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1 y separately published work icon The Truth About Her Jacqueline Maley , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2021 21260214 2021 single work novel

'Journalist and single mother Suzy Hamilton gets a phone call one summer morning, and finds out that the subject of one of her investigative exposes, 25-year-old wellness blogger Tracey Doran, has killed herself overnight. Suzy is horrified by this news but copes in the only way she knows how - through work, mothering, and carrying on with her ill-advised, tandem affairs.

'The consequences of her actions catch up with Suzy over the course of a sticky Sydney summer. She starts receiving anonymous vindictive letters and is pursued by Tracey's mother wanting her, as a kind of rough justice, to tell Tracey's story, but this time, the right way.

'A tender, absorbing, intelligent and moving exploration of guilt, shame, female anger, and, in particular, mothering, with all its trouble and treasure, The Truth About Her is mostly though a story about the nature of stories - who owns them, who gets to tell them, and why we need them. An entirely striking, stylish and contemporary novel, from a talented new writer.'

Source : publisher's blurb

1 y separately published work icon The Ripping Tree Nikki Gemmell , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2021 21259747 2021 single work novel historical fiction

'An illustrious family. A beautiful home. A shipwrecked young woman left on its doorstep.

'Don't think they're going to save her.

'Early 1800s. Thomasina Trelora is on her way to the colonies. Her fate: to be married to a clergyman she's never met. As the Australian coastline comes into view a storm wrecks the ship and leaves her lying on the rocks, near death. She's saved by an Aboriginal man who carries her to the door of a grand European house, Willowbrae.

'Tom is now free to be whoever she wants to be and a whole new life opens up to her. But as she's drawn deeper into the intriguing life of this grand estate, she discovers that things aren't quite as they seem. She stumbles across a horrifying secret at the heart of this world of colonial decorum - and realises she may have exchanged one kind of prison for another.

'The Ripping Tree is an intense, sharp shiver of a novel, which brings to mind such diverse influences as The Turn of the Screw, Rebecca and the film Get Out as much as it evokes The Secret River. A powerful and gripping tale of survival written in Nikki Gemmell's signature lyrical and evocative prose, it examines the darkness at the heart of early colonisation. Unsettling, audacious, thrilling and unputdownable.'

Source : publisher's blurb

1 y separately published work icon The Royal Correspondent Alexandra Joel , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2021 20852821 2021 single work novel romance

'Success would depend on taking a dangerous risk.

'When Blaise Hill, a feisty young journalist from one of Sydney's toughest neighbourhoods, is dispatched to London at the dawn of the swinging sixties to report on Princess Margaret's controversial marriage to an unconventional photographer, she is drawn into an elite realm of glamour and intrigue.

'As the nation faces an explosive upheaval, Blaise must grapple with a series of shocking scandals at the pinnacle of British society. Yet, haunted by a threat from her past and torn between two very different men, who can she trust in a world of hidden motives and shifting alliances? If she makes the wrong choice, she will lose everything.

'Inspired by real events, The Royal Correspondent is a compelling story of love and betrayal, family secrets and conspiracy that takes you from the gritty life of a daily newspaper to the opulent splendour of Buckingham Palace.' (Publication summary)

1 2 y separately published work icon O Steven Carroll , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2021 20764796 2021 single work novel historical fiction

'A woman writes a story for her married lover. Something she always thought of as a fairy tale. A fairy tale with a dark side, like the best of fairy tales...'

'Occupied France, 1943. France's most shameful hour. In these dark times, Dominique starts an illicit affair with a distinguished publisher, a married man. He introduces her to the Resistance, and she comes to have a taste for the clandestine life - she has never felt more alive. Shortly after the war, to prove something to her lover, she writes an erotic novel about surrender, submission and shame. Never meant to be published, Story of O becomes a national scandal and success, the world's most famous erotic novel. But what is the story really about - Dominique, her lover, or the country and the wartime past it would rather forget? 

'From one of our foremost writers, the acclaimed and multi-award-winning Steven Carroll, comes O, a reimagining of what might have been, the story of a novel that took on a life of its own and mirrored its times in a way the author never dreamt of.'

