When a bridge in the small outback town of Mululuk mysteriously collapses, the town is cut off from the world, and its citizens from each other. As the locals try to work out why the bridge fell and what it will take to replace it, old rivalries, forgotten romances and primitive drives come to the fore.
Teenaged Rachel has come from ‘the city’ to stay with her uncle after her home life has fallen apart, and she quickly becomes involved in the quest for the truth about the bridge. Father Nott, the local Franciscan priest, is trying to get the hysterical townsfolk to see sense, particularly his gossip-mongering friend Gussy. Shane, Janice and Craig find themselves at the heart of a devastating love triangle, with deadly ramifications that will reverberate far beyond the three of them. And the mysterious Charlie, a scruffy, charismatic alcoholic with a dark past, has a terrifying idea about what it takes to keep a bridge standing.
In a town that keeps its secrets like it builds its houses – underground – Charlie’s is the most dangerous of all.
Wry, rich and unsettling, All Fall Down is a starkly Australian gothic novel about a community divided, and a chilling, archaic belief about what must be done to reunite it.
How can hope exist when the past is so easily forgotten?
Pasha Ivanov is a child of the Freeze, born in Moscow during Brezhnev's repressive rule over the Soviet Union. As a small child, Pasha sat at the kitchen table night after night as his parents and their friends gathered to preserve the memory of terrifying Stalinist violence, and to expose the continued harassment of dissidents.
When Gorbachev promises glasnost, openness, Pasha, an eager twenty-four year old, longs to create art and to carry on the work of those who came before him. He writes; falls in love. Yet that hope, too, fragments and by 1999 Pasha lives a solitary life in St Petersburg. Until a phone call in the middle of the night acts as a summons both to Moscow and to memory.
Through recollections and observation, Pasha walks through the landscapes of history, from concrete tower suburbs, to a summerhouse during Russia's white night summers, to haunting former prison camps in the Arctic north. Pasha's search to find meaning leads him to assemble a fractured story of Russia's traumatic past.
The book that was written by a book club! The Shifting Light is a riveting rural novel of family intrigue, love and suspense, from the authors of The Painted Sky. Nina Larkin should be happy. She's transformed her rundown outback property, The Springs, into a successful artists' retreat; she's won a distinguished art prize, and she's living with her soulmate, trail-blazing grazier Heath Blackett. But the chance discovery of a portrait of her father, renowned artist Jim Larkin, makes her question everything. How could it have been drawn just weeks ago when Jim has been dead for years ...Or so she thought. Could her father still be alive? Can she track down the man in the picture? And is this connected to the missing gold buried by her ancestor over a century ago? Her search for answers will draw Nina into a maze of family secrets - just as the man who stepped out of a portrait arrives at her door...
ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK
----- Written as a series of interlinked stories, this finely-woven book is from a writer to watch! Mount Barker, up behind Adelaide, is changing from rural idyll to suburbia. Over the course of the novel, this metamorphosis is intricately plotted and shown through the lives of its residents. It starts with the death of the daughter of the richest inhabitants of the town, and then follows the try-hards and failed workers, the people with dreams slowly eroded by life and lack of opportunity, the fearful, the luckless and the pushed-too-fars. The prose is lucid and compelling, restrained and thoughtful,with moments of beauty and revelation and always great empathy. A brilliant debut. Lindy Jones
Everybody thinks they know this story. But do they really?
If you took a bird’s-eye view of Mount Barker, you’d see ordinary Australians living on their ordinary suburban blocks in an ordinary regional town. Get closer. Peer through a window. You might see Nathan Long, obsessively recording the incessant bark of a neighbourhood dog, or the Wheeler family sitting down for a meal and trying to come to terms with a shocking discovery. If you listen, you may hear tales of fathers and their wayward sons, of widows who can’t forgive themselves, of children longed for and lost, of thwarted lust and of pure, incorruptible love. Within the shadows is an unspeakable crime.
Rebekah Clarkson has created a compelling, slow-burning portrait of a town in the midst of major change as it makes the painful transformation from rural idyll to aspirational suburbia. What looked like redemption is now profound loss. What seemed spiteful can now be forgiven.
