in a jungle may become an urban King Kong. Just as day turns into night and back again, a many-tiered cake is both created and eaten down to a single piece. With simple, graphic illustrations sure to appeal to even the youngest of children, this smart exploration of the fascinating theme of before and after will please the most discerning adult readers, too. Author-illustrators, Matthias Aregui Margot and Anne-Ramstein explore a contrasting graphic universe in this beautiful picture book. Subtle hints to classic nursery tales and narratives of a developing civilization make this more than just a simple  before and after  series of illustrations.
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Once Upon an Alphabet: Short Stories for all the Letters

Once Upon an Alphabet: Short Stories for all the Letters

Oliver Jeffers

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This gloriously whimsical book starts with the sentences: If words make up stories, and letters make up words, then stories are made of letters. In this menagerie we have stories, made of words, made for all the letters. So, A is for an astronaut. Which introduces us to Edmund, who has trained for ages but has a small problem: he's frightened of heights! So the book goes, with characters recurring (and some of those are familiar from past Jeffers books) and associations made and dissolved in the great way of all stories. Wonderful for all ages! Lindy

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A flagship publication, gloriously bringing the alphabet to life in irresistible Oliver Jeffers style! The letters of our alphabet work tirelessly to make words that in turn make stories, but what if there was a story FOR each of the letters instead? Turn the pages of this exquisite book to find out...Here you will discover twenty-six short stories introducing a host of new characters (plus the occasional familiar face). From Edmund the astronaut with his awkward fear of heights, via the dynamic new investigative duo of the Owl and the Octopus, through to the Zeppelin that just might get Edmund a little bit closer to where he needs to be, this book is packed with funny, thrilling, perilous and above all entertaining tales inspired by every letter in the alphabet. An adventure to follow from A to Z, or a treasure trove to dip in and out of, Once Upon an Alphabet is a work of exhilarating originality from artist Oliver Jeffers, the creator of much-loved modern classics such as Lost and Found and The Incredible Book Eating Boy.
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Gus and Me: The Story of my Granddad and My First Guitar

Gus and Me: The Story of my Granddad and My First Guitar

Theodora Richards ,  Richards, Keith

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Yep, that Keith Richards! I was very dubious when I first came across this, but was quickly won over by the charming story of a boy and his grandfather and the special bond between them. Theodore Augustus Dupree was many thing - soldier, baker, leader of a dance band - but as Keith's granddad was just Gus. Keith never knew where they'd end up when they went for walks together, and one day they find themselves in a music store. As Keith waits and watches, he falls in love with instruments. Gus promises that when he is tall enough to reach the top of the piano his guitar rests on, Keith can play it - and from there Keith's lifelong passion for music is formed. With expressive pen and ink drawings from his daughter Theodora, and with a CD featuring Keith reading and playing, this is a treat for his many fans - and even those who aren't! Lindy

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Keith's grandfather, Theodore Augustus Dupree lived near Seven Sisters Road, in a house filled with instruments and cakes. A nostalgic look back at happy childhood days as the Rolling Stone star remembers his grandfather - a former big band player who encouraged his grandson to take up the guitar, in this charming picture book whimsically illustrated by Keith Richards' daughter. Includes an exclusive CD with a reading of the story by a professional actor, James Langton, and a spoken introduction and additional guitar music from Keith.
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Sam and Dave Dig a Hole

Sam and Dave Dig a Hole

Mac Barnett ,  Jon Klassen

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- On Monday Sam and Dave (and their unnamed dog) dig a hole. They aren't going to stop until they find something spectacular…so it ends up being quite a very deep hole indeed! Full of sly jokes - Klassen of I Want My Hat Back and This is Not My Hat has a very deft way with the witty illustration that conveys much more than the accompanying text. Delightful, and particularly so when the reader picks up all the little clues... Lindy

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Sam and Dave are on a mission. A mission to find something spectacular. So they dig a hole. And they keep digging. And they find ...nothing. Yet the day turns out to be pretty spectacular after all. Attentive readers will be rewarded with a rare treasure in this witty story of looking for the extraordinary - and finding it in a manner you'd never expect.
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Counting Aussie Animals in My Backyard

Counting Aussie Animals in My Backyard

Bronwyn Houston

$19.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A simple but beautiful counting book. One python slithers through the plants, two kookaburras laugh on the fence, all the way up to ten mosquitoes biting. Bold and colourful illustrations capture a semi-tropical backyard full of natural wonders, and the simple text wins marks for its unforced rhythmical play on sounds (such a pleasure to read out loud!) I know a 2 year old who absolutely loves this book - and what better recommendation! Lindy

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Bronwyn Houston makes counting to 10 so much fun! Her textured and vivid illustrations bring a tropical Australian garden to life, with a touch of humour thrown in. From kookaburras laughing on a fence to bull ants marching through the dirt... find out what these Australian animals get up to in Bronwyn's backyard.
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My Father the Great Pirate

My Father the Great Pirate

Maurizio A.C. Quarello ,  Cali, Davide

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Sometimes there are books in the children's section because they are illustrated and in a picture book format, so therefore they are for kids. But often enough, these books can't be categorised, and shouldn't be limited to young readers, because they truly transcend age barriers and can speak to anyone who reads. This book is one of those undefinable and special experiences.

As a young boy, the narrator's father goes away, and only returns once a year. The child knows this is because his father is a pirate, a great pirate, who tells him stories about the places he's been, the ships he's attacked, the treasures buried and his shipmates. But one summer his father doesn't return and the boy's mother gets a telegram…

I won't tell more of the story, but I will say that every adult I have inveigled to read this book, has stood quietly and thoughtfully when they reach the end. I don't know how a child would react to it, but I know it moved me unutterably. There are themes of love and what we do to protect our loved ones, of bravery and resilience and that moment when childhood is put behind even when understanding has yet to catch up with experience.

The illustrations are coloured in a muted palette, soft greys and creamy yellows with occasional splashes of warm umber, and convey as much meaning as the simply related text.
 
Have a look for yourself - I think this is one of the best books I have seen in my picture book section this year. Or for that matter, anywhere in the shop. Lindy Jones

My Father the Great Pirate by Davide Cali & Maurizio Quarello at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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H is for Hawk

H is for Hawk

Helen Macdonald

$34.99

WINNER - SAMUEL JOHNSON PRIZE 2014 ~ ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----  MacDonald has been obsessed with the archaic traditions of falconry since early childhood, training small falcons and generally immersed in the fellowship of falconers for many years. When her beloved father dies unexpectedly, she is overwhelmed by loss and decides to take on the greatest challenge of all - to train a goshawk. In the process of building a rapport with her hawk, MacDonald learns what it truly is to be human through her association with the wildest and largest British raptor of all.

A lyrical and beautifully crafted meditation on grief, connection, wildness and control, it is also intertwined with her re-reading of T H White's little known book The Goshawk , which details the celebrated author's attempts to train such a bird himself. White and his mistakes, his writings and outsider status, all become essential to her own attempts to make sense of what has happened in losing her father.

I can't recommend this highly enough, and any fan of the ilk of Robert MacFarlane or Roger Deacon, will appreciate this fine book. Lindy

------

'In real life, goshawks resemble sparrowhawks the way leopards resemble housecats. Bigger, yes. But bulkier, bloodier, deadlier, scarier, and much, much harder to see. Birds of deep woodland, not gardens, they're the birdwatchers' dark grail.'

As a child Helen Macdonald was determined to become a falconer. She learned the arcane terminology and read all the classic books, including T. H. White's tortured masterpiece, The Goshawk, which describes White's struggle to train a hawk as a spiritual contest. When her father dies and she is knocked sideways by grief, she becomes obsessed with the idea of training her own goshawk. She buys Mabel for GBP800 on a Scottish quayside and takes her home to Cambridge. Then she fills the freezer with hawk food and unplugs the phone, ready to embark on the long, strange business of trying to train this wildest of animals.

'To train a hawk you must watch it like a hawk, and so gain the ability to predict what it will do next. Eventually you don't see the hawk's body language at all. You seem to feel what it feels. The hawk's apprehension becomes your own. As the days passed and I put myself in the hawk's wild mind to tame her, my humanity was burning away.'

Destined to be a classic of nature writing, H is for Hawk is a record of a spiritual journey - an unflinchingly honest account of Macdonald's struggle with grief during the difficult process of the hawk's taming and her own untaming. At the same time, it's a kaleidoscopic biography of the brilliant and troubled novelist T. H. White, best known for The Once and Future King. It's a book about memory, nature and nation, and how it might be possible to try to reconcile death with life and love.

H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Shadow Art: How to Have Fun in the Dark - Create 100 Shadow Animals

Shadow Art: How to Have Fun in the Dark - Create 100 Shadow Animals

Sophie Collins

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Just for something different, a book that shows how to create a menagerie of different animals with just the aid of a torchlight and the shape of your hands. With a little practice, make silhouettes of things like elephants and camels and dogs and birds… Hours of fun for child and adult alike, simple and effective and a great boost to imaginative play! Lindy

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Made using only your hands and a torch or lamp, shadow animals have a charm that has lasted through the ages. You might have tried creating them as a child, even if your repertoire was limited to a rather shaky wolf (one of the first shadow animals that anyone learns!. But in your great-grandmother's day, shadow-casting was considerably more sophisticated. Any parlour entertainer worth his or her salt could effortlessly bring dozens of animals to life. So, if modern party games seem soulless, step out of the shadows with  Shadow Ark . Just an hour's practice will have you demonstrating the roar of a lion and the snap of a crocodile; and soon you'll be putting on an entire show. Friends will be getting competitive over the realism of their shadow creations and children will be queuing two by two to learn to make their favourites. Before you know it, you'll be an aficionado of a parlour game that even your grandma would consider sweetly old- fashioned. In keeping with this, we've suggested a traditional, biblical story line, but don't limit yourself. Once you have the characters at your fingertips, you'll be able to enact anything from Red Riding Hood to lassie Come Home.
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Dark Inside

Dark Inside

Rupert Wallis

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- James is trapped in a nightmare life - his mother dead, his stepfather violent, neglectful and begrudging, school dreadful. He often seeks refuge in the deserted house on the hill, where he keeps a record of how many days until he's 18 and able to escape. One day though, he discovers a man there - beaten very badly and obviously in trouble. Webster however is not an ordinary man and when the travellers turn up asking about information and promising gold for the knowledge of his whereabouts, James is tempted to reveal what he knows. But the travellers aren't telling the truth, and James and Webster end up running from their respective enemies... This was an amazingly atmospheric novel, which leaves a lot to the reader's imagination (is Webster cursed? is James doomed to suffer the same fate? what is the puppet the old traveller woman keeps?). It reminded me of Patrick Ness and David Almond, and was as skilful and as thought-provoking as works by either of those fine writers. 12+ Lindy

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The House on the Hill has been abandoned for as long as James can remember. So when he discovers Webster, a drifter, hiding there, he's instantly curious about the story behind the homeless man. What is he running from? Afflicted by a dark curse, Webster is no longer who he used to be. But there is said to be a cure and it might just be that by helping Webster, James will find some solace of his own. Together they embark on a journey, not knowing that what they discover will impact them both in ways they never imagined...A gripping and haunting story about loss and hope, perfect for fans of Patrick Ness and David Almond.
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Messenger of Fear

Messenger of Fear

Michael Grant

$22.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Mara wakes up in an unknown place, remembering nothing but her name. A mysterious young man, dressed in a black coat with silver skull buttons, appears, and he knows who she is and what is happening. With no choice that she can see, Mara follows Messenger, and finds herself reliving the final hours of dead teenager Samantha Early's life. As different characters appear, and the taciturn and seemingly harsh Messenger unveils more of Samantha's life, and as Mara witnesses the moral choices made by others, she realises that she is caught within a balance she does not understand, that forces greater than her own existence are in play - and she is just one piece in a vast battle of justice and retribution. A gripping and occasionally creepy beginning to a new series - I couldn't put it down! 13+ Lindy

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I remembered my name - Mara. But, standing in that ghostly place, faced with the solemn young man in the black coat with silver skulls for buttons, I could recall nothing else about myself. And then the games began. The Messenger sees the darkness in young hearts, and the damage it inflicts upon the world. If they go unpunished, he offers the wicked a game. Win, and they can go free. Lose, and they will live out their greatest fear. But what does any of this have to do with Mara? She is about to find out...
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When the Night Comes

When the Night Comes

Favel Parrett

$27.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE SEPTEMBER 2014 ----- Set in the 1980s in Hobart and on the southern oceans, this finely crafted novel is as deceptively simple as Parrett's first, award-winning Past the Shallows.

Isla and her brother have been taken to Hobart by their mother who is escaping an unhappy marriage. It is a grey sort of life for all of them, until her mother befriends some Danish sailors who are crew on the Nella Dan which supplies the Australian Antarctic bases under contract. One sailor in particular, Bo, brings a different way of seeing the world to Isla, and for a few weeks each summer, his kindness and quiet practicality brighten her life.

The chapters are interspersed with Bo's point-of-view as he works as a steward on the Nella Dan (a ship that engenders strong ties and affection in all who serve on her) and these sections are highly evocative of shipboard life and the wonders of the icy south. This is a quiet and reflective novel, pared down but beautifully formed. It is a story of small actions that generate great significance, of the helplessness of children who can only work things out in an incomplete manner, and of how adults bumble their way through life, not having all the answers themselves.

Deeply moving, and highly recommended. Lindy

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Running away from the mainland was supposed to make their lives better. But, for Isla and her brother, their mother's sadness and the cold, damp greyness of Hobart's stone streets seeps into everything. Then, one morning, Isla sees a red ship. That colour lights her day. And when a sailor from the ship befriends her mother, he shares his stories with them all - of Antarctica, his home in Denmark and life onboard. Like the snow white petrels that survive in the harshest coldest place, this lonely girl at the bottom of the world will learn that it is possible to go anywhere, be anything. But she will also find out that it is just as easy to lose it all. For Isla, those two long summers will change everything. Favel Parrett delivers an evocative and gently told story about the power fear and kindness have to change lives.

When the Night Comes by Favel Parrett at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Nest

Nest

Inga Simpson

$27.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE AUGUST 2014 ----- From the author of Mr Wigg comes this beautifully crafted novel of an artist re-finding her purpose and place in life. Jen is licking her wounds after the dissolution of her long term relationship with a man she has never gotten over, nor seems to want to recover from, and her mother’s death has given her the chance to buy a house and piece of bush near her childhood town. Jen left many years ago, but having nowhere else to go, has returned in order to resume her painting and her life. She tutors a promising young boy, Henry, works on her house and block, and observes the birds around her.

When a young girl who is Henry’s close friend goes missing, Jen’s past rears up to confront her, because when she was Henry’s age, her best friend went missing, never to be seen again. And so too, did her father, at the same time – and the town has never been convinced of his innocence. When the town starts remembering, Jen has to accept that her life will change yet again... An outstanding novel with a finely worked narrative line and fully realised characters. Lindy

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Once an artist and teacher, Jen now spends her time watching the birds around her house and tending her lush sub-tropical garden near the small town where she grew up. The only person she sees regularly is Henry, who comes after school for drawing lessons. When a girl in Henry's class goes missing, Jen is pulled back into the depths of her own past. When she was Henry's age she lost her father and her best friend Michael - both within a week. The whole town talked about it then, and now, nearly forty years later, they're talking about it again. Everyone is waiting - for the girl to be found and the summer rain to arrive. At last, when the answers do come, like the wet, it is in a drenching, revitalising downpour.

Nest by Inga Simpson at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Demons

Demons

Wayne Macauley

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Seven old friends decide to spend the weekend in a house perched above the Great Ocean Road. It is to be a total escape from the pressures of their various professional and domestic situations, with good food, good wine and stories. No papers, no television, no mobile phones or computers and no children - it should be a restorative break from modern life. Waiting for the last couple to arrive, they decide to take turns telling stories - true or invented? - as the weather starts to close in.

When Marshall does finally turn up, it's not with his wife but with his daughter, and the dynamics of the group shift into uncertainty - and recriminations. And the stories being told are less innocent, and when the house is cut off by a huge storm, their old friendships are called into question…

A sly social commentary, a thoughtful examination of tale-telling and its forms, and a cleverly constructed novel with unexpected flashes of cutting humour. Lindy

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They were going to tell stories. Let's go away for the weekend, said Megan, and leave our phones behind and turn off the computers and television and stop time because time is moving too fast and soon we'll all be saying where the hell did our lives go? We'll cook some food and drink some wine and each tell a story.  It is the middle of winter. Seven friends travel to a remote coastal beach house for the weekend. Without phones, internet or television, they sit around the fireplace, telling stories - each exposing the foibles of humankind. But as a storm rolls in and torrential rain cuts the party off from the outside world, it soon becomes clear that some secrets are best kept hidden. Demons is an extraordinary novel by one of Australia's great writers.
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Lonely Graves: Posthumus Trilogy #1

Lonely Graves: Posthumus Trilogy #1

Britta Bolt

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I don't usually read a lot of crime novels, and the ones I do should provide me with interesting characterisations and situations rather than gory details! This one is set in Amsterdam, and the main character, Pieter Posthumus, works for the Department of Emergencies and Internment in the section known as the Lonely Funeral team. They provide dignified funerals for the unclaimed, anonymous and forgotten. When one of the bodies belongs to a Moroccan immigrant, Posthumus feels there is something that needs explaining about the situation, and he starts to look for clues. Meanwhile, an elite police squad is hunting for terrorists but one of the detectives starts to suspect all is not above board in their investigation… Twists and turns, and a portrait of contemporary Dutch life to boot! Lindy

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A suicide. A drowned man. A sudden death. It's all in a day's work for Pieter Posthumus. In Amsterdam, the Lonely Funerals team exists to make sure that no one goes to the grave unmourned. Posthumus takes that responsibility seriously. A careful, humane man, he works hard to find out all he can about the anonymous or abandoned dead entrusted to his care. So when a young Moroccan immigrant is found in the Prinsengracht canal in suspicious circumstances, Posthumus cannot let it go. The police may call it accident or suicide; he is sure there's more to it. He takes up the case and starts digging...an investigation that leads to him getting caught up in a terror plot and in the way of an elite police unit. Discover an Amsterdam beyond the charms and the canals, where Pieter Posthumus aims to find justice for all - both the living and the dead.
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Are You Seeing Me?

Are You Seeing Me?

Darren Groth

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Justine and Perry are twins. Their Dad died just before their 18th birthday, their Mum is long gone, and Justine has deferred university (and her slightly overbearing-in-a-nice-way boyfriend) to take care of Perry, who has a brain condition that causes him to react differently to situations he finds stressful. The two of them are off on an overseas holiday care of insurance, and Justine wants it to be memorable for Perry, as he is moving into assisted accommodation when they return to Australia. And it will be, if not for all the reasons she thought before the trip started… Told in alternating voices of both Justine and Perry, this is a sensitively told story of what matters most, whatever your age or however others see you. Ages 14+ Lindy

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This road trip will have earth-shattering consequences ...Twins Justine and Perry are about to embark on the road trip of a lifetime in the Pacific Northwest. It's been a year since they watched their dad lose his battle with cancer. Now, at only nineteen, Justine is the sole carer for her disabled brother. But with Perry having been accepted into an assisted-living residence, their reliance on each other is set to shift. Before they go their separate ways, they're seeking to create the perfect memory. For Perry, the trip is a glorious celebration of his favourite things: mythical sea monsters, Jackie Chan movies and the study of earthquakes. For Justine, it's a chance to reconcile the decision to 'free' her twin, to see who she is without her boyfriend, Marc - and to offer their mother the chance to atone for past wrongs. But the instability that has shaped their lives will not subside, and the seismic event that Perry forewarned threatens to reduce their worlds to rubble...
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We Were Liars

We Were Liars

Emily Lockhart

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Cadence Sinclair is the eldest granddaughter of a patrician old-money family. Each summer they holiday on their private island off Marthas Vineyard - grandparents, aunts and cousins. The aunts are all vying for favour from their bigoted father, the littles and the golden retrievers are tolerated with amusement, and the older grandchildren - Cady, Mirren and Johnny form their own clique. Gat is an addition to their circle, a brown-skinned politically aware boy who Cady falls deeply in love with from the very beginning.

But something unspeakably horrible happened to Cady on the island of her fifteenth summer - and no-one speaks of it. She is continually plagued by debilitating headaches, has missed a lot of school and her cousins don't return her emails.

After missing one summer on the island, she returns the next, only to find there is a lot more she hasn't been told about - her grandfather's senility, her aunts' deterioration, her cousins refusing to stay in their allocated family homes. Spiky and energetic writing carries along a clever, gripping and twisty story. 14+ Lindy

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A beautiful and distinguished family. A private island. A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy. A group of four friends - the Liars - whose friendship turns destructive. A revolution. An accident. A secret. Lies upon lies. True love. The truth. We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense that will leave you reeling. Read it. And if anyone asks you how it ends, just LIE.
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Emu

Emu

Claire Saxby ,  Graham Byrne

$27.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Following on from their successful book Big Red Kangaroo, the creators turn to the other symbol on our coat-of-arms. A father emu gathers up a clutch of blue-green eggs, and incubates his brood. Non-fiction blended with a simple story and accurate and artistically rendered illustrations, so that young readers learn interesting facts wrapped up in the narrative. Lindy

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In the open forest, Emu gathers granite-green eggs under soft feathers. Emu will care for the eggs and protect the stripy chicks once they hatch. There are many hazards in the forest for this unusual family.
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Noggin

Noggin

John Corey Whaley

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Travis has woken up after what feels like a nap to him. He had terminal leukemia and volunteered to undergo a procedure where his head was cryogenically preserved until the time a suitable donor body could be found. At the time of his death, he thought that would be a long time in the future, but it turns out to be only five years - just long enough for people to have come to terms with losing him and picking up the pieces of their lives. Including his girlfriend Cate and best friend Kyle.

It's hard enough dealing with adolescence but dealing with the fact your birth certificate says you're 21 when you're still 16 and the people you relied on have grown up and you haven't, let alone the associated publicity that comes from being grafted onto someone else's body and considered a miracle - well Travis has a lot of catching up to do. And it won't be easy…

This was brilliant! A fascinating concept handled deftly, with a lot of interesting questions and thought-provoking scenarios, but also with humour and insight. Ages 13+ Lindy

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Listen - Travis Coates was alive once and then he wasn't. Now he's alive again. Simple as that. The in between part is still a little fuzzy, but Travis can tell you that, at some point or another, his head got chopped off and shoved into a freezer in Denver, Colorado. Five years later, it was reattached to some other guy's body, and well, here he is. Despite all logic, he's still sixteen, but everything and everyone around him has changed. That includes his bedroom, his parents, his best friend, and his girlfriend. Or maybe she's not his girlfriend anymore? That's a bit fuzzy too. If the new Travis and the old Travis are ever going to find a way to exist together, it looks like there's going to be a few more scars.
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A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove

Fredrik Backman

$29.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JULY 2014 ----- Perhaps the Scandinavians are tired of being associated with literary works of the darkest and most depressing hue, because there are some deliciously farcical and entertaining books filtering through that show the Scandis have a sense of humour! This latest offering has been an international bestseller, and it thoroughly deserves that status.

Ove is 59, in the second day of his forced retirement, and considering the best place to put a hook in his ceiling. He has conducted his morning ritual of ensuring the residential area is free of vehicles, nothing has been broken into, the rubbish has been properly sorted into the recycling bins, and shooed away an annoying cat. Ove is a practical man of inflexible habits and perceived as the neighbourhood’s grump – but that is far from the truth because Ove knows there is right, and everything else is wrong. He judges others by the car they drive (he is a lifelong devotee of Saab) and when his morning is disturbed by the sound of a Japanese car backing into his letterbox, he cannot contain his fury. But it turns out to be just the thing he needed to start living again – because as the reader finds out, Ove is a man who has lost the love of his life and his reasons to live.

This wonderful book had me in fits of laughter at times, and at others in quiet tears. It is a life-affirming novel with many shades of light and dark, a great cast of characters (I did enjoy the Cat Annoyance!) and a charming narrative style. The sort of book I don’t just highly recommend, but want everyone to read! Lindy

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There is something about Ove. At first sight, he is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet. He thinks himself surrounded by idiots -  neighbours who can't reverse a trailer properly, joggers, shop assistants who talk in code, and the perpetrators of the vicious coup d'etat that ousted him as Chairman of the Residents' Association. He will persist in making his daily inspection rounds of the local streets. But isn't it rare, these days, to find such old-fashioned clarity of belief and deed? Such unswerving conviction about what the world should be, and a lifelong dedication to making it just so? In the end, you will see, there is something about Ove that is quite irresistible...The word-of-mouth bestseller causing a sensation across Europe, Fredrik Backman's heartwarming debut is a funny, moving, uplifting tale of love and community that will leave you with a spring in your step - and less ready to judge on first impressions a man you might one day wish to have as your dearest friend.
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Lost and (&) Found

Lost and (&) Found

Brooke Davis

$26.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Millie Bird, aged 7, records dead things in her special book, but she wasn’t to know her Dad would be the 28th entry. Nor was she to know when her mother leaves her in the ladies’ underwear section of the department store, how long she would have to wait.

Karl, aged 87, has been left in an old people’s home and he doesn’t know how much more of his life he has to wait. And Agatha Pantha, aged 82, has been left alone after her husband dies and she doesn’t know how much longer she has to record measurements in her book of ageing.

How these three different characters form a unit makes for a charmingly off-centre story, as they escape their enforced waiting and attempt to reunite themselves with family, love and life. Throw in an incomplete mannequin, public transport, the Indian-Pacific and an assortment of helpful or interfering minor characters and you have a fine road trip of a read.

In turns, funny and poignant, wise and wide-ranging, this book crosses boundaries and deserves all the success it will inevitably have!

Brooke came in to Abbey's recently. It was 'the' book at the recent London Book Fair and has already been sold into 16 countries, with major deals in the US and UK - not bad for a debut novel! Brooke has worked as a bookseller in Victoria and Perth (where she now lives) and charmed everyone she met at the recent booksellers' conferences in Melbourne, with her modesty, intelligence and good nature. Her book is a universal favourite amongst those of us who have read it in advance of release, and we look forward to sharing this wonderful book with the wider reading public! Lindy
 
Photo: Brooke Davis (centre) at Abbey's 
 
Lost & Found and Brooke Davis at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Analogue Men

Analogue Men

Nick Earls

$32.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Nick Earls is well-known for his comedic novels often about young men, decent but somewhat clueless, coping with being adults. In this engagingly funny new novel, he turns his sharply observant talent to a middle-aged man’s struggles in navigating the world around him. I can’t tell you how much I laughed (but I do apologise to the man I startled on the train when I brayed out loud!)

Andrew has finally had enough of being an infrequent visitor to his family’s lives, and has taken on another role in order to return to Brisbane. From being a private-equity troubleshooter for companies overseas, he has been shifted sideways into managing a radio station – AM, at that. His wife is a brisk, efficient doctor who seems chagrined and amused in equal measure by his return; his twin children are busy with technology and being teenagers; his father (once the reigning king of local radio) has moved in to recover from cancer surgery. There just doesn’t seem to be room for Andrew. To top it off, his biggest problem at work is the station’s biggest asset – a politically incorrect bigmouth who delights in offending all and sundry. Andrew starts to feel increasingly irrelevant – an analogue man in a digital age. Warm and wry, witty and wise – a great book to drive away the winter blues! Lindy

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Andrew Van Fleet is 49 and feeling 50 closing in. He's bailed out of his private equity job for something that'll let him spend more time at home, but the house is overrun by iPads and teenage hormones and conversations that have moved on without him. Plus his ailing father is now lodged in the granny flat, convalescing from surgery and with his scrappy bulldog in tow. And then there's Brian Brightman, the expensive fading star at the radio station Andrew's signed up to manage, whose every broadcast offers fresh trouble. He's 49 too and, like Andrew, starting to wonder if the twenty-first century might prove to be his second best.

