Monday, 30 March 2015

Stella Prize shortlist for 2015


The Stella Prize is a major literary award celebrating Australian women’s writing. The prize is named after one of Australia’s iconic female authors, Stella Maria ‘Miles’ Franklin, and was awarded for the first time in 2013. Both nonfiction and fiction books by Australian women are eligible for entry.

The following six titles have been shortlisted for 2015:

The Strays by Emily Bitto
On her first day at a new school, Lily befriends one of the daughters of infamous avant-garde painter Evan Trentham. He and his wife are trying to escape the stifling conservatism of 1930s Australia by inviting other like-minded artists to live and work at their family home. Lily becomes infatuated with this wild, makeshift family and longs to truly be a part of it.
As the years pass, Lily observes the way the lives of these artists come to reflect the same themes as their art: Faustian bargains and spectacular falls from grace. Yet it’s not Evan, but his own daughters, who pay the price for his radicalism.

Foreign Soil by Maxine Beneba Clarke
In Melbourne’s western suburbs, in a dilapidated block of flats overhanging the rattling Footscray train-lines, a young black mother is working on a collection of stories. The book is called Foreign Soil. Inside its covers, a desperate asylum seeker is pacing the hallways of Sydney's notorious Villawood detention centre, a seven-year-old Sudanese boy has found solace in a patchwork bike, an enraged black militant is on the warpath through the rebel squats of 1960s Brixton, a Mississippi housewife decides to make the ultimate sacrifice to save her son from small-town ignorance, a young woman leaves rural Jamaica in search of her destiny, and a Sydney schoolgirl loses her way.

The Invisible History of the Human Race by Christine Kenneally
The Invisible History of the Human Race draws on cutting-edge research to reveal how both historical artifacts and DNA tell us where we come from and where we may be going. Kenneally shows how trust is inherited in Africa, silence is passed down in Tasmania, and how the history of nations is written in our DNA. From fateful, ancient encounters to modern mass migrations and medical diagnoses, Kenneally explains how the forces that shaped the history of the world ultimately shape each human who inhabits it.

The Eye of the Sheep by Sofie Laguna
Meet Jimmy Flick. He's not like other kids - he's both too fast and too slow. He sees too much, and too little. Jimmy's mother Paula is the only one who can manage him. She teaches him how to count sheep so that he can fall asleep. She holds him tight enough to stop his cells spinning. It is only Paula who can keep Jimmy out of his father's way. But when Jimmy's world falls apart, he has to navigate the unfathomable world on his own, and make things right.

The Golden Age by Joan London
It is 1954 and thirteen-year-old Frank Gold, refugee from wartime Hungary, is learning to walk again after contracting polio in Australia. At The Golden Age Children's Polio Convalescent Hospital in Perth, he sees Elsa, a fellow-patient, and they form a forbidden, passionate bond. This is a story of resilience, the irrepressible, enduring nature of love, and the fragility of life.

Heat and Light by Ellen van Neerven
Ellen van Neerven takes her readers on a journey that is mythical, mystical and still achingly real. Over three parts, she takes traditional storytelling and gives it a unique, contemporary twist. In ‘Heat’, we meet several generations of the Kresinger family and the legacy left by the mysterious Pearl. In ‘Water’, van Neerven offers a futuristic imagining of a people whose existence is under threat. While in ‘Light’, familial ties are challenged and characters are caught between a desire for freedom and a sense of belonging.

These outstanding books explore themes of identity, family, displacement and belonging, with distinctly Australian resonances. Two of the books are debut works, highlighting the enormous talent of Australian women writers, even those just beginning their careers as authors.

The 2015 Stella Prize will be awarded in Melbourne on the evening of Tuesday 21 April.

To reserve a copy of any of these books, simply click on the title. For more information on the Stella Prize, click here.

Leigh

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

OneClick Digital March highlights



The Woman Who Went To Bed For A Year by Sue Townsend
Narrated by Caroline Quentin
The day her children leave home, Eva climbs into bed and stays there. She's had enough - of her kids' carelessness, her husband's thoughtlessness and of the world's general indifference. Brian can't believe his wife is doing this. Who is going to make dinner? But Eva won't budge; and soon she realises to her horror that everyone has been taking her for granted - including herself.


Carte Blanche by Jeffrey Deaver
Narrated by Toby Stephens
In the world of espionage, giving an agent carte blanche on a mission comes with an enormous amount of trust, and tests both personal and professional judgement. This new novel asks the looming question of what is acceptable in matters of national and international security. Are there lines that even James Bond should not cross? Join James Bond for a fast-paced thrill ride across the globe…


The Brightest Star in the Sky by Marian Keyes
Narrated by Gerri Halligan
Fate is on its way to the tenants of 66 Star Street, bringing with it love and tragedy, friendship and heartbreak, and the power to change lives… One of them is falling in love; another is torn between two lovers. For some, secrets they want to stay buried will come to light and for others the unveiling of those secrets will have tragic consequences.



The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher by Hilary Mantel
Narrated by Jane Carr
In these ten bracingly subversive tales, all of Hilary Mantel’s gifts of characterisation and observation are fully engaged. Childhood cruelty is played out behind the bushes in ‘Comma’; nurses clash in ‘Harley Street’ over something more than professional differences. Whether set in a claustrophobic Saudi Arabian flat or on a precarious mountain road in Greece, these stories share an insight into the darkest recesses of the spirit.


To download these e-Audiobooks for FREE simply click onto their cover image. You will then be taken to directly to our OneClickdigital page.

