Monday, November 23, 2015

Book reviews & news from the Sydney Morning Herald

The Bookshop: Live Wire Bon Scott; In Order to Live; Silver Shoes; Happy

<i>In Order to Live</i> by Yeonmi Park. Thuy On A heartfelt tale of rocker Bon Scott.

Beginnings of playwright, director and filmmaker David Hare's remarkable career

David Hare has had a remarkably productive career as a playwright, director and filmmaker. Owen Richardson David Hare's memoir covers the 1970s, a period when he wins a scholarship to Lancing College and goes on to Cambridge, wondering if he is becoming the "the young man on the make".

Book reviews: Grandmother sends her regards, Butterflies in November, Undesired

Take Three dinkus Anna Creer Anna Creer delves into the world of fiction in translation.

Book review

The Predictions of Houellebecq review: Michel Houellebecq's vision far too real

<i>Submission</i>, by Michel Houellebecq.
Alison Broinowski Michel Houellebecq must be drowning his anomie somewhere in Paris, wishing he had ended his novel with a bang, rather than a whimper.

Brad Pitt to turn Australian young adult thriller Illuminae into major Hollywood film

Brad Pitt in <i>World War Z</i>. LINDA MORRIS Is this Australian teen book set to become the next Hunger Games movie blockbuster?

Short reviews of fiction from Australia and overseas

Gold Fame Citrus, by Claire Vaye Watkins. Kerryn Goldsworthy Short reviews by Kerryn Goldsworthy of novels by Claire Vaye Watkins, Bill Clegg, Christopher Raja, and Vendela Vida.

Bookmarks: News and views from the book world

<p></p> JASON STEGER Amazon gets a taste of its own medicine as punters start showrooming in its bookshop.

Isobelle Carmody's The Red Queen brings The Obernewtyn Chronicles to an end

Fantasy author Isobelle Carmody has finished her popular series The Obernewtyn Chronicles after more than 40 years.
Louise Schwartzkoff Isobelle Carmody was 14 years old when she began writing The Obernewtyn Chronicles. Forty-three years later, the final book has arrived.

Book review

Southern Cross Safari review: Bruce Gall's lively account of his travels

<i></i> Ian Fraser Former park manager Bruce Gall weaves multiple threads into a lively account of his tour around Australia.

Litbits: Leunig's cartoons that wandered off

<i></i> RON CERABONA  Literary news and events from in and around Canberra.

Top 10 bestsellers; The Wimpy Kid storms to No. 1

Old School, by Jeff Kinney The latest instalment in Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid has wasted no time in hitting the top of the bestseller charts.

Ted Hughes review: Jonathan Bate's biography centres on love and conflict

Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes Chris Wallace-Crabbe It is a measure of balance in Jonathan Bate's writing that the array of Ted Hughes' sexual encounters doesn't overbalance the whole book,

Rain Music review: Di Morrissey shows the way to another bestseller

<i>Rain Music</i>, by Di Morrissey. Dianne Dempsey The skills required to hold the tension in a long narrative, as Di Morrissey does in Rain Music, are not to be underestimated.

Big Blue Sky review: Peter Garrett's memoir is so much more than politics

<i></i> JOHN BIRMINGHAM The initial interest in Peter Garrett's memoir was sparked by the chance it offered to turn over the bones of the Rudd years, but it was music that first brought the author into the public realm, and almost certainly music for which he'll be remembered.

Reviews: Carmel Bird's memoir and short stories have precision of poetry

<i>My Hearts Are Your Hearts</i>, by Carmel Bird. Peter Craven Carmel Bird's stories have a grace and an inevitability that make you want to retell them or allude to them because they waste nothing. They are as light as air, as rapid as anecdote, but with an extraordinary grace of music.

The Eighties review: Frank Bongiorno's dance through a decade of characters

<i>The Eighties</i> by Frank Bongiorno. Jonathan Green Frank Bongiorno's The Eighties is a rattling account, quick-cut and filmic, of contrasting, often overlapping, events: high and low culture, the big moments nestling in the finer long-forgotten detail.

Career of Evil review: Rowling hits her straps with her unlikely detectives

<I>Career of Evil</i>, by Robert Galbraith. Sue Turnbull The pull of J.K. Rowling's crime series lies in its pairing of Cormoran, an amputee war hero, and Robin, a smart young woman who excels in defensive driving courses and counter-surveillance techniques.

Agatha Christie, Chandler and other great writers provide rules for crime fiction

<p></p> Jane Sullivan Raymond Chandler had his own 10 commandments of crime writing. He was scornful of the "cosy" school and insisted the novel should be "about real people in a real world".

The Women's Pages review: Debra Adelaide's fine novel about reading and writing

<i></i> Bernadette Brennan In Debra Adelaide's The Women's Pages, Dove, a 38-year-old graphic designer, who has read and reread Wuthering Heights since her teenager years, reads the novel aloud to her dying mother. This act of reading inspires her to write. 

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