Block of Books
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  • DANCING WITH THE OCTOPUS
    DANCING WITH THE OCTOPUS
    HARDING DEBORAH
    ISBN: 9781788165167
    Title: DANCING WITH THE OCTOPUS
    Author: HARDING DEBORAH
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    One Omaha winter day in 1978, when Debora Harding was just fourteen, she was abducted at knife-point, thrown into a van, assaulted, held for ransom, and left to die.

    But what if this wasn't the most traumatic, defining event in her childhood?

    Undertaking a radical project, Debora Harding dexterously shifts between the past and present to unravel her story. From the immediate aftermath to the possibility of restorative justice twenty years later, Dancing with the Octopus lays bare the social and political forces that act upon us after the experience of serious crime. A vivid, sly and intimate portrait of one family's disintegration, this is a darkly humorous and ground-breaking narrative of reckoning and recovery.

    Imprint: Profile Books
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • DECENT PEOPLE
    DECENT PEOPLE
    JELLIE DAVID
    ISBN: 9781743057520
    Title: DECENT PEOPLE
    Author: JELLIE DAVID
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Decent People tells the story of David Jellie's ancestors from their arrival in Australia up to his parent's generation. They came from Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England and Croatia - all arriving between 1835 and 1861. Three of them were sailors who jumped ship, and all gravitated to the Western District of Victoria where they became pioneer farmers. Their families are still rooted there.

    Some prospered and none failed. These pioneer Australians were not dwelling on the past when they left the shores of their homelands, but were looking to a new future for themselves and their successors. They were touched by the vicissitudes of the time and place of their lives - shipwreck, infant mortality, pandemic, untimely death, human frailty, drought, economic depressions and wars.

    They were all decent people.

    In Decent People David Jellie tells their stories with tenderness, intimacy, humour and gratitude.

    David Jellie commenced his career as a structural engineer with the Country Roads Board of Victoria in 1961. David participated in the development of Australian design codes and has written many technical papers and books - mainly relating to bridge design and construction and safety in construction. He was an Adjunct Professor at RMIT University.

    Imprint: WAKEFIELD
    RRP: $34.95

    Price: $34.95
  • DICTIONARY OF LOST WORDS
    DICTIONARY OF LOST WORDS
    WILLIAMS PIP
    ISBN: 9781922400277
    Title: DICTIONARY OF LOST WORDS
    Author: WILLIAMS PIP
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In 1901, the word 'Bondmaid' was discovered missing from the Oxford English Dictionary. This is the story of the girl who stole it.

    Esme is born into a world of words. Motherless and irrepressibly curious, she spends her childhood in the 'Scriptorium', a garden shed in Oxford where her father and a team of dedicated lexicographers are collecting words for the very first Oxford English Dictionary. Esme's place is beneath the sorting table, unseen and unheard. One day a slip of paper containing the word 'bondmaid' flutters to the floor. Esme rescues the slip and stashes it in an old wooden case that belongs to her friend, Lizzie, a young servant in the big house. Esme begins to collect other words from the Scriptorium that are misplaced, discarded or have been neglected by the dictionary men. They help her make sense of the world.

    Over time, Esme realises that some words are considered more important than others, and that words and meanings relating to women's experiences often go unrecorded. While she dedicates her life to the Oxford English Dictionary, secretly, she begins to collect words for another dictionary: The Dictionary of Lost Words.

    Set when the women's suffrage movement was at its height and the Great War loomed, The Dictionary of Lost Words reveals a lost narrative, hidden between the lines of a history written by men. It's a delightful, lyrical and deeply thought-provoking celebration of words, and the power of language to shape the world and our experience of it.

    Imprint: Affirm Press
    RRP: $19.99
    Price: $19.99
  • DOGS BEST FRIEND : A Brief History of an Unbreakable Bond
    DOGS BEST FRIEND : A Brief History of an Unbreakable Bond
    GARFIELD SIMON
    ISBN: 9781474610742
    Title: DOGS BEST FRIEND : A Brief History of an Unbreakable Bond
    Author: GARFIELD SIMON
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    One of the first words we learn. Perhaps the best friend we'll have. An animal so much part of our lives that we speak to it like a child and spend small fortunes on its wellbeing and wardrobe.

