Ep:24 Pip Smith – Half Wild

Published by Allen & Unwin

Sydney, 1938. After being hit by a car on Oxford Street, sixty-three-year-old Jean Ford lies in a coma in Sydney Hospital. Doctors talk across her body, nurses jab her in the arm with morphine, detectives arrive to take her fingerprints. She has £100 in her pocket, but no identification. Memories come back to her – a murder trial, a life in prison – but with each prick of the needle her memories begin to shift.

Wellington, 1885. Tally Ho doesn’t need to go to school because she is going to be a fisherman or a cart driver or a butcher boy like Harry Crawford. Wellington is her town and she makes up the rules. Papa takes her fishing, Nonno teaches her how to jump fences on his horse Geronimo – life gallops on the way it should, until a brother, baby William, is born. ‘Go and play with your sisters,’ Papa says, but wearing dresses and sipping tea is not the life for Tally Ho. Taking the advice of her hero, Harry Crawford, she runs away.

Sydney, 1917. The burned body of a woman is discovered on the banks of the Lane Cove River. Was she a mad woman? A drunk who’d accidentally set herself on fire? Nobody knows, until-three years later – a tailor’s apprentice tells police that his mother went missing that same weekend, and that his stepfather, Harry Crawford, is not who he seems to be. Who, then, is he?

Based on the true lives of Eugenia Falleni, Half Wild is Pip Smith’s dazzling debut novel.

Read more about Pip Smith here

 

Ep:23 Katherine Brabon – The Memory Artist

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.

Read about Katherine Brabon here

The Memory Artist is published by Allen & Unwin

4: Friday Edition – New Book Releases

Hi and welcome to the Friday Edition, listen here for today’s books.

Come back to me by Sara Foster published by Simon & Schuster

A taut psychological drama that will keep you enthralled until the very last page

When Mark introduces his date, Julia, to Chloe and her husband at a London restaurant, it’s obvious something is very, very wrong. Alex and Julia pretend not to know each other, but the shocked expressions on their faces tell another story.

As the mystery of Julia’s identity unravels a terrible tragedy from ten years ago gradually comes to light. While Chloe struggles with a secret of her own, Alex has to decide whether he should take Julia back to Australia to try to lay the past to rest, when doing so will risk all he has with the wife he loves.


Anaesthesia – the gift of oblivion and the mystery of consciousness by Kate Cole Adams (Non-fiction) published by Text Publishing

You know how it is when you go under. The jab, the countdown, the—
—and then you wake.
This book is about what happens in between.

Until a hundred and seventy years ago many people chose death over the ordeal of surgery. Now hundreds of thousands undergo operations every day. Anaesthesia has made it possible.

But how much do we really know about what happens to us on the operating table? Can we hear what’s going on around us? Is pain still pain if we are not awake to feel it, or don’t remember it afterwards? How does the unconscious mind deal with the body’s experience of being cut open and ransacked? And how can we help ourselves through it?

Haunting, lyrical, sometimes shattering, Anaesthesia leavens science with personal experience to bring an intensely human curiosity to the unknowable realm beyond consciousness.


All these perfect strangers by Aoife Clifford published by Simon & Schuster. 

This is not a new release but it caught my eye for all of you who love a good crime story.

Within six months of Pen Sheppard starting university, three of her new friends are dead. Only Pen knows the reason why. College life had seemed like a wonderland of sex, drugs and maybe even love. Full of perfect strangers, it felt like the ideal place for Pen to shed the confines of her small home town and reinvent herself. But the darkness of her past clings tight, and when the killings begin and friendships are betrayed, Pen’s secrets are revealed. The consequences are deadly.

‘A stunning debut’ – Sydney Morning Herald, ‘Unputdownable’ – Marie Claire.  ‘Best book I’ve read this year’– Fiona Barton, Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author of The Widow are just some of the praise for Aoife’s debut novel.

 

Ep:22 Sarah Bailey – The Dark Lake

A hot summer. A shocking murder. A town of secrets, waiting to explode. A brooding, suspenseful and explosive debut that will grip you from the first page to the last.

There were a few minutes when I was alone with her in the autopsy room. I felt wild. Absent. Before I could stop myself I was leaning close to her, telling her everything. The words draining out of me as she lay there. Her long damp hair hanging off the back of the steel table. Glassy eyes fixed blindly on the ceiling. She was still so beautiful, even in death.

Our secrets circled madly around the bright white room that morning. Rocking back and forth on my heels as I stood next to her, I knew how far in I was again, how comprehensively her death could undo me. I looked at Rosalind Ryan properly for the last time before breathing deeply, readying myself, letting her pull me back into her world, and I sank down, further and further, until I was completely, utterly under.

A beautiful young teacher has been murdered, her body found in the lake, strewn with red roses. Local policewoman Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock pushes to be assigned to the case, concealing the fact that she knew the murdered woman in high school years before.

But that’s not all Gemma’s trying to hide. As the investigation digs deeper into the victim’s past, other secrets threaten to come to light, secrets that were supposed to remain buried. The lake holds the key to solving the murder, but it also has the power to drag Gemma down into its dark depths.

The Dark Lake is an addictive crime thriller, a mesmerising account of one woman’s descent into deceit and madness, and a stunning debut that is already causing a stir around the world.

Read about Sarah Bailey here 

3:Friday Edition – New releases

Hello and welcome to episode three of Friday Edition – new releases.

Listen here to three short readings and information about the books and their authors.

This weeks new releases are

The Gulf by Anna Spargo Ryan published by Pan MacMillan Australia.

Patient 71 by Julie Randall published by Hachette Australia

and The Ones that Disappeared by Zana Fraillon published by Hachette Australia

Want to know more about the authors?  Just click on their name.

Coming up next Tuesday on The Book Podcast, an interview with Sarah Bailey author of The Dark Lake, an addictive crime thriller a stunning debut novel that is causing a stir around the world.

Too busy to get to the website?  Subscribe to The Book Podcast in iTunes (it’s free) and get the podcast automatically downloaded to your device.  Link to iTunes

Ep:21 Catherine Jinks – Charlatan

Charlatan is Catherine Jinks’ account of Thomas Guthrie Carr who was charged by Eliza Gray with mesmerising and then raping her while she was under his influence. But if mesmerism and Mr Carr were shams, was Eliza really raped?

With a driving narrative and novelistic pacing, this scrupulously researched account of the life of Thomas Guthrie Carr, stage mesmerist – who lied, fought and sleazed his way around Australia and New Zealand between 1865 and 1886 – is more than just a fascinating piece of social history. It’s also a mystery, a true crime story and a slyly humorous portrait of a man whose ferocious pursuit of fame and fortune made him an oddly contemporary figure.

With a supporting cast that includes the Duke of Edinburgh, the Mad Dentist of Wynyard, the Nunawading Messiah and a host of shady mesmerists, spiritualists, phrenologists and hired goons, Charlatan delves deeply into a forgotten side of colonial history.

Read about Catherine Jinks on her author page here