Source : publisher's blurb

1 2 y separately published work icon Boy on Fire : The Young Nick Cave Mark Mordue , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2020 20420025 2020 single work biography

'The first volume of the long-awaited, near-mythical biography of Nick Cave, by award-winning writer, Mark Mordue.

'A beautiful, profound, profane and poetic biography of the early formative years of the dark prince of Australian rock 'n' roll, Boy on Fire is Nick Cave's creation story. This is the story of the artist first as a boy, then as a young man. A deeply insightful work which charts his family, friends, influences, milieu and, most of all, his music, it reveals how Nick Cave shaped himself into the extraordinary artist he would become.

'As well as a powerfully compelling biography of a singular, uncompromising artist, Boy on Fire is also a fascinating social and cultural biography, a vivid and evocative rendering of a time and place, from the fast-running dark river and ghost gums of Wangaratta, to the nascent punk scene which hit staid 1970s Melbourne like an atom bomb, right through to the torn wallpaper, sticky carpet and the manic, wild energy of nights at the Crystal Ballroom.' (Publication summary)

3 5 y separately published work icon Sorrow and Bliss Meg Mason , London : Fourth Estate , 2020 19671637 2020 single work novel

'This novel is about a woman called Martha. She knows there is something wrong with her but she doesn't know what it is. Her husband Patrick thinks she is fine. He says everyone has something, the thing is just to keep going.

'Martha told Patrick before they got married that she didn't want to have children. He said he didn't mind either way because he has loved her since he was fourteen and making her happy is all that matters, although he does not seem able to do it.

'By the time Martha finds out what is wrong, it doesn't really matter anymore. It is too late to get the only thing she has ever wanted. Or maybe it will turn out that you can stop loving someone and start again from nothing - if you can find something else to want.

'The book is set in London and Oxford. It is sad and funny.' (Publication summary)

1 5 y separately published work icon All Our Shimmering Skies Trent Dalton , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2020 18652700 2020 single work novel historical fiction

'The bestselling author of Boy Swallows Universe, Trent Dalton, returns with All Our Shimmering Skies - a glorious novel destined to become another Australian classic.

'Darwin, 1942, and as Japanese bombs rain overhead, motherless Molly Hook, the gravedigger’s daughter, turns once again to the sky for guidance. She carries a stone heart inside a duffel bag next to the map that leads to Longcoat Bob, the deep country sorcerer who put a curse on her family. By her side are the most unlikely travelling companions: a razor-tongued actress named Greta and a fallen Japanese fighter pilot named Yukio. ‘Run, Molly, run,’ says the daytime sky. Run to the vine forests. Run to northern Australia’s wild and magical monsoon lands. Run to friendship. Run to love. Run. Because the graverobber’s coming, Molly, and the night-time sky is coming with him. So run, Molly, run.

'All Our Shimmering Skies is a story about gifts that fall from the sky, curses we dig from the earth and the secrets we bury inside ourselves. It is an odyssey of true love and grave danger; of the darkness and the light; of bones and blue skies. A buoyant, beautiful and magical novel abrim with warmth, wit and wonder, a love letter to Australia and the art of looking up.' (Publication summary)

1 2 y separately published work icon Olive Cotton : A Life in Photography Helen Ennis , Pymble : Fourth Estate , 2019 16573779 2019 single work biography

'A landmark biography of a singular and important Australian photographer, Olive Cotton, by an award-winning writer - beautifully written and deeply moving.

'Olive Cotton was one of Australia's pioneering modernist photographers, a woman whose talent was recognised as equal to her first husband's, Max Dupain, and a significant artist in her own right. Together, Olive and Max could have been Australia's answer to Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, or Ray and Charles Eames. The photographic work they produced during the 1930s and '40s was extraordinary and distinctively their own.

'But in the early 1940s Cotton quit their marriage and Sydney studio to live with second husband Ross McInerney and raise their two children in a tent on a farm near Cowra - later moving to a hut that had no running water, electricity or telephone. Despite these barriers, and not having access to a darkroom, Olive continued her photography but away from the public eye. Then a landmark exhibition in Sydney in 1985 shot her back to fame, followed by a major retrospective at the AGNSW in 2000. Australian photography would never be same.