Analogue Men by Nick Earls at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Mr Chicken Lands on London

Mr Chicken Lands on London

Leigh Hobbs

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- He's back! That lovable giant chicken decides he has to visit London, so after breakfast he grabs his camera and flies there for the day. After a whirlwind day full of sightseeing and the sort of chaos that follows him wherever he goes, Mr Chicken heads home tired but satisfied… As much fun as Mr Chicken Goes to Paris with the slightly crazed and anarchic style that makes Leigh Hobbs such a favourite with readers of all ages! Lindy

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See London with Mr Chicken! From the creator of the much-loved bestseller Mr Chicken Goes to Paris. Mr Chicken can't wait another minute, so he finishes his breakfast, collects his camera and flies to London. He wants to see everything. Join Mr Chicken and let him show you his favourite city in all the world.
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As Stars Fall

As Stars Fall

Christie Nieman

$18.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Robin has been forced to leave her beloved home in the Victorian countryside when her father decides to take off with another woman, and her teacher mother accepts a post in Melbourne. She hates the city, the school, and being the new girl. Seth is alienated and angry and spends his days in a drug-induced haze, having dropped out of school when his mother (a scientist studying bush stone-curlews) died in a bushfire. His sister Delia, highly intelligent and principled, is struggling with her nightmares and grief, but as their father is a selfish drunk stuck in his own loss, has to be the grown-up of the family. Each of these lost teenagers are drawn together, united by a misplaced stone-curlew, and eventually learn how to cope with what life has thrown at them. A strong novel for readers 14+ Lindy

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The fire was fast and hot ...only days after it went through, there were absolutely no birds left. I should have seen it as an omen, the birds all leaving like that. Robin is a self-confessed bird-nerd from the country, living in the city. On the first day at her new school, she meets Delia. Delia is freaky and definitely not good for Robin's image. Seth, Delia's brother, has given up school to prowl the city streets. He is angry at everything, especially the fire that killed his mother. When a rare and endangered bird turns up in the city parklands, the lives of Robin, Seth and Delia become fatefully and dangerously intertwined ...An intricate love story about nature, grief, friendship and life. 
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Lucas and Jack

Lucas and Jack

Ellie Royce ,  Andrew McLean

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Every week Lucas accompanies his Mum when she visits her grandfather in a nursing home. It's boring there so Lucas doesn't go inside to see his Great Grandpop - but one day he meets Jack. Jack is another resident, but he's full of stories and even a bit of mischief. Suddenly Lucas can't wait to visit each week, as Jack tells stories and teaches Lucas that old people were once young and full of stories - and often, despite their age, still full of life. Quite a touching story, well-served by Andrew McLean's gentle illustrations. 4-6yo Lindy

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Every week Lucas' mum visits Great Grandpop at the nursing home. And every week Lucas waits for her outside. Waiting is boring! Until Lucas meets Jack. Jack is tricky and Jack is fun, and he is a great storyteller. Lucas and Jack is a great book for introducing young children to the idea that old people can be fun and that deep down we have more in common than we think. More importantly Lucas and Jack encourages children to ask questions, be curious, imaginative and empathetic. 
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Murder Most Unladylike: Wells & Wong #1

Murder Most Unladylike: Wells & Wong #1

Robin Stevens

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Hazel Wong has been sent to an English boarding school, because her Anglophile father in Hong Kong wishes to score points against his competitors. Hazel has been determined to enjoy it, but the reality is somewhat colder and hungrier - not to mention lonelier. That is, until the most popular girl in the school, Daisy Wells decides Hazel will be her best friend (or willing slave, though in Daisy's books they are much of a muchness!) Together they start a detective agency but it's not until Hazel discovers the science mistress dead that they have something to investigate. Particularly when the body disappears before anyone else has seen it… A rather charming cross between an Enid Blyton and an Alan Bradley and a lot of fun! 12+ Lindy

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When Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong set up their very own deadly secret detective agency at Deepdean School for Girls, they struggle to find any truly exciting mysteries to investigate. (Unless you count the case of Lavinia's missing tie. Which they don't, really). But then Hazel discovers the Science Mistress, Miss Bell, lying dead in the Gym. She thinks it must all have been a terrible accident - but when she and Daisy return five minutes later, the body has disappeared. Now the girls know a murder must have taken place ...and there's more than one person at Deepdean with a motive. Now Hazel and Daisy not only have a murder to solve: they have to prove a murder happened in the first place. Determined to get to the bottom of the crime before the killer strikes again (and before the police can get there first, naturally), Hazel and Daisy must hunt for evidence, spy on their suspects and use all the cunning, scheming and intuition they can muster. But will they succeed? And can their friendship stand the test?
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Shy: A Memoir

Shy: A Memoir

Sian Prior

$32.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This absorbing and revealing memoir deals with social anxiety, fame and its effects on relationships. Sian had suffered from shyness all her life, but had managed to hide her ‘failing’, adopting a more confident persona that carried her through careers in the public eye for two decades. When she entered a relationship with someone famed for his songwriting and singing, she could thought she had found someone whose reserve matched her own, and felt safe in his company. But whenever they were in company, people gravitated to him and ignored her, and her social anxieties grew. Deciding to research the topic, she also delves in to more personal questions regarding her past. Then her partner drops a bombshell…A book that will resonate with any woman who has been unceremoniously dumped by the man she thought was her true love. Sian might be criticised for not naming her ex but the book is about her, and not him, and I found this to be an effective method of dealing with the obvious trauma of losing him. I also find it hard to listen to his songs lately, but this memoir is a fine read. Lindy

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Shy. It's a shy word, a timid little word that begs to remain unnoticed. Only three letters long, and it begins with an exhortation to silence. Shhh. Reserved is different. It's for tall men with jutting jaws. Prime ministers can appear reserved: never shy. Restrained carries itself with dignity. Even introvert has a whiff of authority about it: these people have been tested; Myers and Briggs have awarded them an impressive three-syllable psychological label. But with shy there's no authority, no control. It's a blushing, hunching word; a nervous, knock-kneed, wallflower word. A word for children, not grown-ups, because surely grown-ups grow out of shyness. Don't they? Sian Prior has maintained a career in the public eye, as a broadcaster and performer, for more than twenty years. For far longer than that she has suffered from excruciating shyness. Eventually, after bolting from a party in a state of near-panic, she decides to investigate her condition. What is it-shyness? Where did hers come from? Why does it create such distressing turmoil beneath her assured professional front? As Sian begins to research the science of social anxiety, other factors present themselves as facets of the problem. Family, intimate friendships, self-perception and fear and longing and the consequences of love... While, in counterpoint, there is the security, the sense of belonging, she finds in the life she shares with Tom, her famous partner. Until he tells her he is leaving.
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Darwin

Darwin

Tess Lea

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The last of the NewSouth series on Australian capital cities, this maintains the consistent excellent quality of the other books. A blend of history, memoir, explanation and exploration, Darwin the city is a place that shouldn’t exist. Sheer tenacity has seen it survive natural catastrophes, wartime bombing, inhospitable geography and the indifference of Commonwealth governments. Tess Lea reveals a city that has always struggled against its physical position (and the section on how mosquitoes have influenced settlement is both fascinating and slightly scary!) but holds pride in being so isolated, tough and defiant. Even if contemporary Darwin is losing much of what set it apart, and even if it is truly a militarised town where no-one mentions the impact of American Marines stationed there, or the fact Darwin is home to the biggest military aerial defence training zone in the world. A paradoxical place, captured in cleanly descriptive style; a book that presents it in all its compromised glories! Lindy

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Darwin is a survivor, you have to give it that. Razed to the ground four times in its short history, it has picked itself up out of the debris to not only rebuild but grow. Darwin has known catastrophes and resurrections; it has endured misconceived projects and birthed visionaries. To know Darwin, to know its soul, you have to listen to it, soak in it, taste it. To write about her home town, Tess Lea waded knee-deep in memories of the city, including those of her family and her own. The story begins in 1974, when Cyclone Tracy shattered Darwin, and Lea was a little girl. Then it takes us back to the wild times of early settlement, explores the backstory of the White Australia policy, paints a vivid picture of the bombing of Darwin during World War II - the first Australian city to experience direct attack from a foreign power - and guides us to Australia's militarised future, led by Darwin, sitting as it does under the largest aerial defence training space in the world. Lyrical and visceral, Tess Lea's ode to her hometown is suffused with the textures, colours, scents and the many gritty realities that beset this tough, fragile, magical, foolhardy and unique place.
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The Ruby Slippers

The Ruby Slippers

Keir Alexander

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- If you want an easy and entertaining read, this one will fit the bill! Michael Marcinkus runs an old-fashioned deli in a New York neighbourhood. His aunt Rosa is a disreputable, shambling, unwashed wreck of a woman, muttering and shuffling and striking dread into the people who pass her by. One day she is involved in an accident, and while she is in hospital, Michael ventures into her stinking flat, where he stumbles across an unexpected treasure – a pair of ruby shoes in a box stamped with a Hollywood insignia. This starts off a chain of events involving a number of characters in the district – the street boy up to no good, the man who has lost his partner, Michael’s wife and family, and an assortment of well-meaning customers. Nothing serious about this, but a good way to while away an afternoon or two! Lindy

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Old Rosa the bag lady shuffles along the streets of New York, stinking, silent and shunned by man and beast. Time and again her nephew, Michael Marcinkus the grocer, has tried to help - but Rosa remains unknowable, hushed inside her hulk. On the day of the St Patrick's Day Parade, Rosa is in a terrible accident. While she lies in hospital, Mr Marcinkus visits her squalid apartment and unearths something remarkable from the monstrous piles of junk: two glittering ruby slippers, relics of Hollywood history. How on earth does decrepit old Rosa come to own such treasure? And what is to be done with it now? Rosa's 'Ruby Millions' soon become an irresistible beacon for the misplaced hopes and darkest desires of an unforgettable cast of characters. But in the hunger to possess the prize, will anyone stop to learn the incredible story of the woman to whom they once belonged? The Ruby Slippers is a rare and moving fantasia of hidden treasures, forgotten histories, lost connections, and our search for true meaning.
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The Word Ghost

The Word Ghost

Christine Paice

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Rebecca’s father has been given a new parish, and Rebecca is most unhappy. Obsessed with all the fervour of a 15year old she has had to leave behind her boyfriend; her older sister has left home for university; and the new neighbourhood is decidedly weird. Creepy, even. So when the ghost of a failed 19th century poet appears in her bedroom, she is not so much surprised as puzzled by what he wants. Their unusual friendship offers solace to them both, but the ghost of his sister wants something else again… A coming-of-age novel with an energetic, almost breathless style that captures the contradictions and complications of leaving childhood behind. Lindy

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This is England 1973, and fifteen-year-old Rebecca Budde is in love with Dave. After one glorious summer, Rebecca is forced to move with her family to Brightley, a village with a puddle for a pond, and no excitement at all. If only Dave were there. Very weird things are going on inside their new house, and even stranger things are happening in the village at night. Someone appears to be living in Rebecca's wardrobe. Someone else is on the balcony, trying to get in. Things don't make sense anymore as Algernon Keats steps from the shadows, his sister not far behind him. There's no Dave, two ghosts, a pub, a dog and Alex March, a dark and brooding artist, living in the Manor House down the road, whose interest in Rebecca is both puzzling and thrilling. What do Alex and Algernon want from Rebecca? What on earth does any of it mean? Is it possible to love a ghost? And what happens if he loves you back? The lights are out. Welcome to Brightley. Rebecca thinks love is forever, but sometimes it's not. And nor, sometimes, is death. The Word Ghost is a funny, moving story about what it means to find love, lose love and discover who you are when you live in a village with no street lights and a decidedly dark side. 
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The Heroes' Welcome

The Heroes' Welcome

Louisa Young

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is the sequel to the excellent My Dear I Wanted to Tell You and continues the stories of Riley Purefoy and Peter Locke after the cessation of the Great War. If war was hell, settling back into civilian life holds its own horrors. Riley’s facial disfigurement presents problems apart from the physical, and misunderstanding arises between him and his sweetheart Nadine even as they marry. Peter is struggling with a sense of futility, alcoholism and a wife bearing her own self-inflicted damage. As time passes Riley and Peter learn how to re-engage with life, never able to put aside their war experiences, but slowly finding their way in a world irrevocably marked by the cataclysm. An excellent examination of the impact of peace. Lindy

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The Heroes' Welcome is the incandescent sequel to the bestselling R&J pick My Dear, I Wanted to Tell You. Its evocation of a time deeply wounded by the pain of WW1 will capture and beguile readers fresh to Louisa Young's wonderful writing, and those previously enthralled by the stories of Nadine and Riley, Rose, Peter and Julia.

LONDON, APRIL 1919. THE GREAT WAR HAS ENDED. In a flurry of spring blossom, childhood sweethearts Nadine Waverney and Rilery Purefoy are married. Thos who have survived the war are, in a way, home. But Riley is wounded and disfigured; normality seems incomprehensible, and love unfathomable. Honeymooning in a battered, liberated Europe, they long for a marriage made of love and passion rather than dependence and pity. At Locke Hill in Kent, Riley's former CO Major Peter Locke is obsessed by Homer. His hysterical wife, Julia, and the young son they barely know attempt to navigate family life, but are confounded by the ghosts and memories of Peter's war. Despite all this, there is the glimmer of a real future in the distance: Rose Locke, Peter's cousin and Riley's former nurse, finds that independence might be hers for the taking, after all.

For those who fought, those who healed and those who stayed behind, 1919 is a year of accepting realities, holding to hope and reaching after new beginnings. The Heroes' Welcome is a brave and brilliant evocation of a time deeply wounded by the pain of war. It is as devastating as it is inspiring.
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Flying Dinosaurs

Flying Dinosaurs

John Pickrell

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Written by a journalist rather than a scientist, this accessible book presents the current thinking on the evolution of birds. In the process, it removes some long held misconceptions – thanks to the remarkable discoveries of amazing fossil fields in China, and fascinating research being carried out there and elsewhere. It seems many dinosaurs were covered in feathery fuzz rather than scales, that flight as a strategy has been the most successful development of the animal kingdom, that clever science has discovered the colour range of dinosaurs, and that we don’t need to go all Jurassic Park and recreate dinosaurs, as they still exist today in a wonderful array of shapes and abilities today. An entertaining and enlightening read! Lindy

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ABBEY'S CHOICE JUNE 2014 ----- Dinosaurs didn't die out when an asteroid hit Earth 66 million years ago. Get ready to unthink what you thought you knew and journey into the deep, dark depths of the Jurassic.

The discovery of the first feathered dinosaur in China in 1996 sent shockwaves through the palaeontological world. Were the feathers part of a complex mating ritual, or a stepping stone in the evolution of flight? And just how closely related is T. rex to a chicken?

Award-winning journalist John Pickrell reveals how dinosaurs developed flight and became the birds in our backyards. He delves into the latest discoveries in China, the US, Europe and uncovers a thriving black market in fossils and infighting between dinosaur hunters, plus the controversial plan to use a chicken to bring dinosaurs back from the dead.

A rare sighting of the black-crested Pickrellontaurus at Abbey's

A rare sighting of the blue-striped Pickrell at Abbey's
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After Darkness

After Darkness

Christine Piper

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK
WINNER: The 2014 Australian/Vogel's Literary Award

The Vogel is always an interesting award, going as it does to an unpublished manuscript by a writer under 35. Over its 30-something years, it has had its share of controversy (The Hand that Signed the Paper, anyone?) and launched a number of important authors (hello Tim Winton/Kate Grenville/Gillian Mears!). Changes in the award structure a few years ago meant the book was published and released the day after the announcement of the winning story. Or, if you are lucky enough to attend the announcement ceremony, the showbag you leave with contains a couple of boxes of Vogel's breakfast cereals, and a copy of the winning book. So, I went home on Tuesday night and thought I'd better have a look - and four hours later had to put it down half-finished to be resumed and greedily finished the next day.
 
Tomakazu Ibaraki is the main character. The story starts in 1942 as he is on his way to an internment camp in South Australia. He had been working as a doctor in Broome, before being detained and sent to Loveday camp where a number of resident Japanese nationals (as distinct from prisoners-of-war) are interned. Many of the men had lived and worked in Australia for years, but some of them are locked up merely for having a Japanese parent, even though they are Australian-born and bred, and it is the anger these men feel at being treated as enemy aliens that is one of the most interesting themes of the book. As the reserved Tomakazu struggles to fit in, it becomes apparent that he is suffering from a sadness and guilt that predates his arrival in Broome in 1938. The novel moves in time, from 1942 back to 1938 and also 1934, when as a new medical intern Tomakazu is offered the chance to pursue microbiology research at the Army Medical College. Only gradually does he learn what the aim of the research truly is, and the internal conflict between his moral integrity and the need to retain honour by keeping to his commitment of confidentiality creates insurmountable difficulties that affect the rest of his life choices.
 
After Darkness is a compelling and finely written book. It reveals a little-known aspect of World War II history through a character who has not been able to reconcile societal expectations and personal experience. I truly think Christine Piper is an author to watch, and I won’t be surprised if in years to come her name is in the list of great Australian authors launched by the Vogel Award. Lindy


‘A brave, profound meditation on identity, trauma, loss and courage… reminds us that there are two sides to every war and that history never ceases to be written… A novel that demands its place alongside Richard Flanagan’s The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Mark Dapin’s Spirit House.’ – Stephen Romei, The Australian

After Darkness by Christine Piper at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Pigeon Needs a Bath

The Pigeon Needs a Bath

Mo Willems

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The irascible Pigeon is back! He's filthy but he has a host of reasons why he shouldn't take a bath: it's considered impolite in some circles, 'clean' and 'dirty' are just words, he's pretty sure he had one last month… Of course, once he bad-temperedly gets into the bath, he changes his mind! Willem's trademark drawings are deceptively simple, but convey a great deal of attitude. Fun for the pre-schoolers who love Pigeon's naughty antics, and just as much fun for the adult who recognises toddler behaviour! Lindy

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The pigeon is BACK! And he STINKS! No, really, he actually smells very bad... Smell? What smell? I don't smell. YOU smell. The Pigeon needs a bath! Except, well, the Pigeon's really not so sure about that... Besides, he took a bath last month! Maybe. It looks like it's going to take some serious convincing to get the Pigeon to take the plunge! This is a laugh-out-loud, read-out-even-louder brand new pigeon book from the New York Times best-selling picture book master - Mo Willems. Mo's Pigeon encompasses all the melodrama that most 4 years olds muster on a daily occasion including...trying to avoid bathtime! The New York Times Book Review called Mo  the biggest new talent to emerge thus far in the 00's.
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Riot

Riot

Sarah Mussi

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Set a short way into the future, this tremendously paced novel throws the reader straight in the deep end. A bill has been passed into British law, mandating enforced sterilisation of any teenager who does not gain university admission, or has no job to step straight into. It is supposed to solve the problems of society, but of course, the teenagers this repressive measure is aimed at, aren't convinced. The main character, Tia, is the daughter of the minister who has formulated this policy, but she is also an elite hacker who has organised flash mob riots. When a protest turns terribly wrong, she discovers there is more to the movement than meets the eye. Along with a fellow hacker-conspirator, she has to fight for what she thinks is right, even if it means she stands to lose everything she holds important… A compelling read, 14+ Lindy

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England is struggling under a recession that has shown no sign of abating. Years of cuts has devastated Britain: banks are going under, businesses closing, prices soaring, unemployment rising, prisons overflowing. The authorities cannot cope. And the population has maxed out. The police are snowed under. Something has to give. Drastic measures need taking. The solution: forced sterilisation of all school leavers without secure further education plans or guaranteed employment. The country is aghast. Families are distraught, teenagers are in revolt, but the politicians are unshakeable: The population explosion must be curbed. No more free housing for single parents, no more child benefit, no more free school meals, no more children in need. Less means more. But it is all so blatantly unfair - the Teen Haves will procreate, the Teen Havenots won't. It's time for the young to take to the streets.
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The Minnow

The Minnow

Diana Sweeney

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Winner of last year's Text Prize for Young Adult and Children's Literature, this slightly surreal novel is set after a devastating flood. Tom passes herself off as a boy after her parents and sister are killed in the deluge, has conversations with fish and turtles, and lives with Bill in an old shed by the lake. Bill is a secretive man, and very unlikeable, but Tom is so immersed in her grief she accepts his appalling behaviour without judgement - including the fact he has impregnated her… She moves in with her best friend, who lost his family to the same flood, and with his help, and with wise words from her feisty but fading grandmother she learns how to deal with all that life has given her. Ages 14+ Lindy

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Tom survived a devastating flood that claimed the lives of her sister and parents. Now she lives with Bill in his old shed by the lake. But it's time to move out - Tom is pregnant with Bill's baby. Jonah lets her move in with him. Mrs Peck gives her the Fishmaster Super Series tackle box. Nana is full of gentle good advice and useful sayings. And in her longing for what is lost, Tom talks to fish: Oscar the carp in the pet shop, little Sarah catfish who might be her sister, an unhelpful turtle in a tank at the maternity ward. And the minnow. The Minnow is a moving and powerful coming-of-age story with a whimsical element that belies the heartbreaking truth of grief and loss. Tom is a character you will never forget.
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No Stars to Wish on

No Stars to Wish on

Zana Fraillon

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Jack is a cheeky young lad, full of mischief, delighting in jokes. He loves his great-grands, his Mum, his cousins and siblings who all share a tumbledown house. He's also deaf, so when his older sister tries to wake him one night, he doesn't stir, until strange men bundle all the children into a van and take them to an orphanage. Jack is known as Number 49, but there's no way he's going to become 49 - a boy he knows has left him clues on how to make his way home again. As the days accumulate, Jack struggles to make sense of what's happening, but he won't give up hope… and nor will his older sister. A very moving and powerful story, with a fresh and immediate style. Ages 9+ Lindy

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Each kid only has one pair of shoes here. Number 49's shoes are a pretty good fit for me and I know they're new because they still have that plastic smell. But the real Number 49 is quite a bit bigger than I am, because his pants keep falling down on me. I wish he would come back, so that I could go home. Jack loves telling jokes, but not many people laugh at them in the orphanage. Will he ever be reunited with his mother and sister, his great-aunts and great-grandmother, back at home? A haunting, fable-like story.
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Pandora Jones: Admission

Pandora Jones: Admission

Barry Jonsberg

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Pandora wakes in a strange place, and discovers she is one of the few survivors of a pandemic that has swept the world. She can remember watching her family die, but she doesn't know how she got to The School. The School is surrounded by a gigantic wall, ruled by despotic teachers, and is meant to prepare the survivors on how to live in an altered world. But is the truth being told? Pan's not convinced - and she's in danger... A conspiracy novel with a cracking pace! 12+ Lindy

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Pandora Jones wakes in an infirmary - her body weak, her memory providing only flashes of horrific scenes of death. She soon discovers that her family has succumbed to a plague pandemic which almost wiped out humanity. Pan is one of the survivors who have been admitted to The School - a quarantined, heavily guarded survival-skills facility - to recover their strength, hone their skills and prepare for whatever comes next. Pandora's skill is intuition, but how useful will it be outside the secure walls of The School? And what if it leads her to question where the truth lies...Plague. Pandemic. Intuition. Secrets. Truth. Courage. Action. Survival.
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Our Island

Our Island

Children of Gununa ,  Alison Lester ,  Elizabeth Honey

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a lovely and colourful collaboration between respected  authors and the children of the community of Mornington Island. It has been an on-going project, where the children have been encouraged to describe their island home in words and paintings, and this forms the basis of the book. Royalties go to the community, so it is both a worthwhile book and a worthwhile cause! Lindy

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Our island lies beneath a big blue sky, surrounded by the turquoise sea. Turtles glide through the clear salt water, and dugongs graze on banks of seagrass.  In this lyrical celebration of place, the children of Mornington Island explore their home in words and pictures. This is a collaboration with much-loved children's picture-book creators authors Alison Lester and Elizabeth Honey. All royalties from Our Island and one dollar from the sale of each copy will be donated to  Mornington Island State School to fund art projects in the community.
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The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K. Larsen

Susin Nielsen

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Henry's comfortable and loving family life is shattered. Trying to start afresh in a new town and new school, Henry starts a diary at his counsellor's insistence. He resists at first, but before long he starts to confide in his journal - what his present life is like, the pitfalls of living with his barely-employed father and eventually, the tragic events that broke up his family. Strong issues, but dealt with sensitively and with the occasional well-placed flash of humour. 13+ Lindy

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13-year-old Henry's happy, ordinary life comes to an abrupt halt when his older brother, Jesse, picks up their father's hunting rifle and leaves the house one morning. What follows shatters Henry's family, who are forced to resume their lives in a new city, where no one knows their past. When Henry's therapist suggests he keep a journal, at first he is resistant. But soon he confides in it at all hours of the day and night. Susin Nielsen has created a fantastic new character in Henry, whose journal entries are infused with humour and provide a riveting read.
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The Thickety: A Path Begins

The Thickety: A Path Begins

J. A. White ,  Andrea Offermann

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One night 6 year old Kara is snatched from her home and taken, blindfolded, to a field where the first thing she sees is her mother, bound and waiting execution. They have both been accused of witchcraft, a capital offence, but Kara manages to unconsciously fool the witch-hunter and is allowed to go free. 

Seven years later, she, her sickly brother (who was born on the night of their mother's death) and her grief-maddened father are little short of outcasts. Their isolated island community abhors magic - even wishing is considered reprehensible - and is anticipating the return of a legendary leader who will save the world from its evil.

Surrounding the settlement is a forest, Thickety, which embodies all the darkness it fears, and between the trees and the farmland is Fringe, an area vegetated with treacherous plants. When Kara is lured into Thickety, breaking a promise she made her mother, dreadful things are set in motion, and everything she has struggled for is jeopardised…

This is far and away one of the best novels I've read in a very long time. I read it in one sitting because I was so absorbed in the world that was created and couldn't bear to put it down until I had reached the end - and what a finish: there's a major development I didn't see coming at all! There are many levels to this imaginative novel and its atmosphere of uncertainty and menace is artfully conveyed.

The creatures could come from nightmares, and the repressive nature of the puritan community is well described, but it is Kara who catches your attention from the very first. Intelligent, stoic, quietly defiant, she deals with habitual suspicion and doubt, yet remains faithful to her true self. I reckon Kara will be the next heroine to sweep readers away, and that this is the beginning of a very special series indeed! Lindy
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The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History

Elizabeth Kolbert

$29.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE MARCH 2014 ----- Since life began on Earth, there have been five major mass extinctions: the Ordovician 450 million years ago; the late Devonian 375 million years ago; the Permian 250 million years ago; the Triassic-Jurassic 200 million years ago; and the Cretaceous 65 million years ago. Here in the Anthropocene (a name still being investigated as appropriate to describe the current epoch), we are perhaps in the midst of the Sixth Extinction that our race is instrumental in causing.

Kolbert is a journalist, rather than a scientist, but her ability to communicate scientific concepts is evident in this accessible and highly researched book. It blends history with cutting edge discoveries; it has a good overview of the development of the ideas of evolution and species dispersal, of the gradual understanding of the length of life on the planet.

Each chapter is arranged around the story of one species emblematic of an idea or problem, including: the Panamanian golden frog and the discovery of the devastating chytrid fungus; the idea of extinction as arrived at through the examination of mastodon fossils; coral and the acidification of the seas; the fragmentation of rainforest as told through a single tree species and the repercussions of climate change; or the desperate plight of American bats and a plague perhaps introduced by travellers visiting a tourist cave system.

In all of these things, human actions are the essential agency of change. It is perhaps hard to use the word ‘enjoyable’ when the subject is so terrifying, but I found this book absorbing and thoughtful, and it makes me want to read more on various subjects Kolbert covers – a sign that the book has engaged and stimulated in equal measure! Lindy

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Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions of life on earth. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs.

Elizabeth Kolbert combines brilliant field reporting, the history of ideas and the work of geologists, botanists and marine biologists to tell the gripping stories of a dozen species - including the Panamanian golden frog and the Sumatran rhino - some already gone, others at the point of vanishing.

The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy and Elizabeth Kolbert's book urgently compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Enchanted

The Enchanted

Rene Denfeld

$24.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE MARCH 2014 ----- A prisoner on death row watches and listens to what happens around him. We don’t know what he’s done, because he can’t face it himself. He hears The Lady try to make sense of one of his fellow inmate’s life and actions in an attempt to save him from execution; he sees The Priest lost in the maze of good intentions and diminishing faith; he watches the beginnings of something fragile between them. The prisoner shrinks from any contact, but reading and re-reading brings colour to his cell – that and the Horses. 

Language is the enchantment in his dark world, and as the story unfolds, if we do not and can not condone, we come to understand the prisoner’s life. A powerful book best consumed in one sitting, then thought about quietly long afterwards. Lindy
 
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Even monsters need peace. Even monsters need a person who truly wants to listen - to hear - so that someday we might find the words that are more than boxes. Then maybe we can stop men like me from happening...

