Good Reading : July 2006
foreword Pic ador Fi ct ion $32.95 Tra de Paperback Ju ly 2006 Ma cmill an Non-F icti on $32.95 Trade Pape rbac kJ uly 2006 Macmi ll an Non-F icti on $32.95 Trade Paperbac kJ uly 2006 www.panmacmillan.com.au Ma cmi ll an Non-Fi ct ion $32.95 Tra de Pape rback Ju ly 2006 BOOKS OF THE MONTH The sixth novel in Camilleri’s atmospheric and funny Sicilian crime series.Half the retired people of Vigàta have invested their savings with a ﬁnancial wizard who has disappeared with their money. As Montalbano investigates this scam, he ﬁnds himself at a disadvantage: a superior has shut him out of the case, and his cherished Sicily seems to be becoming so ruthless that he wonders if any part of it is worth saving. Drenched with atmosphere and wit, this novel is Camilleri at his most addictive. Why TV is Good For Kids tells the truth about contemporary family life. Catharine Lumby and Duncan Fine, parents of two energetic (occasionally naughty, normal) toddlers, reveal why TV, pop culture, toys and technology will not make your children a) fat, b) violent, or c) stupid and that by removing the misinformation in the public sphere, it’s also clear that Australian parents are excelling at bringing up baby. Christine Hogan was fascinated and a little apprehensive of the Islamic world. But overcoming her trepidation, she decided the only way to gain understanding of Islam was to see things ﬁrst hand. The Veiled Lands is a warm, funny and acutely observed account of a single woman’s travels in a little- understood part of the world, interwoven with the stories of some of the women who belong to the history of the Middle East, including the ﬁrst Muslim, a woman called Khadija. The Last Nizam is the story of an extraordinary dynasty and how the last Nizam gave up a kingdom to come to outback Australia. It charts the rise of the dynasty to fabulous wealth and prominence under the Mughul emperors of India and the strange life of Mukarram Jah, the last Nizam, who left behind him the fabulous wealth of Golconda and the palaces of Hyderabad to drive bulldozers in the Australian bush. It’s hard to believe that this issue marks our fifth birthday! In the first issue, which came out in July 2001, then-editor Caroline Baum wrote: ‘Hello and welcome to a brave new magazine!’ She went on to describe a magazine pretty much the same as the one you’re reading now, and that we’ve survived in the crowded magazine market as long as we have is a testament to the sheer hard work, dedication and talent of everyone involved in its production since that first issue, and to the loyalty and support of all our subscribers, readers and advertisers. This month I’ve met three extraordinarily talented female writers, two of them Australian, and I hope you’ll enjoy meeting them too: Audrey Niffenegger on page 10, Deborah Robertson on page 16, and Kate Morton on page 28. (And in case our male readers are feeling a bit left out, the August issue has nothing but interviews with blokes, so it all evens out in the wash.) In the vein of Sophie Masson’s defence of Agatha Christie in the June issue of gr, young writer Kate Forsyth sticks up for Enid Blyton on page 13. And quite right, too: I also loved Enid Blyton books as a child, especially the ‘Adventure’ series, which I read well into my teens (although by then, like Kate, I didn’t read them in public!). On page 18 regular contributor Derek Parker takes us on a rib-tickling ride through some of his favourite comic novels, and in contrast on page 22 Caroline Lurie pays a poignant and touching tribute to her long-time friend and one-time client Elizabeth Jolley. Our last word this month is by Patti Miller, who has the onerous task (not!) of taking a party of would-be memoirists to Paris each October for two weeks of writing workshops, one-on-one tutelage and lots of sightseeing and cultural pursuits. Finally, this month we have an unusual offer for 50 of our readers, courtesy of Hachette Livre: the first 50 to fill in the card between pages 44 and 45 and send it back to us will receive a bound proof of a new novel the publishers are very excited about: The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox.You have to be willing to fill in a questionnaire about the book after you’ve read it, but I’m sure you’ll all agree that that’s a small enough price to pay for an early look at what promises to be a great read. See more details on page 15. Meanwhile, thanks to you, happy birthday to us!