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Book releases that have caught my eye – April 2015

Here are just a few of the titles being released in April 2015 that have caught my eye.

black-rock-white-cityBlack Rock White City is a novel about the damages of war, the limits of choice, and the hope of love.
During a hot Melbourne summer Jovan’s cleaning work at a bayside hospital is disrupted by acts of graffiti and violence becoming increasingly malevolent. For Jovan the mysterious words that must be cleaned away dislodge the poetry of the past. He and his wife Suzana were forced to flee Sarajevo and the death of their children.
Intensely human, yet majestic in its moral vision, Black Rock White City is an essential story of Australia’s suburbs now, of displacement and immediate threat, and the unexpected responses of two refugees as they try to reclaim their dreams. It is a breathtaking roar of energy that explores the immigrant experience with ferocity, beauty and humour.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks

the thrilling adventures of lovelace and babbageThe Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage . . . in which Sydney Padua transforms one of the most compelling scientific collaborations into a hilarious series of adventures.
Meet Victorian London’s most dynamic duo: Charles Babbage, the unrealized inventor of the computer, and his accomplice, Ada, Countess of Lovelace, the peculiar protoprogrammer and daughter of Lord Byron. When Lovelace translated a description of Babbage’s plans for an enormous mechanical calculating machine in 1842, she added annotations three times longer than the original work. Her footnotes contained the first appearance of the general computing theory, a hundred years before an actual computer was built. Sadly, Lovelace died of cancer a decade after publishing the paper, and Babbage never built any of his machines.
But do not despair! The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage presents a rollicking alternate reality in which Lovelace and Babbage do build the Difference Engine and then use it to build runaway economic models, battle the scourge of spelling errors, explore the wilder realms of mathematics, and, of course, fight crime-for the sake of both London and science. Complete with extensive footnotes that rival those penned by Lovelace herself, historical curiosities, and never-before-seen diagrams of Babbage’s mechanical, steam-powered computer, The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage is wonderfully whimsical, utterly unusual, and, above all, entirely irresistible.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | AmazonB&N

the truth and other liesFamous bestselling author, loving husband, generous friend – Henry Hayden is a pleasant person to have around. Or so it seems. And when his mistress, who is also his editor, becomes pregnant, his carefully constructed life threatens to fall apart.
So Henry works out an ingenious plan. Craftily and cold-bloodedly, he intertwines lies and truths and all the shades of grey in-between.
But when he tries to get rid of his mistress, Henry makes a terrible mistake. Not only are the police soon after him, but his past, which he has painstakingly kept under the carpet, also threatens to catch up with him with deadly consequences.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | Amazon | B&N

TheReadingRoom

quicksandThe literary event of 2015. Steve Toltz follows his extraordinary debut, the Booker-shortlisted A Fraction of the Whole, with a novel that’s just as edgy, hilarious and compelling: Quicksand, at once unmistakeably Toltzean and unlike anything that’s come before.
‘Why should I let you write about me?’
‘Because you’ll inspire people. To count their blessings.’
Aldo has been so relentlessly unlucky – in business, in love, in life – that the universe seems to have taken against him personally. Even Liam, his best friend, describes him as ‘a well-known parasite and failure’. Aldo has always faced the future with optimism and despair in equal measure, but this last twist of fate may finally have brought him undone. There’s hope, but not for Aldo.
Liam hasn’t been doing much better himself: a failed writer with a rocky marriage and a dangerous job he never wanted. But something good may come out of Aldo’s lowest point. Liam may finally have found his inspiration. Together, maybe they can turn bad luck into an art form.
What begins as a document of Aldo’s disasters develops into a profound story of love lost, found and betrayed; of freedom and incarceration; of suffering and transcendence; of fate, faith and friendship; of taking risks – in art, work, love and life – and finding inspiration in all the wrong places.
Quicksand is a fearlessly funny, outrageously inventive dark comedy that looks contemporary life unblinkingly in the eye. It confirms Steve Toltz as one of our most original and insightful novelists.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | B&N

