Block of Books
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  • PRINCE AND THE ASSASSIN : Australia's First Royal Tour and Taste of World Terror
    PRINCE AND THE ASSASSIN : Australia's First Royal Tour and Taste of World Terror
    HARRIS STEVE
    ISBN: 9781925556131
    Title: PRINCE AND THE ASSASSIN : Australia's First Royal Tour and Taste of World Terror
    Author: HARRIS STEVE
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The engrossing real life story of how Queen Victoria's favourite son, Prince Alfred, undertook the most ambitious Royal tour, only for Australia's overwhelming joy of having the first Royal on its shores jolted by his decadent behaviour, then shocked by an attempted assassination by a man trained as a priest.

    The British Empire's youngest and most distant outpost found itself at the epicentre of a new crime and empirical fears about the first inter-continental terrorist group, a conspiracy and a 'lone wolf '. In a resulting 'reign of terror' extraordinary steps were taken to safeguard security with laws on treason and sedition which even the Queen felt went too far, and the would-be assassin was hastily executed in a miscarriage of justice led by opportunistic politicians.

    This is an extraordinary and atmospheric weaving of the stories - some detailed for the first time - of royal intrigue, sexual appetite, religious bigotry, patriotic vengeance, naked ambition, national security and moral panic. They are stories of royals, immigrants, archbishops, republicans and the founding fathers of Australia and issues that remain with us today.

    Drawing on Royal, British and Australian archives, the compelling narrative embraces a pivotal time in the evolution of Australia, and on the 150th anniversary reveals how a minute of madness rocked the country to its foundations, with a legacy which helped shape Australia's history and continues to influence and challenge us today.

    Imprint: MELBOURNE BOOKS
    RRP: $32.99

    Price: $32.99
  • PROTEST YEARS : THE OFFICAL HISTORY OF ASIO 1963-1975
    PROTEST YEARS : THE OFFICAL HISTORY OF ASIO 1963-1975
    BLAXLAND JOHN
    ISBN: 9781760294182
    Title: PROTEST YEARS : THE OFFICAL HISTORY OF ASIO 1963-1975
    Author: BLAXLAND JOHN
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

    The continuing story of Australia's domestic intelligence organisation during the turbulent years from the end of the Menzies era to the downfall of the Whitlam government.


    By 1963, Robert Menzies had been prime minister for thirteen years, Australia had its first troops in Vietnam, and change was in the air. There would soon be street protests over women's rights, Aboriginal land rights and the Vietnam War, and unprecedented student activism. With the Cold War lingering, ASIO was concerned that protests were being orchestrated to foment revolution.

    The Protest Years tells the inside story of Australia's domestic intelligence organisation from the last of the Menzies years to the dismissal of the Whitlam government. With unrestricted access to ASIO's internal files, and extensive interviews with insiders, for the first time the circumstances surrounding the alleged role of ASIO in the demise of the Whitlam Government are revealed, and the question of the CIA's involvement in Australia is explored. The extraordinary background to the raid on ASIO headquarters in Melbourne by Attorney-General Lionel Murphy, and Australia's efforts at countering Soviet bloc espionage, as well as the sensitive intelligence activities in South Vietnam, are exposed.

    This is a ground-breaking political and social history of some of Australia's most turbulent years as seen through the secret prism of ASIO.

    The Protest Years is the second of three volumes of The Official History of ASIO.

    Imprint: ALLEN AND UNWIN
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • QUARTERLY ESSAY 69 : Moment of Truth - History and Australia's Future
    QUARTERLY ESSAY 69 : Moment of Truth - History and Australia's Future
    MCKENNA MARK
    ISBN: 9781760640507
    Title: QUARTERLY ESSAY 69 : Moment of Truth - History and Australia's Future
    Author: MCKENNA MARK
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    On the other hand, debates about the past, and its meaning for the present - such as the recent controversy over statues - have never been more rancorous. Is there a way beyond the history wars that began under John Howard? And in an age of free-floating fears about the global, digital future, is history any longer relevant, let alone equal to the task of grounding the nation?

    In this essay, Mark McKenna takes what we have learnt from recent groundbreaking historical writing and links this to the deeper currents of a country on the brink of a more complete commonwealth. He considers the frontier, the Anzac legacy, deep time, culture wars and political leadership. He drags some fascinating scholarship into the light, and pushes the debate about history beyond the familiar polarities.