    Dogs and humans: in the last 200 years no inter-species relationship has developed so fast nor come so far. Dogs accompany us in every walk of life, usually three times a day. How and why did this relationship begin? How has it changed over the centuries? And who's getting the upper hand?

    DOG'S BEST FRIEND investigates this unique bond by revisiting some of the most important milestones in our shared journey. It begins with the earliest visual evidence on ancient rock art, and ends at the laboratory that sequenced the first dog genome. En route we encounter the first Labradoodle in Australia, a misguidedly loyal Akita in Japan, an ill-fated Poodle trainer in the United States, and a hilariously disobedient Romanian rescue dog named Kratu at the Birmingham NEC. We will also meet Corgis and Dorgis at the Palace, the weightless mutniks of the Soviet space programme, a Dalmatian who impersonates Hitler, and an owner who claims his Border Collie can remember the names of more than a thousand soft toys.

    If you own or once owned a dog, you will know that our relationship can be as rich, complicated and rewarding as the relationship we have with other humans, and the book reflects this diversity with the aid of trainers, breeders and psychologists. Above all, it explores the extraordinary ability of dogs to enhance so many aspects of our lives. DOG'S BEST FRIEND is as entertaining as it is informative, as eccentric as it is erudite, and all told with Simon Garfield's irrepressible gift for witty and insightful storytelling.

    Imprint: Weidenfeld & Nicolson
    RRP: $32.99
    Price: $32.99
  • DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON
    DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON
    ORWELL GEORGE
    ISBN: 9781787302532
    Title: DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON
    Author: ORWELL GEORGE
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    'Orwell was the great moral force of his age' Spectator

    You can live on a shilling a day in Paris if you know how. But it is a complicated business.

    When he was a struggling writer in his twenties, George Orwell lived as a down-and-out among the poorest members of society. In this early memoir, he recounts shocking experiences working as a penniless dishwasher in Paris, pawning clothes to buy a day's worth of bread and wine, sleeping in bug-infested bunks, trading survival skills and cigarette butts with fellow tramps, and trudging between London's workhouse spikes for a few hours' sleep and tea-and-two-slices.

    With sensitivity and compassion, Orwell exposed the hardships of poverty and gave readers an unprecedented look at life lived on the fringes of society. His vivid account is an enduring call to support the world's most vulnerable people and exemplifies his belief that 'The greatest of evils and the worst of crimes is poverty.'

    The Authoritative Text. With a new introduction by Kerry Hudson.

    *This stunning edition of Down and Out in Paris and London features period artwork by Elizabeth Friedlander, one of Europe's pre-eminent 20th-century graphic designers. Look out for complementjary editions of Orwell's essential works Animal Farm and Nineteen Eighty-Four.*



    Imprint: Harvill Secker
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • EINSTEINS WAR
    EINSTEINS WAR
    STANLEY MATTHEW
    ISBN: 9780241985618
    Title: EINSTEINS WAR
    Author: STANLEY MATTHEW
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In 1916, Arthur Eddington, a war-weary British astronomer, opened a letter written by an obscure German professor named Einstein. The neatly printed equations on the scrap of paper outlined his world-changing theory of general relativity. Until then Einstein's masterpiece of time and space had been trapped behind the physical and ideological lines of battle, unknown.

    Einstein's name is now synonymous with 'genius', but it was not an easy road. He spent a decade creating relativity and his ascent to global celebrity owed much to against-the-odds international collaboration, including Eddington's globe-spanning expedition of 1919 - two years before they finally met. We usually think of scientific discovery as a flash of individual inspiration, but here we see it is the result of hard work, gambles and wrong turns.

    Einstein's War is a celebration of what science can offer when bigotry and nationalism are defeated. Using previously unknown sources and written like a thriller, it shows relativity being built brick-by-brick in front of us, as it happened 100 years ago.