where the bird sings bestThe magnum opus from Alejandro Jodorowsky-director of The Holy Mountain, star of Jodorowsky’s Dune, spiritual guru behind Psychomagic and The Way of Tarot, innovator behind classic comics The Incal and Metabarons, and legend of Latin American literature.
There has never been an artist like the polymathic Chilean director, author, and mystic Alejandro Jodorowsky. For eight decades, he has blazed new trails across a dazzling variety of creative fields. While his psychedelic, visionary films have been celebrated by the likes of John Lennon, Marina Abramovic, and Kanye West, his novels-praised throughout Latin America in the same breath as those of Gabriel Garcia Marquez-have remained largely unknown in the English-speaking world. Until now.
Where the Bird Sings Best tells the fantastic story of the Jodorowskys’ emigration from Ukraine to Chile amidst the political and cultural upheavals of the 19th and 20th centuries. LikeOne Hundred Years of Solitude, Jodorowsky’s book transforms family history into heroic legend: incestuous beekeepers hide their crime with a living cloak of bees, a czar fakes his own death to live as a hermit amongst the animals, a devout grandfather confides only in the ghost of a wise rabbi, a transgender ballerina with a voracious sexual appetite holds a would-be saint in thrall. Kaleidoscopic, exhilarating, and erotic, Where the Bird Sings Best expands the classic immigration story to mythic proportions.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | B&N

the dream loverNew York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Berg has written a lush historical novel based on the sensuous Parisian life of the nineteenth-century writer George Sand-which is perfect for readers of Nancy Horan and Elizabeth Gilbert.
At the beginning of this powerful novel, we meet Aurore Dupin as she is leaving her estranged husband, a loveless marriage, and her family’s estate in the French countryside to start a new life in Paris. There, she gives herself a new name-George Sand-and pursues her dream of becoming a writer, embracing an unconventional and even scandalous lifestyle.
Paris in the nineteenth century comes vividly alive, illuminated by the story of the loves, passions, and fierce struggles of a woman who defied the confines of society. Sand’s many lovers and friends include Frederic Chopin, Gustave Flaubert, Franz Liszt, Eugene Delacroix, Victor Hugo, Marie Dorval, and Alfred de Musset. As Sand welcomes fame and friendship, she fights to overcome heartbreak and prejudice, failure and loss. Though considered the most gifted genius of her time, she works to reconcile the pain of her childhood, of disturbing relationships with her mother and daughter, and of her intimacies with women and men. Will the life she longs for always be just out of reach-a dream?
Brilliantly written in luminous prose, and with remarkable insights into the heart and mind of a literary force, The Dream Lover tells the unforgettable story of a courageous, irresistible woman.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | AmazonB&N


this is how it really soundsAn infamous financier courts an ethereal young woman who lives in a secret walled garden in Shanghai. A faded rock star in Los Angeles nurses his last few flashes of brilliance, hoping to write the song that will re-ignite his career. And, in the Alaskan wilderness, the once-greatest extreme skier on the planet sets out on a quest to save his son.
Ranging from the wicked noir Shanghai of 1946, to the echo chambers of Hollywood, to remote, snow-covered mountains, This Is How it Really Sounds follows three men, each in search of a different life. Small-town Alaskan “Harry” Harrington is a legend in a small circle, once the world’s greatest extreme skier, racing avalanches and knocking back flips off of cliffs. Peter Harrington is a world-famous financier, hated across the globe for making hundreds of millions of dollars on his hedge fund, and fleeing New York to begin a new venture in Shanghai. Finally, there is Pete Harrington, a middle-aged rock star, now touring third-tier venues and fleeing bankruptcy, but hoping that one great new song can rescue him. All are seeking something that has slipped away–youth, power, purpose, magic; all are wonderful creations, whose strangely familiar lives and dreams become unforgettable.
Mingling wickedly-funny satire with heart-stopping adventure, This is How it Really Sounds explores the seductive power of the unlived life, and what happens when you finally grasp it.

Available from:
Book DepositoryBooktopia(Aus) | Amazon | Kobobooks | B&N