Block of Books
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  • UNIVERSAL MAN : THE SEVEN LIVES OF JOHN MAYNARD KEYENS
    UNIVERSAL MAN : THE SEVEN LIVES OF JOHN MAYNARD KEYENS
    DAVENPORT-HINES RICHARD
    ISBN: 9780007519828
    Title: UNIVERSAL MAN : THE SEVEN LIVES OF JOHN MAYNARD KEYENS
    Author: DAVENPORT-HINES RICHARD
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    From the bestselling and award-winning author of AN ENGLISH AFFAIR, a dazzlingly original thematic biography which throws fresh light on the greatest economist of the twentieth century.

    John Maynard Keynes is the man who saved Britain from financial crisis not once but twice - over the course of two World Wars. He remains a highly influential figure, nearly 70 years after his death. But who was he?

    In this entertaining biography, Richard Davenport-Hines gives us the man behind the economics: the connoisseur, intellectual, public official and statesman who was equally at ease socialising with the Bloomsbury Group as he was persuading prime ministers and presidents. By exploring the desires and experiences that made Keynes think as he did, Davenport-Hines reveals the aesthetic basis of Keynesian economics, and explores why the ideas of this Great Briton continue to resonate so powerfully today.

    Imprint: COLLINS
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • UNKNOWN JUDITH WRIGHT
    UNKNOWN JUDITH WRIGHT
    ARNOTT GEORGINA
    ISBN: 9781742588216
    Title: UNKNOWN JUDITH WRIGHT
    Author: ARNOTT GEORGINA
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Judith Wright (1915–2000) remains a giant figure within Australian art, culture and politics. Her 1946 collection of poetry, The Moving Image, revolutionised Australian poetry. She helped to establish the modern Australian environmental movement and was a key player in early campaigns for Aboriginal land rights. A friend and confidante of artists, writers, scholars, activists and policy makers – she remains an inspiration to many. And yet, as Georgina Arnott is able to show in this major new work, the biographical picture we have had of this renowned poet-activist has been very much a partial one.

    This book presents a more human figure than we have previously seen, and concentrates on Wright’s younger years. New material allows us to hear, directly, thrillingly, the feisty voice of a young Judith Wright and forces us to reconsider the woman we thought we knew.

    Imprint: UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN AUS
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • UNKNOWN PLEASURES : INSIDE JOY DIVISION
    UNKNOWN PLEASURES : INSIDE JOY DIVISION
    HOOK PETER
    ISBN: 9781471148330
    Title: UNKNOWN PLEASURES : INSIDE JOY DIVISION
    Author: HOOK PETER
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    Joy Division changed the face of music.

    Godfathers of the enduring alternative scene, they reinvented rock in the post-punk era, creating a sound – dark, hypnotic, intense – that would influence U2, Morrissey, R.E.M., Radiohead and many others. This is the rollercoaster story of Joy Division – the friendships, fights, fall-outs; the rehearsals and recording sessions; the larger than life characters – told by the band’s legendary bassist, Peter Hook.

    Imprint: SIMON & SCHUSTER
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • UNMASTERED : A BOOK ON DESIRE MOST DIFFICULT TO TELL
    UNMASTERED : A BOOK ON DESIRE MOST DIFFICULT TO TELL
    ANGEL KATHERINE
    ISBN: 9781846146671
    Title: UNMASTERED : A BOOK ON DESIRE MOST DIFFICULT TO TELL
    Author: ANGEL KATHERINE
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK


    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $35.00
    Price: $35.00
  • UNPUNISHED VICE : A Life of Reading
    UNPUNISHED VICE : A Life of Reading
    WHITE EDMUND
    ISBN: 9781408870266
    Title: UNPUNISHED VICE : A Life of Reading
    Author: WHITE EDMUND
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    An insightful account of the key role reading has played in the life of literary icon Edmund White