A prisoner sits on death row in a maximum security prison. His only escape from his harsh existence is through the words he dreams about, the world he conjures around him using the power of language. For the reality of his world is brutal and stark. He is not named, nor do we know his crime. But he listens. He listens to the story of York, the prisoner in the cell next to him whose execution date has been set. He hears the lady, an investigator who is piecing together York's past. He watches as the lady falls in love with the priest and wonders if love is still possible here. He sees the corruption and the danger as tensions in 'this enchanted place' build. And he waits. For even monsters have a story...
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Two Wolves

Two Wolves

Tristan Bancks

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One day when Ben is filming one of his stop-motion detective movies, there's a knock on the front door. Real policemen are asking after his parents. After they leave, Ben's folks turn up, tell Ben and his young sister they are all going on their first family holiday, and head for his grandfather's cabin in remote bushland. Ben's Dad is a short-tempered and unpleasant man, and the holiday certainly isn't like anything Ben has ever imagined, even if there seems to suddenly be some money to spend which they have never had before. What starts as an uncomfortable and tense time rapidly gets worse, and Ben is forced to confront some awful truths… An action-packed novel for ages 11-13. Lindy

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'Gripping and unpredictable, with a hero you won't forget.' - John Boyne, author of The Boy in The Striped Pyjamas An old man tells his grandson that there is a battle raging inside him, inside all of us. A terrible battle between two wolves. One wolf is bad u pride, jealousy, greed. The other wolf is good u kindness, hope, truth. The child asks, 'Who will win?' The grandfather answers simply, 'The one you feed.' One afternoon, police officers show up at Ben Silver's front door. Minutes after they leave, his parents arrive home. Ben and his little sister Olive are bundled into the car and told they're going on a holiday. But are they? It doesn't take long for Ben to realise that his parents are in trouble. Ben's always dreamt of becoming a detective u his dad even calls him 'Cop'. Now Ben gathers evidence and tries to uncover what his parents have done. The problem is, if he figures it out, what does he do? Tell someone? Or keep the secret and live life on the run?
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The One and Only Jack Chant

The One and Only Jack Chant

Rosie Borella

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Amber works in an old people's home; there isn't much on offer in her small country town and it certainly isn't something she particularly wanted to do. She starts noticing a young man hanging around the home; the old people accept him and enjoy his company but no-one knows who he is. She is attracted to him, and his courtly old-fashioned manners; although he is suitably vague about his past, he also appears troubled by something he can't quite remember. As she comes to learn more about him, Amber suspects Jack may not be quite what, or who, he appears. An enjoyably romantic and sweet-natured novel about the past affecting the present and determining the future. 13+ Lindy

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Sixteen-year-old Amber never expected to find romance while working in an old people's home...but then Jack Chant is not what she expected either. He's young, exciting and enigmatic - and deeply troubled by something that happened in his past, something he can't quite remember. Gradually Amber suspects that Jack's past might be a whole lot further back in time than he realises. Is he solid flesh and blood, or just some kind of dreamy fantasy? A sweetly romantic coming-of-age story in which Amber learns more than most teens about getting old, falling in love and letting go.
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The Simple Things

The Simple Things

Bill Condon ,  Beth Norling

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Known for his young adult novels, Condon turns his talents to a novel for primary age readers. Stephen is the sort of gentle young lad who likes routine and has a certain way of looking at the world around him. When his parents take him to visit his Great Aunt Lola, he doesn't want to stay even though his Mum says they have to wait until Lola's 80th birthday has passed before returning home. He isn't sure about the girl staying next door, either, although her grandfather is likeably eccentric. Lola is scary, and used to her own way, and both she and Stephen learn that the world can contain all sorts of different ways of living and loving. An affectionate novel of cross-generational friendship and the importance of allowing outsiders a chance. Ages 8-11. Lindy

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Stephen has never met his great aunt Lola, and he doesn't want to. She sends him money twice a year and he always writes back, but Lola is almost eighty - what will they have to talk about? When they arrive at her house, Stephen discovers she's grumpy, scary and really, really old. He wants to turn around and go home, but his mum says they have to stay until Lola's birthday - three weeks away. Left to his own devices, Stephen learns about the simple things in life - like fishing, and cricket, and climbing trees - and the importance of family. Soon Lola entrusts Stephen with a great secret, and he realises that Lola has become more important to him than just an aunt who sends him money - she's now a friend.
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Fire

Fire

Jackie French ,  Bruce Whatley

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A companion to the creators' book Flood this captures the harshness of bushfire. Written in simple rhyming couplets, the text conveys the omnivorous nature of wildfire, the harshness and battles and cost as it devours the land. It also ends with a positive message, of resilience and regrowth. The illustrations are evocative, the oranges and yellows of the flames, and the ashy greys of the aftermath conveying a realistic portrayal of bushfire's effects. Whatley also spatters his paint on the pages to effectively show how fire is dirty, spewing ash and debris. An important and useful book to discuss a widespread and common occurrence, which does not sacrifice artistic beauty to its message. Lindy

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One small spark brought fire awake, Winding like a small black snake, Fire flickered, fire crept, Flames snickered, bushfire leapt...  Inspired by the bushfires that have affected many Australians, Fire is a moving and sensitive story of a natural disaster as seen through the eyes of a cockatoo. The fire mercilessly engulfs homes and land, leaving a devastating path of destruction.
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The Mark of the Horse Lord

The Mark of the Horse Lord

Rosemary Sutcliff

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I grew up reading Sutcliff's novels, and I credit my interest in history to her deftly plotted and deeply researched stories. This was one of my favourites and has certainly stood the test of time since it was first published in 1965. Red-haired gladiator, Phaedrus, wins his freedom but has no place nor people to return to. Approached by Celtic tribesmen to impersonate their rightful king in a plot against a ursurping queen, Phaedrus accepts. He is taught by the man he needs to impersonate, and learns much of importance - including a sense of belonging. Being accepted by the tribe however, is only the beginning of a deeper struggle… Full of sophisticated storylines and psychological depth, this is a powerful and exciting read. Lindy

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'Take my place, Phaedrus, and with it, take my vengeance...' Phaedrus the gladiator wins his freedom after years of bloody battles in the arena. Soon he finds himself riding north towards the wilds of Caledonia on a strange mission. He is to assume the identity of Midir, Lord of the Horse People, to seek vengeance against the treacherous Liadhan, who has usurped the throne. Ahead of him lies more adventure and more danger than he had ever known in the arena...
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Museum of Extraordinary Things

Museum of Extraordinary Things

Alice Hoffman

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Coralie has been brought up by her slightly sinister father to impersonate a mermaid in his Museum of Extraordinary Things – a freak show on Coney Island in the early years of the 20th century. She is kept separate from human society to preserve the illusion of her otherness, but as the nature of mass entertainment changes, her father looks for different attractions. He also displays her in less innocent circumstances, as his business declines…

Eddie is a young man who rejects his Jewish background and feels betrayed by what he perceives as his father’s weakness. He becomes intrigued by photography, and when he witnesses a terrible tragedy, finds himself embroiled in both cover-ups and mysteries.

How these two disparate characters find each other and their true place in the world is a riveting and beautifully detailed read. Lindy
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The Wives of Los Alamos

The Wives of Los Alamos

TaraShea Nesbit

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It took me a few chapters to get into this novel, as it is narrated by a collective chorus of voices – the wives of the men involved in the Project at Los Alamos during WWII. Once I had gotten used to the multiplicity of storytellers, I found this thoroughly interesting. The women have come from all over the country, kept ignorant of their husbands’ works and dealing with life in an isolated and isolating place.

From the difficulties of maintaining their families, the jealousies and friendships and hardships of living in a town constructed for one purpose, the need to maintain secrecy and something of their own lives and the many and varied ways they coped (or didn’t) this is an admirable exercise in evoking place and time and experience. Lindy

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Their average age was twenty-five. They came from Berkeley, Cambridge, Paris, London and Chicago - and arrived in New Mexico ready for adventure or at least resigned to it. But hope quickly turned to  hardship in the desolate military town where everything was a secret,  including what their husbands were doing at the lab. They lived in  barely finished houses with a P.O. Box for an address, in a town wreathed with barbed wire, all for the benefit of 'the project' that didn't exist as far as the greater world was concerned.

They were  constrained by the words they couldn't say out loud, the letters they couldn't send home, the freedom they didn't have. Though they were strangers, they joined together - babies were born, friendships  were forged, children grew up.

But then 'the project' was unleashed and even bigger challenges faced the women of Los Alamos, as they struggled  with the burden of their contribution towards the creation of the most destructive force in mankind's history - the atomic bomb.

Contentious, gripping and intimate, The Wives of Los Alamos is a personal tale of one of the most momentous events in our history.
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Terms & Conditions

Terms & Conditions

Robert Glancy

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Frank has been involved in a very bad accident. He doesn’t remember very much of his past life as a husband, employee in the family law firm (where there was none better at dealing with the fine print of contracts) and is being told who he was by his wife, his older brother and various acquaintances.

It’s rather puzzling though, the things he does remember don’t quite seem to fit with the pictures other people make of him and for him. And what is his younger brother trying to tell him in the strange and entertaining emails he keeps sending? As Frank’s past life gradually comes back to him, he starts to realise there are plenty of terms and conditions to living that he may not have been aware of in his previous incarnation…

I really enjoyed Frank and his gradual reawakening to life’s possibilities, and how the underdog can actually come out on top! Lindy

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Frank has been in a car accident*. The doctor tells him he lost his spleen, but Frank believes he has lost more. He is missing memories - of those around him, of the history they share and of how he came to be in the crash. All he remembers is that he is a lawyer who specialises in small print**.

In the wake of the accident Frank begins to piece together his former life - and his former self. But the picture that emerges, of his marriage, his family and the career he has devoted years to, is not necessarily a pretty one. Could it be that the terms and conditions by which Frank has been living are not entirely in his favour***?

In the process of unravelling the knots into which his life has been tied, he learns that the devil really does live in the detail and that it's never too late to rewrite your own destiny.

*apparently quite a serious one.
**words that no one ever reads.
*** and perhaps never have been.
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Bark

Bark

Lorrie Moore

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A collection of eight short stories, this is the first from this celebrated writer in 15 years. Each story explores time’s passing and its effects on relationships. Very few of the characters are happy or even content; mostly they are in the ruins of personal relationships – marriages dissolving, friends dying, the aftermath of divorce and all the attendant griefs of failure.

Observant, occasionally poignant, tender and often just on the edge of something hopeful, these are fine examples of how the short story can often convey more than whole novels. Lindy

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In these eight masterful stories Lorrie Moore explores the passage of time, and summons up its inevitable sorrows and comic pitfalls.

In 'Debarking', a newly divorced man tries to keep his wits about him as the US prepares to invade Iraq. In 'Foes', a political argument goes grotesquely awry as the events of 9/11 unexpectedly manifest at a fundraising dinner in Georgetown. In 'The Juniper Tree', a teacher, visited by the ghost of her recently deceased friend, is forced to sing 'The Star Spangled Banner' in a kind of nightmare reunion. And in 'Wings', we watch the unraveling of two once-hopeful musicians, who neither held fast to their dreams, nor struck out along other paths.

Gimlet-eyed social observation, the public and private absurdities of American life, dramatic irony, and enduring half-cracked love wend their way through each of these narratives, in Moore's characteristic style that is always tender, never sentimental and often heartbreakingly funny.
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This is the Life

This is the Life

Alex Shearer

$27.99  $8.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I think so far this year, that this is my favourite novel. It is a tender and sometimes poignant novel of two brothers and their loving but sometimes difficult past. The younger one has left his family and work in England to fly to Brisbane to be by his brother's side. Louis has brain cancer, it turns out, but he's not going down without a fight.

He has never quite found his place in the world, possessing both intelligence and principles in equal measure; nor has he ever really settled down as restlessness and his own eccentricities play against other people understanding him fully. Despite this, Louis' friends are true ones, and his younger brother adores and tolerates him. As the disease takes hold, and takes away, brotherly love supports, consoles, and deepens the understanding, that this is the life.

With a cast of beautifully drawn characters, and a feeling that this is not a novel but almost a memoir, the veracity of the descriptions and wonderful flashes of humour make this touching book quite special indeed. Lindy

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Even when you have received a death sentence, you still have to live...

Life just seems like a big party sometimes, at which we all gradually get edged to the door, and then we are out in the cold. But the party continues without us... 

This is the story of Louis, who never quite fitted in, and of his younger brother who always tagged along. Two brothers on one final journey together, wading through the stuff that is thicker than water.

Tender-hearted, at times achingly funny, This is the Life is a moving testimony to both the resilience of the human spirit and to the price of strawberries.
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For Once in My Life

For Once in My Life

Marianne Kavanagh

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tess believes in soul mates. She’s pretty sure that the thoughtful, attractive and faithful Dominic is hers. George doesn’t believe in soul mates, but he does believe in music, love and doing the right thing. They’ve never met, but they have mutual friends, most of whom think Tess and George would be good together. It takes a few years, and plenty of mistakes before they do finally meet, but by then both are happily enmeshed with other partners. Or are they?

A charmingly entertaining and ebullient novel that is perfect for a lazy weekend (and will no doubt one day make a perfect Saturday afternoon rom-com movie!). Lindy

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This was George. She recognised him, although she had never met him. All around were people pressing into him, shouting over him, jostling him, and he stood there, looking at her, completely and utterly familiar. She was shocked, because of that jolt of recognition. But at the same time she was reassured. He was exactly as she knew he would be. Tess and George are soul mates. They've just never met each other. They both live in London. They went to the same university.

But throughout their twenties, despite their shared friends' best efforts, they never come face to face. And now they're stuck with partners who don't understand them and jobs that make them unhappy, always settling for second best. Finally they meet at a friend's thirtieth birthday party. Can they disentangle themselves from their former lives and grab hold of their one chance to be together? Or is it too late?
 
This is a love story that teeters on the edge of disaster. It's about whether it's better to compromise-or to wait for your soul mate.
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White Beech: The Rainforest Years

White Beech: The Rainforest Years

Dr. Germaine Greer

$39.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE NOVEMBER 2013 ----- Love her or hate her, you have to admire Greer’s fierce intelligence and passion. When she buys an abandoned farm in the Gold Coast hinterland, she is seduced by possibilities, incensed by despoliation and determined to heal a part of the land she so loves. Never doing anything by halves, she takes to botany with the fervour of a convert. This engaging book is about the rainforest she starts rehabilitating, and also the history and patterns of change wrought by humans upon the land. Intellectually satisfying writing coupled with absorbing observations. Lindy

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"For years I had wandered Australia with an aching heart. Everywhere I had ever travelled across the vast expanse of the fabulous country where I was born, I had seen devastation, denuded hills, eroded slopes, weeds from all over the world, feral animals, open-cut mines as big as cities, salt rivers, salt earth, abandoned townships, whole beaches made of beer cans."

One bright day in December 2001, 62-year-old Germaine Greer found herself confronted by an irresistible challenge in the shape of 60 hectares of dairy farm, one of many in south-east Queensland that, after a century of logging, clearing and downright devastation, had been abandoned to their fate. She didn't think for a minute that by restoring the land she was saving the world. She was in search of heart's ease.

Beyond the acres of exotic pasture grass and soft weed and the impenetrable curtains of tangled Lantana canes, there were Macadamias dangling their strings of unripe nuts and Black Beans with red and yellow pea flowers growing on their branches... and the few remaining White Beeches, stupendous trees up to 40 metres high, logged out within 40 years of the arrival of the first white settlers. To have turned down even a faint chance of bringing them back to their old haunts would have been to succumb to despair. 

Once the process of rehabilitation had begun, the chance proved to be a dead certainty. When the first replanting shot up to make a forest, and rare caterpillars turned up to feed on the leaves of the new young trees, she knew beyond doubt that at least here biodepletion could be reversed. Greer describes herself as an old dog who succeeded in learning a load of new tricks, inspired and rejuvenated by her passionate love of Australia and of Earth, most exuberant of small planets.
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The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles

The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles

Katherine Pancol

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This book has sold millions in Europe! Josephine’s husband has run away to Africa with his manicurist, leaving her with his debts and their daughters - a sarcastic nymphet and a malleable pre-teen. Her glamorous sister Iris, tired of her empty Parisian chic lifestyle, pays historical researcher Josephine to write a novel so Iris can pass it off as her own, which is all very well until the novel becomes a literary sensation and Iris becomes addicted to celebrity. How Josephine finds love and the courage to stand on her own two feet makes for a typically quirky French novel! Lindy
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The Charioteer: A Virago Modern Classic

The Charioteer: A Virago Modern Classic

Mary Renault ,  Simon Russell Beale

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- First published in 1953, this fine novel has been reissued after a number of years of being unavailable. Laurie has been injured in the evacuation from Dunkirk and, whilst recuperating, forms a friendship with a young conscientious objector, Andrew. Laurie, however, is hiding his true feelings. When Ralph, a former schoolmate, reappears in Laurie’s life, long-held beliefs are challenged and discoveries made. A tender and affecting novel of great beauty and hard truths, this is one of my all-time favourites. Lindy
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The Icing on the Cake

The Icing on the Cake

Annabel Morley

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a charming and gentle memoir of a bygone age. Annabel’s father was the actor Robert Morley and her maternal grandmother was the acclaimed actress and beauty Gladys Cooper. Surrounded by theatrical and eccentric people, acting in films from a young age, encouraged and loved by her family, her childhood was anything but ordinary. Dotted throughout with recipes garnered from her world travels, this is a delightful life story! Lindy

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With her grandmother the society beauty Dame Gladys Cooper, and her father the renowned actor Robert Morley CBE, Annabel Morley was always going to lead an extraordinary life.

Evoking an English childhood from a bygone era, Annabel Morley brings back to life the magic and charm of growing up in a bohemian artistic and quintessentially English family. Their house in Berkshire is the backdrop to a wonderful array of events and personalities. Often surrounded by the greats of theatre such as Vivien Lee, Lawrence Olivier and Spencer Tracy, Annabel recounts these times with such wit and affection.

The Icing on the Cake features not only unpublished photographs of the Morley lives, but private letters and personal memories, including her travels to Sydney, Venice and Hollywood during the glamorous 1940’s and 50’s. Annabel’s passion for the theatre is also matched by her love of food and family, and includes recipes served at family get togethers on both sides of the word.

The Icing on the Cake by Annabel Morley at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Cook: From Sailor to Legend

Cook: From Sailor to Legend

Rob Mundle

$49.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- James Cook - the greatest maritime navigator, explorer and cartographer of all time - began life as a Yorkshire farm boy. He didn’t even go to sea (in the merchant marine) until he was 18. How he achieved fame in his chosen career, and the many and varied circumstances of his life and work, are described in this vivid book. As with Mundle's previous books on Bligh and Flinders, this is full of nautical detail, well-researched and very readable. Lindy

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Captain James Cook is one of the greatest maritime explorers of all time. Only the acclaimed 15th-century explorers Christopher Columbus and Vasco da Gama can stand with him.

Bestselling author of FATAL STORM, BLIGH and FLINDERS, Rob Mundle explores the life and travels of James Cook in a major new biography for lovers of adventure and the romance of sail.

Over three remarkable voyages of discovery into the Pacific in the latter part of the 18th century, Cook unravelled the centuries-old mystery surrounding the existence of the Great South Land, Terra Australis Incognita. He became the first explorer to circumnavigate New Zealand and prove it comprised two main islands, he discovered the Hawaiian Islands, and much more.

Cook was a man who pursued a teenager's dream that evolved from a chance encounter in a small seafront village on the east coast of England. It was a dream that became a reality and transported him to legendary status among all who mapped the world - on land and sea.

Through the combination of hard-won skills as a seafarer, the talents of a self-taught navigator and surveyor, and an exceptional ability to lead and care for his men, Cook contributed to changing the shape of the world map more than anyone else.

Cook: From Sailor to Legend by Rob Mundle at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Therese Anne Fowler

$19.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE APRIL 2013 ----- Zelda Sayre is a Montgomery debutante, a beautiful daredevil of a girl, indulged and talented. She catches the eye of a young man stationed nearby, waiting to be called up to do his bit in the European war. Francis Scott Fitzgerald is everything her family does not want for her – Catholic, poor (and worst of all) Yankee, with no prospects and the burning belief he is a writer. Disregarding everything sensible, she falls in love, accepts his proposal and moves to New York. There they become the feted Fitzgeralds, always good for a good time, leading a pack of young Jazz Agers in search of more, more, more. Scott becomes the author of the moment and the pressure to always come up with the next best selling story (along with increasing dependence on alcohol) starts to tear holes in their charmed existence. Moving to France, like many others, only causes more problems, particularly as Scott takes a protégé, by name Ernest Hemingway… Told from Zelda’s point-of-view, this is a marvelously colourful novel, evocative of time and place; and while it is a novelisation of true people and events, it reads with a veracity and immediacy that will have you believing in the character. If you liked The Paris Wife by Paula McLain, you will certainly enjoy this! Lindy
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The Universe versus Alex Woods

The Universe versus Alex Woods

Gavin Extence

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----  Loveable characters and serious issues, and one of quirkiest and best-intentioned narrators! Lindy

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A rare meteorite struck Alex Woods when he was ten years old, leaving scars and marking him for an extraordinary future. The son of a fortune teller, bookish, and an easy target for bullies, Alex hasn't had the easiest childhood. But when he meets curmudgeonly widower Mr. Peterson, he finds an unlikely friend.

Someone who teaches him that that you only get one shot at life. That you have to make it count. So when, aged seventeen, Alex is stopped at customs with 113 grams of marijuana, an urn full of ashes on the front seat, and an entire nation in uproar, he's fairly sure he's done the right thing...

Introducing a bright young voice destined to charm the world, The Universe Versus Alex Woods is a celebration of curious incidents, astronomy and astrology, the works of Kurt Vonnegut and the unexpected connections that form our world.
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Something Like Normal

Something Like Normal

Trish Doller

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----  Examines the effects of war on a young man who is not yet emotionally mature. Lindy

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When Travis returns home from a stint in Afghanistan, his parents are splitting up, his brother's stolen his girlfriend and his car, and he's haunted by nightmares of his best friend's death. It's not until Travis runs into Harper, a girl he's had a rocky relationship with since middle school, that life actually starts looking up. And as he and Harper see more of each other, he begins to pick his way through the minefield of family problems and post-traumatic stress to the possibility of a life that might resemble normal again. Travis's dry sense of humour, and incredible sense of honour, make him an irresistible and eminently loveable hero.
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Siege

Siege

Sarah Mussi

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I can't remember the last time I read such a heart-stopping novel - or one where the last two lines have so much impact! The pace is relentless and the story takes place over the course of one day. Leah is 16, the one who looks after her fractured family, and it's one ordinary Friday at school - or would be if it hadn't started with things going awry before she even arrived. Because she was late, she has detention. Because she is in the detention room, and not at general assembly, she doesn't witness a group of ninth graders arrive and start shooting. Because of this, she has a chance to escape. But this is a school in the near future, where the government has instituted a lock-down procedure for schools to prevent the reoccurrence of riots that had society in an uproar, so Leah can't leave the building. What follows is a tense day, where she has to outwit the armed students, try to convince the police that help is required, and go against the need for personal survival in order to help others. Worse still is the dreadful realisation her younger brother might be involved, and how can she protect him then? Guaranteed to be a powerful read: ages 14+ Lindy
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Death, Dickinson, and the Demented Life of Frenchie Garcia

Death, Dickinson, and the Demented Life of Frenchie Garcia

Jenny Torres Sanchez

$13.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is an edgy novel for the young adult reader. Frenchie is in a mess. She’s finished school, but hasn’t managed to get in to the art college she wanted. Her best friend, who has always promised they would leave their dead-end Florida town to live somewhere cooler (in temperature and attitude) together, has changed his mind because he is in love with an up-and-coming singer. The only person she thinks understands her is a dead poet. And then there is the secret she’s been carrying around since the boy she has always had a crush on committed suicide… Sharp observations and a believable voice lift this above depressing issue-based YA fiction. I really enjoyed it! Lindy

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Frenchie Garcia can't come to grips with the death of Andy Cooper. Her friends didn't know she had a crush him. And they don't know she was the last person with him before he committed suicide. But Frenchie's biggest concern is how she blindly helped him die that night. Frenchie's already insane obsession with death and Emily Dickinson won't help her understand the role she played during Andy's one night of adventure. But when she meets Colin, she may have found the perfect opportunity to recreate that night. While exploring the emotional depth of loss and transition to adulthood, Sanchez's sharp humor and clever observations bring forth a richly developed voice.
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Song for a Scarlet Runner

Song for a Scarlet Runner

Julie Hunt

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Peat has lived apart from the isolated village she was born into, exiled to the furthest reaches of the territory to tend to dairy cows. When she inadvertently points a stranger towards the township, and he brings the plague, she is driven away from the only home she has known. Forced into the terrible swamps of the borders, she is caught by a marsh-aunty, and becomes her apprentice. Peat also makes the acquaintance of a sleek, or scarlet runner, a strange creature of variable friendliness. She learns the trade of storytelling, and accompanies her mistress to the city at the centre of the world, where it becomes apparent that the marsh-aunty has not revealed all the stories that need to be told… A classic adventure story set in a strange world, an enjoyable and well-constructed standalone novel. Ages 10-14. Lindy

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Peat is on the run - forced to flee for her life when she's blamed for bringing bad luck to her village. She heads for the endless marshes, where she's caught by an old healer-woman who makes Peat her apprentice and teaches her the skill of storytelling. But a story can be a dangerous thing. It can take you out of one world and leave you stranded in another - and Peat finds herself trapped in an eerie place beyond the Silver River where time stands still. Her only friends are a 900-year-old boy and his ghost hound, plus a small and slippery sleek - a cunning creature that might sink his teeth into your leg one minute, and save your life the next.
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Coast: A History of the New South Wales Edge

Coast: A History of the New South Wales Edge

Ian Hoskins

$49.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A readable history (with scads of lovely illustrations) of human interactions with the NSW coast. Lindy

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From Eden to Byron Bay, the New South Wales coast is more than 2,000 kilometres long, with 130 estuaries and 100 coastal lakes. This is the first history of the NSW coast and traces our relationship with this stretch of land and sea, starting when Aboriginal people feasted on shellfish and perfected the art of building bark canoes, to our present obsession with the beach as a place to live or holiday. Leading us through the European fascination with marine life, attempts to establish a whaling industry, a fear of seaborne invasion which led to the creation of a navy of our own in 1911, through to the rise of our unstoppable enthusiasm for surfing and fishing, Ian Hoskins argues that our current enthralment with the coast began more recently than we might think.

Coast by Ian Hoskins at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Born in a Tent: How Camping Makes Us Australian

Born in a Tent: How Camping Makes Us Australian

Bill Garner

$39.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Interesting theory of the origin of the Australian character, and a fine read to boot.

Everyone I know has camped and I’ve had camping holidays myself, but I wouldn’t have believed I’d find a social history about it so fascinating. Yet this book is not only enjoyable and appealing, it also persuasively argues the case that camping has been a factor in our national character and that many of the traits we pride ourselves on are directly attributable to the widespread and historical practice
of living in tents! From the First Fleet (with digressions on indigenous shelters) to the gold rushes, from necessity to leisure, and right up to Tent Embassies, this wonderfully illustrated book is a pleasure to read. Lindy

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Breathtakingly original, this book shows that the history of Australia can be told through a history of camping. Bill Garner reminds us that Australia was settled as a campsite – the nation was born in a tent. But while Europeans brought tents, they did not bring camping. Australia had been a camping place for millennia. And so it continued to be. For more than a hundred years, settlers – women as well as men – colonised the country by living under canvas. It changed them into a new sort of native Australian. It gave them a feel for the place, a wry can-do attitude, and a lasting taste for equality. And it led to a sense of belonging. Born in a Tent takes the story from the campfire to the gas bottle, from a tarp slung on saplings to polymer tents and aluminium poles. It reveals how deeply our camping holidays connect us to the land, to the past, and to one another.
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Flocks of Colour

Flocks of Colour

Penny Olsen

$39.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Another of those glorious productions the National Library does so well.