    Imprint: BLACK INC
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • QUARTERLY ESSAY 71 : Laura Tingle on Modern Political Leadership
    QUARTERLY ESSAY 71 : Laura Tingle on Modern Political Leadership
    TINGLE LAURA
    ISBN: 9781760640705
    Title: QUARTERLY ESSAY 71 : Laura Tingle on Modern Political Leadership
    Author: TINGLE LAURA
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    In this crisp and timely essay, Laura Tingle examines political leadership in general - some profiles in courage, and cunning - as well as styles of leadership. She looks at Macron and Merkel, Keating and Obama.
    Tingle notes that leaders must command not only their country, but also their party. Where does this leave Malcolm Turnbull and Bill Shorten? She observes that Turnbull came to power seeking to do the opposite of everything Tony Abbott did, but neither leader's approach has been seen as a success. Why? And what can Australia's next prime minister learn from this?

    Imprint: BLACK INC
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • QUARTERLY ESSAY 72 : Sebastian Smee on the Inner Life in the Digital Age
    QUARTERLY ESSAY 72 : Sebastian Smee on the Inner Life in the Digital Age
    SMEE SEBASTIAN
    ISBN: 9781760640712
    Title: QUARTERLY ESSAY 72 : Sebastian Smee on the Inner Life in the Digital Age
    Author: SMEE SEBASTIAN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    What is the inner life? And is it vanishing in the digital age?
    Throughout history, artists and philosophers have cultivated the deep self, and seen value in solitude
    and reflection. But today, through social media, wall-to-wall marketing, reality television and the
    agitation of modern life, everything feels illuminated, made transparent. We feel bereft without our
    phones and their cameras and the feeling of instant connectivity. It gets hard to pick up a book, harder
    still to stay with it.
    In this eloquent and profound essay, renowned critic Sebastian Smee brings to the surface the idea of
    inner life - the awareness one may feel in front of a great painting or while listening to extraordinary
    music by a window at dusk or in a forest at night. No nostalgic lament, this essay evokes what is
    valuable and worth cultivating - a connection to our true selves, and a feeling of agency in the mystery
    of our own lives. At the same time, such contemplation puts us in an intensely charged relationship
    with things, people or works of art that are outside us.
    If we lose this power, Smee asks, what do we lose of ourselves?

    Imprint: BLACK INC
    RRP: $22.99

    Price: $22.99
  • QUEERSTORIES : Reflections on lives well lived from some of Australia's finest LGBTQIA+ writers
    QUEERSTORIES : Reflections on lives well lived from some of Australia's finest LGBTQIA+ writers
    MARSDEN MAEVE [ED]
    ISBN: 9780733640728
    Title: QUEERSTORIES : Reflections on lives well lived from some of Australia's finest LGBTQIA+ writers
    Author: MARSDEN MAEVE [ED]
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    There's more to being queer than coming out and getting married. This exciting and contemporary collection contains stories that are as diverse as the LGBTQIA+ community from which they're drawn.

    From hilarious anecdotes of an awkward adolescence, to heartwarming stories of family acceptance and self-discovery, the LGBTQIA+ community has been sharing stories for centuries, creating their own histories, disrupting and reinventing conventional ideas about narrative, family, love and community.

    Curated from the hugely popular Queerstories storytelling event this important collection features stories from Benjamin Law, Jen Cloher, Nayuka Gorrie, Peter Polites, Candy Royalle, Rebecca Shaw, Simon 'Pauline Pantsdown' Hunt and more.

    Imprint: HACHETTE
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • QUIET CITY : WALKING IN WEST TERRACE CEMETARY
    QUIET CITY : WALKING IN WEST TERRACE CEMETARY
    LEFEVRE CAROL
    ISBN: 9781743053874
    Title: QUIET CITY : WALKING IN WEST TERRACE CEMETARY
    Author: LEFEVRE CAROL
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Ordinary lives are revealed as extraordinary, as Carol Lefevre traces the stories of West Terrace Cemetery's little-known inhabitants. From archives, and headstones, the author recovers histories that time and weather threaten to obliterate. This book is for everyone who has ever wandered through an old graveyard and wished its stones could speak.

    Imprint: WAKEFIELD
    RRP: $29.99

    Price: $29.99
  • RATOWA : A HOUSE BY THE SEA
    RATOWA : A HOUSE BY THE SEA
    HEYWOOD-SMITH PAUL
    ISBN: 9780648039105
    Title: RATOWA : A HOUSE BY THE SEA
    Author: HEYWOOD-SMITH PAUL
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE


    Imprint: CONSIGNMENT STOCK
    RRP: $35.00
    Price: $35.00
  • RATTLING SPEARS : A History of Indigenous Australian Art
    RATTLING SPEARS : A History of Indigenous Australian Art
    MCLEAN IAN
    ISBN: 9781780239873
    Title: RATTLING SPEARS : A History of Indigenous Australian Art
    Author: MCLEAN IAN
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Large, bold and colourful, Indigenous Australian art has impressed itself on the contemporary imagination. But it is controversial, dividing the stakeholders from those who smell a scam. Whether the artists are victims or victors, there is no denying their impact in the media and on the art world and collectors worldwide. How did it become the most successful Indigenous art in the world? How did its artists escape the ethnographic and souvenir markets to become players in an art world from which they had been barred?