    Edmund White made his name as a writer, but he remembers his life through the books he read. For White, each momentous occasion came with books to match- Proust 's Remembrance of Things Past, which opened up the seemingly closed world of homosexuality while he was at boarding school in Michigan; the Ezra Pound poems adored by a lover he followed to New York; the biography of Stephen Crane that inspired one of White 's novels.
    Blending memoir and literary criticism, The Unpunished Vice is a compendium of all the ways reading has shaped White 's life and work. His larger-than-life presence on the literary scene he is close friends with giants including Michael Ondaatje and Joyce Carol Oates lends itself to fascinating, intimate insights into the lives of some of the world 's best-loved cultural figures. With characteristic wit and candour, he recalls reading Henry James to Peggy Guggenheim in her private gondola in Venice, and phone calls at eight o 'clock in the morning to Vladimir Nabokov who once said that White was his favourite American writer.

    Featuring writing that has appeared in The New York Review of Books, The Paris Review and The Times Literary Supplement, among others, The Unpunished Vice is a wickedly smart and insightful account of a life in literature.

    Imprint: BLOOMSBURY
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • UNRELIABLE MEMOIRS
    UNRELIABLE MEMOIRS
    JAMES CLIVE
    ISBN: 9781447275480
    Title: UNRELIABLE MEMOIRS
    Author: JAMES CLIVE
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    I was born in 1939. The other big event of that year was the outbreak of the Second World War, but for the moment that did not affect me.

    In the first instalment of Clive James's memoirs we follow the young Clive on his journey from boyhood to the cusp of manhood, when his days of wearing short trousers are finally behind him. Battling with school, girls, various relatives and an overwhelming desire to be a superhero, Clive's adventures growing up in the suburbs of post-war Sydney are hair-raising, uproarious and almost too good to be true . . .

    Told with James's unassailable sense of humour and self-effacing charm, Unreliable Memoirs is a hilarious and touching introduction to the story of a national treasure. A million-copy bestseller, this classic memoir is a celebration of life in all its unpredictable glory.

    Imprint: PICADOR
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • UNSTUCK IN TIME : A JOURNEY THROUGH KURT VONNEGUTS LIFE AND NOVELS
    UNSTUCK IN TIME : A JOURNEY THROUGH KURT VONNEGUTS LIFE AND NOVELS
    SUMNER GREGORY D
    ISBN: 9780980863987
    Title: UNSTUCK IN TIME : A JOURNEY THROUGH KURT VONNEGUTS LIFE AND NOVELS
    Author: SUMNER GREGORY D
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    Unstuck in Time is a passionate and insightful journey through the life of one of America's most-loved authors, Kurt Vonnegut. Gregory Sumner guides us through Vonnegut's best known works, his fourteen novels starting with Player Piano, including the iconic Slaughterhouse Five, and all the way to an epilogue on his last book, A Man Without a Country, to illustrate the quintessential American writer's profound engagement with the 'American Dream'. Sumner gives us a poignant portrait of Vonnegut and his resistance to celebrating the traditional values associated with the American Dream: grandiose ambition, unbridled material success, rugged individualism, and 'winners' over 'losers.' Instead of a celebration of these values, we read and share Vonnegut's outrage, his brokenhearted empathy for those who struggle under the ethos of survival-of-the-fittest in the frontier mentality - something he once memorably described as 'an impossibly tough-minded experiment in loneliness'. Heroic and tragic, Vonnegut's novels reflect the pain of his own life's experiences, relieved by small acts of kindness, friendship, and love that exemplify another way of living, another sort of human utopia, an alternative American Dream, and the reason we always return to his books. Unstuck in Time is delightful, essential reading for those who remain enchanted by one of the giants of 20th century American fiction.