Australia’s avifauna is distinguished by many beautiful birds, and particularly by our glorious parrots. This splendid book draws on the National Library collection and features images of all the Australian parrots, from the first published illustration of a rainbow lorikeet collected in 1770 to William Cooper’s watercolour of the fabled night parrot. With essays by Olsen, this gorgeous book is the perfect gift for anyone interested in birds, nature, science, history or art. It’s one I’ve bought myself! Lindy

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What name could be a more apt description of Australia than The Land of Parrots, a name inspired by late 16th-century maps showing a southern region labelled Psittacorum regio? This beautiful book takes a close look at parrots in Australia, from the first published illustration of an Australian parrot - a Rainbow Lorikeet collected live on Cook’s 1770 voyage - to William Cooper’s 20th-century watercolour of the elusive Night Parrot. With introductory essays by ornithologist Penny Olsen, this book covers two and a quarter centuries of discovery and illustration of Australia’s avifauna. It features a rich portfolio of images of all the Australian parrots by artists including John Gould, Edward Lear, Neville Cayley and William Cooper, selected from the collections of the National Library of Australia. The foreword is by Joseph Forshaw, a world expert on the parrot family.
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The Orchardist

The Orchardist

Amanda Coplin

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Early in the 20th century in an isolated corner of the Pacific Northwest, a fruit grower finds his solitude disturbed by two young - and pregnant - runaway girls. Gradually he wins their trust, but their tenuous peace is shattered and tragedy strikes. Already scarred by the disappearance of his only sister many years before, the farmer must disrupt the order of his life to heal and make amends. A lyrical and assured novel of great depth. Lindy

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At the turn of the twentieth century, in a remote stretch of Northwest  America, a solitary orchardist, Talmadge, tends to apples and apricots as if they were his children. One day, two teenage girls steal his fruit at the market. Feral, scared and very pregnant, they follow Talmadge to his land and form an unlikely attachment to his gentle way of life. But their fragile peace is shattered when armed men arrive in the orchard. In the tragedy that unfolds, Talmadge must fight to save the lives of those he has learned to love while confronting the ghosts of his own troubled past. THE ORCHARDIST is an astonishing and unforgettable epic about a man who disrupts the lonely harmony of his life when he opens his heart and lets the world in.
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The Storyteller and His Three Daughters

The Storyteller and His Three Daughters

Lian Hearn

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Sei has been a successful traditional storyteller, but the new ways and methods of post-gunboat Japan make him feel behind the times. Suffering financial embarrassment and creative block, he starts to realise that his own daughters provide all the drama and inspiration he could possibly want, but do the ruling powers want these stories? A charming and agreeable novel, full of rich detail and a very likeable main character. Highly recommended. Lindy
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Truly Tan Spooked!

Truly Tan Spooked!

Jen Storer ,  Claire Robertson

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tan’s family have settled well into country life, but she is happy to learn that her best friend Molly is coming from the city to stay, even if it causes a small misunderstanding with her best friend Georgia. The three girls all get on well and find a mystery to investigate: why are all the stone creatures in people’s gardens disappearing? Highly recommended for girls 8-11. Lindy
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Everything We Ever Saw: From the Beach to the Bush and More!

Everything We Ever Saw: From the Beach to the Bush and More!

Roland Harvey

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is excellent value, containing as it does, complete but scaled-down versions of Harvey's best-selling holiday series. A family accompanies Uncle Kev to the beach, bush, city, farm, Top End, and all the way to W.A. Full of wonderfully detailed illustrations that keep youngsters absorbed for hours - the text is fun, but it is the humorous drawings depicting all sorts of extra stories that really appeal. There are also things to find and notice scattered throughout, adding an element of search and find to keep the reader occupied. Ages 5-8 ~ Lindy

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We did a squillion and seventy things on our SIX holidays all across Australia: sailing and surfing, caving and kayaking, camping under big skies, explorations underground, museums and markets, amazing adventures on our way to the very tip of the Top End and way out west, and finally a heap of fun helping Uncle Kev on his farm. So join us! Come along to everywhere we ever went, and see everything we ever saw! And enjoy all the madness and mayhem of our fabulous family holidays. 
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Once Tashi Met a Dragon

Once Tashi Met a Dragon

Anna Fienberg ,  Barbara Fienberg ,  Kim Gamble

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tashi is a popular character in a range of little novels for newly confident readers, but this delightful picture book introduces him to slightly younger readers. Tashi has always heard tales about dragons, but no-one has ever met one. They bring the rains, and when one year the rains don't fall, Tashi sets out to discover why. A charming adventure to introduce one of the most enduring little characters of recent Australian children's books! Lindy

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No one had ever seen the dragon, but once a year it would send smoke and thunder down the mountain, and soon the rains would follow. Now the skies were always blue, the creeks were drying up and the people were hungry. What was happening up there? When Tashi reaches the dragon's golden palace, he meets an angry young dragon who is upset because his mother is under the spell of a demon sleep and he can't wake her up.
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Jump: Twinmaker #1

Jump: Twinmaker #1

Sean Williams

$18.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The world has adapted to a form of instantaneous transport using d-mat booths. Some people refuse to use them, thinking that it is an abomination to be copied by a machine and reassembled, but mostly people don't think about the consequences. Clair and her best friend Libby are in to Lucky Jumping, where the coolest people assemble for spontaneous parties, and when they manage to find a great location, they become small celebrities in the circle of cognescenti. Unfortunately for Clair, she has fallen for Libby's boyfriend, and Libby has started to act strangely. When a secret code is offered that will help change your appearance as you use d-mat, Clair is repulsed, but Libby fascinated. What seems to be a simple thing turns out to be Clair's worst nightmare, and she finds herself on the run with a mob of Abstainers and with a mysterious on-line ally who isn't what they seem to be… A cracker of a novel, the first in a trilogy. 14+ ~ Lindy

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Clair lives in a world revolutionised by d-mat, a global teleport system that allows people to transport themselves instantaneously around the world. When a coded note promises improvement - the chance to change your body any way you want, making it stronger, taller, more beautiful - Clair thinks it's too good to be true, but her best friend, Libby, is determined to give it a try. What starts as Libby's dream turns into Clair's nightmare when Libby falls foul of a deadly trap. With the help of Jesse, the school freak, and a mysterious online friend called Q, Clair's attempt to protect Libby leads her to an unimagined world of conspiracies and cover-ups. Soon her own life is at risk, and Clair is chased across the world in a desperate race against time.
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Little Mermaid Classic Edition

Little Mermaid Classic Edition

Hans Christian Andersen ,  Charles Santore

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Personally this has always been one of my favourite fairy tales, and this new edition is faithful to the original tale. It is beautifully illustrated by Charles Santore, an award-winning American illustrator, in a range of soft marine colours which perfectly complement the sad tale of the mermaid who gives up everything for love. It would be the ideal gift for any young girl who is ready for the real story, not the bawdlerised versions, or for the collector of classic children's literature. Lindy

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The beloved tale of The Little Mermaid is faithfully reproduced in this new edition of Hans Christian Anderson's classic. Original art by critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling illustrator Charles Santore is masterfully reproduced using the most advanced technology to bring these breathtaking illustrations to life like never before. The vivid colors and captivating spreads make this beautiful story one to be treasured in every home. The Little Mermaid is a timeless classic that has fascinated readers young and old for many generations. The adventures of the young mermaid princess splash life across the pages of a story full of belonging, hope, love and sacrifice. This new edition embodies beautiful original artwork by Charles Santore, masterfully reproduced with the latest technology available, containing vivid colors and captivating illustrations that make every page an unrivaled masterpiece. The sharp contrast of life under the sea and on the land is captured with these magnificent depictions of the story. In reviewing the original Santore artwork, the School Library Journal wrote, Through his clever use of contrasting palettes, the illustrations create two distinct worlds: the ethereal blues and greens of the Sea King's undersea realm, and the sun-drenched reds and golds of the prince's domain. Children and adults are sure to treasure this book and all it encompasses for many years to come.
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Tide

Tide

John Kinsella

$22.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The most beautiful short stories I’ve read this year! Kinsella is unparalleled at catching landscapes - the spaces of sea and land - but it is the psychological insights that make this so special. From young men making adult mistakes, children in the midst of nature, tired people trying and failing, or older ones understanding their lives, these stories tell more in their few pages than many novelists could ever hope to convey. Lindy
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Perfect North

Perfect North

Jenny Bond

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This assured and compelling debut novel is based on real events. In 1897 at the height of the rush to reach the North Pole, a Swedish expedition set out to conquer the distance - by hot air balloon. One of the members was a young man related to August Strindberg, part of an accomplished and talented family, and engaged to Anna. When the expedition disappears, and as nothing is heard from them, she too vanishes.

Decades later, the remains of the balloon are found on a remote island, and the newspaper which originally sponsored the attempt sends a journalist, Kurt Stubbendorff, to the scene. There he finds the body of Nils Strindberg, and a cache of love letters. Moved by their contents, he decides to track down Anna and return them to her. But Anna had her reasons for disappearing, and as Kurt discovers, sometimes secrets need to be kept…

I found this to be a wonderful read, with an interesting narrative structure, psychologically rounded characters and passages of quite beautiful writing. Very satisfying, and very much recommended! Lindy

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1897: As explorers and scientists scramble to conquer the North Pole, Nils Strindberg, with fellow adventurers S. A. Andre and Knut Frankel, takes up the challenge. Setting flight in a hydrogen balloon, Nils leaves his fiance Anna and his brother Erik behind in Stockholm anxiously hoping for his return.

1930: When the men's remains are discovered on the frozen island of Kvit ya, the news makes headlines around the world. Brash young journalist Knut Stubbendorff is sent to report from the site and uncovers, among the debris, journals filled with love letters from Nils to Anna. Wanting to know more about the man who left his love to embark on a journey that was doomed from the start, Stubbendorff is determined to find her... but Anna doesnt want to be found.

In a search that uncovers lost loves, deceit and long-buried secrets, Stubbendorff discovers a story that has stayed hidden for decades and the people who have been concealing it.

Perfect North by Jenny Bond at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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Murder and Mendelssohn: Phryne Fisher #20

Murder and Mendelssohn: Phryne Fisher #20

Kerry Greenwood

$22.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It's almost unnecessary to review a new Phryne Fisher novel, as the fans will read it anyway! What's so enjoyable about this series, apart from the loving descriptions of beautiful frocks, delicious cocktails, and beautiful young men, is the sassy Phryne herself.

This (the 20th Phryne book) reveals some more of her past, particularly her involvement in the Great War - and her clandestine activities for the British secret service - nothing surprises when it comes to Miss Fisher! Of course, we start with a murder - an orchestral conductor found dead with a sheaf of Mendelssohn stuffed in his mouth. Jack Robinson has asked for her insights, and she is all too willing to help investigate. This involves her joining an amateur choral group, leads to her rekindling a love affair with an old paramour (who himself, is pining away for love of someone who takes him for granted - something Phryne will help rectify!) and generally finding herself up to her green eyes in trouble! As enjoyable a novel as all the rest have been! ~ Lindy

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To the accompaniment of heavenly choirs singing, the fearless Miss Phryne Fisher returns in her 20th adventure with musical score in hand. An orchestral conductor has been found dead and Detective Inspector Jack Robinson needs the delightfully incisive and sophisticated Miss Fisher's assistance to enter a world in which he is at sea. Hugh Tregennis, not much liked by anyone, has been murdered in a most flamboyant mode by a killer with a point to prove. But how many killers is Phryne really stalking?

At the same time, the dark curls, disdainful air and the lavender eyes of mathematician and code-breaker Rupert Sheffield are taking Melbourne by storm. They've certainly taken the heart of Phryne's old friend from the trenches of WW1, John Wilson. Phryne recognises Sheffield as a man who attracts danger and is determined to protect John from harm. Even with the faithful Dot, Mr and Mrs Butler, and all in her household ready to pull their weight, Phryne's task is complex. While Mendelssohn's Elijah, memories of the Great War, and the science of deduction ring in her head, Phryne's past must also play its part as MI6 become involved in the tangled web of murders.  

A vastly entertaining tale of murder, spies, mathematics and music.

Murder and Mendelssohn: Phryne Fisher #20 by Kerry Greenwood at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Signature of All Things

The Signature of All Things

Elizabeth Gilbert

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- My rep told me he had a book I'd really enjoy, but when I found out it was by Eat Pray Love author Elizabeth Gilbert, I was very dubious to say the least. Still, I promised I'd have a look… and I was drawn in immediately! I admit to being prejudiced, and to being wrong!

Alma Whittacker is born in 1800, the only child to an Englishman and his Dutch wife, in Pennsylvania. Her father is basically illiterate, but by dint of cunning and hard work (and some illegality!), has made a fortune in plant collecting and pharmacy. Alma is encouraged to explore the estate and question everything from a very young age. She's homely, but effortlessly intelligent, and becomes a precocious naturalist. She takes care of her father's library and discovers certain things perhaps not intended for young, or female, eyes. When her parents adopt the beautiful daughter of a murdered prostitute, Alma's life becomes complicated with negative emotions, but botany and increasing participation in her father's business keep her busy.

Becoming intrigued and obsessed with mosses, Alma spends her adult years observing and thinking about the signature of all things - the underlying structures of life. A beautiful younger man with an unsurpassed talent for botanical illustration comes to her notice and they work well together, until the messy complications of love intrude…

I found this a clever and compelling story with many levels (all satisfying), well rounded and believable characters, and a brilliant recreation of the 19th century. Others I have persuaded to read it (despite their initial preconceptions!) have agreed with me - this is a great novel indeed! ~ Lindy

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5th January 1800. At the beginning of a new century, Alma Whittaker is born into a perfect Philadelphia winter. Her father, Henry Whittaker, is a bold and charismatic botanical explorer whose vast fortune belies his lowly beginnings as a vagrant in Kew Gardens. Alma's mother, a strict woman from an esteemed Dutch family, is conversant in five living languages (and two dead ones) and her knowledge of botany is equal to any man's.

An independent girl with a thirst for knowledge, it is not long before Alma comes into her own within the world of plants and science. As Alma's careful studies of moss take her deeper into the mysteries of evolution, the man she comes to love draws her in the opposite direction - into the realm of the spiritual, the divine, and the magical. Alma is a clear-minded scientist; Ambrose is a Utopian artist. But what unites this couple is a shared passion for knowing - a desperate need to understand the workings of this world and the mechanisms behind all of life.

The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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John Saturnall's Feast

John Saturnall's Feast

Lawrence Norfolk

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is my favourite historical novel of the year, along with Hilary Mantel’s Bring Up the Bodies. It is 17th century England and John has the extraordinary ability to determine ingredients in any dish. When he and his mother, the village wise woman, are driven out by religious bigots, he gains refuge after her death in Buckland Manor. His talents see him rise from scullery boy to head cook, but he is driven by the need to fulfil his mother’s vision and create a Grand Feast, no matter how many years it takes… His recipes (for which Heston Blumenthal was consulted!) are interspersed throughout the book. A story of love and redemption, and a colourful recreation of the times, this is a fine feast for any reader of delicious prose! Lindy

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From the bestselling author of Lempriere's Dictionary, Lawrence Norfolk is back with an astounding novel of seventeeth-century life, love and war; the story of an orphan who becomes the greatest cook of his age. The village of Buckland, 1625. A boy and his mother run for their lives. Behind them a mob chants of witchcraft. Taking refuge among the trees of Buccla's Wood, the mother opens her book and tells her son of an ancient Feast kept in secret down the generations. But as exquisite dishes rise from the page, the ground beneath them freezes. That winter, the boy's mother dies. Taken to Buckland Manor, John is put to work in the house's vast subterranean kitchens where his talent raises him from the scullery to the great house above. A complex dish served to King Charles brings him before Lady Lucretia Fremantle, the headstrong daughter of the house. He must tempt her from her fast. But both encounters will imperil him. As the Civil War begins and the New Order's fanatical soldiers march, John and Lucretia are thrown together into a passionate struggle for survival. To keep all he holds most dear, John must realise his mother's vision. He must serve the Saturnall Feast.
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Patrick Leigh Fermor

Patrick Leigh Fermor

Artemis Cooper

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Adventurer, war hero, polymath, Hellenophile – Patrick Leigh Fermor (1915-2011) is also celebrated as one of the finest travel writers of his generation. This wonderful biography is based on unrestricted access to his private papers and years of conversations with him. It is a lovingly crafted portrait of his life, from a young boy who didn’t quite fit in, through his reckless adolescence and wartime service, to his long life of travel, learning and friendship. Lindy

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Patrick Leigh Fermor (1915-2011) was a war hero whose exploits in Crete are legendary. Above all, he is widely acclaimed as the greatest travel writer of our times, notably for his books about his walk across pre-war Europe - A Time of Gifts and Between the Woods and the Water. He was a self-educated polymath, a lover of Greece and the best company in the world. Artemis Cooper has drawn on years of interviews and conversations with Paddy and his closest friends, and had complete access to his archives. Her beautifully crafted biography portrays a man of extraordinary gifts - no one wore their learning so playfully, nor inspired such passionate friendship.
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Every Breath

Every Breath

Ellie Marney

$18.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Rachel Watts is living in a tiny house in a Melbourne suburb, her parents and older brother working all the hours they can to keep a roof above their heads. None of them want to be there, but the banks foreclosed on the family property and they are reduced to near penury.

Rachel resents the loss of her wide-open country life, but there is one consolation - her friendship with charismatic neighbour and near-genius James Mycroft. He attends the same school (when he hasn't been suspended - a regular occurrence) and there are hints about a troubling past. His abiding passion is forensic science, and he runs a website dedicated to criminal forensics. When they find a friend of theirs, a homeless man, dead near Melbourne Zoo, they begin their own investigation. A page-turner for older teen readers! Lindy
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The Vanishing Moment

The Vanishing Moment

Margaret Wild

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The respected and award-winning picture book author has produced a fascinating and intriguing novel for older readers. Three people's lives are followed, in fragments. Bob has an awful stepfather who makes his life hell. The only bright spot is his little half-sister, who he loves with all his heart. Arrow is adrift, and has never felt comfortable since early adolescence, when a terrible tragedy split her life into 'before' and 'after'.

Marika can't stop weeping after her little brother is kidnapped in a public place when she was was in charge. Arrow and Marika's lives intersect in a small coastal town which has significance for both of them - and for the magician, Bob, who tells them both of his theory about multiple universes. And even though their present lives aren't what they want, what would Marika and Arrow lose if they could change their pasts? A very satisfying read! ~ Lindy
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The Dance Teacher

The Dance Teacher

Simon Milne ,  Chantal Stewart

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Isabelle wants to be a ballerina. Her teacher, Miss Sylvie, tells her dancing is hard work and practice is necessary, and asks whether she can work hard. So starts Isabelle's love affair with ballet. Her best friends start classes with her, until life gets in the way for the others, but Isabelle persists, until she realises her ambitions to be a ballerina. But one day she realises she wants something else… A sweet and charming picture book about the thrill of dance, and of working hard to achieve your dreams, and then the satisfaction of giving back. Expressive illustrations by Chantal Stewart. ~ Lindy
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Just So Stories

Just So Stories

Rudyard Kipling ,  Robert Ingpen

$39.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is one in Ingpen's beautifully illustrated classics for children - but as with all the others he has done (eg Wind in the Willows, Secret Garden, Treasure Island, Alice in Wonderland) their appeal is widespread and certainly not limited! The text is unabridged and brings to the reader all Kipling's charming and colourful tales of how certain animals got their characteristic features. They are delightful and entertaining, and still worth sharing with younger readers. The gorgeous illustrations add to the experience, Ingpen's warm and soft colours in realistic shades of golden greys and browns enlivened with greens and blues are so beautifully expressive! For readers and book collectors, young and old. ~ Lindy

Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling & Robert Ingpen at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Sky So Heavy

The Sky So Heavy

Claire Zorn

$19.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Fin is your typical teenage boy, growing up in the lower Blue Mountains, getting through school, mucking around with his friends, trying to impress the girl of his dreams. But one day nuclear bombs are detonated in the northern hemisphere, and not only are whole countries obliterated, but the climate changes literally overnight. A bitterly cold winter has set in. With his mother in Sydney, his father gone off to appease his second wife the night before the bombs and not returned, and a younger brother to look after, Fin suddenly has to grow up. Supplies run out, water is contaminated, and society reverts to each for themselves.

A cracking, page-turning novel for readers 13 and up, in the style of John Marsden’s Tomorrow series. ~ Lindy

The Sky So Heavy by Claire Zorn at Abbey's Bookshop 131 York Street, Sydney
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The Swan Book

The Swan Book

Alexis Wright

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- How to describe this amazing, complicated and intellectually demanding novel? It is full of inventive wordplay, chorus-like mutterings from the wings of the main theatre, splintered and fragmentary narratives.

It is angry, and playful, and colourful. It is about discrimination – against and within refugees, indigenes, country-dwellers. The main character, Oblivia, does not speak, but the ghosts of (some of) her past do. The woman who saves her from the abuses of her childhood is a great storyteller, full of tales of swans from a different hemisphere.

Climate change has intensified the problems of society, but the land remains essential to a sense of identity. Politics is as useless to the ordinary person as it ever was, but hero-worship remains important to national pride. Cultural misappropriation is rife, but it isn't always the fault of the non-indigenous.

All these elements make for a coruscating story, a 'modernist' novel that takes some effort to get into, but which is well and truly worth the time. 
~ Lindy

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The new novel by Alexis Wright, whose previous novel Carpentaria won the Miles Franklin Award and four other major prizes including the ABIA Literary Fiction Book of the Year Award.

Set in the future, with Aboriginals still living under the Intervention in the north, and in an environment fundamentally altered by climate change. It follows the life of a mute teenager called Oblivia, the victim of gang-rape by petrol-sniffing youths, from the displaced community where she lives in a hulk, in a swamp filled with rusting boats, and thousands of black swans driven from other parts of the country, to her marriage to Warren Finch, the first Aboriginal president of Australia, and her elevation to the position of First Lady, confined to a tower in a flooded and lawless southern city.

The Swan Book has all the qualities which made Carpentaria a prize-winning bestseller. It offers an intimate awareness of the realities facing Aboriginal people; the wild energy and humour in her writing finds hope in the bleakest situations; and the remarkable combination of storytelling elements, drawn from myth and legend and fairy tale.

The Swan Book by Alexis Wright
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MaddAddam

MaddAddam

Margaret Atwood

$35.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It's taken a couple of years but the final book in the trilogy is here, that ties up the events of Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood – and it was worth the wait!

It starts from the point where the second book left off, but as with the other books, moves between the present and the past quite smoothly. In this volume, Toby, ex-God's Gardener who has survived the plague released by Crake upon the world, is the main narrator. She finds herself telling to the neo-human Crakers, the stories Zeb has told her. As the survivors of the plague work out the ways to live in the transformed world and also how to combat the evil inadvertently released, Toby and Zeb's stories intertwine.

A lot more complicated to review than to read, Maddaddam is a wonderfully constructed novel, full of surprisingly light touches (Toby's bedtime stories to the child-like Crakers can be very funny), gripping story-lines, imaginative wordplay and a plausible world future that may not be so very far away… Fabulous stuff! ~ Lindy

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A man-made plague has swept the earth, but a small group survives, along with the green-eyed Crakers - a gentle species bio-engineered to replace humans. Toby, onetime member of the God's Gardeners and expert  in mushrooms and bees, is still in love with street-smart Zeb, who has an interesting past. The Crakers' reluctant prophet, Snowman-the-Jimmy, is hallucinating; Amanda is in shock from a Painballer assault; and Ivory Bill yearns for the provocative Swift Fox, who is flirting with Zeb. Meanwhile, giant Pigoons and malevolent Painballers threaten to attack.

Told with wit, dizzying imagination, and dark humour, Booker Prize-winning Margaret Atwood's unpredictable, chilling and  hilarious MaddAddam takes us further into a challenging dystopian world - a moving and dramatic conclusion to the internationally celebrated trilogy that began with Oryx and Crake and The Year of the Flood.

MaddAddam by Margaret Atwood
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Stillways: A Memoir

Stillways: A Memoir

Steve Bisley

$27.99

From one of Australia's favourite actors comes a classic memoir of an Australian childhood in the sixties.

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The well-known and talented Australian actor can also write – beautifully! This is his memoir of childhood and school days, spent on the central coast. The 1950s and 60s are a foreign country now, but Bisley evokes the innocence and accepted violence of those days without sentiment.

The joys of the local show or Cracker Night, of catching a feed of prawns with his family, of mucking about with good mates, of being a young tearaway pushing the boundaries of allowable behaviour – all these and more are described in clean and unforced prose.

So too the darker moments of living with a father who had an unpredictable, violent and nasty streak, who thrashed his wife and children for perceived infractions.

There is no rancour in the retelling of these painful episodes, just a kind of mute acceptance; but they are more often hinted at than dwelt on. The book ends with Bisley being offered his first job after leaving school. I hope there will be a book of his further adventures, I enjoyed this one so much! ~ Lindy

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The Vale Girl

The Vale Girl

Nelika McDonald

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Sarah Vale is the daughter of a prostitute in a small country town. She knows lots of secrets, like which of Banville's men visit her mother regularly, even if they pretend to live upright and righteous lives. She knows how to do without things, like regular meals and friends.

Tommy Johns knows how to do without things too, like his father's presence. In fact, all the people he has ever loved have disappeared. So when Sarah vanishes, he isn't surprised. She is the one friend he has. His feelings for her are actually deeper than that, but he's too careful to let them show. When he tries to tell others that Sarah is missing, nobody cares. Even the local copper, Sergeant Henson, can't undermine the indifference to her fate.

Tommy, with his fascination for local botany, is very observant, and he isn't going to give up on Sarah, and he isn't going to let others give up on her either…

A compulsively readable novel, with a few twists to keep the reader guessing. Very much in the vein of Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey, if a comparison is needed, a quietly confident and multi-layered representation of secrets and undercurrents in small town life. ~ Lindy

An extraordinary debut from a talented new writer.