    Superbly illustrated, and rich in detail and critical analysis, this book provides the first full historical account of Indigenous Australian art and shows that there is much more to the art than large colourful canvasses.

    Imprint: REAKTION BOOKS
    RRP: $39.99

    Price: $39.99
  • REEF : A PASSIONATE HISTORY
    REEF : A PASSIONATE HISTORY
    MCCALMAN IAIN
    ISBN: 9780143783350
    Title: REEF : A PASSIONATE HISTORY
    Author: MCCALMAN IAIN
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The Great Barrier Reef, argues Iain McCalman, has been created by human minds as well as coral polyps, by imaginations as well as natural processes.

    In this landmark book he charts our shifting perceptions of it, from the terrifying labyrinth that almost sunk Cook's Endeavour to a fragile global treasure. The Reef describes twelve key encounters between people, places, ideas and biosystems. In the nineteenth century the region was infamous for shipwrecks, and when Indigenous clans rescued survivors like Eliza Fraser, their actions were misrepresented in the popular press. Later, the whole world caught the fiery debate between Darwinists and creationists over the origins of this colossal structure. Artists and visionaries celebrated its beauty and fought its exploitation; marine scientists catalogued the threats to its existence.

    Imprint: PENGUIN BOOKS
    RRP: $24.99

    Price: $24.99
  • REMEMBERING THE MYALL CREEK MASSACRE
    REMEMBERING THE MYALL CREEK MASSACRE
    RYAN LYNDALL / LYNDON JANE (ED)
    ISBN: 9781742235752
    Title: REMEMBERING THE MYALL CREEK MASSACRE
    Author: RYAN LYNDALL / LYNDON JANE (ED)
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    On the 180th anniversary of the Myall Creek Massacre of 1838, acclaimed writers, historians, lawyers and artists explore the impact of one of the most horrifying events of Australian colonial history, showing why this event was and remains so important for Australia.

    The 1838 Myall Creek Massacre is remembered for the brutality of the crime committed by white settlers against innocent Aboriginal men, women and children, but also because eleven of the twelve assassins were arrested and brought to trial. Amid tremendous controversy, seven were hanged. Myall Creek was not the last time the colonial administration sought to apply the law equally to Aboriginal people and settlers, but it was the last time perpetrators of a massacre were convicted and hanged. Marking its 180th anniversary, this book explores the significance of one of the most horrifying events of Australian colonialism. Thoughtful and fearless, it challenges us to look at our history without flinching as an act of remembrance and reconciliation.

    Imprint: NEW SOUTH
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • RIGHTFUL PLACE : A Road Map to Recognition
    RIGHTFUL PLACE : A Road Map to Recognition
    MORRIS SHIREEN [ED]
    ISBN: 9781863959131
    Title: RIGHTFUL PLACE : A Road Map to Recognition
    Author: MORRIS SHIREEN [ED]
    Format: PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    The nation has unfinished business. After more than two centuries, can a rightful place be found for Australia’s original peoples?

    Soon we will all decide if and how indigenous Australians will be recognised in the constitution. In this essential book, several leading indigenous writers and thinkers provide a road map to recognition.

    These eloquent essays show what constitutional recognition means, and what it could make possible: a fairer relationship and a renewed appreciation of an ancient culture. With remarkable clarity and power, they traverse law, history and culture to map the path to change.

    The contributors to A Rightful Place are Noel Pearson, Stan Grant, Rachel Perkins, Damien Freeman, Rod Little and Jackie Huggins, and the book includes a foreword by Galarrwuy Yunupingu. A Rightful Place is edited by Shireen Morris, a lawyer and constitutional reform fellow at the Cape York Institute and researcher at Monash University.

    “The day we come to regard ourselves as people with a distinct heritage, with distinct cultures and languages but not of a distinct race, will be a day of psychological liberation. And it will also be liberating for those in the wider community.”
    Noel Pearson

    Imprint: BLACK INC
    RRP: $27.99

    Price: $27.99
  • ROYAL VISITS TO AUSTRALIA
    ROYAL VISITS TO AUSTRALIA
    CONNORS JANE
    ISBN: 9780642278708
    Title: ROYAL VISITS TO AUSTRALIA
    Author: CONNORS JANE
    Format: HARD COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Out of Australia’s total population of around nine million, an estimated seven million people turned out to catch a glimpse of the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II in 1954. Sixty years later, in April 2014, television news bulletins, newspapers and social media were awash with stories of the royal visit of Prince William, his wife Catherine and their baby son George. The frequent, whirlwind royal tours of today are a far cry from those to Australia between 1867 and 1954. These stretched over months, bursting with events such as civic receptions, state banquets, military reviews, cricket matches, agricultural shows, processions, schoolchildren’s pageants and the laying of foundation stones. Occasionally shambolic, quarrelsome and raucous affairs, they were always intensely patriotic. While most of the visits described in this book are from the British Royal Family, royals from other countries appear too, including ‘Our Mary’ of the Danish Royal Family, proudly claimed by Australians as their own.

