2020 literary prize winners

 Read reviewHamnet

Hamnet

Maggie O'Farrell

Told in Maggie O'Farrell's unique voice, Hamnet reveals for the first time in fiction the story of heartbreaking loss which inspired Shakespeare's most celebrated play

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The Discomfort of Evening

The Discomfort of Evening

Marieke Lucas Rijneveld, Michele Hutchison

The sensational Dutch bestseller: Marieke Lucas Rijneveld's extraordinary portrait of a farming family distorted by grief, translated by Michele Hutchison.

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 Read reviewThe Nickel Boys

The Nickel Boys

Colson Whitehead

Based on the history of a real reform school in Florida that operated for one hundred and eleven years and warped and destroyed the lives of thousands of children, The Nickel Boys is a devastating, driven narrative by a great...

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 Read reviewThe Yield

The Yield

Tara June Winch

The 2020 winner of the Miles Franklin Literary Award, Tara June Winch's The Yield is the story of a people and a culture dispossessed. But it is as much a celebration of what was and what endures, and a powerful...

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 Read reviewSee What You Made Me Do

See What You Made Me Do

Jess Hill

Combining exhaustive research with riveting storytelling, See What You Made Me Do dismantles the flawed logic of victim-blaming and challenges everything you thought you knew about domestic and family violence.

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The Old Drift

The Old Drift

Namwali Serpell

On the banks of the Zambezi River, a few miles from the majestic Victoria Falls, there was once a colonial settlement called The Old Drift. In 1904, in a smoky room at the hotel across the river, an Old Drifter named Percy M....

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Ghost Bird

Ghost Bird

Lisa Fuller

An intriguing and gripping young adult novel by the winner of the David Unaipon award.   

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 Read reviewThe Girl, the Cat & the Navigator

The Girl, the Cat & the Navigator

Matilda Woods

An enchanting, charming story of bravery on the ice-tipped ocean, with stunning art by Anuska Allepuz on every page.     

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The Wife and the Widow

The Wife and the Widow

Christian White

Brilliant and beguiling, The Wife and the Widow takes you to a cliff edge and asks the question: how well do we really know the people we love?        

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Present Tense

Present Tense

Natalie Conyer

What if justice isn't enough?     

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 Read reviewBowraville

Bowraville

Dan Box

From the creator of the Walkley Award-winning podcast comes the story of a small Australian town, the murders of three children and a desperate fight for justice.

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The Chain

The Chain

Adrian McKinty

A high concept thriller masterpiece by a world class writer: it doesn't get any better than The Chair.       

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I Need a Parrot

I Need a Parrot

Chris McKimmie

A book about wanting and needing what a child wants and what a wild bird needs.     

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 Read reviewYoung Dark Emu: A Truer History

Young Dark Emu: A Truer History

Bruce Pascoe

The highly-anticipated junior version of Bruce Pascoe's multi award-winning book.

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The Little Wave

The Little Wave

Pip Harry

When a Manly school sets out to bring a country class to the city for a beach visit, three very different kids find each other and themselves.

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 Read reviewThis Is How We Change The Ending

This Is How We Change The Ending

Vikki Wakefield

A gritty, ultimately triumphant novel from one of Australia's most loved YA writers, the author of award-winning Friday Brown

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My Friend Fred

My Friend Fred

A. Yi, Frances Watts

A delightful picture book about a friendship between an exuberant but loveable dachshund and his more retiring, tidy housemate.    

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Baby Business

Baby Business

Jasmine Seymour

Baby Business tells the story of the baby smoking ceremony that welcomes baby to country. The smoke is a blessing - it will protect the baby and remind them that they belong.

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 Read reviewThe Trespassers

The Trespassers

Meg Mundell

The Trespassers is a beguiling novel that explores the consequences of greed, the experience of exile, and the unlikely ways strangers can become the people we hold dear.

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 Read reviewEight Lives

Eight Lives

Susan Hurley

A smart, sophisticated thriller that explores power, class and prejudice, Eight Lives will keep you engrossed until the last page.    

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Banking Bad

Banking Bad

Adele Ferguson

How corporate greed broke our trust and failed Australia.

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 Read reviewDiary of a Young Naturalist

Diary of a Young Naturalist

Dara McAnulty

An astonishing, evocative exploration of the natural world and all its wonders, by 15-year-old conservationist and rising literary star Dara McAnulty.     

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 Read reviewKokomo

Kokomo

Victoria Hannan

Winner of the 2019 Victorian Premier's Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript. Both tender and fierce, heartbreaking and funny, Kokomo is a story about how secrets and love have the power to bring us together and tear us...

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 Read reviewTales from the Inner City

Tales from the Inner City

Shaun Tan

The visionary Shaun Tan returns to show us the soul-opening work he's been doing for the past five years.