    Imprint: Penguin Books
    RRP: $22.99
    Price: $22.99
  • END OF HISTORY AND THE LAST MAN
    END OF HISTORY AND THE LAST MAN
    FUKUYAMA FRANCIS
    ISBN: 9780241991039
    Title: END OF HISTORY AND THE LAST MAN
    Author: FUKUYAMA FRANCIS
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Ever since its first publication in 1992, The End of History and the Last Man has provoked controversy and debate. Francis Fukuyama's prescient analysis of religious fundamentalism, politics, scientific progress, ethical codes, and war is as essential for a world fighting fundamentalist terrorists, populists and pandemics as it was for the end of the Cold War. Now updated with a new afterword, The End of History and the Last Man is a modern classic.

    Imprint: Penguin Books
    RRP: $27.99

    Price: $27.99
  • EX LIBRIS : 100+ Books to Read and Reread
    EX LIBRIS : 100+ Books to Read and Reread
    KAKUTANI MICHIKO
    ISBN: 9780008421953
    Title: EX LIBRIS : 100+ Books to Read and Reread
    Author: KAKUTANI MICHIKO
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    From 'the most powerful book critic in the English-speaking world' (Vanity Fair) comes an inspiring and beautifully illustrated selection of the life-changing books that none of us should miss

    'Why do we love books so much?'

    For legendary literary critic Michiko Kakutani, books have always been an escape and a sanctuary, the characters of some novels feeling so real to her childhood self that she worried they might leap out of the pages at night if she left the book cover open. In Ex Libris, she offers a personal selection of over 100 works of fiction, nonfiction and poetry, with passionate essays on why each has had a profound effect on her life.

    From Homer's The Odyssey to The Writings and Speeches of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale to Elena Ferrante's Neapolitan Novels, Ex Libris covers a rich and vast range of classics, old and new, that will help build a well-rounded reader and citizen of the world. With gorgeous illustrations by lettering artist Dana Tanamachi that evoke vintage bookplates leafed between Kakutani's inspiring essays, Ex Libris points us to our next great read - and proves an unmissable reminder of why we fell in love with reading in the first place.

    Imprint: William Collins
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • FEATHERHOOD
    FEATHERHOOD
    GILMOUR CHARLIE
    ISBN: 9781474622424
    Title: FEATHERHOOD
    Author: GILMOUR CHARLIE
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    'One of the best books I have ever read. Incredibly moving' Elton John

    'I cant recommend it too highly' Helen Macdonald

    'Ranks among the best modern coming-of-age memoirs' Sunday Times

    'Where Helen Macdonald's H Is For Hawk meets Gerald Durrell's My Family And Other Animals ... Remarkable' Daily Mail

    'Beautiful, wise, compassionate and powerful' Isabella Tree

    This is a story about birds and fathers.

    About the young magpie that fell from its nest in a Bermondsey junkyard into Charlie Gilmour's life - and swiftly changed it. Demanding worms around the clock, riffling through his wallet, sharing his baths and roosting in his hair... About the jackdaw kept at a Cornish stately home by Heathcote Williams, anarchist, poet, magician, stealer of Christmas, and Charlie's biological father who vanished from his life in the dead of night.

    It is a story about repetition across generations and birds that run in the blood; about a terror of repeating the sins of the father and a desire to build a nest of one's own. It is a story about change - from wild to tame; from sanity to madness; from life to death to birth; from freedom to captivity and back again, via an insane asylum, a prison and a magpie's nest.

    And ultimately, it is the story of a love affair between a man and a magpie.

    Imprint: Weidenfeld & Nicolson
    RRP: $32.99
    Price: $32.99
  • FIRE FLOOD AND PLAGUE
    FIRE FLOOD AND PLAGUE
    CUNNINGHAM SOPHIE [ED]
    ISBN: 9781761040405
    Title: FIRE FLOOD AND PLAGUE
    Author: CUNNINGHAM SOPHIE [ED]
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Writers, scientists, historians, journalists and commentators consider subjects as broad as culture and the arts, working as a doctor, travel, domestic violence, security, immigration, the death of a loved one, geopolitics, distance and zoom to ensure we never forget the experience of this pile-on of a year.