'This is a moving and powerful story about talent, creativity and women, and about what it means for an artist to manage the competing demands of art, work, marriage, children and family.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 10 y separately published work icon The Erratics Vicki Laveau-Harvie , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2019 15542580 2018 single work autobiography

'The family secrets are only just beginning to unravel... 

'When her elderly mother is hospitalised after an accident, Vicki is summoned to her parents' isolated and run-down ranch home in Alberta, Canada, to care for her father. She has been estranged from her parents for many years (the reasons for which become quickly clear) and is horrified by what she discovers on her arrival.

'For years her mother has suffered from an undiagnosed mental illness but carefully hidden her delusions and unpredictable behaviour behind a carefully guarded mask, and has successfully isolated herself and her husband from all their friends. But once in hospital her mask begins to crack and her actions leave everyone baffled and confused ... and eventually scared for their lives.

'Meanwhile Vicki's father, who has been systematically starved and harruanged for years, and kept virtually a prisoner in his own home, begins to realise what has happened to him and embarks upon plans of his own to combat his wife.

'The ensuing power play between the two takes a dramatic turn and leaves Vicki stuck in the middle of a bizzare and ludicrously strange family dilemma. All this makes for an intensely gripping, yet black-humoured family drama which will leave you on the edge of your seat.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 3 y separately published work icon The Year of the Beast Steven Carroll , Sydney South : Fourth Estate , 2019 15014937 2019 single work novel

'Melbourne, 1917: the times are tumultuous, the city is in the grip of a kind of madness. The Great War is raging, and it is the time of the hotly contested second conscription referendum. Fights are raging on the streets, rallies for 'YES' and 'NO' facing off against each other on opposing corners. Men, women and children, jostling, brawling, fighting and spitting.

'Through these streets walks Maryanne, forty years old, unmarried and seven months pregnant. These are uncertain, dangerous times for a woman in her position. And she is facing a difficult choice - a choice which gets more urgent by the day - whether to give her child up for adoption as the Church insists she does, or to keep her child and face an uncertain future.

'An extraordinary powerful novel of a time, a city and a woman, The Year of the Beast is Steven Carroll at his best. A rhythmic, insistent and pulsing novel that tells a compelling story of mothers, families, and what it means to be an individual, standing against the surge of the crowd.'  (Publication summary)

1 2 y separately published work icon Mrs. M : An Imagined History Luke Slattery , Sydney South : Fourth Estate , 2019 12034921 2017 single work novel historical fiction

'From one of Australia's foremost journalists, Luke Slattery, comes a bravura literary achievement, a rich and intense novel of an imagined history of desire, ambition and dashed dreams, and a portrait of one passionate, unforgettable woman - Elizabeth Macquarie.

'Elizabeth Macquarie, widow of the disgraced former Governor of New South Wales, Lachlan Macquarie, is in mourning - not only for her husband, but the loss of their shared dream to transform the penal colony into a bright new world. Over the course of one long sleepless night on the windswept isle of Mull, she remembers her life in that wild and strange country; a revolution of ideas as dramatic as any in history; and her dangerous alliance with the brilliant, mercurial Francis Greenway, the colony's maverick architect.

'A stirring, provocative and thrilling novel of passion, ideas, reforming zeal and desire.'

11 138 y separately published work icon My Brilliant Career Miles Franklin , Australia : Fourth Estate , 2018 Z161522 1901 single work novel (taught in 56 units)

My Brilliant Career was written by Stella Franklin (1879-1954) when she was just nineteen years old. The novel struggled to find an Australian publisher, but was published in London and Edinburgh in 1901 after receiving an endorsement from Henry Lawson. Although Franklin wrote under the pseudonym 'Miles Franklin', Lawson’s preface makes it clear that Franklin is, as Lawson puts it 'a girl.'

The novel relates the story of Sybylla Melvyn, a strong-willed young woman of the 1890s growing up in the Goulburn area of New South Wales and longing to be a writer.