Read an extract
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Peggy

Peggy

Anna Walker

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Peggy the chook has a nice quiet routine life. She's happy doing the same thing everyday (including watching the pigeons) so when a big gust of wind blows her away from her suburban street into the Big City, Peggy is quite confused. Still, she gets to experience all sorts of new things, and a lot of them are enjoyable; but she does want to go home. Eventually she does, with the help of the pigeons... A charming little tale, with softly expressive illustrations, which gently introduces the young reader to the joys of moving outside your comfort zone. Lindy
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All Our Yesterdays

All Our Yesterdays

Cristin Terrill

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Em is a prisoner in a tiny cell, interrogated regularly and often beaten by a cold unfeeling man. Her only comfort is hearing the voice of Finn, the boy in the cell next to hers. When she discovers a list in her handwriting in a secret place in the cell, one she has no knowledge of writing, there is an instruction she can't ignore, but doesn't want to act upon… Marina is a popular girl, rich and in love with the boy next door, James, who happens to be her closest friend and the genius son of a prominent political family. It looks like James is starting to consider Marina in a different light - if only he'd stop hanging around with his annoying friend, Finn. It doesn't take long for the reader to understand Em and Marina are the same person, separated by time, nor to understand that Em keeps travelling in time to stop something unspeakable happening. A strong punchy storyline, clever ideas and interesting characters make this an exciting and complex novel for older readers. ~ Lindy

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A brilliantly brain-warping thriller and a love story that leaps back and forth in time - All Our Yesterdays is an amazing first novel, perfect for fans of The Hunger Games. Em is locked in a bare, cold cell with no comforts. Finn is in the cell next door. The Doctor is keeping them there until they tell him what he wants to know. Trouble is, what he wants to know hasn't happened yet. Em and Finn have a shared past, but no future unless they can find a way out. The present is torture - being kept apart, overhearing each other's anguish as the Doctor relentlessly seeks answers. There's no way back from here, to what they used to be, the world they used to know. Then Em finds a note in her cell which changes everything. It's from her future self and contains some simple but very clear instructions. Em must travel back in time to avert a tragedy that's about to unfold. Worse, she has to pursue and kill the boy she loves to change the future...
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The Four Seasons of Lucy McKenzie

The Four Seasons of Lucy McKenzie

Kirsty Murray

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- When Lucy's older sister is involved in an accident and her mother must fly to Paris to be with her, and her father cannot leave his job to care for her, Lucy is sent to the country house of her great aunt Big for summer. With no prospect of a family Christmas, no internet coverage and disliking her distant and gruff aunt, Lucy is not at all happy. But when the flowing mural in the dining room, which depicts the landscape outside in its four seasons, draws Lucy in the dark of night to look at it, she soon finds a portal into an earlier time. There she makes dear friends with a funny and brave young girl, and learns to draw upon her own strengths. A time-slip story for ages 11-14 ~ Lindy

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The room was full of moon shadows and dancing light. But it was the wall around the window that Lucy couldn't stop staring at, the one with the painting of Spring. It was as bright as a sunny day and the tiny yellow flowers that covered the fields were moving, as if a breeze had blown through the painting and set all the petals dancing. Lucy McKenzie can walk through walls. Sent to stay with her Aunt Big in a hidden valley, Lucy discovers the old house is full of mysteries. One hot night, she hears a voice calling from inside a painting on the dining-room wall...On the other side of the painting, Lucy meets three children. Together they race horses through the bush, battle fires and floods, and make friendships that will last a lifetime. But who are April, Tom and Jimmy Tiger, and what magic has drawn Lucy to them?
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Emily Feather and the Enchanted Door

Emily Feather and the Enchanted Door

Holly Webb

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Emily doesn't look anything like the rest of her fair family and she hasn't discovered her particular talent like the rest of them either. Nor does her house behave like anyone else's house - sometimes it feels like the walls have moved and the staircase has more steps than it did the day before. Then one day Emily discovers why… With a pinch of magic, and a dash of adventure and mystery, this will be the first in a series from the bestselling author, and is pitched at readers 8-10. ~ Lindy

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A brand-new series from bestselling author Holly Webb. Be careful which door you open. Everyone thinks Emily's house is cool. It has so many different doors and everything is mismatched and sometimes it feels like maybe the walls have moved. But that would be silly. Of course they couldn't have...But little do people realize that behind some doors lie other worlds, full of magic and wonder. And Emily is soon going to discover this for herself...
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Banjo And Ruby Red

Banjo And Ruby Red

Libby Gleeson ,  Freya Blackwood

$24.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I've been a fan of Freya Blackwood's beautiful illustrative style since her first book, and so a new collaboration with Libby Gleeson is to be welcomed! Banjo is a black-and-white hardworking high-energy farm dog, and Ruby Red is a stand-offish and very proud chook. They have nothing in common it would seem, and tend to get on each other's wrong side, but of course, an understanding is finally reached! An endearing story to read aloud and share. ~ Lindy

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A funny and touching story of antagonism and love by award-winning author Libby Gleeson, with illustrations by internationally acclaimed Freya Blackwood. Freya Blackwood's stunning illustrations perfectly capture the endearing personalities of boisterous Banjo and head-strong Ruby Red.  A stunning clothbound cover makes this a beautiful gift item that will be treasured for years to come.
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Silver Buttons

Silver Buttons

Bob Graham

$27.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One ordinary Thursday morning, a young girl draws silver buttons on the boots of a duck. As she does so, her baby brother wobbles to his feet and takes his first step. Outside their door people pass by on their way to other places, busy with the day-to-day busy-ness of their lives. Things are bought, farewells said, babies born. Dogs scratch and birds fly past. As the illustrations draw back from that tiny moment of domesticity in a quiet suburban house, all the rest of the city is seen to be connected. With his trademark delicately portrayed illustrations in quiet tones, Bob Graham has once again given us a thoughtful and sensitive picturebook for all ages. ~ Lindy

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Bob Graham beautifully captures a world vision in one solitary moment. At 9.59 on Thursday morning, Jodie draws a duck. Just as she is about to add one final silver button to the duck's boots, her little brother takes his first step. At this exact same moment, a man buys bread, a soldier leaves home, a baby is being born...Here is a book, a story, a philosophy so simply told and yet - in true and inimitable Bob Graham style - so rich with emotion and meaning. It is in the smallest details that we sense the greatest significance and can see the big picture. From his glorious urban skyscapes to the tender portrayal of a falling feather or the tying of a shoelace or a dog's joy in scratching his back, Bob lets us in on a world view conveyed with humanity, compassion and affection. This is a book that is sure to connect quietly and powerfully with readers of all ages. The idea that we are all alone, and yet all as one in the world, is drawn with huge sensitivity and poetry. Bob Graham's books are multi-award winning and have sold over two million copies worldwide!
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Mr Wigg

Mr Wigg

Inga Simpson

$26.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This has been one of my favourites this year! A charming, delightful and tender book about connections: to family, the past, community, a way of life. Mr Wigg is getting on in years, and his son would like him to move from the family farm into a retirement home in the nearby country town. Mr Wigg is resisting the suggestion, as he knows it will be the death of him to leave behind the orchard and his sheds and all the things that retain importance after his wife's death. Over the course of summer 1971, Mr Wigg tends his fruit trees (which, in the way they rustle their leaves, convey a great deal of information!) makes his preserves, teaches his grandchildren how to bake, tells his stories, and embarks on a couple of different projects. This is a gentle, beautifully paced and subtle novel that left me beguiled and satisfied. It is the perfect anecdote to winter! Lindy

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It's the summer of 1971, not far from the stone-fruit capital of New South Wales, where Mr Wigg lives on what is left of his family farm. Mrs Wigg has been gone a few years now and he thinks about her every day. He misses his daughter, too, and wonders when he'll see her again. He spends his time working in the orchard, cooking and preserving his produce and, when it's on, watching the cricket. It's a full life. Things are changing though, with Australia and England playing a one-day match, and his new neighbours planting grapes for wine. His son is on at him to move into town but Mr Wigg has his fruit trees and his chooks to look after. His grandchildren visit often: to cook, eat and hear his stories. And there's a special project he has to finish... Trouble is, it's a lot of work for an old man with shaking hands, but he'll give it a go, as he always has.
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The Day the Crayons Quit

The Day the Crayons Quit

Drew Daywalt ,  Oliver Jeffers

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Duncan comes home one day to find his crayons have written him letters. Red crayon is exhausted from being used on fire engines and Santa Claus and apples. Beige is feeling a unloved, because Light Brown gets all the gigs. Yellow and Orange are arguing as to who is the real colour of the sun. Purple wants to keep within the lines, and Pink is not an exclusive girl's colour. How is Duncan going to keep them all happy? Quite text heavy, so best for the youngster who can follow a longer narrative, but a lot of fun! Lindy

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Poor Duncan just wants to color. But when he opens his box of crayons, he finds only letters, all saying the same thing: His crayons have had enough! They quit! Beige Crayon is tired of playing second fiddle to Brown Crayon. Black wants to be used for more than just outlining. Blue needs a break from coloring all those bodies of water. And Orange and Yellow are no longer speaking - each believes he is the true color of the sun. What can Duncan possibly do to appease all of the crayons and get them back to doing what they do best? Kids will be imagining their own humorous conversations with crayons and coloring a blue streak after sharing laughs with Drew Daywalt and  New York Times bestseller Oliver Jeffers.

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From the Outback

From the Outback

Jill Brailsford

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- There are four in the series: From the Bush, From the Nest, From the Ocean, From the Outback. Cloth books with a crinkly element, with black silhouettes on white backgrounds, two words to a page ('wren twitters' or 'dolphin leaps' or 'gecko climbs') these are simple but effective first books for baby. I rather like the use of less obvious animals as well (dugongs and brolgas and bilbies as well as the usual suspects!) and these are perfect gifts for the littlest member of your reading family! Lindy

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The Apprentices

The Apprentices

Maile Meloy

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I absolutely adored the first book from this author (The Apothecary) and this sequel continues the adventures of Janie and Benjamin. Janie has lost some of her memories of their previous escapades, but they slowly come back to her. She's back in America, at boarding school. Benjamin and his father have taken the precious Pharmacopoeia with them to Vietnam where they are hunting a rare plant, but inbetween hunting for a rare medicinal plant, Benjamin has been experimenting with an elixir which allows him to connect with Janie - and he realises she is in dreadful danger. Fast paced, but with the elements of thoughtfulness which marked the first book, this is an imaginative and enjoyable novel. Ages 13+ Lindy

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The enthralling sequel to The Apothecary, Maile Meloy's first book for young readers. Illustrated by Ian Schoenherr Two years have passed since Janie Scott last saw Benjamin Burrows, the mysterious apothecary's son who stole her heart. She's thrown herself into an ambitious chemistry project and, when it vanishes, she suspects the rich and powerful Magnusson of stealing it. And she knows she needs help to fight him. On the other side of the world, Benjamin and the apothecary have been working in the war-torn jungles of Vietnam, using their elixirs to help the sick and wounded. But Benjamin has also been experimenting with a new formula that allows him to see into Janie's world. The friends are thrown into a whirlwind chase around the Pacific Ocean, trying to find each other and the truth behind what threatens them. The Apprentices is a magical blend of fantasy and reality that sparkles with life and adventure-a delightful sequel to the much-loved The Apothecary.
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The Son

The Son

Michel Rostain

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This has been a European bestseller, and is the sort of book the French do so well. It is also a distillation of truth and fiction, because the author, Michel, lost his son, Lion, as the character Michel loses his son Lion. It is told from the point-of-view of the son, and starts eleven days after his death. Lion observes the effect of his sudden death on his parents, but primarily his father, and remembers his life and their relationship. A story of grief, and living, and love, but also ultimately of acceptance and memory’s consolations. Lindy

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We first meet Michel eleven days after the death of his son Lion. Lion was lost, suddenly, to a virulent strain of meningitis and it's left his father and entire family reeling. We join Michel on his personal journey through grief, but the twist that makes the journey truly remarkable, and tips this true story into fiction, is the fact that we see it all through Lion's eyes. In a stunningly original blurring of memoir and fiction, the novel tackles the very hardest of subjects in the most readable of ways. Rostain resolutely ducks away from sentimentality and pathos, and tells his story instead with wit, wisdom and vitality. For this is not a book about death; it's a book about life.
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The Hive

The Hive

Gill Hornby

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- In a small English town, the mothers gather at the school gates to collect their children. St Ambrose Primary School is a 'good' school and for the mothers, represents not just the place for their kids to get educated but also an achievement that reflects on their social status. And standing in the centre of it all, is Beatrice, who is the undisputed arbiter of taste and the mother everyone wants to be friends with. Rachel was Beatrice's best friend, but since Rachel's husband deserted her, she has been relegated to the outer, where she watches miserably. Other women have stepped into the breach, delighted to follow orders and believe in Bea's superiority… but then a new mother appears, one who takes no notice of Bea's directives, one who is more than capable of holding her own on the issues of fundraising and social initiatives. I did laugh in places, but by the end of the novel, I couldn’t decide if the author held all women in contempt, or just mothers. Lindy

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Welcome to St Ambrose Primary School. A world of friendships, fights and feuding. And that's just the mothers. It's the start of another school year at St Ambrose. But while the children are in the classroom colouring in, their mothers are learning sharper lessons on the other side of the school gates. Lessons in friendship. Lessons in betrayal. Lessons in the laws of community, the transience of power...and how to get invited to lunch. Beatrice - undisputed queen bee. Ruler, by Divine Right, of all school fund-raising, this year, last year and, surely, for many years to come. Heather - desperate to volunteer, desperate to be noticed, desperate just to belong. Georgie - desperate for a fag. And Rachel - watching them all, keeping her distance. But soon to discover that the line between amused observer and miserable outcast is a thin one. The Hive is an irresistible, brilliantly observed novel - warm, witty and true. Wickedly funny, it is also a fascinating and subtle story about group politics and female friendship.  From the joys and perils (well, mainly perils) of the Lunch Ladder, to the military operation that is the Car Boot Sale, via the dos and don'ts of dressing your child as a dalek, all human life is here.
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The Astronaut Wives Club

The Astronaut Wives Club

Lily Koppel

$32.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JUNE 2013 ----- When the men were chosen who would be the proud and patriotic space pilots proving the superiority of American technology against that of the Soviets, they became instant popular heroes. To that end, their wives were also thrust into the limelight, and were expected to support their husbands, be role models for American femininity and fulfill NASA's demands for perfection. In the pre-feminist times of the 1950s and 60s, these women could rely only on each other for support. This isn't an analytical gender study of the astronauts' wives, but a readable, almost gossipy book about how a bunch of service spouses became Cold War icons for the Space Race. Lindy

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As American astronauts were launched on death-defying missions, television cameras focused on the brave smiles of their wives. Overnight, these women were transformed from shy military spouses to American royalty: having tea with Jackie Kennedy, attending high society galas, and being featured on the cover of Life magazine. They quickly grew into fashion icons, donning sherbet-swirled Pucci dresses and lacquering their hair into extravagant rocket styles (to match their husbands' spaceships). Annie Glenn was the envy of the other wives, with her many magazine features; platinum-blonde bombshell Rene Carpenter was proclaimed JFK's favourite; homely Betty Grissom worried her husband was having affairs; Louise Shepard just wanted to be left alone to her card games; and licensed pilot Trudy Cooper arrived on base with a dirty secret. Together they rallied to form the Astronaut Wives Club, which has now turned into over 40 years of enduring friendship. Sexy and sophisticated, rich in melodrama, and set against the uniquely atmospheric backdrop of the Space Age, this tells the real story behind some of the biggest heroes in American history, chronicling their romantic, domestic, and public dramas during the Mad Men era.
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And the Mountains Echoed

And the Mountains Echoed

Khaled Hosseini

$32.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JUNE 2013 ----- From the author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns comes another achingly beautiful novel from this master wordsmith. 

A father tells his son, Abdullah, a story of a father’s sacrifice of one of his children, to ensure that child has a better life than he’s born to. This is on the night before the man is walking to Kabul with his little daughter, Pari. Abdullah loves Pari so much that he refuses to stay behind; he doesn’t yet know that his father has promised the girl to a rich, childless couple. The separation that follows will scar not only the siblings, but many of the people closely involved in the transaction, and even into the next generation.

Told in turn from the point of view of other family members, and of the children themselves, this is a finely woven tale of many colours and textures that spans more than five decades. It takes place in Kabul, in a small village in the mountains, in California and Paris and a small Greek island, but the true setting is the human heart, and all it is capable of. Highly recommended. Lindy

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Afghanistan, 1952. Abdullah and his sister Pari live with their father and step-mother in the small village of Shadbagh. Their father, Saboor, is constantly in search of work and they struggle together through poverty and brutal winters. To Adbullah, Pari, as beautiful and sweet-natured as the fairy for which she was named, is everything. More like a parent than a brother, Abdullah will do anything for her, even trading his only pair of shoes for a feather for her treasured collection. Each night they sleep together in their cot, their skulls touching, their limbs tangled. One day the siblings journey across the desert to Kabul with their father. Pari and Abdullah have no sense of the fate that awaits them there, for the event which unfolds will tear their lives apart; sometimes a finger must be cut to save the hand. Crossing generations and continents, moving from Kabul, to Paris, to San Francisco, to the Greek island of Tinos, with profound wisdom, depth, insight and compassion, Khaled Hosseini writes about the bonds that define us and shape our lives, the ways that we help our loved ones in need, how the choices we make resonate through history, and how we are often surprised by the people closest to us.
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Flight Behaviour

Flight Behaviour

Barbara Kingsolver

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Dellarobia is a young mother so discontented with her poverty-stricken life on a failing farm in the Appalachian Mountains that she impulsively decides to have an affair. On her way to consummate it, she stumbles across something so impossible as to be a miracle. But is it? Or is it a sign of something more disturbing – a freak of nature that indicates how far out of whack the world really is? With the Christians of her community celebrating it as one, and visiting researchers treating it as the other, Dellarobia finds her life totally transformed. Thoughtful, powerful and quietly compulsive reading – highly recommended. Lindy

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Discontented  with her life of poverty on a failing farm in the Eastern United States, Dellarobia, a young mother, impulsively seeks out an affair. Instead, on the Appalachian mountains above her home, she discovers  something much more profoundly life-changing - a beautiful and terrible  marvel of nature. As the world around her is suddenly transformed by a  seeming miracle, can the old certainties they have lived by for centuries remain unchallenged? Flight Behaviour is a captivating, topical and deeply  human story touching on class, poverty and climate change. It is Barbara  Kingsolver's most accessible novel yet, and explores the truths we live  by, and the complexities that lie behind them.
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Me and Rory Macbeath

Me and Rory Macbeath

Richard Beasley

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Rose Avenue, Adelaide, 1977. A strange new kid and his family moves into the dilapidated rental house at the end of the street. Jake, who has lived there all the twelve years of his life, is not convinced he needs to make friends with Rory MacBeath, but Jake's best friend Robbie is more accepting. Rory is hard for Jake to work out – he knows certain things really well, like how to make a slingshot or catch a fish– but stuff that any normal kid would know how to do, like swim or play cricket, Rory has problems with. He also has problems with his father, a man so disappointed in life that he resorts to alcohol and violence; even when that's no longer a secret, no-one can help Mrs MacBeath, the main brunt of his vicious temper. Jake's mother (my favourite character in the novel – I wanted more of her!) is an unconventional woman, a chain-smoking, hard drinking, passionate criminal lawyer, and she certainly tries – and so does Rory, who seems to have no fear. This is a strong coming-of-age novel, and while it doesn't capture any of the particular flavour of Adelaide and could have been set in any Australian city, it does convey very well, that time in life when everything is on the cusp of change, and that certain helplessness associated with being unable to influence wider events. Lindy
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Verity Sparks, Lost and Found

Verity Sparks, Lost and Found

Susan Green

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Verity, who we first met in the award winning The Truth About Verity Sparks, has been reunited with her father, and is living in St Kilda. It is 1879 and her Papa is very eager for 14yo Verity to be accepted into society, and thinks the best way for that to happen is that she attends Hightop House Academy for Young Ladies. While Verity has found a loving father who can provide for her, she has lost the thing that made her special – her gift for finding lost objects by merely thinking of them. When she learns about a missing heiress, Verity becomes fascinated by the case, but danger lurks as she becomes involved in the investigation. It isn’t necessary to have read the first book to read this one, but it will delight those young readers who enjoyed the first adventure of this plucky girl. ~ Lindy
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Truly Tan: Jinxed!

Truly Tan: Jinxed!

Jen Storer

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tan, the sassy young girl who is very good at spying and solving mysteries, has found another puzzle to solve. Her Dad has bought a tram called Miss Havisham, and put it in the backyard with a big sign warning all stickybeaks to stay away. Tan is convinced the tram is haunted, and then when strange things start happening she is told it is jinxed! Using all her special skills as a spy and detective, and with the help of her best friend Gloria, an amulet, her collection of special pens and occasionally, one of her sisters, Tan sets out to lift the curse. A lot of fun, great for girl readers 8-11. ~ Lindy
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Bad Dog Flash

Bad Dog Flash

Ruth Paul

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Flash is full of life, and unwittingly, mischief – very typical for a young puppy! Cats, sticks, bones, shoes, washing on the line: there are lots of temptations even when you don’t mean to be naughty! Gently rendered illustrations and text that incorporates simple concepts and is delightfully playful to read out loud, this would be a fine book to share with the pre-schooler in your life. ~ Lindy
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Park Lane

Park Lane

Frances Osborne

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Grace has moved to London in early 1914 to find a secretarial job to help support her family in grimy Carlisle, but the only job she can find is exactly the one her mother didn't bring her up to do - domestic service, at 35 Park Lane. It is an elegant home full of beautiful and costly things, including the daughter of the house, Beatrice, who has been jilted and is both angry and despairing. In her desire to break out of the restraints her family impose upon her, Beatrice secretly joins the suffragette movement, becoming embroiled in the increasingly violent demonstrations. Grace and Beatrice may be from opposite ends of the social spectrum, but they have a lot more in common than they know - including a man... A good solid read with interesting characters and settings and the first novel by the author of the bestselling The Bolter. Lindy
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A World of Other People

A World of Other People

Steven Carroll

$24.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE APRIL 2013 ----- Set mostly in 1941 in London, the main character is Iris - young and impetuously embracing life, as all her cohort are, in the face of threat and constant reminders of death, defying the thin-lipped 'others' who would condemn their behaviour. She has half-heartedly promised to marry an old friend, who is stationed somewhere overseas, and while she is very fond of him, is it love? She volunteers for fire-watching duties with someone she knows through her church – the poet T S Eliot – at his workplace, dreaming of the time her writing is submitted for publication. Together they witness something that seems like a dream, a bomber with a dove painted on its fuselage. Some time later, Iris meets an Australian airman, Jim, and in a short time comes to understand what love should be; but war and its effects will not be denied. After reading this, I had to reacquaint myself with Little Gidding which has a pivotal part in the plot. The style is slightly hectic when told through Iris' voice, but it works very well to convey the feeling of life rushing and threatened. Highly recommended - but I would also say, ignore the cover which has nothing to do with the story! Lindy

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Set in 1941 during the Blitz, the novel traces the love affair of Jim, an Australian pilot in Bomber Command, and Iris, a forthright Englishwoman finding her voice as a writer. The young couple, haunted by secrets and malign coincidence, struggles to build a future free of society's thin-lipped disapproval. The poet T S Eliot, with whom Iris shares firewatching duties, unwittingly seals their fate with his poem Little Gidding, one of the famous Four Quartets.

Steven Carroll is always interesting to listen to when he talks about his books. The same thoughtful, mesmeric quality that comes through in his writing, is also there in his speech. He spoke with Michael Cathcart in this ABC Books & Arts Daily interview about A World of Other People, and mentions that his character Iris was inspired by Iris Murdoch, as he had been reading Peter Conradi's biography, Iris Murdoch: a Life: The Authorized Biography. He also mentions the biography, The Imperfect Life of T S Eliot by Lyndall Gordon.
 
An Abbey's Great Reading Trail

A World of Other People by Steven Carroll Four Quartets by T S Eliot Iris Murdoch: a Life: The Authorized Biography by Peter J Conradi The Imperfect Life of T. S. Eliot by Lyndall Gordon
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Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Therese Anne Fowler

$29.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE APRIL 2013 ----- Zelda Sayre is a Montgomery debutante, a beautiful daredevil of a girl, indulged and talented. She catches the eye of a young man stationed nearby, waiting to be called up to do his bit in the European war. Francis Scott Fitzgerald is everything her family does not want for her – Catholic, poor (and worst of all) Yankee, with no prospects and the burning belief he is a writer. Disregarding everything sensible, she falls in love, accepts his proposal and moves to New York. There they become the feted Fitzgeralds, always good for a good time, leading a pack of young Jazz Agers in search of more, more, more. Scott becomes the author of the moment and the pressure to always come up with the next best selling story (along with increasing dependence on alcohol) starts to tear holes in their charmed existence. Moving to France, like many others, only causes more problems, particularly as Scott takes a protégé, by name Ernest Hemingway… Told from Zelda’s point-of-view, this is a marvelously colourful novel, evocative of time and place; and while it is a novelisation of true people and events, it reads with a veracity and immediacy that will have you believing in the character. If you liked The Paris Wife by Paula McLain, you will certainly enjoy this! Lindy

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Before F. Scott Fitzgerald was a literary darling, before he'd even begun to imagine The Great Gatsby or Benjamin Button, he was a young WWI army lieutenant who fell hard for a spirited Southern belle named Zelda Sayre. The life he and Zelda would lead together in New York, Long Island, Paris, Hollywood and the French Riviera made them legends, even in their own time. Set amidst the glamour of the Jazz Age and The Lost Generation's vivid world abroad, Z vividly brings Zelda and Scott's romantic, tumultuous, extraordinary journey to life. Zelda was the embodiment of the Jazz Age and the Roaring Twenties. She was vibrant, headstrong, complicated and misunderstood. Z is the irresistibly rich, romantic and tumultuous story of Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald, set in seductive settings. Filled with larger-than-life characters such as Ernest Hemingway, Sara and Gerald Murphy and Gertrude Stein, we watch the evolution of this iconic woman as she lived large and ached to find her own identity in the shadow of her celebrated husband.
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Collecting Ladies: Ferdinand Von Mueller and Women Botanical Artists

Collecting Ladies: Ferdinand Von Mueller and Women Botanical Artists

Penny Olsen

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Von Mueller was the powerhouse of 19th century botany in Australia, well-connected (and sometimes well-disliked!) full of energy and passion for the wonders of the new continent. But one of his greatest talents was in encouraging others, and in the 1870s he began to advertise for lady plant collectors and illustrators. With his assistance, some of our finest botanical illustrators began, or furthered, their art at a time when women typically had no formal recourse to science. With profiles of 14 of these women, and plentifully illustrated, this is a marvelous book for anyone interested in history, science or art. One of the series of books published by the National Library, drawing on its extensive collections. Lindy

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Around 1870, Ferdinand von Mueller, the greatest Australian botanist of the nineteenth century, began to advertise in several newspapers across Australia for lady plant collectors. This was at a time when women typically had little recourse to science, or contact with men outside their circle of friends, making Mueller's network of ladies quite extraordinary. Collecting Ladies profiles 14 of Mueller's coterie of women collectors. Included are Fanny Charsley, Louisa Atkinson, Annie Walker and Ellis Rowan for whom Mueller made time to assist in pursuit of their own passions. He identified the plants they painted and provided letters of introduction to publishers and scientists. Together, these ladies produced some of the most beautiful books and botanical art to come out of Australia in the nineteenth century, covering all the Australian colonies.
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A Botanical Life

A Botanical Life

Penny Olsen

$34.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Another of the beautiful productions that our National Library does so well! Robert Fitzgerald arrived from Ireland in his 20s and rose through the Lands Department in 19th century NSW. He was also one of those Victorian gentlemen-scientists who contributed a great deal to the knowledge of our natural history. Starting as a keen ornithologist, he soon discovered the attractions of our native orchids, and became quite obsessed with them. Living in Hunters Hill, he devoted his leisure time to collecting specimens, then recording them in skilled botanical illustrations which formed the basis of one of the most acclaimed works on Australian orchids. Full of glorious reproductions of his botanical art (not just of orchids) this is a lovely tribute to one of our forgotten men of science and art. Lindy

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Robert David Fitzgerald (1830-1892) was a successful colonial surveyor who had arrived in Australia in 1856 as a young Irish immigrant of 25. He was employed by the Lands Department in New South Wales and, although he was an exemplary public servant, he was also one of the last of the Victorian-era gentlemen scientists: an avid naturalist, ornithologist and skilled taxidermist. In 1864, while searching for birds to add to his collection, he was inspired by the discovery of a clump of Rock Lilies to collect a number of other orchid specimens in the area. Over the following years, Fitzgerald devoted his leisure time to botanical illustration and documented the orchids of Australia, publishing his discoveries in his internationally acclaimed work, Australian Orchids. In so doing, he corresponded and engaged with some of the great thinkers of his time, including Ferdinand von Mueller, George Bentham and Charles Darwin. A Botanical Life presents a short biography, followed by a portfolio section of more than 100 stunning full-colour images of flowers painted by Robert David Fitzgerald.
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Before I Burn

Before I Burn

Gaute Heivoll ,  Don Bartlett

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- A writer returns to the small Norwegian community he grew up in. It is a quiet rural area, but at the time of his birth, it was targeted by an arsonist. At first abandoned buildings were burnt, but then the arsonist started to attack occupied houses, causing great fear and distress that such a thing was happening. As the writer relates the events of the past, his own life story is revealed, and there are echoes in his life with that of the arsonist. This is not a whodunit, but a quietly unfolding psychologically-driven narrative based on true events. From an author acclaimed in his native Norway. Lindy

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In the late 1970s, a pyromaniac runs amok in rural Norway. As homes are burnt to cinders, panic spreads as neighbours wonder who amongst them could cause such fear and anguish. Born in to this chaos, Gaute Heivoll is indelibly linked to this disturbing time, and to the arsonist intent on such destruction. Before I Burn is a fictional exploration of the true events of Norway's most dramatic arson case. By juxtaposing the pyromaniac's story with his own, Gaute Heivoll lays bare the insanity that lies just beneath the surface of the human psyche, and the triggers that may flip any of us into madness. Written in fluid, vivid prose, and with a shattering honesty and humanity, Before I Burn is a literary sensation.
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The Secret Lives of Men

The Secret Lives of Men

Georgia Blain

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This collection of short stories examines the small moments of life that have a greater impact than first suspected. A couple take their daughter on a play date none of them wants to go to, with consequences beyond anticipation. A woman discovers something almost redemptive about the man who dreadfully scarred her, physically and emotionally. A man is faced with a morally difficult decision - to keep the new love he’s finally found, or destroy the one that’s kept him attached to life. Written in Blain’s trademark cool, almost detached, certainly non-judgmental style, this may not appeal to everyone, but the connoisseurs of restrained, observant and precise prose will appreciate these stories. Lindy
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She Rises

She Rises

Kate Worsley

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Louise Fletcher is a dairymaid, but she has been unexpectedly offered the chance to work as a lady’s maid in a bustling port town. Her mother has always warned her against the sea, as it had stolen both her father, and her brother Luke, but the opportunity to see more of the world is irresistible, so Louise takes the position. Her new mistress is barely older in years but is certainly wiser to the ways of the world. An alternating narrative tells of Luke, press-ganged into His Majesty’s navy, and what he has to do to survive long enough to get back to the girl he loves. The dual narrative that tries to make this a clever novel didn’t work for me, but I found it a very interesting depiction of life in the mid-18th century and worth reading for that alone. Lindy