    Imprint: HUNTER HOUSE PUBLISHERS
    RRP: $29.95

    Price: $29.95
  • UNTOLD STORIES
    UNTOLD STORIES
    BENNETT ALAN
    ISBN: 9780571228317
    Title: UNTOLD STORIES
    Author: BENNETT ALAN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The astonishing sequel to Alan Bennett's classic Writing Home, updated for paperback


    The paperback of Untold Stories contains new unpublished diaries, as well as a poignant memoir of his family and of growing up in Leeds, together with his much celebrated diary for the years 1996-2004, and numerous other exceptional essays, reviews and comic pieces. Since the success of Beyond the Fringe in the 1960s Alan Bennett has delighted audiences worldwide with his gentle humour and wry observations about life. His many works include Forty Years On, The Lady in the Van, Talking Heads, A Question of Attribution and The Madness of George III. Bennett's most recent play, The History Boys, opened to great acclaim at the National in 2004, and is winner of the Evening Standard Award, the South Bank Award and the Critics' Circle Award for Best New Play. It came to Sydney in March 2006 and was made into a feature film

    Imprint: FABER AND FABER
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • UPDIKE
    UPDIKE
    BEGLEY ADAM
    ISBN: 9780061896460
    Title: UPDIKE
    Author: BEGLEY ADAM
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A major biography of one of America's greatest writers, from one of our foremost literary critics Updike is Adam Begley's masterful, much-anticipated biography of one of the most celebrated figures in American literature: Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Updike - a candid, intimate, and richly detailed look at his life and work. In this magisterial biography, Adam Begley offers an illuminating portrait of John Updike, the acclaimed novelist, poet, short-story writer, and critic who saw himself as a literary spy in small-town and suburban America, who dedicated himself to the task of transcribing "middleness with all its grits, bumps and anonymities." Updike explores the stages of the writer's pilgrim's progress: his beloved home turf of Berks County, Pennsylvania; his escape to Harvard; his brief, busy working life as the golden boy at The New Yorker; his family years in suburban Ipswich, Massachusetts; his extensive travel abroad; and his retreat to another Massachusetts town, Beverly Farms, where he remained until his death in 2009. Drawing from in-depth research as well as interviews with the writer's colleagues, friends, and family, Begley explores how Updike's fiction was shaped by his tumultuous personal life - including his enduring religious faith, his two marriages, and his first-hand experience of the "adulterous society" he was credited with exposing in the bestselling Couples. With a sharp critical sensibility that lends depth and originality to his analysis, Begley probes Updike's best-loved works - from Pigeon Feathers to The Witches of Eastwick to the Rabbit tetralogy - and reveals a surprising and deeply complex character fraught with contradictions: a kind man with a vicious wit, a gregarious charmer who was ruthlessly competitive, a private person compelled to spill his secrets on the printed page. Updike offers an admiring yet balanced look at this national treasure, a master whose writing continues to resonate like no one else's.

    Imprint: HARPER COLLINS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • VANISHING MAN : In Pursuit of Velazquez
    VANISHING MAN : In Pursuit of Velazquez
    CUMMING LAURA
    ISBN: 9780099587040
    Title: VANISHING MAN : In Pursuit of Velazquez
    Author: CUMMING LAURA
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In 1845, a Reading bookseller named John Snare came across the dirt-blackened portrait of a prince at a country house auction. Suspecting that it might be a long-lost Velázquez, he bought the picture and set out to discover its strange history - a quest that led from fame to ruin and exile.

    Fusing detection and biography, this book shows how and why great works of art can affect us, even to the point of mania. And on the trail of John Snare, Cumming makes a surprising discovery of her own. But most movingly, The Vanishing Man is an eloquent and passionate homage to the Spanish master Velázquez, bringing us closer to the creation and appreciation of his works than ever before.

    Imprint: VINTAGE
    RRP: $19.99

    Price: $19.99
  • VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL : Sex Lies and a Murder Plot at the Heart of the Establishment
    VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL : Sex Lies and a Murder Plot at the Heart of the Establishment
    PRESTON JOHN
    ISBN: 9780241973745
    Title: VERY ENGLISH SCANDAL : Sex Lies and a Murder Plot at the Heart of the Establishment
    Author: PRESTON JOHN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The shocking true story of the first British politician to stand trial for murder

    Behind oak-panelled doors in the House of Commons, men with cut-glass accents and gold signet rings are conspiring to murder. It's the late 1960s and homosexuality has only just been legalised, and Jeremy Thorpe, the leader of the Liberal party, has a secret he's desperate to hide. As long as Norman Scott, his beautiful, unstable lover is around, Thorpe's brilliant career is at risk. With the help of his fellow politicians, Thorpe schemes, deceives, embezzles - until he can see only one way to silence Scott for good.

