Author : Mary-Lou Stephens (Pan Macmillan $33.00)
Miraculously, Mary-Lou Stevens has just made it into her forties. With the aid of therapy and NA/AA she has overcome a tricky childhood (youngest of six kids, evangelical parents); drama school; drug and alcohol addiction; the lure of rock and roll; and her spectacularly poor taste in men. She has landed a dream job as a broadcaster for the ABC. Life is looking good. Except that Mary-Lou has a new boss, a psychopath in a suit, a harridan in high heels. Determined to avoid MORE therapy, and desperate to cope with an increasingly toxic work environment, Mary-Lou signs up for a ten-day meditation retreat that requires total silence, endless hours of sitting cross-legged, and a food-as-fuel kind of a diet (i.e. basic). For a woman who talks for a living, is rarely still and cooks for comfort, this was never going to be an easy ask.
Author : Kay Suanders (Harper Collins $33.00)
Do women kill? Yes they do, but often for very different reasons from men … Meet the women who have murdered – theyve killed children, husbands, lovers, relatives and friends. They include the desperate, the poor, the abused, the sexually betrayed, and the downright callous. In some cases they were motivated by fear of societys disapproval, in others they acted to save themselves from violence. Among their number were early backyard abortionists like Madame Olga and Madame Harper; poisoners like Caroline Grills and Yvonne Fletcher; women who committed infanticide like Keli Lane; women who formed lovers pacts to murder their husbands; and women whose troubled lives on the margins, like transgendered Eugenia Falleni/Harry Crawford, led them almost inevitably to crime. In her first, bestselling book, Notorious Australian Women, author Kay Saunders profiled some of the countrys most scandalous women. Here she turns her eye to those who have broken one of societys most cherished taboos and become both notorious and deadly.
Author : Leila Rudge (Walker Books $27.95)
Ted is a smart dog, with his own jumper. But he has lived at the pet store for as long as he can remember and nobody seems to notice him. Will Ted ever find the perfect place to live?
Author/Illustrator : Marc Martin (Penguin $25.00)
From armadillo to zebras, chameleons to quetzals, these exotic animals will surprise and delight. No curious explorer should be without Marc Martin’s stunning celebration of strange and beautiful creatures from all over the world. Here is a book of wonder, a unique and breathtaking treasure from one of Australia’s most outstanding new talents.
Author : Lily Brett (Penguin, rrp $30.00)
Lola Bensky is a nineteen-year-old rock journalist who irons her hair straight and asks a lot of questions. A high-school dropout, she’s not sure how she got the job – but she’s been sent by her Australian newspaper right to the heart of the London music scene at the most exciting time in music history: 1967.
Lola spends her days planning diets and interviewing rock stars. In London, Mick Jagger makes her a cup of tea, Jimi Hendrix (possibly) propositions her and Cher borrows her false eyelashes. At the Monterey International Pop Festival, Lola props up Brian Jones and talks to Janis Joplin about sex. In Los Angeles, she discusses being overweight with Mama Cass and tries to pluck up the courage to ask Cher to return those false eyelashes.
Lola has an irrepressible curiosity, but she begins to wonder whether the questions she asks these extraordinary young musicians are really a substitute for questions about her parents’ calamitous past that can’t be asked or answered. As Lola moves on through marriage, motherhood, psychoanalysis and a close relationship with an unexpected pair of detectives, she discovers the question of what it means to be human is the hardest one for anyone – including herself – to answer.
Drawing on her own experiences as a young journalist, the bestselling author of Too Many Men has created an unforgettable character in the unconventional and courageous Lola. Genuinely funny and deeply moving, Lola Bensky shows why Lily Brett is one of our most distinctive and internationally acclaimed authors.