1 y separately published work icon The Girl on the Page John Purcell , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2018 14770531 2018 single work novel

'Two women, two great betrayals, one path to redemption. A punchy, powerful and page-turning novel about the redemptive power of great literature, from industry insider, John Purcell.

'Amy Winston is a hard-drinking, bed-hopping, hot-shot young book editor on a downward spiral. Having made her name and fortune by turning an average thriller writer into a Lee Child, Amy is given the unenviable task of steering literary great Helen Owen back to publication.

'When Amy knocks on the door of their beautiful townhouse in north west London, Helen and her husband, the novelist Malcolm Taylor, are conducting a silent war of attrition. The townhouse was paid for with the enormous seven figure advance Helen was given for the novel she wrote to end fifty years of making ends meets on critical acclaim alone. The novel Malcolm thinks unworthy of her. The novel Helen has yet to deliver. The novel Amy has come to collect.

'Amy has never faced a challenge like this one. Helen and Malcolm are brilliant, complicated writers who unsettle Amy into asking questions of herself - questions about what she values, her principles, whether she has integrity, whether she is authentic. Before she knows it, answering these questions becomes a matter of life or death.

'From ultimate book industry insider, John Purcell, comes a literary page-turner, a razor-sharp, fast-paced novel that cuts to the core of what it means to balance ambition and integrity. With lashings of sex, glamour, bad behaviour and wicked publishing insider references, The Girl on the Page is a muscular, juicy and provocative novel that is all about what really matters in life, and the redemptive power of great literature. '  (Publication summary)

14 5 y separately published work icon Boy Swallows Universe Trent Dalton , Sydney South : Fourth Estate , 2018 13529833 2018 single work novel

'Brisbane, 1983: A lost father, a mute brother, a mum in jail, a heroin dealer for a stepfather and a notorious crim for a babysitter. It's not as if Eli's life isn't complicated enough already. He's just trying to follow his heart, learning what it takes to be a good man, but life just keeps throwing obstacles in the way - not least of which is Tytus Broz, legendary Brisbane drug dealer.

'But if Eli's life is about to get a whole lot more serious. He's about to fall in love. And, oh yeah, he has to break into Boggo Road Gaol on Christmas Day, to save his mum.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 y separately published work icon Say Hello : How I Became the Hero of My Story Carly Findlay , Australia : Fourth Estate , 2018 13352036 2018 single work autobiography

'In fairytales,the characters who look different are often cast as the villain or monsters. It's only when they shed their unconventional skin that they are seen as "good" or less frightening. There are very few stories where the character that looks different is the hero of the story ... I've been the hero of my story - telling it on my own terms, proud about my facial difference and disability, not wanting a cure for my rare, severe and sometimes confronting skin condition, and knowing that I am beautiful even though I don't have beauty privilege.'

'This bold, brave and moving memoir by award winning writer and appearance activist Carly Findlay will challenge all your assumptions and beliefs about what it is like to have a visibly different appearance. Carly's memoir is about living with a rare skin condition, Ichthyosis. Hers is both a memoir and manifesto on disability and appearance diversity issues.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

14 2 y separately published work icon The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart Holly Ringland , Australia : Fourth Estate , 2018 12341482 2018 single work novel

'The most enchanting debut novel of 2018, this is an irresistible, deeply moving and romantic story of a young girl, daughter of an abusive father, who has to learn the hard way that she can break the patterns of the past, live on her own terms and find her own strength.

'An enchanting and captivating novel, about how our untold stories haunt us - and the stories we tell ourselves in order to survive.

'After her family suffers a tragedy, nine-year-old Alice Hart is forced to leave her idyllic seaside home. She is taken in by her grandmother, June, a flower farmer who raises Alice on the language of Australian native flowers, a way to say the things that are too hard to speak.

'Under the watchful eye of June and the women who run the farm, Alice settles, but grows up increasingly frustrated by how little she knows of her family's story. In her early twenties, Alice's life is thrown into upheaval again when she suffers devastating betrayal and loss. Desperate to outrun grief, Alice flees to the dramatically beautiful central Australian desert. In this otherworldly landscape Alice thinks she has found solace, until she meets a charismatic and ultimately dangerous man.

