Australian politics, society & culture


The literary comic novel and Steve Toltz’s ‘Quicksand’
By Richard Cooke
The author of ‘This House of Grief’ and ‘Joe Cinque’s Consolation’ on writing about darkness
By Helen Garner
A&U Canongate; $27.99
By Linda Jaivin
Jonathan Cape; $32.99
By Helen Elliott
Image of Algiers
Punk and gospel influences combine to make the personal political on Algiers’ self-titled debut
By Anwen Crawford
Adapting Kate Grenville’s ‘The Secret River’ for the screen
By Steve Dow
George Miller and the evolution of Mad Max
By Shane Danielsen
Master perfumer Jonathon Midgley concocts some unusual scents
By Ceridwen Dovey
Verse Chorus Press; $29.95
By Anwen Crawford
Harvill Secker; $32.99
By Anna Goldsworthy
David Malouf’s extraordinary musings on life and art
By David Marr
How the television adaptation of ‘Wolf Hall’ transcends the usual Tudor tale
By Benjamin Law
Did a ’70s soft-rock group predict the future of music?
By Robert Forster
A fresh take on horror in David Robert Mitchell’s ‘It Follows’
By Luke Davies
Julia Gillard was sworn in as the 27th prime minister of Australia on 24 June 2010 and served in that office until June 2013. She was the first woman to serve as Australia’s prime minister. Her memoir, My Story, is a fascinating account of her time in office and the life she is now making for herself as a professor
Set in a polio clinic in Perth in 1954, The Golden Age tells the story of 13-year-old Frank Gold, his parents and his fellow patients. Told with Joan London’s quiet grace and exquisite prose, the novel is a triumphant story about love. Join her in conversation with Steven Gale at Adelaide Writers’ Week 2015.
Is it possible that the world’s songbirds all come from Australia? Yes, according to biologist Tim Low in his fascinating ornithological history of Australia, Where Song Began. Low’s wonderfully readable book literally turns the map upside down and makes a compelling case for the origin of birds in the antipodes. Join