With many Australians in lockdown and interstate and international borders closed, we felt it timely to share these epic reads ‘Books Down Under’ curated by none other than Philip Blackwell of Ultimate Library. Just some of the selections include journalist Stan Grant’s ‘With the Falling of the Dusk’ about his experiences reporting on the front lines and ‘Amnesty’ by Aravind Adiga about an undocumented immigrant. #StaySafeAustralia
1. A Home Like Ours by Fiona Lowe
A picturesque town, a cosy community garden, a fa ade of tolerance and acceptance – but when three wildly different women come together, what secrets will be revealed? Tara Hooper is juggling her family, a business, and new neighbours. Helen Demetriou is attempting to find stability through the community garden when she uncovers shady goings on in the council. And teenage mother Jade Innes faces a lonely judgement until the three meet in the community garden and an unlikely friendship develops.
2. Other People’s Houses by Kelli Hawkins
Kate Webb still grieves for her young son, ten years after his loss. Spending her weekends, hungover trawling the open houses of Sydney’s wealthiest, imagining the lives of the owners. Visiting one house, the perfect house it seems, she finds the perfect family – a kind-looking man, a beautiful woman she knew at university, and a boy that for one second, she believes is her own son. Curiosity turning to obsession she uncovers unsavoury truths, but could Kate be the real threat?
3. The Ripping Tree by Nikki Gemmell
Early 1800s. Thomasina Trelora is on her way to the colonies. Her fate: to be married to a clergyman. As the Australian coastline comes into view a storm wrecks her ship. Washed up almost dead, she is saved by an Aboriginal man. He takes her to Willowbrae House, where she is free of expectations. Being drawn deeper into the intriguing life at the grand estate, she begins to uncover secrets and realises she may have left one prison for another.
4. Amnesty by Aravind Adiga
Danny – formerly Dhananjaya Rafaratnam – is an undocumented immigrant. Denied refugee status and working as a cleaner, for four years he has been trying to create a new identity for himself. One morning, Danny discovers one of his clients has been murdered. He suspects another client after finding a jacket at the scene. He is confronted with a choice: come forward as a witness and be deported or stay silent.
5. With the Falling of the Dusk by Stan Grant
A powerful and inciteful analysis of the state of the world we live in, and our place in it. Stan Grant weaves his personal experiences of reporting on the front lines of global flashpoints, together with his understanding of politics, history and philosophy. As the world is in lockdown and the showdown with China is accelerating, the west must adapt to a world it no longer dominates.