    The trial of Jeremy Thorpe changed our society forever- it was the moment the British public discovered the truth about its political class. Illuminating the darkest secrets of the Establishment, the Thorpe affair revealed such breath-taking deceit and corruption in an entire section of British society that, at the time, hardly anyone dared believe it could be true.

    A Very English Scandal is an eye-opening tale of how the powerful protect their own, and an extraordinary insight into the forces that shaped modern Britain.

    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • VICTORIA : A LIFE
    VICTORIA : A LIFE
    WILSON A N
    ISBN: 9781848879584
    Title: VICTORIA : A LIFE
    Author: WILSON A N
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    When Queen Victoria died in 1901, she had ruled for nearly sixty-four years. She was mother of nine and grandmother of forty-two, and the matriarch of Royal Europe, through the marriages of her children.
    To many, Queen Victoria is a ruler shrouded in myth and mystique .an aging, stiff widow, paraded as the figurehead to an all-male imperial enterprise. But in truth, Britain's longest reigning monarch was one of the most passionate, expressive, humorous and unconventional women who ever lived, and the story of her life continues to fascinate.

    A. N. Wilson's exhaustively researched and definitive biography includes a wealth of new material from previously unseen sources, to show us Queen Victoria as she's never been seen before. It explores the curious set of circumstances that led to Victoria's coronation, her strange and isolated childhood, her passionate marriage, Prince Albert's pivotal influence, her widowhood and subsequent intimate friendship with John Brown, all set against the backdrop of this momentous epoch in Britain - and Europe's - history. Victoria is a towering achievement; a masterpiece of biography by a writer at the height of his powers.

    Imprint: ATLANTIC BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • VICTORIA : The Woman Who Made the Modern World
    VICTORIA : The Woman Who Made the Modern World
    BAIRD JULIA
    ISBN: 9780732295707
    Title: VICTORIA : The Woman Who Made the Modern World
    Author: BAIRD JULIA
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The extraordinary story of the world's most influential, intriguing and surprising ruler, Queen Victoria.

    When Alexandrina Victoria was crowned Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on 20 June 1837, she was 18 years old and barely five feet tall. Her subjects were fascinated and intrigued; some felt sorry for her. Writer Thomas Carlyle, watching her gilded coach draw away from the coronation, said: 'Poor little Queen, she is at an age at which a girl can hardly be trusted to choose a bonnet for herself; yet a task is laid upon her from which an archangel might shrink.'

    Queen Victoria is long dead, but in truth she has shaped us from the grave. She was a tiny, powerful woman who reigned for an astonishing 64 years. By the time of her Diamond Jubilee Procession in 1897, she reigned over a fourth of the inhabitable part of the world, had 400 million subjects, and had given birth to nine children. Suffrage, anti-poverty and anti-slavery movements can all be traced to her monumental reign, along with a profound rethinking of family life and the rise of religious doubt. When she died, in 1901, she was the longest reigning monarch in English history. Victoria is truly the woman who made the modern world.

    A fascinating, provocative and authoritative new biography of Queen Victoria which will make us see her in a new light, from one of Australia's most admired and respected journalists and commentators, Julia Baird.


    'It's Baird's gift as a storyteller, her knack for human detail and the idiosyncrasies of the era, that make this book so superb. Through her eyes, the stolid Victoria we thought we knew comes thrillingly alive. An extraordinary story, told with brilliance and tenderness by one of Australia's most perceptive writers.' Annabel Crabb

    'Victoria was young enough when she assumed the throne to consult with her prime minister about her eyebrows (were they too thin?), confident enough when she married to excise the word 'obey' from her vows. Julia Baird vividly captures her in every light, at once bold and sentimental, stubborn and deferential. Victoria: The Queen is a crisp, sparkling account of the extraordinary woman whose reign was as long as her legacy is vast.' Stacy Schiff, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Cleopatra

    'A stunning achievement . . . Neither sanitized nor mythologizing,Victoria: The Queen is a remarkably lucid, endlessly engaging account of Queen Victoria's life and rule.' Amanda Foreman, author of the prize-winning best seller Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire and the 2016 chair of The Man Booker Prize.