    Imprint: NAT LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA
    RRP: $39.99

    Price: $5.00
  • RUSTED OFF : Why Country Australia is Fed Up
    RUSTED OFF : Why Country Australia is Fed Up
    CHAN GABRIELLE
    ISBN: 9780143789284
    Title: RUSTED OFF : Why Country Australia is Fed Up
    Author: CHAN GABRIELLE
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Telling the story of Australia as it is today, Gabrielle Chan has gone hyper-local.

    In Rusted Off, she looks to her own rural community's main street for answers to the big questions driving voters. Why are we so fed up with politics? Why are formerly rusted-on country voters deserting major parties in greater numbers than their city cousins? Can ordinary people teach us more about the way forward for government?

    In 1996 - the same year as Pauline Hanson entered parliament - Gabrielle, the city-born daughter of a Chinese migrant, moved to a sheep and wheat farm in country New South Wales. She provides a window into her community where she raised her children and reflects on its lessons for the Australian political story. It is a fresh take on the old rural narrative, informed by class and culture, belonging and broadband, committees and cake stalls, rural recession and reconciliation.

    Imprint: VINTAGE
    RRP: $34.99

    Price: $34.99
  • SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA
    SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA
    HAIGH GIDEON
    ISBN: 9780143789574
    Title: SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA
    Author: HAIGH GIDEON
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    As enigmatic in life as in death, Mollie Dean was a woman determined to transcend. Creatively ambitious and sexually precocious, at twenty-five she was a poet, aspiring novelist and muse on the peripheries of Melbourne's bohemian salons - until one night in 1930 she was brutally slain by an unknown killer in a laneway while walking home.

    Her family was implicated. Those in her circle, including her acclaimed artist lover Colin Colahan, were shamed. Her memory was anxiously suppressed. Yet the mystery of her death rendered more mysterious her life and Mollie's story lingered, incorporated into memoir, literature, television, theatre and song, most notably in George Johnston's classic My Brother Jack.

    In A Scandal in Bohemia, Gideon Haigh explodes the true crime genre with a murder story about life as well as death. Armed with only a single photograph and echoes of Mollie's voice, he has reassembled the precarious life of a talented woman without a room of her own - a true outsider, excluded by the very world that celebrated her in its art. In this work of restorative justice, Mollie Dean emerges as a tenacious, charismatic, independent woman for whom society had no place, and whom everybody tried to forget - but nobody could.

    Imprint: HAMISH HAMILTON
    RRP: $32.99

    Price: $32.99
  • SCANDALOUS FREDDIE MCEVOY : The true story of the swashbuckling Australian rogue
    SCANDALOUS FREDDIE MCEVOY : The true story of the swashbuckling Australian rogue
    WALKER FRANK
    ISBN: 9780733639876
    Title: SCANDALOUS FREDDIE MCEVOY : The true story of the swashbuckling Australian rogue
    Author: WALKER FRANK
    Format: TRADE PAPER COVER
    Publishing status: ACTIVE TITLE

    Swashbuckler, daredevil racing-car champion, Winter Olympian, gambler, smuggler, scoundrel, stud and suspected Nazi agent who died a mysterious death - this is the fascinating story of the scandalous Freddie McEvoy.

    Born in Melbourne in 1907, Freddie's life took him from socialising with a young Errol Flynn in Sydney and on to the French Riviera in the heady years leading up to World War II.

    With his dashing good looks and charm, Freddie lived a swashbuckling life, quickly figuring out his path to easy fortune was through lonely rich women. World War II didn't stop Freddie's hedonistic pursuits - he skipped enlistment for Australia and Britain to party on in Hollywood, where he renewed his friendship with the now infamous Errol Flynn. Always short of cash, Freddie smuggled guns and diamonds on his yacht between California and Mexico and was rumoured to have worked as a spy.

    It was a life lived large and Freddie's death in 1951 was under the most mysterious circumstances off the coast of Morocco: his body was found naked and scalped . . .

    Frank Walker, bestselling author of The Tiger Man of Vietnam and Maralinga, has for the first time uncovered the complete, outrageous and incredible true story of Freddie McEvoy, Australia's daredevil lothario.

    Imprint: HACHETTE
    RRP: $32.99

    Price: $32.99
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