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It is 1740 and Louise Fletcher, a young dairymaid on an Essex farm, has been warned of the lure of the sea for as long as she can remember - after all, it stole away her father and brother. But when she is offered work in the bustling naval port of Harwich, as maid to a wealthy captain's daughter, she leaps at the chance to see more of the world. There she meets Rebecca, her haughty young mistress, who is unlike anyone Louise has encountered before: as unexpected as she is fascinating. 15-year old Luke is drinking in a Harwich tavern when it is raided by His Majesty's Navy. Unable to escape, Luke is beaten and press ganged and sent to sea on board the warship Essex. He must learn fast and choose his friends well if he is to survive the brutal hardships of a sailor's life and its many dangers, both up high in the rigging and in the dark below decks. Louise navigates her new life among the streets and crooked alleys of Harwich, where fine houses concealing smugglers' tunnels are flooded by the Spring tides, and love burns brightly in the shadows.  And Luke, aching for the girl he left behind and determined to one day find his way back to her, embarks on a long and perilous journey across the ocean. The worlds they find are more dangerous and more exciting than they could ever have imagined, and when they collide the consequences are astonishing and irrevocable. A breathtakingly accomplished love story and a gripping search for identity and survival, She Rises is a bold, brilliant and utterly original novel.
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Evan's Gallipoli

Evan's Gallipoli

Kerry Greenwood

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Evan has been accompanying his father on his country business trips since he was young. Mr Warrender is rich enough not to have to travel, but since his wife died, he prefers to escape their fine home, peddling both his natural remedies and his faith. When he reads about the unfolding events in Gallipoli, he hatches a desire to go there and assist, taking Evan with him. Once there, Evan has to find great reserves of strength to deal with what is happening, and even more so when his father decided to parley with the Turks. Caught behind enemy lines, Evan must disguise and shepherd his increasingly erratic father back to safety on a route through Turkey and Greece, keeping more than one secret safe... Full of fine historical detail, and believable characterisations, this is pitched at teen readers, but will be enjoyed by the legion of Greenwood fans of all ages. Lindy

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The gripping story of an incredible journey behind enemy lines - told in diary form. Fourteen-year-old Evan Warrender travels with his father to the Dardenelles, where they intend to provide succour to the Allied soldiers. When they are captured by the Turks, they are launched into an epic journey, living on their wits and the kindness of strangers as they escape and travel through Turkey, back to Greece and finally home to Australia. Along the way they meet unlikely friends and companions, some of whom have deep secrets. And when Evan's own secret is revealed, we realise just how incredible the journey has truly been. Evan's fascinating survival story takes readers beyond the frontline and creates an all-encompassing account of this significant time in Australian military history. Impeccably researched, this is an eye-opening adventure story that cleverly explores both sides of the war.
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My Brother Jack

My Brother Jack

George Johnston

$14.99

The Miles Franklin award-winning classic. 'One of the greatest books written this century' - The Illustrated London News 'the thing I am trying to get at is what made Jack different from me. Different all through our lives, I mean, and in a special sense, not just older or nobler or braver or less clever.' David and Jack Meredith grow up in a patriotic suburban Melbourne household during the First World War, and go on to lead lives that could not be more different. through the story of the two brothers, George Johnston created an enduring exploration of two Australian myths: that of the man who loses his soul as he gains worldly success, and that of the tough, honest Aussie battler, whose greatest ambition is to serve his country during the war. Acknowledged as one of the true Australian classics, My Brother Jack is a deeply satisfying, complex and moving literary masterpiece. David Meredith's story continues in the sequels Clean Straw for Nothing and A Cartload of Clay. 'Enthralling ...entertaining ...vividly original - the Age
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The Unfeathered Bird

The Unfeathered Bird

Katrina van Grouw

$79.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a very special book indeed, lavishly and gorgeously presented on beautiful paper and with quality binding. It is the result of 25 years’ labour and is both a thing of beauty and of science, and is concerned with the appearance, posture and behavioural influences of avian internal structures. That makes the book sound dry, but it is anything but – the author is an immensely talented natural illustrator (as well as an experienced taxidermist and ornithologist) and there are nearly 400 fascinating, detailed and beautifully rendered drawings of bird skeletons, sometimes with depictions of attached muscles, and shown in natural poses. Grouped according to outward appearances rather than evolutionary pathways, with jargon-free text describing the obvious adaptations to particular environments, this is a fine book for ornithologists and artists both. Words can’t do it justice: it has to be seen to be appreciated! Lindy

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There is more to a bird than simply feathers. And just because birds evolved from a single flying ancestor doesn't mean they are structurally all the same. With over 385 stunning drawings depicting 200 species,  The Unfeathered Bird  is a richly illustrated book on bird anatomy that offers refreshingly original insights into what goes on beneath the feathered surface. Each exquisite drawing is made from an actual specimen and reproduced in sumptuous large format. The birds are shown in lifelike positions and engaged in behavior typical of the species: an underwater view of the skeleton of a swimming loon, the musculature of a porpoising penguin, and an unfeathered sparrowhawk plucking its prey. Jargon-free and easily accessible to any reader, the lively text relates birds' anatomy to their lifestyle and evolution, examining such questions as why penguins are bigger than auks, whether harrier hawks really have double-jointed legs, and the difference between wing claws and wing spurs. A landmark in popular bird books,  The Unfeathered Bird  is a must for anyone who appreciates birds or bird art.  It features: a unique book that bridges art, science, and history; over 385 beautiful drawings, artistically arranged in a sumptuous large-format book; accessible, jargon-free text - the only book on bird anatomy aimed at the general reader; drawings and text all based on actual bird specimens; includes most anatomically distinct bird groups; and many species never illustrated before.
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Freaks Like Us

Freaks Like Us

Susan Vaught

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Jason is an alphabet. That’s the word he and his friends Sunshine and Drip call themselves, because they attend special classes at their school for the Severely Emotionally Disturbed. Drip has ADHD, Jason is SCZI (schizophrenic) and Sunshine is SM (selectively mute). Sunshine is the only person who makes Jason feel safe from the voices in his head, so when she disappears one afternoon between getting off the bus and reaching home, Jason needs to find her. Unfortunately suspicion falls on him, and he’s got to fight through the voices to prove he didn’t do anything to her. A powerful and absorbing read for young adults that doesn’t gloss over the difficulties of mental illness, but takes a sympathetic stand for the sufferers. Lindy

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'You're just a freak. You're just a stupid freak. Freaks don't speak. Freaks shouldn't speak. Don't talk out of your head or the swirly clouds will eat you because sometimes clouds have teeth' Jason's best friend, Sunshine, has vanished. If only Jason could push through all the voices in his head, he'd know what happened; he'd tell everyone; he'd find her. But then people don't always listen to kids like Jason ...A funny and compelling thriller about a boy on the edge of mainstream society.
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This isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You

This isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You

Jon McGregor

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This collection of short stories is set in the flat fenlands of eastern England. Some stories are mere fragments of language, others are technically and cleverly proficient and others still are achingly detailed observations of people and the landscape. All of them, though, are the work of a master craftsman, who catches a multiplicity of voices and characters in believable situations and treats all of them with dignity (even – or especially – the characters who are society’s refuse). Each book McGregor has produced is different from the others and this one just confirms what I believe is his amazing talent; when I had finished, I went right back to the beginning and re-read them all. Lindy

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- McGregor's unique writing style may be daunting at first but perservere and you will be rewarded with one of the most beautiful, heartbreaking, real novels of our generation. A descent into the character's world that is so subtle that you may never want to fully let go. Meg

A man builds a tree house by a river, in anticipation of the coming flood. A sugar-beet crashes through a young woman's windscreen. A boy sets fire to a barn. A pair of itinerant labourers sit by a lake, talking about shovels and sex, while fighter-planes fly low overhead and prepare for war. These aren't the sort of things you imagine happening to someone like you. But sometimes they do. Set in the flat and threatened fenland landscape, where the sky is dominant and the sea lurks just beyond the horizon, these delicate, dangerous, and sometimes deeply funny stories tell of things buried and unearthed, of familiar places made strange, and of lives where much is hidden, much is at risk, and tender moments are hard-won.
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Clay

Clay

Melissa Harrison

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Even though it’s early in the year, I’m going to state this is one of the finest novels I will read in 2013. It is astonishingly assured for a debut novelist, and reminded me of one of my favourite authors, Jon McGregor, in style and content, but with nothing so derivative. It is a story of innocence, and trying to live in a society that has changed the meaning of innocence. Three characters live in an area which borders a strip of woodland; this remnant means something different, but ultimately similar, for each. For TC, a young neglected outsider, it is refuge and connection. For Jozef, a sad and lonely man far from his native Poland, it is reminder and comfort. For Sophia, quietly mourning her beloved husband who died years previously, it is something to passionately care for that keeps her going. Full of beautiful passages of observation of the natural world that has managed to coexist in an otherwise urban environment (despite the depredations of human occupation) this is a multi-layered and thoughtful novel. It has lingered in my memory and I look forward to seeing what this writer will produce in the future. Lindy

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A boy creeps down from a high-rise block in the half-light of dawn to see the neat prints left by a fox on the frosty grass. He is TC, eight years old and skipping school to spend his time exploring the city's waste ground and long-forgotten wild corners. At school and at home he is barely missed. Sophia, seventy-eight and a half and still wearing her dear dead husband's shoes, looks out through her kitchen window at the little city park outside her flat, its grassy acres grimy and litter-blown, but to her eyes beautiful. She is writing her weekly letter to her granddaughter Daisy, whose privileged upbringing means she exists in a different world to that of TC, even though they live less than a mile apart. Jozef spends his days clearing houses and works night shifts at the local takeaway, but he is unable to forget the farm he left behind in Poland, the woods and fields he grew up with still a part of him, although he is a thousand miles away. When he meets TC in the little park one night he finds a kindred spirit, despite the forty years between them: both lonely, both looking for something, both lost.
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Fish Change Direction in Cold Weather

Fish Change Direction in Cold Weather

Pierre Szalowski

$22.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- An 11yo only child is told just before Christmas 1997, that his parents are separating. He asks the sky to help, and whether it is an answer or not, storms drop an enormous amount of snow on Montreal. This has the effect of his immediate neighbours all having to help each other: the exotic dancer helps the Russian mathematician keep his fish warm so as not to lose the data he is collating on randomness; the gay couple who are pretending to the world that they aren’t, take in the angry bigot and his neglected son – but will all this goodwill help the young boy bring his parents back together? This has been an international bestseller and is a lovely quirky read; I very much enjoyed it! Lindy

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When his parents split up, and his dad leaves home, a ten-year-old boy begs the sky to help him. The next day an ice storm covers his city. When the power goes out and the temperature drops, people must turn to each other to survive. But for one neighbourhood the catastrophe brings surprising new beginnings. Julie, the dancer who lives across the street, helps Boris, an eccentric Russian mathematician, save his fish from the cold weather. And the urbane Michel and Simon open their door to Alexis, their embittered neighbour, and his son. But will the ice storm bring the boy's parents back together? Hilarious and heartwarming, Fish Change Direction in Cold Weather reminds us that happy endings might still be possible.
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Remembering Lionsville

Remembering Lionsville

Bronwyn Bancroft

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Bronwyn Bancroft is one of our most celebrated Indigenous illustrators, and this fine book tells the story of her family. In a settlement nestled in the north of NSW, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people lived and worked together, and this book vividly evokes a way of life that is mostly vanished now. Bancroft directly addresses the reader to follow her in her memories of the country and her grandparents, aunties and uncles. Her trademark flat and highly decorative bordered style is complemented with collages of family photographs. A beautiful celebration of family history and its importance. Lindy

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A boy creeps down from a high-rise block in the half-light of dawn to see the neat prints left by a fox on the frosty grass. He is TC, eight years old and skipping school to spend his time exploring the city's waste ground and long-forgotten wild corners. At school and at home he is barely missed. Sophia, seventy-eight and a half and still wearing her dear dead husband's shoes, looks out through her kitchen window at the little city park outside her flat, its grassy acres grimy and litter-blown, but to her eyes beautiful. She is writing her weekly letter to her granddaughter Daisy, whose privileged upbringing means she exists in a different world to that of TC, even though they live less than a mile apart. Jozef spends his days clearing houses and works night shifts at the local takeaway, but he is unable to forget the farm he left behind in Poland, the woods and fields he grew up with still a part of him, although he is a thousand miles away. When he meets TC in the little park one night he finds a kindred spirit, despite the forty years between them: both lonely, both looking for something, both lost.
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The Handbook for Gyfted Children

The Handbook for Gyfted Children

Lee Bacon

$16.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a rollicking good tongue-in-cheek read! Joshua has moved many times in his life, and changed his surname just as often, because his parents – kind, loving and concerned – are supervillains and intent on destroying the world. As you do! Their main nemesis is the super-shiny, highly marketed, Captain Justice; and it turns out the new girl at school, Sophie, who Joshua is attracted to, is his daughter. Even more inconveniently, Joshua’s body is starting to play tricks on him. It turns out he is Gyfted: Genetic Youth Fluctuation, Triggering Extraordinary Development – and his gyft? Spontaneous combustion – which comes in handy when his parents disappear and he, Sophie, and his best friend Milton have to outwit a lot of really bad guys! An enjoyable fast-paced read for ages 10-13. Lindy

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When your parents are supervillains, it's hard to have a normal life. In the past two days, Joshua's parents  have tried to destroy the world, the houseplant has threatened to kill him and he's discovered something weird is happening to him. Super weird. Pencils explode in his hand. He leaves scorched butt marks on the carpet. And he can send bullies crashing into lockers. Turns out Joshua has a superpower. But he doesn't have to use it for evil, right?
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Dance of Shadows

Dance of Shadows

Yelena Black

$15.99

Dancing with someone is an act of trust. Elegant and intimate; you're close enough to kiss, close enough to feel your partner's heartbeat. But for Vanessa, dance is deadly - and she must be very careful who she trusts ...Vanessa Adler attends an elite ballet school - the same one her older sister, Margaret, attended before she disappeared. Vanessa feels she can never live up to her sister's shining reputation. But Vanessa, with her glorious red hair and fair skin, has a kind of power when she dances - she loses herself in the music, breathes different air, and the world around her turns to flames ...Soon she attracts the attention of three men: gorgeous Zep, mysterious Justin, and the great, enigmatic choreographer Josef Zhalkovsky. When Josef asks Vanessa to dance the lead in the Firebird, she has little idea of the danger that lies ahead - and the burning forces about to be unleashed ...
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The One and Only Ivan

The One and Only Ivan

Katherine Applegate

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I don’t normally bother reading award winners after they’ve been honoured, but I do make an exception for Newbery winners. I will also admit to bias when it came to Katherine Applegate, because she and her husband were responsible for the Animorph series ages ago. So it was with some interest, and a little trepidation, that I read The One and Only Ivan and I have to admit that I should not have let my prejudices get in the way of this lovely book! Ivan is a silverback gorilla, who has lived in his domain for 9855 days. By any other name, his domain is a cage, in a struggling and under-resourced shopping mall circus. His best friends are Bob the dog of unknown heritage, and Stella the elephant. When a new elephant, a baby, joins the menagerie, Ivan makes a promise to keep her safe – something that increasingly looks impossible… Told in Ivan’s calm voice, in small and thoughtful chapters, this is a charming and heart-warming story of friendship and freedom. Ages 10 and up. Lindy

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Inspired by a true story, this is the beautifully written tale of how a mighty gorilla wins his freedom. A winning blend of humour and poignancy that will appeal to fans of Michael Morpurgo. Ivan is an easy-going gorilla who has spent his life performing for the crowds at the Exit 8 shopping mall. He rarely misses life in the jungle. In fact, he hardly thinks about it at all. But everything changes when a baby elephant called Ruby arrives and Ivan realises he must find a new life for them both. Told from Ivan's perspective this is a stand-out novel with a pertinent message for readers of 9+.
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Nell's Festival of Crisp Winter Glories

Nell's Festival of Crisp Winter Glories

Glenda Millard ,  Stephen Michael King

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----  The last in the Kingdom of Silk series, and as tender and sweet as all the others. Lindy

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Two of Perry Angel's favourite people are Grandma Nell and his good friend Jenkins. One night, while listening to Nell play the beautiful Tennessee Waltz, Perry thinks of the perfect way to bring his two favourite people together: he wants to put on a dance - a proper one with petticoats and posies and a real band. Perry shares his idea with his sisters, and before long the dance turns into a wonderful winter festival.

But when something happens to Nell, will Perry's wish come true? Glenda Millard has won many prestigious awards for her Kingdom of Silk series, including CBCA Book of the Year for Younger Readers for Perry Angel's Suitcase, and the Queensland Premier's Children's Book Award for Layla, Queen of Hearts. Now this stunning series about the very 'uncommon' Silk family has its glorious finale in Nell's Festival of Crisp Winter Glories.
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Lily: Lily and the Traitors, Spell

Lily: Lily and the Traitors, Spell

Holly Webb

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----  Because this brought the series to an end, and I loved the magical world she created. Lindy

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Having rescued their father from a terrible prison, Lily and Georgie now find themselves in greater trouble than ever. Their evil mother has filled Georgie with wicked spells and means to use her as an unwilling weapon to execute a deadly plot against the Royal Family.

Lily must join forces with her father and friends to overcome evil. But faced with such powerful dark magicians, can they really hope to succeed? The conclusion to the richly magical Lily sequence.
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The Girl from Snowy River

The Girl from Snowy River

Jackie French

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Set in a community devastated by the influenza epidemic and the losses of WWI. Flinty McAlpine disguises herself as a boy to earn money on the brumby muster headed by Clancy of the Overflow. Seeing a colt’s potential, she buys him; it will be the catalyst for her future as well. A stirring historical novel from one of our best writers for young readers. Lindy 

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Flinty McAlpine is 16 and, while WW1 ended almost a year ago, it still resonates for Flinty and her family, who lost so much. Years of war and drought have left the district in chaos and local families are doing their best to rebuild lives and land. With both parents dead, Flinty is bringing up her younger siblings, as her brother Andy has 'gone with cattle' to Queensland. Money is tight, but as the best rider in the family, Flinty seizes the opportunity to make a quick 100 quid. Disguised as a boy, she talks her way into a brumby muster headed up by the legendary Clancy of the Overflow. Among the herd there is an unbroken colt that Flinty buys as she can see his enormous potential. But for a young girl, there is still so much of life to be lived and while she has hints of her future, she never imagines what life can really hold for her. The second title in The Matilda Saga, this book is a love song to the beautiful Snowy Mountains and a tribute to Australia's poets, who immortalised so much of our land.
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Robin Hood

Robin Hood

David Calcutt ,  Grahame Baker-Smith

$17.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Robin Hood, champion of the downtrodden and destitute, is a hero for all times, and this lavishly illustrated volume introduces his daring feats and his band of Merry Men to a new generation of readers. From how Robin became an outlaw to his last battle, this graceful retelling is enhanced by finely rendered illustrations from Greenaway Prize-winner Baker-Smith. Ages 8-12 Lindy

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The champion of the destitute and downtrodden rides again. Meet young Robin Hood before he becomes the hero of Sherwood Forest, and follow along with his band of merry men as his adventures become the stuff of legend. This lavishly illustrated picture book makes a wonderful gift title to complement Arthur of Albion and The Arabian Nights, and features nine tales including: Robin Becomes an Outlaw, Robin Meets Little John, Robin and the Widow, and Robin's Last Battle.

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Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great

Jamila Gavin

$32.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- There’s a great exhibition at the Australian Museum in November (2012) on Alexander the Great and this is the perfect book to accompany it! It tells of Alexander’s exciting life and achievements, and interleaves the biographical and historical details with myths and legends that resonated for Alexander himself. It also relates stories that sprang up in his wake as he conquered a fair chunk of his world. A bold and stirring story, enhanced by decorated pages and energetic illustrations. Lindy 

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Who was Alexander? Myth or man? God or devil? He claimed to be the son of Zeus, and even in his own lifetime wild legends sprang up about him. Above all, he was a hero - brave, wily, handsome and inspiring. This richly illustrated biography skilfully interweaves accounts of his battle campaigns with legends from each newly conquered country. From Greece and Egypt to Persia and India, the stories of the great mythical heroes of Achilles, Gilgamesh and more provide revealing echoes to Alexander's own charmed life.
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Monsieur Albert Rides to Glory

Monsieur Albert Rides to Glory

Peter Smith ,  Bob Graham

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -----
Albert decides that even if he is 60, he will compete in the bike race from Paris to Nice. After all, he’s fit and has a good bike, so why not? Although not the fastest cyclist, with perseverance and a bit of bonne chance, Albert does ride to glory! Told in rhyme which reads out loud beautifully, and with delightfully witty illustrations provided by Bob Graham (look out for his ever-charming trademark vignettes), this is a book made to share. Lindy

ABBEY'S READER REVIEW -----
"Dear Abbey's,
I collected the copy of Monsieur Albert Rides to Glory this morning and was lucky enough to be able to get it signed by the author. It is a brilliant book. Brilliantly written - warm-hearted, exciting and witty, brimming with insight into character, glorious in its whimsy and sense of adventure, and inspiring in its celebration of bicycles and of the pleasure of being alive, no matter how old you are. And on top of that the language is a joy to read - great humour and fun in the superbly crafted rhythm and rhyme.

Please pass on my grateful thanks to Peter Smith and to Bob Graham too, as the illustrator, for his special skills. Every page is a delight. Looking forward to the next one!

Cheers, Alison"


And if the author below looks familiar to some of our readers, that is because Peter can often be found at Abbey's where he works as one of our booksellers. So all of Abbey's is giving Peter a hearty "Salut Peter!" and we do hope that you will soon be reading the tale of Monsieur Albert with your young ones and be marvelling at the beautiful lines of Bob Graham's illustrations.


 

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Latin for Gardeners

Latin for Gardeners

Lorraine Harrison

$35.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is both a beautiful book, and a useful one, and both the gardener and the Latin scholar will enjoy it. Arranged alphabetically, each entry notes masculine (and where applicable, feminine and neutral) versions, pronunciation guide, meaning and example. There are plenty of colourful historic botanical illustrations, ‘Latin in action’ breakout boxes, plant profiles and themes, and stories of plant hunters. A splendid gift! Lindy

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This is an informative, entertaining and beautifully illustrated unravelling of the mysteries of botanical Latin. Over 3,000 Latin names are listed alphabetically, showing how botanical Latin can reveal where a plant originally comes from (and thus its preferred growing conditions), along with such properties as its shape, form, colour, taste and smell. Each name is clearly defined and accompanied by a pronunciation guide, and the pages are filled with attractive botanical illustrations. Fascinating feature spreads retell the adventures of important plant hunters such as Sir Joseph Banks and Alexander von Humboldt, explaining how their discoveries affect the way our gardens look today. Individual plants are also profiled throughout, showing how their names can illuminate their hidden histories. Aided by this book, every gardener, and their garden, will benefit from uncovering the wealth of information that lies within the remarkable world of Latin binomials.
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The Silver Brumby Centenary Edition

The Silver Brumby Centenary Edition

Elyne Mitchell

$32.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I adored the Silver Brumby books as a youngster and this very fine edition contains the original four stories (Silver Brumby / Silver Brumby’s Daughter / Silver Brumbies of the South / Silver Brumby Kingdom), as well as a biography of the author, who was born in 1913. Set in the Australian Alps, they concern Thowra, the magnificent stallion, and his struggles to remain free and wild. Full of glorious descriptions of the country and its animals, with a strong environmental message, these are timeless tales. Lindy

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To many people the name Elyne Mitchell is synonymous with The Silver Brumby, the timeless classic that has captivated the hearts and imaginations of young readers since it was first published in 1958.  This special edition has been published to commemorate the centenary of Elyne Mitchell's birth and contains The Silver Brumby and three other favourite Brumby books, Silver Brumby's Daughter, Silver Brumbies of the South and Silver Brumby Kingdom. These much-loved classics tell the story of Thowra, the magnificent silver stallion, king of the brumbies. Whether you are enjoying the Silver Brumby series for the first time or rediscovering it after many years, this is a book to be treasured.  Also included in this beautiful edition is a specially commissioned biography of Elyne Mitchell, who was born in 1913 and went on to become one of Australia's most successful and popular authors. The biography also contains photographs that depict Elyne in many other areas of her long and distinguished life, including that of daughter, wife, mother, sportswoman, horsewoman, farmer and environmentalist.

A biography, Elyne Mitchell: A Daughter Remembers by Honor Auchinleck is also available.
 
See also On the Trail of the Silver Brumby by Elyne Mitchell, the best of her non-fiction writing about her beloved high country.
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On the Trail of the Silver Brumby

On the Trail of the Silver Brumby

Elyne Mitchell

$49.99  $25.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is one of the most gorgeous books you’ll see this year! There are archival images and glorious photographs of the high country taken by Mitchell’s grandson, James Auchinleck, to complement a fine selection of her non-fiction writings. Mitchell was a committed conservationist, champion skier and knew the Australian Alps like few others could. Best known for her Silver Brumby books, this shows another side to a remarkable writer. Lindy

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Generations of Australians have fallen in love with the silver brumbies of Elyne Mitchell's classic children's stories. Now, for the centenary of her birth in 1913, comes this celebration in words and pictures of the brumby heartland: the glorious Australian Alps that were her inspiration and great passion. Featuring the best of her non-fiction writing about her beloved high country, this is lavishly illustrated with archival images and glorious new photography of the Alps by her grandson, James Auchinleck, and others. From thrilling accounts of exploring these untamed places on foot, skis and horseback to tales of wild brumby chases and evenings spent yarning around the campfire, her words bring the mountains vividly to life. The book allows readers to follow Elyne and her brumby heroes through their kingdom and discover for themselves a world of snowy alps, secret valleys, sparkling cascades and summer fields of wildflowers.

The Centenary Edition of The Silver Brumby is also available, issued to celebrate the birth of Elyne Mitchell in 1913.

