Our books of the month, June 2022

OUR FICTION BOOK OF THE MONTH


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Horse by Geraldine Brooks

Reviewed by Gabrielle Williams, Readings Prize manager

‘As with each of Brooks’ books, the historical detail is astonishing, and you can’t escape the sense that this is really and truly the way things happened. The barns, the barbers, the drawing rooms, the streets, are all skilfully and convincingly drawn. The cruelty of humankind towards animals, as well as the cruelty of humankind towards itself feels real. This is a huge book, with enormous themes, beautifully and engagingly written. Expect it on all the prize lists this year. Brilliant!’

Read the full review here.


OUR CRIME BOOK OF THE MONTH


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The Woman in the Library by Sulari Gentill

Reviewed by Fiona Hardy, bookseller at Readings Doncaster

‘Sulari Gentill – author of the excellent Rowland Sinclair series – has written a standalone literary mystery that is delightfully self-referential: it constantly reminds you of its fictional scaffolding while making you, somehow, even more invested in the story. This is a clever, twisting piece of meta-crime writing that will have you scouring layers for clues and finding in the pages the joy of a truly original read.’

Read the full review here.


OUR NON-FICTION BOOK OF THE MONTH


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Eat Weeds by Diego Bonetto

Reviewed by Chris Gordon, community engagement and programming manager

‘Bonetto begins the Great Weed Tour of 2022 in his own backyard, before heading out to woodlands, seasides and riverbanks. Along the way he picks various seaweeds, mushrooms, greens and leaves. Each ‘weed’ is photographed and discussed alongside recipes featuring the plant. Eat Weeds: A Field Guide to Foraging is a cookbook, as well as a walking tour, that celebrates our past and hopefully our future.’

Read the full review here.


OUR KIDS BOOK OF THE MONTH


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Open Your Heart to Country by Jasmine Seymour

Reviewed by Clare Miller, Readings online

‘This is a visually stunning picture book; Seymour’s distinctive illustration style of combining printmaking and painting with digital collage results in delightfully deep blues and purples, contrasted with a variety of bright flowers, birds and other wildlife. I was drawn to each character, deep in concentration in their connection to Country while they swim, dance and perceive the world around them.’

Read the full review here.


OUR YOUNG ADULT BOOK OF THE MONTH


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My Spare Heart by Jared Thomas

Reviewed by Lucie Dess, marketing assistant

‘This is a tender story about the struggles of growing up. Phoebe is dealing with a lot: dividing her loyalties between her parents, confronting the ignorance and racism of her fellow students, experiencing her first crush, and of course, making it onto the local basketball team.

My Spare Heart is a powerful and crucial story by a First Nations YA writer that explores alcoholism, racism, sexual assault, bullying and family dynamics.’

Read the full review here.


CHILDREN’S CLASSIC OF THE MONTH


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Is There Anyone Better than Henrietta? by Martine Murray

Reviewed by Athina Clarke, bookseller at Readings Malvern

‘Henrietta is a little girl with an enormous personality and a vast imagination; she’s a fireball of passion, one of a kind!

Finally, all four of these hilarious stories are collected together in one book, a delectable treat for a whole new generation of readers who are about to discover that there really is no one better than Henrietta! These outstanding read-aloud stories are perfect for anyone ages five and up.’

Read the full review here.


CLASSICAL ALBUM OF THE MONTH


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Fable: Works for Solo Harp by Australian Women Composers

Reviewed by Kate Rockstrom, friend of Readings

‘As I listened to Fable, I recognised a couple of tracks from my many years of listening to ABC Classic, but there was also a spiciness to some of the repertoire that I found myself enjoying. Wondering what was giving these works an extra kick, I discovered that all the pieces on the album are by Australian composers – not only that, they are also all by women.

I’ve listened to this album many times while writing this review, but each time I get something new – just the way it should be.’

Read the full review here.

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Horse

Horse

Geraldine Brooks

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