    Including original pieces from Lenore Taylor, Nyadol Nuon, Christos Tsiolkas, Melissa Lucashenko, Billy Griffiths, Jess Hill, Kim Scott, Brenda Walker, Jane Rawson, Omar Sakr, Richard McGregor, Jennifer Mills, Gabrielle Chan, John Birmingham, Tim Flannery, Rebecca Giggs, Kate Cole-Adams, George Megalogenis, James Bradley, Alison Croggan, Melanie Cheng, Kirsten Tranter, Tom Griffiths, Joelle Gergis and Delia Falconer.

    Imprint: Vintage
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • FOOTNOTES : A Journey Around Britain in the Company of Great Writers
    FOOTNOTES : A Journey Around Britain in the Company of Great Writers
    FIENNES PETER
    ISBN: 9781786077707
    Title: FOOTNOTES : A Journey Around Britain in the Company of Great Writers
    Author: FIENNES PETER
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    'The premise of this book is simple, or that is what it seemed when I started.'
    Peter Fiennes follows in the footsteps of twelve inspirational writers, bringing modern Britain into focus by peering through the lens of the past.
    The journey starts in Dorset, shaped by the childhood visions of Enid Blyton, and ends with Charles Dickens on the train that took him to his final resting place in Westminster Abbey.
    From the wilds of Skye and Snowdon, to a big night out in Birmingham with J. B. Priestley and Beryl Bainbridge, Footnotes is a series of evocative biographies, a lyrical foray into the past, and a quest to understand Britain through the books, journals and diaries of some of our greatest writers.
    And as Fiennes travels the country, and roams across the centuries, he wonders-
    'Who are we? What do we want? They seemed like good questions to ask, in the company of some of our greatest writers, given these restless times.'

    Imprint: ONE WORLD
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • FREE RANGE FREDDY
    FREE RANGE FREDDY
    BRIGHT RACHEL
    ISBN: 9781408350096
    Title: FREE RANGE FREDDY
    Author: BRIGHT RACHEL
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A new egg is ready to hatch, and the chickens all think they know what to expect. But when Freddy bursts from his shell with a multi-coloured explosion, it's clear he's not like ANY other chick they know!

    Join Free-Range Freddy as he turns the farmyard upside down and shows the other hens just how egg-citing life can be if you only look at it a little differently . . .

    A delightfully funny rhyming picture book about the importance of being true to oneself and embracing difference. Award-winning wordsmith Rachel Bright, creator of The Lion Inside and The Koala Who Could, pairs with wonderfully talented debut illustrator Izzy Evans, winner of the Carmelite Prize.

    Look out for these other egg-cellent books from Rachel Bright:

    The Lion Inside

    The Koala Who Could

    The Squirrels Who Squabbled

    The Way Home For Wolf

    All I Want For Christmas

    Love You Hoo

    Amazing Daddy

    Imprint: Orchard Books
    RRP: $24.99
    Price: $24.99
  • FRENCH ART OF NOT TRYING TOO HARD
    FRENCH ART OF NOT TRYING TOO HARD
    POURRIOL OLLIVIER
    ISBN: 9781788163279
    Title: FRENCH ART OF NOT TRYING TOO HARD
    Author: POURRIOL OLLIVIER
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    We've often been told that anything worthwhile can only be achieved through sustained effort, hard work or 10,000 hours of practice. But what if the opposite were true?

    The French have known it for centuries. We can see it in their laissez faire parenting, their chic style and their haute cuisine - the French barely seem to be trying, yet the results are world famous.

    Here, philosopher Ollivier Pourriol draws lessons from French legends to show that the best results in life come not from working harder but from letting go. From Stendhal's writing technique to Phillipe Petit's grace on the tightrope; from the eloquence of Cyrano de Bergerac to the serenity of Rodin and the simplicity of Descartes, this book shows how the greatest French artists, musicians, writers, thinkers and chefs have perfected the art of making their achievements seem easy. And how we can cultivate such je ne sais quoi in our own lives.