'Spanning two decades, set between sugar cane fields by the sea, a native Australian flower farm, and a celestial crater in the central desert, The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart follows Alice's unforgettable journey, as she learns that the most powerful story she will ever possess is her own.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 3 y separately published work icon Line of Fire Ian Townsend , Sydney South : Fourth Estate , 2017 10703049 2017 single work non-fiction biography

'The little known and intriguing WWII story of an eleven-year-old Australian schoolboy who was shot by the Japanese in Rabaul in 1942 as a suspected spy - a compelling story of spies, volcanoes, history and war.

'In May 1942, in the town of Rabaul in the Australian territory of New Guinea, five Australian civilians were taken by Japanese soldiers to a pit at the base of a volcano and executed as spies.

'A mother, her brother, her husband and her friend. And her 11-year-old son.

Who were these people and what had led them to this terrible end, under the shadow of a volcano?

'Acclaimed 4th Estate author and award-winning science journalist Ian Townsend has uncovered a fascinating story that sheds new light on a largely forgotten but desperate battle fought on Australian territory. The Australian Government, unable to reinforce its small garrison, abandoned more than 1500 Australian soldiers and civilians as ‘hostages to fortune' in the face of the irresistible Japanese advance. Set against the romantic, dramatic and ultimately tragic backdrop of Rabaul in WWII, this is a wholly intriguing narrative of Australian history, military conflict and volcanology, woven together with the story of one ordinary but doomed Australian family.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 13 y separately published work icon A World of Other People Steven Carroll , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2013 Z1932853 2013 single work novel historical fiction (taught in 2 units) 'Set in 1941 during the Blitz, A World of Other People traces the love affair of Jim, an Australian pilot in Bomber Command, and Iris, a forthright Englishwoman finding her voice as a writer.The young couple, haunted by secrets and malign coincidence, struggles to build a future free of society's thin-lipped disapproval. The poet T.S. Eliot, with whom Iris shares firewatching duties, unwittingly seals their fate with his poem 'Little Gidding', one of the famous Four Quartets.' (Publisher's blurb)
2 9 y separately published work icon Chasing the Light : A Novel of Antarctica Jesse Blackadder , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2013 Z1910703 2013 single work novel adventure 'It′s the early 1930s. Antarctic open-sea whaling is booming and a territorial race for the mysterious continent between Norwegian and British-Australian interests is in full swing.

Aboard a ship setting sail from Cape Town carrying the Norwegian whaling magnate Lars Christensen are three women: Lillemor Rachlew, who tricked her way on to the ship and will stop at nothing to be the first woman to land on Antarctica; Mathilde Wegger, a grieving widow who′s been forced to join the trip by her calculating parents-in-law; and Lars′s wife, Ingrid Christensen, who has longed to travel to Antarctica since she was a girl and has made a daunting bargain with Lars to convince him to take her.

Loyalties shift and melt and conflicts increase as they pass through the Southern Ocean and reach the whaling grounds. None of the women is prepared for the reality of meeting the whaling fleet and experiencing firsthand the brutality of the icy world.

As they head for the continent itself, the race is on for the first woman to land on Antarctica. None of them expect the outcome and none of them know how they will be changed by their arrival.

Based on the little-known true story of the first woman to ever set foot on Antarctica, Jesse Blackadder has captured the drama, danger and magnetic pull of exploring uncharted places in our world and our minds.' (Publisher's blurb)
1 y separately published work icon Personally : Further Notes on Life Nikki Gemmell , Sydney : Fourth Estate , 2013 6855776 2013 selected work essay column

In Personally, [Gemmell] tackles a variety of subjects ranging from female bullying, tenderness, the urge to apologise and becoming an embarrassing parent, to celibacy and the tyranny of technology. Packed full of Nikki's trademark blistering honesty, insight and humour, this collection of columns and exclusive new essays will make you nod in recognition, disagree vehemently, laugh out loud and, above all, think.' (Publisher's blurb)

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