See also Elyne Mitchell: A Daughter Remembers by Honor Auchinleck, a poignant memoir by the daughter of Elyne Mitchell.
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Romeo & Juliet

Romeo & Juliet

William Shakespeare ,  Mario DiGangi ,  Kevin Stanton

$47.15  $42.45

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Shakespeare Signature Series. There are many editions of Macbeth and Romeo and Juliet, but these extremely attractive books will appeal to the collector, as much as the reader. Beautifully designed and printed with laser-cut paper designs and overlays throughout, as well as copious illustrations, essays and commentaries, introductions by renowned scholars and notes on language and meaning. Objects of beauty indeed! Lindy

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Shakespeare's timeless tale of star-crossed lovers who "Do with their death bury their parents' strife". Includes contextualizing essays and timelines by scholar Mario DiGangi, in collaboration with one of the world's foremost Shakespeare authorities, David Scott Kastan of Columbia University.
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Where Things Come Back

Where Things Come Back

John Corey Whaley

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK -------- This book has won its debut author a number of awards in America, and it is a worthy winner. Cullen Witter is in his final year of high school. His small hometown Lily, Arkansas, is dull and ordinary and like many a teenager he wants more. While he's academically gifted, his younger brother Gabriel is not only intelligent, but open-hearted, content  and believes nothing evil about others. Which makes his sudden disappeareance all the more inexplicable. As the Witter family deals with the uncertainty of his fate, the town fills up with birdwatchers chasing the sighting of the Lazarus Woodpecker, a bird thought extinct for decades. Weaving in and out of this storyline is the search of a young college student for the destiny of humankind, an obsession that grows out of an apocryphal book of the Ethiopan Orthodox bible. This is a great read, the characters and their struggles are both real and believable, and the clever narrative line keeps the reader intrigued. One of those young adult novels with wider appeal. Lindy
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Puzzles and Words

Puzzles and Words

David Astle

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The devilish ‘DA’ (no, I can’t always get the Friday crossword out!) presents more than 170 original brain teasers (torments?) and 200 word stories. A fiendish mixture of quirky dictionary and puzzle book, with anagrams, riddles, rhymes and challenges, this will keep any word nerd or frazzled puzzler occupied for hours (or in my case, days…) Lindy

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Word nerds and puzzle nuts welcome - this is a book to keep your mind tickled. With over 170 original brain teasers and 200 word stories, this has something for all ages. From agenda to zumba, this collection tells you how words came to be. Puzzles such as anagram challenges, riddles, rhymes and brain teasers will keep you amused for hours. A quirky dictionary and puzzle book in one pocket-sized volume.
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Topsy-Turvy World

Topsy-Turvy World

Kirsty Murray

$29.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- The first Europeans in Australia were mightily puzzled by the weird animals they found here: the water creature with a duck’s bill at one end and a beaver’s tail at the other; the greyhound hopping on its back legs; the bird that brayed like a donkey. Trying to make sense of such oddities by comparing them to more familiar animals led to any number of misunderstandings! This colourful and lively book presents 15 animals and is full of fascinating stories and facts. Perfect for the young naturalist in your life! Lindy 

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To the first Europeans who came to Australia, everything seemed topsy turvy. Christmas was in the summer and trees shed their bark but not their leaves. And the animals were bizarre. There was a bird that laughed like a donkey and a type of greyhound that bound along on its hind legs like a hare. There was an animal in Tasmania whose nocturnal screeches sounded like the devil and a river creature that had a ducks bill at one end and a beavers tail at the other. The Europeans had never seen anything like these animals before and gave them names similar to those of the European creatures they already knew. They drew and painted odd pictures of them, showing they did not understand the animals habits. In one illustration, a wombat is standing on its back legs and in another a Tasmanian tiger is wrestling with a platypus of the same size.
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100 Stories From the Australian National Maritime Museum

100 Stories From the Australian National Maritime Museum

Australian National Maritime Museum,

$39.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- There are thousands of stories contained within our National Maritime Museum and many of the best are included in this superb book. Divided into sections such as First Mariners, Explorers & Settlers, Migrants & Refugees, Sail & Steam, Sport & Play, each chapter presents various objects and their attached history. Clean, crisp layout, full-colour photos and fascinating information makes this a special gift for anyone interested in our history, maritime or not! Lindy

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From a small silver medallion beautifully engraved by a First Fleet convict to the 119-metre Royal Australian Navy destroyer HMAS Vampire, in 20 years the Australian National Maritime Museum has built an incredibly diverse collection of more than 130,000 items. Here the museum's curators reveal the fascinating stories behind many amazing objects, including the kit of a 19th-century ship's surgeon, the fastest vessel in the world (Spirit of Australia), a boat made from 2,000 beer cans, the remarkable Saltwater Collection of bark paintings from Arnhem Land, and surfboards inspired by the Bra Boys and the 2005 Cronulla race riots. The objects tell of unforgettable people, both famous and lesser known, whose lives were shaped by the sea. Their stories are part of our history and live on in our culture today.
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When God was a Rabbit

When God was a Rabbit

Sarah Winman

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One of the very best contemporary novels you'll read. A wonderful novel about what constitutes family - love - friendship. Often funny, sometimes deeply sad but always beautifully done. Lindy

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This is a book about a brother and a sister. It's a book about secrets and starting over, friendship and family, triumph and tragedy, and everything in between. More than anything, it's a book about love in all its forms. In a remarkably honest and confident voice, Sarah Winman has written the story of a memorable young heroine, Elly, and her loss of innocence-a magical portrait of growing up and the pull and power of family ties. From Essex and Cornwall to the streets of New York, from 1968 to the events of 9/11,  When God Was a Rabbit  follows the evolving bond of love and secrets between Elly and her brother Joe, and her increasing concern for an unusual best friend, Jenny Penny, who has secrets of her own. With its wit and humor, engaging characters whose eccentricities are adroitly and sometimes darkly drawn, and its themes of memory and identity,  When God Was a Rabbit  is a love letter to true friendship and fraternal love. Funny, utterly compelling, fully of sparkle, and poignant, too,  When God Was a Rabbit  heralds the start of a remarkable new literary career.
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Alice Springs

Alice Springs

Eleanor Hogan

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I'm a real fan of this series of 'City' books, all of which so far have been about our capital cities. This new title is a welcome addition! As with the others, it is written by someone who has lived and worked there for many years, and it is organised as an unfolding of a year. The author has a background in Indigenous policy and research, and has insights into that fraught area, without condescension or naïve enthusiasm. Her matter-of-fact,  clear-eyed relation of some of the problems faced by the Indigenous population is careful, and caring; but this is not a book concerned wholly with those difficulties. It is also a finely written book that celebrates the landscapes and the natural beauties of the area, considers the non-Indigenous cultures of the town, and is an affectionate tribute to a place that gets under your skin. Highly recommended. Lindy
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Capturing Time: Panoramas of Old Australia

Capturing Time: Panoramas of Old Australia

Edwin Barnard

$49.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Panoramas were a popular 19th century way of showing off locations, whether painted or photographed. Wide-angled depictions of landscapes could give viewers a wonderful sense of place, and that still holds true in modern times. This splendid, beautifully-produced book has 20 fold-out panoramas and many full-colour illustrations of our capital cities, major towns and localities, as well as excellent background to the creators of the panoramas and fascinating historical information. An absolute must for anyone interested in our history! Lindy

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Panoramas, whether painted or photographed, were the 19th-century equivalent of IMAX or Google maps. These wide-angle views of landscapes and cities fascinated viewers, who had never before seen such far-reaching perspectives on the world around them. Based on the National Library of Australia's extensive collections, this book looks back on our nation through the magic of panoramas to the streets of Sydney when it was the convict capital, to the gold rushes of Melbourne, to Perth, struggling to establish a toehold in the west. Dating from 1810 to the 1920s, the paintings and photographs include historic views of all capital cities, plus some country towns. Readers can imagine what it might have been like to stand on Sydney's Observatory Hill in 1820, for example, with a companion able to point out landmarks and tell the interesting stories that only locals know.
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Truly Tan

Truly Tan

Jen Storer ,  Claire Robertson

$16.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tan is a Great Detective and she’s not convinced about her family’s relocation to the country. Starting a new school and making friends isn’t easy. But then she and her sisters discover the neighbouring kids have a fabulous cubby house, and when a photograph of it reveals a ghostly figure and strange things start happening, Tan knows her detecting skills will come in handy! A really delightful story with a sassy, good-hearted character. Highly recommended for ages 8-11. Lindy 

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The funniest series for girls since Clarice Bean! Meet Tan. She's funny. She's lively. She has the mind of a Great Detective... Dear Diary, it's official. Our entire family has moved to the country. The pets are disturbed and restless. My sisters are disturbed and restless - although that's normal. What is not normal is a cursed fox and a haunted house. That is definitely UNNORMAL. At least the country people now have an expert in their midst. Someone with a cool head and a sharp eye. Someone who can solve intriguing mysteries and knows how to keep detailed Spy Files. Really, it's lucky I came along when I did. Truly, Tan. Ages 8+
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These Wonderful Rumours!

These Wonderful Rumours!

Juliet Gardiner ,  Smith, May

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- May Smith was a schoolteacher in Derby during WWII. Her diaries record life on the home front; and while the war is mentioned, and her horror at it all, mostly she writes about day-to-day life. Going to the flicks, the difficulties of dressing nicely, reading books, family doings, the chores of teaching, balancing two beaus: all describe her determination not to let war totally blight all pleasure and joy. Sometimes droll, sometimes acerbic, her voice is clear and strong. A charming book that will appeal to anyone who loved The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. Lindy

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"Auntie F. came in announcing dramatically that Hitler is coming tomorrow, at which my father remarked that he would, now that he's just finished papering upstairs." This is the diary of May Smith, a primary school teacher in a small village in Derbyshire during the Second World War. May is as preoccupied with finding a boyfriend and spending her wages on dresses as she is by the blitz and the refugee children arriving in her school. Written with wit and style, this is a charming and light-hearted insight into life during the war.
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Vanished Years

Vanished Years

Rupert Everett

$32.99  $10.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- With a wry and self-deprecating eye to his own faults and failings, Everett takes the reader for a tour through some of the chapters of his life. As he showed in Red Carpets and Banana Skins, he is as gifted and entertaining a writer as he is an actor, and a charming, if somewhat louche, narrator who is able to observe his skewed world with warmth and wicked wit. Lindy

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Rupert Everett's first memoir - Red Carpets and Other Banana Skins - was an international bestseller and an instant classic on publication in 2006. Reviewers compared him to Evelyn Waugh, David Niven, Noel Coward and Lord Byron. But Rupert Everett is - of course - one of a kind. Mischievous, touching and nothing less than brilliant, this new memoir is filled with brand-new stories, from childhood to the present. Astonishing encounters; tragedy and comedy; vivid portraits of friends and rivals; razor-sharp observations of the celebrity circus from LA to London and beyond...there is something extraordinary on every page. A pilgrimage to Lourdes with his father is both hilarious and moving. A misguided step into reality TV goes horribly wrong. From New York to Moscow to Berlin to Phnom Penh, Vanished Years takes the reader on a wild and wonderful new journey with a charming (and rather disreputable) companion.
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Flinders

Flinders

Rob Mundle

$49.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Matthew Flinders, Mundle asserts, belongs to a glorious triumvirate of heroic seafaring alongside Cook and Bligh. If you don’t already agree, by the time you’ve finished this stirring account of Flinders’ life and achievements, you certainly will! Much of Flinders’ work was done in poorly-equipped, almost unseaworthy, vessels and his personal life was tragically affected by his ill-fortune in being wrecked on unfriendly shores. This is narrative history at its best! Lindy

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Matthew Flinders is a towering figure in Australian history - the first to chart our coastline and the leading champion for naming the country Australia. In 1801, he was made commander of the expedition of his life - the first close circumnavigation of Terra Australis. Famous for his meticulous charts and superb navigational skills, he was a bloody good sailor. He battled treacherous conditions in a boat hardly seaworthy, faced the loss of a number of his crewmen and, following a shipwreck on a reef off the Queensland coast, navigated the ships cutter over 1,000 km back to Sydney to get help. Rob Mundle brings Flinders fascinating story to life, from the heroism and drama of shipwreck, imprisonment and long voyages in appalling conditions, to the heartbreak of being separated from his beloved wife for most of their married life. This is a gripping adventure biography in the style of Mundles BLIGH: MASTER MARINER.
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The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens' London

The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens' London

Judith Flanders

$49.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- London in the 19th century was a noisy, crowded, bustling, dangerous, exciting, vibrant city. Dickens, who obsessively walked its streets, chronicled what he saw in his phenomenally popular books, and Flanders describes in extraordinary detail what it was like in the largest city the world had known. This wonderful book explores squalid alleys and the finest homes, tells of tramping office workers and exhausted hawkers, the means of travel and modes of entertainment, and much more – a vivid testament to a vanished London. Lindy

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The 19th century was a time of unprecedented transformation and nowhere was this more apparent than on the streets of London. In only a few decades, London grew from a Regency town to the biggest city the world had ever seen, with more than 6.5 million people and railways, streetlights and new buildings at every turn. In The Victorian House, Judith Flanders described in intimate detail what went on inside the 19th-century home. Now, in The Victorian City, she explores London's outdoors in an extraordinary, revelatory portrait of everyday life on the streets. From the moment Charles Dickens, the century's best-loved novelist and London's greatest observer, arrived in the city in 1822, he obsessively walked its streets, recording its pleasures, curiosities and cruelties. Now, with him, Judith Flanders leads us through the markets, transport systems, sewers, rivers, slums, alleys, cemeteries, gin palaces, chop-houses and entertainment emporia of Dickens' London to reveal the Victorian capital in all its variety, vibrancy and squalor. From the colourful cries of street-sellers to the uncomfortable reality of travel by omnibus, via the many uses for the body parts of dead horses, or the unimaginably gruelling working days of hawker children, no detail is too small or too strange. No one who reads this book will view London in the same light again.
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The Lost Diggers

The Lost Diggers

Ross Coulthart

$70.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Louis and Antoinette Thuillier had a photographic studio in Vignacourt during WWI where soldiers would have photos taken as souvenirs. 4,000 glass plates from this time were recently discovered in a farmhouse attic and a massive exercise is now under way to identify the men portrayed. Often battle-weary, the soldiers show camaraderie and a determination to hold on to light-hearted moments. This poignant and moving tribute, presenting over 350 of the photographs and the amazing stories behind them, is also a detective story, history and priceless archive. Lindy

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During the First World War, thousands of Aussie diggers and other Allied troops passed through the French town of Vignacourt, two hours north of Paris. Many had their photographs taken by Louis and Antoinette Thuillier as souvenirs while they enjoyed a brief respite from the carnage of the Western Front. For all too many, this was their last moment away from the lines before being sent to their deaths in battles that are now part of the mythology of Australian nationhood - Pozieres, Bullecourt, the Somme. The weariness and horror of battle is reflected in their eyes, but the photos also capture a sense of camaraderie, high spirits and even a soupcon of romance. This is the riveting detective story of the hunt across northern France for a rumoured treasure trove of antique glass photographic plates that led investigative journalist Ross Coulthart to an ancient metal chest in a dusty attic in a small farmhouse. The nearly 4,000 glass plates he and his team from Channel 7's Sunday Night discovered are being hailed by experts as one of the most important First World War discoveries ever made. But that was just the beginning. With meticulous research and the help of descendants, Coulthart was able to discover the stories behind many of the photos, of which more than 330 appear here. Part thriller, part family history and part national archive, this book brings together these wonderful images and the amazing stories behind them. The book coincides with an exhibition of the photos at the Australian War Memorial, to run from 1 Nov 2012 to 31 July 2013.
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Battle Castles: 500 Years of Knights and Siege Warfare

Battle Castles: 500 Years of Knights and Siege Warfare

Dan Snow

$35.00

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This lavishly illustrated book explores the rise and fall of the medieval castle. It is divided into sections concerned with England, Normandy, Crusaders, Wales, Teutonic Knights and the Spanish Reconquest, with a particular castle featured in each chapter to explain the history by example. Thoroughly researched, and thoroughly readable, this is history at its most accessible. Lindy

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Join TV's Dan Snow in this fully illustrated book that brings to thrilling life a cavalcade of medieval fortifications and the clashes that turned empires to dust and mortals into legends. Castles and their ruins still dominate the landscape and are a constant reminder to us of a time when violence, or the threat of it, was the norm. Dan Snow explores the world's greatest medieval castles: from Dover Castle to Chateau Gaillard, Richard I's fortress in Normandy and Castillo de Gibalfaro - the last vanguard of Moorish rule in Spain, to Krak des Chevaliers in Syria - an astounding feat of engineering by the Crusaders. Each castle's story is dramatically recounted: the building techniques, the weapons used and daily life within the walls. Spanning the globe and using the latest CGI reconstructions, Snow gets to the very heart of the bloodshed and battles of the greatest fortresses of the Middle Ages.
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Curious Minds

Curious Minds

Peter Macinnis

$39.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Australia’s unique flora and fauna presented challenges to the Europeans, who wanted to classify and describe what they found, and it took time and the emergence of home-grown naturalists to solve some of the conundrums presented. This gorgeously presented book draws on collections from the National Library, telling the stories of these naturalists. Some are well known, others unfairly forgotten, but each one contributed to our natural science. The perfect gift for anyone interested in art, science or history! Lindy

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This book looks at the long line of naturalists who have traversed Australia in search of new plants and animals. Identifying and classifying the unfamiliar plants and animals was their biggest challenge. The early ones were frequently wrong, but later naturalists were able to build on and learn from previous mistakes. In time, a new breed of homegrown naturalists emerged. This succession of curious minds would help to foster pride in a developing nation, as well an interest in the preservation of natural history. This book brings to life the stories of the naturalists and settlers who made the unfamiliar familiar and contributed to developments in natural science. Among the names are Joseph Banks, Charles Darwin, Amalie Dietrich, Ludwig Leichhardt, Ferdinand von Mueller, Ellis Rowan, John Lewin and John and Elizabeth Gould. Beautifully illustrated with images from the collection of the National Library of Australia, this is a loving tribute to the courageous and inquisitive men and women who led by example.
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John Gould's Extinct & Endangered Birds

John Gould's Extinct & Endangered Birds

Sue Taylor

$49.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Gould was a pioneering ornithologist whose Birds of Australia stretched over 8 volumes. Now many of the birds he described in the mid-19th century are threatened – or worse, extinct. This splendidly designed book takes 59 of those birds, reproduces the original illustrations, gives a historical narrative, then concise yet detailed descriptions of status, habits and threats. As a birder myself, I know this will make a beautiful gift – if slightly sobering – for anyone interested in birds, scientific history or natural art. Lindy

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In 1838, John Gould, the father of Australian ornithology, visited Australia with the intention of gathering material for his great work on Australian birds. In the resulting publication, The Birds of Australia: In Seven Volumes (1848), and the accompanying Supplement (1869), Gould named, for the first time, no fewer than 32 Australian bird species. His words about the Norfolk Island Kaka were prophetic - the last bird of its kind died in a cage in London in 1851. Since then, a number of other species illustrated in The Birds of Australia have become extinct and others are now facing extinction. This new book features 59 plates of birds from his eight-volume work, birds that today are threatened or no longer exist. Featuring exquisite full-colour lithographs reproduced from the National Library of Australia's copy of The Birds of Australia, this book gives an insight into the history of each bird's European discovery, as well as its subsequent fortunes or misfortunes.
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The Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef

Len Zell

$59.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Written by a leading authority, this glowingly beautiful book is not just full of stunning images, it is also enlightening and informative, with extensive and clearly written text. Take a journey along 2,300 km of the north-eastern coastline, learn how the reef was formed, the life forms it harbours and the environmental challenges that beset it. Includes handy tips on getting the most out of any trip to the reef. Lindy

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The Great Barrier Reef really is like nowhere else on earth. For many of us, the thought of it conjures up images of beautiful azure waters teeming with colourful fish against a background of coral of every shape, colour and form imaginable. Yet there is so much more to the Great Barrier Reef than this. It is a massive, complex ecosystem, one that has gone through enormous changes throughout the history and evolution of our planet. Produced in partnership with the BBC's The Great Barrier Reef TV series, this book takes you on a journey along 2,300 km of Australia's north-eastern coastline, through the diverse range of habitats that make up this extraordinary water world. Along the way, discover how the Great Barrier Reef was formed, learn about life on the Reef and meet the plants and animals that inhabit it. The book also looks at the environmental challenges facing this incredibly delicate ecosystem and what the future may hold. Illustrated in spectacular full-colour photography throughout, it also features hints and tips for making the most out of any trip to the Reef, making it the ultimate guide to one of the most treasured natural wonders of the world.
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Roger, Sausage and Whippet

Roger, Sausage and Whippet

Christopher Moore

$24.99

ABBEY'S CHOICE JANUARY 2013
ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This charming book is an alphabetical lexicon of the words, terms and slang of WWI when Roger referred to a gas cylinder, rum or intercourse; Sausage was an observation balloon; and Whippet was a light tank. It is interspersed with letters written by an imagined captain, Charles Cartwright, which illustrate the language in a manner that lists could not manage, bringing the words to life and conveying the times in an accessible, entertaining way. Lindy

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Roger: A code word for gas cylinder; a nickname for rum; to have sexual intercourse. Sausage: An observation balloon. Whippet: A small, light tank with a top speed of 8 mph. In four long years from 1914 to 1918, the Western Front maimed a generation of young men and women, bonded by combat and burdened by duty. Now, through the letters of Christopher Moore's Captain Cartwright, comes an extraordinary lexicon of the phrases and lingo of life at the front. Whether born of the desperation of gallows humour in France and Flanders ("If it keeps on like this, someone's going to get hurt") or borrowed from further afield ("Cushy: comfortable, safe, pleasant. From the Hindustani, khush, pleasure"), wherever he was, whatever he was doing, Tommy invented or borrowed his own word for it. From Ammo to Zig-Zag, this is a fascinating glimpse into the world of our World War One heroes. So boil up the dixie and scrounge yourself some dooly. By the time you've drummed up, you'll be slinging the bat like a barber's cat!
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101 Best Australian Beaches

101 Best Australian Beaches

Andy Short ,  Brad Farmer

$39.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One of the things I loved about this book is it doesn’t include my favourite beach! But if you’re looking for ideas, or confirmation that your best beach is included, then you will have other reasons to love this glorious book. It has something for everyone, from locality to best beaches for shells, waves, geological features and more. Complementing the fascinating text are photographs that will make you want to go, and go now - or just make you breathe deeply and relax… Lindy

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Which Australian beach is made entirely of shells, millions of them, several metres deep? Which beach has the biggest waves? Where is the world's biggest sand dune? Where do loggerhead turtles come to lay their eggs? And why does Australia have the best beaches on the planet? This book answers all those questions and more. Between them, authors Andy Short and Brad Farmer have visited every one of Australia's 11,761 mainland beaches, making them uniquely qualified to tell us which ones we have to see before we die. This superbly illustrated and thoroughly researched book will make you want to start the journey right now.
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Australian Backyard Naturalist

Australian Backyard Naturalist

Peter Macinnis

$29.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Lots of things live in even the smallest, most urban, backyard and this book enthusiastically reveals what you can find if you just go out and look! Plenty of illustrations and photographs to complement the information about everything from the tiniest and slimiest, to the cutest and furriest! With projects for all ages, this lively and entertaining book also contains anecdotes and history. A fine companion to Australian Backyard Astronomy and Australian Backyard Explorer. Lindy
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Dead End in Norvelt

Dead End in Norvelt

Jack Gantos

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- It is 1962 and Jack is looking forward to the summer holidays in his quiet and dwindling home town. However, after an unintended incident involving his father's souvenired Japanese rifle and the local drive-in showing a war movie, Jack is grounded for the duration. He is allowed out only to help old Miss Volker across the road write her history columns and obituaries for the town newspaper. Norvelt, a co-operative town set up by Eleanor Roosevelt, is suddenly witnessing the deaths of its last remaining original residents and soon Miss Volker may be the only one left. Apart from the officious and unlikeable Mr Spizz… A charming, funny and delightful book, winner of the 2012 Newbery Medal. Lindy
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Red

Red

Libby Gleeson

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- After a cyclone devastates Sydney, a young girl comes to. She has absolutely no idea who she is, where she is or what happened. Found by a streetwise boy who names her Red after her T-shirt she struggles to make sense of her surroundings as strange pieces of what might be her past surface through her amnesia. What seems to be a pendant around her neck turns out to be a memory stick and a message from her father - trust no-one, get this to Melbourne. With the help of Peri and a re-discovered, but unremembered, friend, Red sets off to deliver information that is vital to a commission into police corruption. Combines mystery with a road story. Lindy
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Animal People

Animal People

Charlotte Wood

$23.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Stephen is not an animal person. He's allergic to them. Nor can he understand how people treat animals better than humans. In fact, on this one stifling summer's day, Stephen can't understand anything about the world, or even himself. Why does he want to escape the one woman who truly loves him and who accepts him unquestioningly? I loved this novel - its cutting and incisive look at contemporary city life, its flawed and believable characters, and its clear-eyed prose. Lindy

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Charlotte Wood takes a character from her bestselling book The Children and turns her unflinching gaze on him and his world in Animal People. Set in Sydney over a single day, Animal People traces a watershed day in the life of Stephen, aimless, unhappy, unfulfilled - and without a clue as to how to make his life better. His dead-end job, his demanding family, his oppressive feelings for Fiona and the pitiless city itself...the great weight of it all threatens to come crashing down on him. The day will bring untold surprises and disasters, but will also show him - perhaps too late - that only love can set him free. Sharply observed, hilarious, tender and heartbreaking, Animal People is a portrait of urban life, a meditation on the conflicted nature of human-animal relationships, and a masterpiece of storytelling. 
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Limoncello and Linen Water

Limoncello and Linen Water

Tessa Kiros

$59.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tessa is well known for her gorgeous, evocative cookbooks and this does not disappoint. Paying homage to her Italian mother-in-law, it is redolent of family gatherings around the table. Full of superb photographs, the true beauty of this book is that the recipes are for food you not only want to eat, but can also cook quite easily! Lindy 

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Much-loved author Tessa Kiros celebrates the heritage of Italy, the country she has chosen to call home, in Limoncello and Linen Water. This whimsically feminine book is a tribute to the women in our lives - mothers, mothers-in-law, grandmothers - and the important lessons we learn from them. With accessible, delicious recipes ranging from robust family dishes to quirky cakes and old-fashioned preserves, this book is a precious heirloom to treasure.
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Zombie Tits, Astronaut Fish and Other Weird Animals

Zombie Tits, Astronaut Fish and Other Weird Animals

Rebecca Crew

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This vastly entertaining book introduces the reader to some rather amazing denizens of the animal kingdom: critters like frogs with gender-specific language, lizards that squirt poisonous blood from their eyes, the loudest insects in the world (and you’ll never guess what they use...) It contains facts and serious science, but also on the side, sassy light-hearted ruminations anthropomorphising the creatures – a blend of humour and research which is energetic and enjoyable. Lindy

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Did you know that the peacock mantis shrimp has the most powerful punch on Earth? That vampire spiders are attracted to your smelly socks? That the lesser water boatman is the loudest animal in the world? Or that concave-eared frogs have a secret language that only males can hear? From the mother-eating, black-lace weaver spiders to Texas horned lizards that can shoot jets of poisonous blood from their eyes, this book from fearless science blogger Becky Crew introduces you to a menagerie of the world's weirdest animals.
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Birds of Prey of Australia

Birds of Prey of Australia

Stephen Debus

$39.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This is a completely revised and updated field guide of a classic first published fifteen years ago, and so draws on a lot of new data. It has been reformatted, so that it is a comprehensive guide to the diurnal raptors, and contains a brief overview of the biology and the threats, conservation and future of Australian raptors. Illustrated by Jeff Davies, the plates show adult, juvenile and dimorphic differences in plumage, as well as drawings of the flight pattern (often as fellow birders know, the only way of seeing the birds!) and distribution maps. There are also illustrations of difficult species pairs so you can see the difference between an adult brown goshawk and a collared sparrowhawk for instance. Photographs are also included in a separate section, drawn from some of our best bird photographers. Overall, a very valuable book equally useful in the field, or as a reference. Lindy

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This book is an illustrated field guide to diurnal raptors, a bird group that many people find among the most difficult birds to identify. Raptors are popular and iconic birds, and important ecologically as well as in legislation, with some species listed as threatened. Birds of Prey of Australia will enable people to more easily identify them. It also provides a brief overview of the biology of raptors and an indication of the current state of knowledge on them. The book has been completely revised and updated, with 15 years of new data, a section on difficult species-pairs (split-images providing direct contrast), and rearranged in modern field-guide format, making it easy to use and enabling rapid identification of 'difficult' raptors. Birds of Prey of Australia will appeal to a wide range of readers, including ornithologists, raptor biologists, birdwatchers, wildlife rescuers/carers, raptor rehabilitators, zookeepers, naturalists, bushwalkers, ecological consultants, fauna authorities, park rangers, state forestry personnel, and students. 
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Foal's Bread

Foal's Bread

Gillian Mears

$22.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- 
Northern NSW in the Depression is no place for soft dreamers. Noah is tough and independent with a talent for highjumping horses. She catches the eye, then the heart, of Rowley Nancarrow, the Australian champion highjumper. Their marriage is full of inarticulate love and ambition, but when Rowley survives his third lightning strike with permanent and accumulating loss of physical control, he and Noah face insurmountable difficulties. A powerful, remarkable, hauntingly beautiful novel, with pitch-perfect writing. My pick of the year (2011). Lindy

The sound of horses' hooves turns hollow on the farms west of Wirri. If a man can still ride, if he hasn't totally lost the use of his legs, if he hasn't died to the part of his heart that understands such things, then he should go for a gallop. At the very least he should stand at the road by the river imagining that he's pushing a horse up the steep hill that leads to the house on the farm once known as One Tree.  Set in hardscrabble farming country and around the country show high-jumping circuit that prevailed in rural New South Wales prior to the Second World War, Foal's Bread tells the story of two generations of the Nancarrow family and their fortunes as dictated by the vicissitudes of the land. It is a love story of impossible beauty and sadness, a chronicle of dreams 'turned inside out', and miracles that never last, framed against a world both tender and unspeakably hard.
 