    Imprint: Profile Books
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • FRIENDLY FIRE : How Israel became its own worst enemy
    FRIENDLY FIRE : How Israel became its own worst enemy
    AYALON AMI
    ISBN: 9781922310521
    Title: FRIENDLY FIRE : How Israel became its own worst enemy
    Author: AYALON AMI
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A highly decorated Israeli military officer, leader, and former director of the internal security service, Shin Bet, sees the light on what his country must do to achieve a lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

    In this deeply personal journey of discovery, Ami Ayalon seeks input and perspective from Palestinians and Israelis whose experiences differ from his own. As head of the Shin Bet security agency, he gained empathy for 'the enemy' and learned that when Israel carries out anti-terrorist operations in a political context of hopelessness, the Palestinian public will support violence, because they have nothing to lose.

    Researching and writing Friendly Fire, he came to understand that his patriotic life had blinded him to the self-defeating nature of policies that have undermined Israel's civil society while heaping humiliation upon its Palestinian neighbours. 'If Israel becomes an Orwellian dystopia,' Ayalon writes, 'it won't be thanks to a handful of theologians dragging us into the dark past. The secular majority will lead us there motivated by fear and propelled by silence.'

    Ayalon is a realist, not an idealist, and many who consider themselves Zionists will regard as radical his conclusions about what Israel must do to achieve relative peace and security and to sustain itself as a Jewish homeland and a liberal democracy.

    Imprint: Scribe Publications
    RRP: $35.00

    Price: $35.00
  • GLAMOUR BOYS : The Secret Story of the Rebels who Fought for Britain to Defeat Hitler
    GLAMOUR BOYS : The Secret Story of the Rebels who Fought for Britain to Defeat Hitler
    BRYANT CHRIS
    ISBN: 9781526630551
    Title: GLAMOUR BOYS : The Secret Story of the Rebels who Fought for Britain to Defeat Hitler
    Author: BRYANT CHRIS
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A story of unsung bravery at a defining moment in Britain's history

    'A fascinating, beautifully written story I had never heard before' Hugh Grant

    We like to think we know the story of how Britain went to war with Germany in 1939, but there is one chapter that has never been told. In the early 1930s, a group of young, queer British MPs visited Berlin on a series of trips that would change the course of the Second World War. As Hitler rose to power, they watched the Nazis arrest their gay and Jewish friends, send them to concentration camps and murder them.

    These men were some of the first to warn Britain about Hitler, repeatedly speaking out against their government's policy of appeasing him. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain hated them. Branding them 'the glamour boys', he had them followed, harassed, spied upon and derided in the press. They suffered abuse, innuendo and threats of de-selection. At a time when even the suggestion of homosexuality could land you in prison, the bravery these men were forced to show in their personal lives gave them extraordinary courage in public. Adept at hiding their true nature, some became talented spies, while others witnessed the brutality of Hitler's camps first hand. Four of them died in action. And without them, this country would never have faced down the Nazis.

    Based on years of archival research, this is a story of unsung bravery at a defining moment in Britain's history.

    Imprint: Bloomsbury Publishing
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • GLITCH FEMINISM : A Manifesto
    GLITCH FEMINISM : A Manifesto
    RUSSELL LEGACY
    ISBN: 9781786632661
    Title: GLITCH FEMINISM : A Manifesto
    Author: RUSSELL LEGACY
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Simone de Beauvoir said "One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman." The glitch announces- One is not born, but rather becomes, a body.
    The divide between the digital and the real world no longer exists- we are connected all the time. What must we do to work out who we are, and where we belong? How do we find the space to grow, unite and confront the systems of oppression? This conflict can be found in the fissures between the body, gender and identity. Too often, the glitch is considered a mistake, a faulty overlaying, a bug in the system; in contrast, Russell compels us to find liberation here. In a radical call to arms Legacy Russell argues that we need to embrace the glitch in order to break down the binaries and limitations that define gender, race, sexuality.
    Glitch Feminism is a vital new chapter in cyberfeminism, one that explores the relationship between gender, technology and identity. In an urgent manifesto, Russell reveals the many ways that the Glitch performs and transforms- how it refuses, throws shade, ghosts, errs, encrypt, mobilizes and survives. Developing the argument through memoir, art and critical theory, Russell also looks at the work of contemporary artists who travel through the glitch in their work. Timely and provocative, Glitch Feminism shows how the error can be a revolution.

    Imprint: Bloomsbury Publishing
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
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