    Imprint: HARPER COLLINS
    RRP: $35.00

    Price: $35.00
  • WAITING FOR THE LAST BUS : Reflections on Life and Death
    WAITING FOR THE LAST BUS : Reflections on Life and Death
    HOLLOWAY RICHARD
    ISBN: 9781786890214
    Title: WAITING FOR THE LAST BUS : Reflections on Life and Death
    Author: HOLLOWAY RICHARD
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    A moving and profound exploration of life's greatest mystery from one of the most revered religious figures of our time

    Where do we go when we die? Or is there nowhere to go? Is death something we can do or is it just something that happens to us?

    Now in his ninth decade, former Bishop of Edinburgh Richard Holloway has spent a lifetime at the bedsides of the dying, guiding countless men and women towards peaceful deaths. In Waiting For The Last Bus, he presents a positive, meditative and profound exploration of the many important lessons we can learn from death: facing up to the limitations of our bodies as they falter, reflecting on our failings, and forgiving ourselves and others.

    But in a modern world increasingly wary of acknowledging mortality, Waiting for the Last Bus is also a stirring plea to reacquaint ourselves with death. Facing and welcoming death gives us the chance to think about not only the meaning of our own life, but of life itself; and can mean the difference between ordinary sorrow and unbearable regret at the end. Radical, joyful and moving, Waiting for the Last Bus is an invitation to reconsider life's greatest mystery by one of the most important and beloved religious leaders of our time.

    Imprint: CANONGATE
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • WALK THROUGH WALLS
    WALK THROUGH WALLS
    ABRAMOVIC MARINA
    ISBN: 9780241974520
    Title: WALK THROUGH WALLS
    Author: ABRAMOVIC MARINA
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Performance artist Marina Abramovic has spent her life walking through walls - barriers of pain, endurance, acceptability and, above all, art and life. In this extraordinary memoir she tells her story from her severe, abusive childhood in post-war Yugoslavia to the daring and controversial acts of performance that have stunned audiences and won international acclaim.

    Exploring how her extreme commitment to the moment is the secret to her art and success, Walk Through Walls reveals how she became one of the most important living artists in the world.

    Imprint: FIG TREE
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • WALKING FREE : FROM IRAQI REFUGEE TO PIONEERING SURGEON
    WALKING FREE : FROM IRAQI REFUGEE TO PIONEERING SURGEON
    AL MUDERIS MUNJED
    ISBN: 9781760291143
    Title: WALKING FREE : FROM IRAQI REFUGEE TO PIONEERING SURGEON
    Author: AL MUDERIS MUNJED
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    One man's phenomenal tale of escaping a death sentence in Iraq, surviving the Australian Refugee system and becoming a pioneering surgeon at the forefront of Orthopaedic medicine.


    In 1999, Munjed Al Muderis was a young surgical resident working in Baghdad when a squad of Military Police marched into the operating theatre and ordered the surgical team to mutilate the ears of three busloads of army deserters. When the head of surgery refused, he was executed in front of his staff. Munjed's choices were stark--comply and breach the medical oath 'do no harm', refuse and face certain death, or flee.

    That day, Munjed's life changed forever. He escaped to Indonesia, where he boarded a filthy, overcrowded refugee boat, bound for Australia.

    Like his fellow passengers, he hoped for a new life, free from fear and oppression, but for ten months he was incarcerated in what became known as the worst of the refugee camps, Curtin Detention Centre in Western Australia. There he was known only by a number, locked in solitary confinement and repeatedly told to go back to Iraq.

    On 26 August 2000, Munjed was finally freed. Now, fourteen years later, he is one of the world's leading osseointegration surgeons, transforming the lives of amputees with a pioneering technique that allows them to walk again.

    Walking Free is Munjed's extraordinary account of his journey from the brutality of Saddam Hussein's Iraq to a new life in Australia and a remarkable career at the forefront of medicine.

    Imprint: ALLEN AND UNWIN
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
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