In 1903, the artist Gwendolen Mary John travels from London to France with her companion Dorelia. Surviving on their wits and Gwen's raw talent, the young women walk from Calais to Paris. In the new century, the world is full of promise- it is time for Gwen to step out from the shadow of her overbearing brother Augustus and seek out the great painter and sculptor Auguste Rodin. It is time to be brave and visible, to love and be loved - and time perhaps to become a hero as the stain of anti-Semitism spreads across Europe.
Blogger Lizzy's life is buzzing, happy, normal. Two gorgeous children, a handsome husband, destiny under control. For her real-life alter-ego Beth, things are unravelling. Tensions are simmering with her husband, mother-in-law and even her own mother. Her teenage daughters, once the objects of her existence, have moved beyond her grasp and one of them has shown signs of, well, thoughtlessness...
Then a classmate of one daughter is callously bullied and the finger of blame is pointed at Beth's clever, beautiful child. Shattered, shamed and frightened, two families must negotiate worlds of cruelty they are totally ill-equipped for.
This is a novel that grapples with modern-day spectres of selfies, selfishness and cyberbullying. It plays with our fears of parenting, social media and Queen Bees, and it asks the question: just how well do you know your child?
One afternoon, near the tourist trap of Checkpoint Charlie, Clare meets Andi. There is an instant attraction, and when Andi invites her to stay, Clare thinks she may finally have found somewhere to call home. But as the days pass and the walls of Andi's apartment close in, Clare begins to wonder if it's really love that Andi is searching for a or something else altogether. Berlin Syndrome is a closely observed and gripping psychological thriller that shifts between Andi's and Clare's perspectives, revealing the power of obsession, the fluidity of truth, and the kaleidoscopic nature of human relationships. A startling debut from a talented new writer.
WINNER OF THE VICTORIAN PREMIER'S LITERARY AWARD 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE CHRISTINA STEAD PRIZE FOR FICTION 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE STELLA PRIZE 2016
SHORTLISTED FOR THE VOSS LITERARY PRIZE 2016
LONGLISTED FOR THE MILES FRANKLIN LITERARY AWARD 2016
LONGLISTED FOR THE INTERNATIONAL DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD 2017
It has been six months since Tess Müller stopped speaking. Her silence is baffling to her parents, her teachers and her younger sister Meg, but the more urgent mystery for both girls is where their mother, Evangeline, goes each day, pushing an empty pram and returning home wet, muddy and dishevelled.
Their father, Stefan, struggling with his own losses, tends to his apiary and tries to understand why his bees are disappearing. But after he discovers a car wreck and human remains on their farm, old secrets emerge to threaten the fragile family.
One day Tess's teacher Jim encounters Evangeline by the wild Repentance River. Jim is in flight from his own troubles in Sydney, and Evangeline, raised in a mountain commune and bearing the scars of the fire that destroyed it, is a puzzle he longs to solve.
As the rainforest trees are felled and the lakes fill with run-off from the expanding mines, Tess watches the landscape of her family undergo shifts of its own. A storm is coming and the Müllers are in its path.
Sometimes we must confront what has been lost so that we can know the solace of being found.
The World Without Us is a beautifully told story of secrets and survival, family and community, loss and renewal.
In this luminous book of new stories, John Kinsella drops us seamlessly into the worlds of men, women and children at pivotal moments in their lives. In the title story, a husband who has lost his wife plans to destroy the old-growth bush she loved and escape to the city, with alarming consequences. Elsewhere, racism at a small town supermarket is resisted through friendship; in an act of kindness a frightening stranger turns up in a family's woodshed; a home-made telephone transmits a dark truth; a theatre director is seduced into the world of an obsessive rabbit trapper; and two sisters find their lives thrown out of kilter by a charismatic junkie. This is a book of city and country, of challenge and threat, of sobriety and loss of control, but also of hope and beauty. Wandoos hold 'the sunset cold and warm at once in their powdery barks' as Kinsella captures the intensity of place, and the complexities and strangeness of human behaviour with wonder and pathos.