Leigh

Monday, 23 March 2015

The 10 keys to success by John Bird

Are you struggling to achieve what you want? John Bird, founder of The Big Issue, believes that success is about deciding what you want, working out what is important to you and then going out to grab it. John gives simple, practical tips and advice, such as 'Stop looking for approval from others' and 'Start with small steps'. In this way he shows us that we can all achieve whatever we want. We just need to go after it.

In his inimitable no-nonsense style, John Bird shows us how to be successful in whatever we choose in just ten easy steps. No one is born deserving anything - you only deserve what you achieve by yourself. Drawing from this, John's philosophy is based on the idea that success is about deciding what you want, working out what is important to you and then going out to grab it. The beauty of this approach is that we can all achieve whatever we want; we just need to go after it. With unique lessons such as 'Don't be afraid to make mistakes along the way. Instead, make mistakes and learn from them' and 'Take responsibility for yourself as you are no one else's problem', The 10 Keys to Success shows us how uncomplicated success can be.

Needing a book to read on the train? This book is thin and powerful and one of many profound books I've read! John Bird is one of many excellent motivators!!! It's a quick and easy read which outlines 10 simple ways that can help those who are looking for some steps to change their life. Fully accessible and simple to understand. John Bird did a brilliant job here keeping his advice useful and concise.

Julia

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Tuesday, 17 March 2015

The House of Tides by Hannah Richell

If you like English family sagas in the vein of Rosumunde Pilcher, you will love The House of Tides by Hannah Richell.

The Tide family are all affected by a family tragedy and each one holds secrets which make for compelling reading.

The book is told in the narrative of different characters in different decades before, during and after the pivotal event –in a style similar to Jodi Piccoult in it’s drama and emotionally charged dialogue.

Set for the most part in an English coastal family home, “The House of the Tides” has a “Clifftops” geography which reflects the story itself – turbulent and rocky in some parts , and quiet and serene in others.

I found this book compelling to read and I would recommend it to anyone who would enjoy the journey of a family who confront truths about themselves, and gives the opportunity for forgiveness and love.

Fiona

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Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Withering-by-Sea by Judith Rossell

Withering-by-Sea tells the tale of Stella Montgomery, a young girl who lives in the Hotel Majestic with her three horrible Aunts. The hotel sits on a cliff in the town of Withering-by-Sea, and nothing too exciting seems to happen there. Stella passes the time by reading her atlas and trying to hide from the Aunts.

One night, Stella witnesses a murder, and finds herself the keeper of a curious treasure that is being pursued by a dangerous magician. The book is decorated with beautiful illustrations of Stella's adventures, and the author's interest in Victorian England has enabled some wonderful quirks and artefacts to find their way into the story.

This book is for junior readers, and contains some scary scenes and characters. However, the resourcefulness of Stella and her friends makes for a rollicking adventure story. Fans of Sally Rippin and Jen Storer will enjoy Judith Rossell's work.

Emily

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Thursday, 5 March 2015

New fiction titles for March


Its time to reveal the new fiction titles for March and this month we have a great selection for you to choose from.

Secret keeping for beginners Maggie Alderson
God in ruins Kate Atkinson
Vision in silver Anne Bishop
Cavendon women Barbara Taylor Bradford
Dead heat Patricia Briggs
Game of mirrors Andrea Camilleri
Host Robin Cook
Solitude Creek Jeffery Deaver
Someone is watching Joy Fielding
Lord of ashes Richard Ford
One mile under Andrew Gross
At the water’s edge Sara Gruen
Absolution Jonathan Holt
Bone tree Greg Iles
Road to hope Rachael Johns
Lady from Zagreb Philip Kerr
Werewolf cop Andrew Klavan
Tempting of Thomas Carrick Stephanie Laurens
World gone by Dennis Lehane
Signature kill David Levien
Leap of faith Fiona McCallum
Inspector of the dead David Morrell
God help the child Toni Morrison
Truth or die James Patterson
Corridors of the night Anne Perry
Assumed Nora Roberts
Lone star Paullina Simons
Guest cottage Nancy Thayer
Daughter of the house Rosie Thomas
Cellar Minette Walters

To place free holds simply click on your chosen title. You will then be transported to The Vault. Here you can place holds, browse our extensive new book and AV collections, download eBooks and eAudio and read magazines and newspapers, all at the click of a button.

Leigh

Monday, 2 March 2015

The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Despite their differences, sisters Vianne and Isabelle have always been close. Younger, bolder Isabelle lives in Paris while Vianne is content with life in the French countryside with her husband Antoine and their daughter. But when the Second World War breaks out and Antoine is conscripted to fight, Isabelle is sent to the country by her father to help Vianne.

As the war develops, the strength of the sisters’ relationship is put to the test. With life changing, and confronted by unbelievable horrors, Vianne and Isabelle find themselves responding in ways they never thought possible, as bravery and resistance take differing for each of the two sisters.


This story is a departure from the usual Kristin Hannah novels and personally I believe it is her best work to date. The story travels back and forth in time and is told from the parallel points of view of the two sisters. The historical details of World War II, its atrocities and the Resistance, are woven into the story and vividly portray the horrors and heartbreak of that devastating period. It is beautifully written, packed with emotion and action, and even though the subject matter is not my usual cup of tea, I was hooked from the first chapter. This is a book that I will be thinking about for a long time.

I can highly recommend this book but will also suggest that you keep a box of tissues close by.

Leigh

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