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Tiberius with a Telephone

Tiberius with a Telephone

Patrick Mullins

The oddly compelling story of a man regarded as Australia's worst prime minister.

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 Read reviewState Highway One

State Highway One

Sam Coley

A stunning debut novel about what it means to come home, from the winner of the 2017 Richell Prize for Emerging Writers.   

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The Queen

The Queen

Josh Levin

The never-before-told story of a beguilingly complex American character, lost in the rush to create a vicious stereotype. For fans of incredible investigative writing in the vein of David Grann and John Carreyrou.   ...

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The Whole Fish Cookbook

The Whole Fish Cookbook

Josh Niland

A completely new way to think about all aspects of fish cookery.

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Lark

Lark

Anthony McGowan, Nick Hayes

Nicky and Kenny's mum is coming to visit for the first time in years. But when an outdoor adventure to take their minds off everything goes from bad to worse, there's a chance that not everyone will make it home alive......

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 Read reviewMeat Market

Meat Market

Juno Dawson

Jana Novak is catapulted to superstardom when she's scouted by a model agency. But the fashion industry is as grimy as it is glamorous, and there are predators at every turn

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Lot

Lot

Bryan Washington

Stories of a young man finding his place among family and community in Houston, from a powerful, emerging American voice.   

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The Narrow Land

The Narrow Land

Christine Dwyer Hickey

The stunning new novel from the beloved Christine Dwyer Hickey, the bestselling author of Last Train from Liguria.

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Sontag: Her Life

Sontag: Her Life

Benjamin Moser

The definitive portrait of one of the twentieth century's most towering figures: her writing and her radical thought, her public activism and her private face.

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The Tradition

The Tradition

Jericho Brown

The powerful second poetry collection published in the UK from award-winning American poet Jericho Brown.   

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The Undying

The Undying

Anne Boyer

An intellectually exhilarating memoir-meets-examination of cancer (both illness and industry) in the age of data, from an award-winning poet and essayist.

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The End of the Myth

The End of the Myth

Greg Grandin

From a Pulitzer Prize finalist, a new and eye-opening interpretation of the meaning of the frontier, from early westward expansion to Trump's border wall

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Sweet Taste of Liberty

Sweet Taste of Liberty

W. Caleb McDaniel

The extraordinary life of Henrietta Wood - a formerly enslaved woman sold back into slavery, eventually freed again, and who then sued the man who had sold her back into bondage, and won.     

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 Read reviewAxiomatic

Axiomatic

Maria Tumarkin

Janet Malcolm meets The Empathy Exams, in a genre-bending work on how we understand the traumas we inherit.

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A Treacherous Country

A Treacherous Country

K.M. Kruimink

Winner of the 2020 The Australian/Vogel’s Literary AwardSet in the 1800s, Gabriel Fox is newly arrived to Van Diemen’s Land (Tasmania) from England. Drawn by the promise of his...

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Magical Negro

Magical Negro

Morgan Parker

New collection of poems by Morgan Parker, author of There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce: 'This is a marvelous book. See for yourself. Morgan Parker is a fearlessly forward and forward-thinking literary star' TERRANCE...

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Know My Name

Know My Name

Chanel Miller

The riveting, powerful memoir of the woman whose letter to Brock Turner gave voice to millions of survivors.

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Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments

Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments

Saidiya Hartman

What was the fate of the first generations of black women born after abolition in America? Struggle: to create autonomous and beautiful lives, to escape new forms of servitude, and to live as if they really were free. This book...

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 Read reviewSay Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

Patrick Radden Keefe

Winner of the Orwell Prize for Political Writing 2019. A gripping story forensically reported, Say Nothing explores the extremes people will go to for an ideal, and the way societies mend - or don't - after long and...

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Everything Inside: Stories

Everything Inside: Stories

Edwidge Danticat

From the internationally acclaimed, best-selling author of Brother, I'm Dying, a collection of vividly imagined stories about community, family, and love.   

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Nganajungu Yagu

Nganajungu Yagu

Charmaine Papertalk Green

An award-winning work of poetry from Charmaine Papertalk Green.

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 Read reviewDamascus

Damascus

Christos Tsiolkas

In Damascus, Tsiolkas has written a masterpiece of imagination and transformation: an historical novel of immense power and an unflinching dissection of doubt and faith, tyranny and revolution, and cruelty and...

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 Read reviewThe Girls

The Girls

Chloe Higgins

A memoir of enormous power: of family, loss, and sexuality which recalls Kate Holden, Fiona Wright or Sarah Krasnostein.

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Sea People

Sea People

Christina Thompson

A masterful mix of history, geography, anthropology, and the science of navigation, Sea People is a vivid tour of one of the most captivating regions in the world.  

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How it Feels to Float

How it Feels to Float

Helena Fox

A stunning, profound, deeply hopeful portrayal of living with mental illness and grief, from an exceptional new voice in YA. 

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