Revenge, redemption ...and pastry. The witty new novel from the author of Hotel du Barry, for fans of Jonas Jonasson. In the winter of 1912 on the wild West Coast of Tasmania, Wolfftown's most notorious heiress and murderess, Sasha Torte, tells the tale of her own spectacular downfall. Forsaken by her parents and raised by criminals and reprobates, Sasha becomes a world-famous pastry chef at the tender age of seventeen. Entanglement with the disreputable Dasher brothers leads to love, but also to a dangerous addiction. Behind bars in Wolfftown's gaol, Sasha sips premium champagne as she recalls a life of seduction, betrayal, ghosts, opium and an indiscreet quantity of confectionary - and plots her escape. The Scandalous Life of Sasha Torte is a wild romp of dastardly deeds, intrepid protagonists, dark villains, wild gangs, luxurious hotels ...and mouth-watering treats.
Nina never knew what happened to her father, the celebrated artist Jim Larkin. One minute he was her devoted dad, the next he'd disappeared without trace. Seventeen years later, she's still haunted by the mystery. Until a call from outback Wandalla changes everything. At first, Nina's inheritance of a waterless property and a farmhouse stuffed with junk seems more like a burden than a gift. But this was her father's childhood home - and possibly her last chance to discover the truth. So what is the local solicitor, Harrison Grey, not telling her as he hands over the keys? Why does the area's wealthiest resident, Hilary Flint, seem to hate her so much? What is the significance of the gold locket with cryptic engravings that Nina always wears? And why, on top of everything, is she inexplicably drawn to her soon-to-be-married neighbour, Heath Blackett?
In Honour & Other People's Children, Helen Garner examines the idiosyncratic and bothersome notions of honour by which her characters - adults and children - shape their untidy lives. Honour is about a couple whose marriage, though abandoned in practice, persists in spirit. But the arrival of a new lover obliges them to make a proper separation and draw their child into the conflict. Other People's Children is a witty, sad story of the breakdown of friendship between two women, Scotty and Ruth, and the collapse of their collective household. Scotty loves Ruth's daughter as only the childless can love other people's children, but the broken friendship leaves Scotty with no claims. Into this mess blunders Madigan, looking for something that Scotty has long ago trained herself not to give.
Nothing is as it seems in this twisted fairytale of moral ambiguity and corrupted innocence. Just as the tropical beauty of The Frangipani Gardens conceals its inherent menace, watercolour painter Doll lives a prim, respectable existence belying her wildest fantasies. But when her young niece and nephew come to stay, Doll's true self threatens to be exposed. Barbara Hanrahan was a prolific Australian visual artist and author, publishing fifteen books in under two decades. The Frangipani Gardens, first released in 1980, was shortlisted for The Age Book of the Year, her second shortlisting for the award in as many years. Her bestselling semi-autobiographical novel The Scent of Eucalyptus remains in print.
January 1920. Young Englishwoman Margaret Dalton arrives in Sydney full of excitement for what her new life will bring. She leaves behind the horrors of WWI and can't wait to see her husband, Frank, after two years' separation. But when Margaret's ship docks, Frank isn't there to greet her and Margaret is informed that he already has a wife...Devastated, Margaret must swap her hopes and dreams for the reality of living and working in a strange new city. And just as a growing friendship with army sergeant Tom McBride gives her a steady person to rely on, news arrives that will have far-reaching consequences. Where should Margaret's loyalties lie: with the old life or with the new?
From the internationally bestselling author of The Homestead Girls and Red Sand Sunrise comes this heartfelt story of friendship, forgiveness and love.
A year after a tragic accident changed her life forever, Tess Daley is in desperate need of a change. When she is offered a position with the Flying Doctor Service, she seizes the opportunity to make a fresh start. Yet once she arrives in remote Mica Ridge she feels like an outsider, unable to connect with her patients and unsure if she'll ever fit in with this outback community.
Station owner Soretta Byrnes has grown to love the company and chaos that comes with living in a house filled with boarders. So with tenants moving out and bills piling up, it's a welcome relief to have Tess and new pilot Charlie Fennes arriving in town and looking for somewhere to stay.
As they share life's triumphs and challenges, it isn't long before everyone at the station feels like family. But Charlie has yet to reveal his motive for coming to Mica Ridge and his secret will change the life of someone in the house forever...