We’ve released some fantastic books this year, so we thought we’d share some of our favourites and help you out with your holiday gift-giving! Here are some recommendations from the staff here at Scribe HQ.
For fans of fiction …
Georgia Blain’s Between a Wolf and a Dog is one of the best novels I have read this year hands down. It is warm, smart, profound, clear-eyed without being sentimental or mawkish in the slightest. Set over the course of one rainy day in Sydney, we meet one family in all their beauty and flaws as they deal with how to love one another in the complex world of relationships, grief, loss, and desire. You’ll fall in love with these characters in all their aspects, you’ll feel the rain pelting down, smell the Sydney air in a storm, and care so so much what happens to this family. – Sarina
I can’t recommend Tiffany McDaniel's The Summer That Melted Everything enough. So lyrical in its prose, every page has a sentence or paragraph that you will want to highlight and come back to. Covering the BIG issues: race, sexuality, religion, family, love, and community, McDaniel delicately unravels her story whilst still managing to pack a punch. A perfect gift for literary fiction lovers, this book stays with you for weeks after reading — not to mention the stunning cover design by Allison Colpoys! – Marian
For fans of nonfiction ….
Paul Keating: the big-picture leader by Troy Bramston is a blockbuster of a book — in every sense. You could do serious damage to someone with it, and it nearly did serious damage to Troy and us in its creation and production. Scribe has published many significant political books over the years and I have to say that I see this book as one of the crowning achievements of our house. Troy has interviewed over 100 people in the course of his research, and pored over troves of documents. It is going to be seen as the definitive account of Paul Keating and his era, and is a fantastic gift for those history buffs and political wonks in your circle. – Henry
Popping up on ‘Best Of’ lists all over the place is Kim Mahood’s Position Doubtful. Recounting the author’s visits over many years to the Tanami Desert region of north-western Australia, it’s an evocative, vital, and profound book that is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand contemporary Indigenous Australia. As well as being refreshingly apolitical — Mahood perceives the land she’s moving through for its significance to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, without privileging one over the other — it’s an absolute pleasure to read, written with much intelligence, warmth, and humour. — Marika
Kiffy Rubbo: curating the 1970s, is a detailed historical record and a compelling portrait of a remarkable woman. Edited by Janine Burke and Helen Hughes, the essays delve into culture, art, feminism and politics of the period in a way that’s detailed but still accessible for people who might not be well-versed in Australian visual art history. The selection of letters from Kiffy to her brother Mike are a particularly illuminating and at times heartbreaking glimpse into Kiffy’s mind. The book is a testament to Kiffy’s lasting impression on not only the art world but also everyone who had the fortune to know her as a friend, colleague or mentor. – Lilly
As you can no doubt tell from the title, The Genius of Birds by Jennifer Ackerman, is a book about birds — about how darn amazing, surprising, delightful, and confounding they are, and what’s really going on in those tiny ‘bird brains’ of theirs (a lot more than you think). Science, nature, and bird lovers will delight in the new perspectives being presented by Ackerman here; she’s a great writer, and this book is just so entertaining and accessible. Get it! Read it! Gift it! (not necessarily in that order). – Lesley
Pitched Battle: in the frontline of the 1971 Springbok tour of Australia by Larry Writer is a terrific summer read, a blow-by-blow account of the Australian anti-Apartheid campaign targeting the South African rugby team in 1972. An examination of the complexities of disruptive, sometimes illegal protest, and a timely reminder that the Nazi Party of Australia stalked our streets in living memory. – David
And for the little ones …
I Am Doodle Cat by Kat Patrick (illustrated by Lauren Marriott) is a left-field and irreverent tale of a cat and his/her catalogue of loves, for all of the little people because it is fun, energetic, and just too dang cute to resist sharing. I love Doodle Cat! – Steph
Remember the days when childhood was simple and free, the sun was always shining and you roamed a Mediterranean island with your pet donkey? No, me either, but it’s easy to pretend with My Donkey Benjamin by Hans Limmer, Lennart Osbeck (trans. Elke Wakefield), an absolutely delightful photographic picture book from the 70s, published for the first time in English. – Tamsin
There are so many more fantastic releases from the past year, so do head over to our website and have a browse — we're sure you'll find that special something!