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Rural Australian Homes

Rural Australian Homes

Leta Keens ,  Simon Griffiths

$89.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- I’m the first to admit my idea of interior decoration is a wall full of books, but this splendid production had me turning the pages in rapt attention and dreaming of finding somewhere as special as the homes featured. And they are homes, not sterile and uncomfortable showcases, although some are certainly excellent examples of the architect’s vision. From an artist’s studio to a sheep station, a shed-by-any-other-name to a house of connected pavilions, these rural residences all invoke a beautiful way of living. Lindy

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Most Australians live in cities, clinging to the coast and looking outwards towards the ocean. Yet almost all of us feel closely connected to the country, even if we hardly ever visit it. Many of us dream of moving to rural areas - there's a harshness to much of the Australian landscape and yet we still feel a sense of romance about it. For Rural Australian Homes, Leta Keens travelled around Australia to find the 18 homes featured in the book - a wide-ranging and appealing selection that includes a sheep station that has been in the same family for 100 years, a converted general store, an adapted shed, and award-winning architect-designed contemporary houses. Covering every state and the Northern Territory, Rural Australian Homes gives a compelling insight into contemporary life in rural Australia, and offers a glimpse into some of the history that has defined it.
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Food Lover's Guide to the World: Experience the Great Global Cuisines

Food Lover's Guide to the World: Experience the Great Global Cuisines

Lonely Planet

$62.00  $55.80

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Travelling the world is a wonderful idea, but journeying through its cuisines? Even better! Culinary regions, cities and countries are featured, and there are usable basic recipes scattered throughout to give you a taste for the regional specialties. This fabulous book is good enough to eat: the irresistible photographs will have you salivating and booking your next trip! Lindy

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The world is your oyster. Or hot dog. Or camembert. When we travel, it is often love at first bite. This book presents a lifetime of eating experiences that will lead you from one end of the globe to the other. Take your taste buds on a tour around the world and cook up you next great culinary adventure. Includes introductions by Mark Bittman and James Oseland, celebrity food-lover contributions, best places to find local dishes in cities great and small, cultural tips and how-to-eat etiquette, plus more than 50 recipes to cook back home.
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City

City

James Roy

$19.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Like his best-selling and awarded Town this is a series of interconnecting and tangential stories. A minor character in one story may take centre stage in another, later tale; or may never be seen again: but that's life in the big city. Connections are tenuous, but place links all the characters.  From the young man writing to allay his mother's fears, to the shadowy graffiti artist; from the girl who knows her African music, to the one mistaken for a credible street performer; the young lads in the red-light district for a night of looking, or the pregnant student writing about vultures, this is a swirling collection. Older readers 14+ Lindy
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Clementine Rose and the Surprise Visitor

Clementine Rose and the Surprise Visitor

Jacqueline Harvey

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Harvey is best known for her Alice-Miranda series, and this (the first of a new series) is aimed at younger readers aged 6-8. Clementine-Rose lives in a big house with a kind guardian, Lady Clarissa, who needs to run the house as an upmarket hotel to pay for the upkeep. Clemmie is sweet-natured, but does tend to get into trouble without trying, so when the imperious Aunt Violet arrives, things will not go to plan. A nice read for the youngsters, nothing too scary or challenging. Lindy

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Clementine Rose was delivered not in the usual way, at a hospital, but in the back of a mini-van, in a basket of dinner rolls.  So begins the story of a lovely little girl who lives in Penberthy Floss in a large ramshackle house with her mother, Lady Clarissa, Digby Pertwhistle the butler and a very sweet teacup pig called Lavender. When her scary Aunt Violet arrives unexpectedly, the household is thrown into disarray. What is it that Aunt Violet really wants and what is she carrying in her mysterious black bag?
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The Getting of Wisdom

The Getting of Wisdom

Henry Handel Richardson ,  Dr. Germaine Greer

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Another wonderful title added to the Text Classics range! You might remember the charming movie from the 1980s which was fairly true to the book, but reading will give you more insight into the characters. Laura Rambotham, with her homemade dresses and rustic ways, is sent to an exclusive girls' school. Eager to be accepted, she is ridiculed and belittled for her lack of worldliness, and as many a youngster has done, she foregoes her better nature to fall in with the crowd around her. All the pain and confusion of growing up, of getting wisdom, come hard, but this novel abounds in a lightness of touch that allows the reader to sympathise, and eventually to cheer for Laura, as she finds her own way. Lindy

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One of the most memorable characters in Australian fiction, Laura Rambotham, aged twelve, enters the portals of an exclusive girls' school eager to be accepted. But this precocious country girl is snubbed and ridiculed by her fellow students, who are richer, more attractive and more adept at dealing with life's hypocrisies. The Getting of Wisdom, a wicked and satirical novel on the pain and confusion of growing up, first appeared in 1910. A century later it has lost none of its bite. In her splendid introduction Germaine Greer describes this classic as 'Richardson's only great book precisely because the subject is, like the rest of us, ordinary, and therefore deeply important'.
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Welcome to Normal

Welcome to Normal

Nick Earls

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Nick Earls is one of my favourite Australian writers, so a new collection of his short stories was a real treat for me. Some of the stories turn out to be linked, which adds to the enjoyment of Earls' deft and sympathetic treatment of his characters. In the title story, a man travels through mid-west America on a business trip with his boss, and learns that in Normal, his boss was something else other than the boring, normal person he now is. The longest story in the collection has two men on a small group tour, who tell outrageous lies about each other in a personal game of payback which ultimately reveals the closeness of their difficult relationship. Other tales take place in Brisbane, and overseas destinations, but each one contains a small truth within the smooth storytelling. HIghly recommended. Lindy
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Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl

Jesse Andrews

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Greg is just waiting for high school to be over so he can get on with whatever life holds for him. He prides himself on not being part of any of the school cliques, while being friendly towards all of them. Really he only has one friend, Earl, a verticallychallenged Afro-American with a seriously dysfunctional family. Together they make their own versions of cult classic films. When his mother forces him to spend time with a girl he has avoided since adolescence first hit, he has to move out of the self-protective bubble he's constructed. Rachel has leukaemia and has decided to stop treatment; and in an awkward attempt to cheer her on, Earl and Greg make a film of her life. This is a funny, profane (warning: lots of swearwords!) entertaining and poignant novel for mature readers. Lindy

 

Up until senior year, Greg has maintained total social invisibility. He only has one friend, Earl, and together they spend their time--when not playing video games and avoiding Earl's terrifying brothers-- making movies, their own versions of Coppola and Herzog cult classics. Greg would be the first one to tell you his movies are f*@$ing terrible, but he and Earl don't make them for other people. Until Rachel. Rachel has leukemia, and Greg's mom gets the genius idea that Greg should befriend her. Against his better judgment and despite his extreme awkwardness, he does. When Rachel decides to stop treatment, Greg and Earl make her a movie, and Greg must abandon invisibility and make a stand. It's a hilarious, outrageous, and truthful look at death and high school by a prodigiously talented debut author.
 
A frequently hysterical confessional...Debut novelist Andrews succeeds brilliantly in painting a portrait of a kid whose responses to emotional duress are entirely believable and sympathetic, however fiercely he professes his essential crappiness as a human being. Though this novel begs inevitable thematic comparisons to John Green's The Fault in Our Stars (2011), it stands on its own in inventiveness, humor and heart. It is sure to be popular with many boys, including reluctant readers, and will not require much selling on the part of the librarian.
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Australian Story

Australian Story

Tania McCartney

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Timelines are a good way to give children a cohesive overview of the sweep of history. This book traces the geological beginnings of Australia over the first few pages, deals with pre-contact society in a double-page spread, then follows European discovery and settlement in 22 pages of miscellaneous information (when capital cities were founded, minerals discovered, technological advances, inventions, sporting achievements - a real mix!). Aimed at very young readers and copiously illustrated with fine, full-colour images drawn from the National Library's collection! Lindy
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The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

William Joyce

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This was the story that inspired the Academy Award winning short film (if you haven't seen it, it's well worth looking for). A bit like Shaun Tan's Lost Thing, in that the illustrations are used to wonderful effect to tell a simple but deceptively sophisticated tale. Morris Lessmore loved words, books and order. One day though, his nicely arranged world is upset, and even the words in his book are scattered. Not knowing what else to do, he sets off aimlessly, and spies a lovely lady being towed by books, who sends him her favourite book. It leads the way to a building where other books nest, and Morris finds his true place in the world. One of those gorgeous books that any reader of any age will enjoy, and which every reader should own! Lindy
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Horrible Harriet's Inheritance

Horrible Harriet's Inheritance

Leigh Hobbs

$13.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Harriet is one of Leigh Hobb's wonderfully subversive characters (she invented Mr Chicken!) and in this entertaining, slightly anarchic style Hobbs has made his trademark, Harriet's story is expanded in this young reader. Harriet is descended from a long line of interesting people - vikings, royalty, vampires - and she decides to learn more about her infamous ancestors. With many crazy drawings, this is a vastly enjoyable story which will appeal to primary aged readers (and to their parents with a slightly skewed sense of humour)! Lindy
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The Glass Canoe

The Glass Canoe

David Ireland ,  Nicolas Rothwell [intro]

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- When the Text Classics range was first announced, this was the book that really got me excited! I consider David Ireland to be one of THE best writers and it has always staggered me that the works of this three-time winner of the Miles Franklin Award have been allowed to go out of print. So you can be forgiven if you don't know them - and more so if you read this novel, the 1976 Miles Franklin winner. Lance, better known as Meat Man, is chronicling his 'tribe' - the habitues of the Southern Cross Hotel, somewhere in bluecollar Northmead. Theirs is a life of casual attitudes to sex, work and violence, centred around alcohol and their own particular watering hole, but there is also loyalty (no matter how misplaced) and inarticulate tolerance towards each other (unless they transgress - as one character does). Meat Man is capable of appreciating nature with an almost pagan and poetic sensibility, but it is the colourful tales of the characters that makes an unforgettable, impressionistic portrait of working class life. The story is in the glimpses, and the power of it is in the reading. See for yourself! Lindy
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The Messenger Bird

The Messenger Bird

Rosanne Hawke

$19.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tamar can't make sense of the world: her beloved brother has died in a car crash, her mother is in hospital suffering depression, her father has thrown himself into restoring their old farmhouse in an attempt to forget his sorrow. Even her cherished music holds no consolation. When her father discovers a hand- notated music manuscript, Tamar is drawn to the melancholy beauty of the piece. Playing it opens a window onto a former inhabitant's life - Nathaniel, who lived in the farm house when it was first built. Nathaniel becomes her lifeline, and his past holds answers for her future… A rather lyrical exploration of transcending grief, with a delicate air of mystery. Suitable for 14+ Lindy
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Ten Scared Fish

Ten Scared Fish

Ros Moriarty ,  Balarinji

$12.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This delightful book introduces early childhood concepts. The boldly coloured, playful and attractive illustrations are by Balarinji (the Indigenous art studio best known for covering Qantas planes with vibrant indigenous motifs). This book not only counts to ten but introduces prepositions as the fish make their way down a river to the sea. Perfect for youngsters here or overseas! Lindy
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Kangaroos Hop

Kangaroos Hop

Ros Moriarty ,  Balarinji

$12.99

Kangaroos Hop helps children identify favourite Australian animals in the Australian landscape. The kangaroos hop, the butterflies fly, the echidnas shuffle across the land and down to the water's edge where a sleepy crocodile lies...Shhhh! The lively illustrations and cumulative text help readers identify animals as well as verbs.
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Overseas

Overseas

Beatriz Williams

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Don't read this if you want a historically accurate and sensible novel! But if you want a divertisement on a rainy day with your favourite box of chocolates and pot of beverage at your left elbow, go for it! Kate is a 20-something financial analyst in a Wall Street bank, overworked and under-respected, so when the legendary and mysterious businessman Julian Laurence insists on working with her, she is more than surprised. His handsome frame and courtly old-fashioned manners win her over, but he (of course!) has a strange secret - he is really the celebrated soldier-poet of WWI who disappeared on the Somme, presumed killed. An American woman appeared to him on the eve of battle and foretold his fate… The timeslip element doesn't hold up to scrutiny, but it isn't why you read these sorts of novels! As I said earlier, it's a fine distraction from the everyday world. Lindy
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Dark Secrets

Dark Secrets

Hans Rosenfeldt ,  Michael Hjorth

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Scandinavia has been the revelation of the past few years for crime fiction and this new book from two Swedish writers joins a long list of gripping titles. A teenager is reported missing in a provincial town, though police incompetence means nothing is done for more than two days. Then the body is found – missing most of the heart. To avoid complete scandal, the local police call in the Riksmord, a crack team of investigators from Stockholm. Nothing is straightforward, of course, either with the case or with the team – particularly when its leader, Torkel, brings in an outsider to assist, much to the disgust of the female investigators. Sebastian Bergman is a renowned psychologist notorious for his lack of patience and social skills, and for his sexual misbehaviour, which has worsened since the death of his wife and daughter in the Boxing
Day tsunami. A cynical, damaged man, Bergman is reluctantly back in the town of his childhood where he discovers he may have a child somewhere, and he wants to make contact. The case itself is proving very frustrating, as every lead is discounted and no motive is discernible. Then another murder is committed. This is a strong, police procedural novel with plenty of twists to hold the reader’s attention. I would have liked a bit more fleshing out of the members of the Riksmord team, and a little less extraneous detail about procedure, but this didn’t get in the way of turning the pages as quickly as possible to discover the motivations and identity of the murderer. The first in a series, I’ll certainly look for the second when it comes! Lindy
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The Light Between Oceans

The Light Between Oceans

M L Stedman

$19.99

WINNER - INDIE Awards 2013 - BOOK OF THE YEAR and CATEGORY WINNER: DEBUT-FICTION

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Tom Sherbourne finds that lighthouse keeping offers him respite from the horrors of his experiences of WWI. He takes on the posting of Janus Rock, far off the Western Australian coast, but he also falls in love with the vivacious Isabel, who marries him on his brief return to the mainland between stints. They have a happy life, but for one thing - none of Isabel’s pregnancies produce a baby who lives for long. Desperate for a child, she persuades the upright and morally unambiguous Tom to not report the most serious incident that ever occurs on the island. A small boat washes up on their rock, with a dead man and a living baby, and for the love of Isabel, he acquiesces to her pleas… A powerful novel of moral choices, beautifully written and highly recommended. Lindy
 
This mesmerizing novel has been a bestselling book around the world, and Hollywood movie rights were recently snapped up by Dreamworks, with David Heyman (Harry Potter) set to produce.
 
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The Foundling

The Foundling

Agnes Desarthe

$27.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Jerome is calm and balanced, according to himself; but others find him somewhat cold and unfeeling. When his teenaged daughter’s boyfriend dies in a motorcycle accident, however, Jerome is overwhelmed by an all-consuming grief. Images from his past start to assail him, and his ordered way of life starts to show cracks. He befriends a slightly sinister retired policeman, struggles with his feelings for his ex-wife and a free-spirited new client, and wonders if things really are as they seem. The author has won awards in her native France, and this clever and delicately rendered novel plays with the notion of the wolf-child as an adult. Lindy
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The Lifeboat

The Lifeboat

Charlotte Rogan

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Grace Winter has been married for 10 weeks, widowed for 6, and finds herself on trial for her life. War had broken out, curtailing their honeymoon in Europe, but the liner they were on sank in mysterious circumstances halfway between London and New York. Her rich husband managed to get Grace on to a lifeboat, but it doesn’t take long for the occupants to realise there are too many people crowded on to the lifeboat. Nor does it take long for them to be confronted by moral dilemmas, and as the days turn into weeks, and no sign of rescue is apparent, the veneer of civilisation wears very thin indeed. I very much enjoyed this finely written book. Grace is a well-drawn, but ultimately ambiguous, character who is not as innocent - or as guilty - as she seems. Lindy
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Croc and Bird

Croc and Bird

Alexis Deacon

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Two eggs hatch, side-by-side. One has a bird, the other a crocodile, but they don't know they're not brothers, so together they grow and share, teaching each other the skills they need. When the river carries them down to a place with more birds and crocodiles, they realise they're not related, and separate: but do they find happiness
amongst the others who look like them? A deceptively simple, profound and moving picture book, with delightful illustrations that convey cleverness, warmth and whimsy. Lindy
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I'll Save You Bobo!

I'll Save You Bobo!

Eileen Rosenthal ,  Marc Rosenthal

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Willy doesn't like the book he's just read - the big dinosaur doesn't eat the little one - so he decides to write one of his own, using his toy monkey Bobo as the hero. It would be easier if Earl the cat didn't keep getting in the way... Simply coloured, almost retro illustrations, but the concept is very easily recognisable: who hasn't heard a young boy making up a story with mounting excitement as he keeps adding more and more dangers and details? A lot of fun! Lindy
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Pennies for Hitler

Pennies for Hitler

Jackie French

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Georg loves his life in Germany, but his parents realise that Hitler means war and it is not safe for a half-English boy to stay in the country. He is smuggled out to England, where it is no safer; and then across the oceans to Australia. There he has to live a lie, denying his past and his identity - his German background would automatically make him a despised enemy, and his attitudes and what he has been taught to believe in pro-Nazi Germany will find no sympathy in his new home. As always, French writes simply and powerfully and this thoughtful novel will please her fans. Ages 12+ Lindy
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The Bellwether Revivals

The Bellwether Revivals

Benjamin Wood

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Oscar Lowe is a bookish, working class boy who has escaped the stifling confines of his unsympathetic family. He works in a Cambridge nursing home and enjoys the friendship of an irrascible resident, Dr Paulsen, who encourages his love of reading and knowledge. One fateful day, Oscar meets Iris Bellwether and is ineluctably drawn into her privileged, somewhat jaded circle of friends, but more importantly, comes to the attention of her self-absorbed, musically talented and dangerously intelligent brother, Eden. He has some very strange qualities and believes in the healing qualities of a particular Baroque composer’s music – are they based in truth, or are they the delusions of a mentally disturbed man? As Eden experiments with his theories, Oscar is increasingly alarmed at what is happening… A beautifully written and beguiling novel. Lindy
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This isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You

This isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You

Jon McGregor

$29.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- This collection of short stories is set in the flat fenlands of eastern England. Some stories are mere fragments of language, others are technically and cleverly proficient and others still are achingly detailed observations of people and the landscape. All of them, though, are the work of a master craftsman, who catches a multiplicity of voices and characters in believable situations and treats all of them with dignity (even – or especially – the characters who are society’s refuse). Each book McGregor has produced is different from the others and this one just confirms what I believe is his amazing talent; when I had finished, I went right back to the beginning and re-read them all. Lindy

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- McGregor's unique writing style may be daunting at first but perservere and you will be rewarded with one of the most beautiful, heartbreaking, real novels of our generation. A descent into the character's world that is so subtle that you may never want to fully let go. Meg
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The Longing

The Longing

Candice Bruce

$32.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Cornelia is working as an assistant curator on an exhibition for a painter, S P Hart, who breezed into Victoria in the 1850s leaving behind exquisite sketchbooks and a number of paintings which record the properties of landowners. When her supervisor is involved in an accident, she undertakes to interview owners of some of the paintings in the hope of finding out more about the artworks and perhaps acquiring them for the gallery. This story is intertwined with that of Ellis McRorie, the wife of the original land holder. Ellis is isolated in a loveless marriage, has suffered difficult pregnancies and the death of babies, and her only companion is an indigenous woman who has lost more than the well-meaning Ellis can conceive of. When the charming Sanford Hart is commissioned to paint Strathcarron, she feels love and hope for the first time; and Louisa is given the means to preserve her own memories. An interesting and thoughtful novel. Lindy
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Five Bells

Five Bells

Gail Jones

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One fine and shining Saturday, four people find themselves at Circular Quay. Ellie and James, who were teenaged lovers, are meeting for the first time in years to have lunch. Catherine has recently moved from Ireland to take up a new job, so she’s doing the tourist thing. Pei Xing, who suffered dreadfully in China’s Cultural Revolution, is catching a ferry to visit someone she knows on the North Shore. Each character is struggling with something from their past and, over the course of the novel, this is revealed. And beneath the brightness of the day in the heart of Sydney, there is a dark mystery in play which each of the four catch glimpses of… A lyrical novel, drenched in descriptions of Sydney Harbour and local colour, with some beautifully drawn characters. Lindy
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Sea Hearts

Sea Hearts

Margo Lanagan

$19.99

MULTI-AWARD WINNING NOVEL

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Best known for her thoughtful, interesting and slightly surreal short stories, this full-length novel contains elements that Lanagan's fans will recognise. On the island of Rollrock, young boys gather sea hearts for their mothers to eat. They have no sisters, and their fathers are mostly fishermen, but their mothers are all beautiful women with a sense of mystery about them. Misskaella is ugly, but she has what every man on the island needs - the power to bring them sea-wives, and she uses this to bind them all to her. A beautifully rendered and lyrically written tale that takes the myth of the Selkies, and breathes delicate and strange new life into it. Any age from 14 up. Lindy

Winner, 2012 Aurealis Awards - Best Fantasy Novel

Winner, 2012 Aurealis Awards - Best Young Adult Novel (shared with Dead, Actually, Kaz Delaney)

Winner, 2013 Independent Booksellers of Australia Awards (INDIE) - Best Children's & YA Book

Winner, 2013 Norma K Hemming Award

Shortlisted, 2013 NSW Premier's Literary Awards - Ethel Turner Prize (Young People's Literature)

Shortlisted, 2013 Book Design Awards - Young Adult

Shortlisted, 2013 Stella Prize

Shortlisted, 2013 Ditmar Awards - Best Novel

Shortlisted, 2012 Aurealis Awards - Fantasy Novel and Young Adult Novel

Shortlisted, 2013 Norma K Hemming Award for race, gender, sexuality, class and disability in speculative fiction

Longlisted, 2013 UK CILIP Carnegie Medal (published in UK as The Brides of Rollrock Island)
Longlisted, 2012 Gold Inky for an Australian YA Book
Shortlisted, 2012 Queensland Literary Awards

Selected as one of US Publishers Weekly best books for 2012 (Children's Fiction)
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The Tunnels of Tarcoola

The Tunnels of Tarcoola

Jennifer Walsh

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- No fairies! No wizards! No paranormals! Just a good clean adventure, à la Enid Blyton or Arthur Ransome, set in inner suburban Sydney. Kitty, David, Andrea and Martin are mucking around one day and discover an old tunnel, which in turn has an exit at the local derelict house. They explore the tunnels underneath their suburb and discover a stash of documents; but at the same time, sinister thugs start to shadow them. And what is the connection of the old woman in the nursing home to all of this? Excellent for ages 9-12 Lindy
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Grandpa Green

Grandpa Green

Lane Smith

$19.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Grandpa Green was born a long time ago, before TV or computers, growing up on a farm, going to fight in a war instead of studying, marrying and having kids. His great-grandson tells the story, simply, while playing in Grandpa's garden, which itself tells the story as well, through topiary. Grandpa is forgetting things, but the garden remembers for him. A charming and gentle picturebook about the bonds of family, beautifully illustrated - in green, of course! Lindy
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The Future of Us

The Future of Us

Jay; Mackler, Carolyn Asher ,  Carolyn Mackler

$16.99

It's 1996 and very few high school students have ever used the internet. Facebook will not be invented until several years in the future. Emma just got a computer and an America Online CD. She and her best friend Josh power it up and log on - and discover themselves on Facebook in 2011. Everybody wonders what they'll be like fifteen years in the future. Josh and Emma are about to find out.
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I Capture the Castle

I Capture the Castle

Dodie Smith ,  Valerie Grove [intro]

$14.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Cassandra Mortmain lives in a beautiful but dilapidated castle and is determined to capture scenes of her everyday life in a journal. She has plenty of material to work with! Her father, who wrote a critically acclaimed novel some years before, is suffering from writer's block, and from a wilful blindness that ignores the poverty his family endures. His second wife, Topaz, a beautiful, fey, ex-artist's model, likes to commune with nature wearing nothing but boots. Cassandra's older sister, Rose, is a scheming romantic; and Thomas, their intelligent younger brother, lives in his own world. When wealthy Americans become their landlords, Rose (who has always wanted to live in a Jane Austen novel), decides she will marry Simon, the heir, despite not loving him. Cassandra chronicles all this in an endearingly clear-eyed style, recording amusing episodes and more serious matters, including her own inconvenient love for Simon… This is a beautifully polished, seemingly effortless, novel, one which I have revisited with a great deal of pleasure many times over the years and which still retains its charms Lindy
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Cosmo Cosmolino

Cosmo Cosmolino

Helen Garner ,  Ramona Koval

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Originally published in 1992, this was a stylistic departure for Garner, and puzzled her readers somewhat. Full of long, beautifully constructed sentences, three stories are linked by the characters moving through time - and the appearance of angels. The unnamed narrator of the first grapples with the illness of one of her oldest friends who holds their shared past in his inflexible memory. In the second, an awkward young man does nothing to save his girlfriend from her troubles, and for his carelessness, sees her crumble into ash - literally, after her funeral service at a crematorium. And the third sees three disparate characters collide with misunderstandings on all sides, in a neglected house that was once a vital hub. Re-reading this, I was struck by the beauty of Garner's language and the keen insights she always brings to her writing; and what seemed slightly weird back in 1992 now feels timeless. Lindy
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The Home Girls

The Home Girls

Olga Masters ,  Geordie Williamson [intro]

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Olga Masters wrote and published towards the end of her life, and in those six or so years she produced fiction that should stand high in our literary consciousness - but as often happens, she is not remembered as she should be. Thankfully Text have republished her first collection of stories in their wonderful Text Classics series. Her short stories are masterful distillations of the human condition, written in an immediately recognisable style. Masters had a way with punctuation that can convey both just as much as needed, and much more than expected. Her subjects are domestic and universal, and one of her talents is the way she can let the reader know that behind a character's small and inarticulate action is a lifetime of experience, hurt, frustration or puzzlement. If you haven't read Masters before, this is a fine introduction; and if you have, this is a reminder of what a great writer could do a choice handful of words. Lindy

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The Home Girls is a collection of candid, witty stories about rural and suburban life. Set in the mid-twentieth century, these are tales of ordinary people and domestic life. Masters was, as the Advertiser remarked, 'a natural storyteller'. Between the publication of The Home Girls, in 1982, and her death, Olga Masters was acclaimed as one of Australia's finest writers. Her short stories, distinguished by their acute observation of human behaviour, drew comparison with the finest exponents of the form, such as Chekhov.
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Louis Beside Himself

Louis Beside Himself

Anna Fienberg

$15.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- From the bestselling author of the Tashi series comes this delightful book for the upper primary reader. Louis' Dad comes from a wrestling background,a nd he likes nothing better than coaching his son in the finer points of such moves as the Five Star Frog Splash or the Walls of Jericho. Louis would prefer to collect words, because he thinks that’s a better way of arming yourself against unknown terrors. His best friends like basketball and skateboarding, and Louis feels a little out of synch; but when he has to confront a burglar - who turns out to be an older girl called Cordelia, who has run away from home and needs somewhere to stay - he discovers that everyone has unique abilities; they just might not be what you thought they were…  Lindy
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Careful, He Might Hear You

Careful, He Might Hear You

Sumner Locke Elliot ,  Robyn Nevin [intro]

$12.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Elliott in his lifetime was a famed writer for stage and screen in America, where he had emigrated to after WWII. He wrote a number of popular and acclaimed novels - some like this one turned into  successful movies or screenplays - and all of which have been out of print for ages, and some unjustly faded from consciousness. This was his first novel, and won the Miles Franklin in 1963, and is very closely based on his own life. PS lives with his Aunt Lila in working-class and Depression-era Neutral Bay. His mother died giving birth to him, and his father drifted off without any concern for his son. PS is happy enough, until his beautiful Aunt Vanessa decides that she should have custody of him. She's returned from London and taken a house in privileged Port Piper, and she can give him all the material things Lila can't. PS is pulled between his beloved aunties, and a court case ensues - but can anyone ever win when family is involved? A novel which gives rich textures to a Sydney of the past, and is still an absorbing study of family dynamics and the powerlessness of childhood. Lindy

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'Oh, aren't you lucky, PS.' 'Goodness, what a lucky boy.' 'What a treat!' 'Your Aunt Vanessa is coming.' Vanessa was coming all the way from England back to Australia and she was coming on a piano boat. It's the Great Depression. Six-year-old PS is an orphan. He lives in Sydney with his Aunt Lila. But all that is about to change. Now his Aunt Vanessa has decided to take proper care of him. Careful, He Might Hear You is one of the most extraordinary portraits of childhood in Australian fiction.
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Around the World in Eighty Days

Around the World in Eighty Days

Jules Verne ,  Robert Ingpen

$39.95

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Continuing with his project of illustrating unabridged classics for a new generation of readers, Robert Ingpen brings to life this enduring tale of the voyage made for a bet by Phileas Fogg. Accompanied by his manservant Passepartout, they use every form of transport to circumnavigate the world. Trailling behind is Detective Fix of Scotland Yard, who thinks Fogg is a criminal mastermind. Full of adventure and excitement, this is also quite funny in places. A beautifully presented and bound edition, printed on lovely paper, and with glorious illustrations which will appeal to those who read the story long ago, or those newly acquainted with it: any bibliophile will love it! Lindy
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The Good Mayor

The Good Mayor

Andrew Nicoll

$24.99

ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- One of my favourite feel-good read! A bit of magic, a lot of misdirected love, enjoyable, quirky and a pleasure all-round. Lindy

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This magical debut novel is a love story. It is also a story of loss, magic, friendship, wonderful food, a brass band, an Italian witch, a large lawyer, an occasional dog and a car chase at a walking pace. Set in the little town of Dot in a forgotten part of the Baltic, it tells the life of Tibo Krovic, the good and honest mayor of Dot, and his love for his secretary, the beautiful, lonely -- and married -- Mrs. Agathe Stopak. In the quiet, respectable town there is nothing that Tibo can do about his love for Mrs. Stopak. Then one day, when she accidentally drops her lunch into a fountain, everything changes -- and their lives will never be the same. Read The Good Mayor and fall in love again.
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