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Friday, December 19, 2014

Author Event - Tilney Cotton - Little Chef, Big Curse

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Twice Upon a Time Anthology Release

I am very excited to say that the Twice Upon a Time Anthology will be released on the 23rd of December. To all my fellow Aussies, that is actually the 24th of December. It is an action packed book filled with the re-tellings of fairy tales, myths and legends. 

In this forthcoming title, fairytale, folklore, and myth is reimagined and remastered.

Join Joshua Allen Mercier and The Bearded Scribe Press in its maiden publication, filled with retellings of horror, steampunk, dark fantasy, historical fantasy, cyberpunk, zombies, and other sub-genres of Speculative Fiction.

Featuring tales from:

Liz DeJesus
Alethea Kontis
Brian Rathbone
Jax Goss
Richard Chizmar
Julianne Snow
RS McCoy
S. M. Blooding
Rick Chiantaretto
Kenechi Udogu
Joshua Allen Mercier
Tarran Jones
...and Many More

If you would like to order a copy, just send us a message :D

Author Events - December 2014

This month has been very busy as we have had so many author events at the store. Here are some pictures.





Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Author Interview - Gillian Polack - Langue [dot] doc 1305

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Gillian Polack. Her latest book ' Langue [dot] doc 1305' has just been released and it looks to be a thrilling read. 

There are people involved.
That’s the first mistake.
Scientists were never meant to be part of history.
Anything in the past is better studied from the present.
It’s safer.
When a team of Australian scientists – and a lone historian –
travel back to St-Guilhem-le-D├ęsert in 1305 they discover being impartial,
distant and objective just doesn’t work when you’re surrounded
by the smells, dust and heat of a foreign land.
They’re only human after all.
But by the time Artemisia is able to convince
others that it’s time to worry,
it’s already too late.
 ‘Viscerally powerful, deeply felt, strongly written:  Langue[dot]doc 1305 challenges reader expectations of time travel, of ‘Grim-dark’ and of mediaeval life and brings a haunting, authentic voice both to the past and to the struggles facing the present.’
~ Kari Sperring, author of Living With Ghosts 

What inspired Langue[dot]doc 1305?

It wasn’t so much an inspiration as being caught in a cleft stick. I’m a Medievalist and I’m a writer and I swore I’d never write anything straight historical. I’d stick to fantasy and keep my two worlds safely apart. I wrote the novel as part of a doctorate, though (third novel, second doctorate, but not the first time I’ve eaten my words) and it was really important to question the deep truths I thought I believed in. Keeping those two worlds apart was one of those truths and it turned out to be not a truth at all, but a giant fear of worlds colliding. The worlds didn’t collide in the end, but merged gracefully.

And this is not the answer anyone expects when they ask that question! “I wrote this book because I said I never would.”

·         Can you tell me a little bit about the main characters?

The novel is an ensemble creature. There are two casts (and a few extras off to the side). There is the time travel team, led by the uber-brilliant Luke Mann and his offsider Dr Sylvia Smith. The historian (who explains the past to us, is Artemisia Wormwood. She’s not at all the same kind of historian as me, which made her quite a challenge to write ) – Medievalists are specialists and working out how the limits of her knowledge were different to mine wasn’t straightforward. There is a whole bunch of scientists, there is a doctor/cook and there’s a handyman time-travelling under the hill and they’re all far too strong personalities to be confined so tightly. It brings out the worst in everyone.

The leader in the valley (the townsfolk in the valley and they actually belong in 1305) never actually appears, but of those who do appear I love Guilhem-the-smith most and Fiz almost-most. Fiz is an adolescent who doesn’t know he’s bored. Guilhem-the-smith bears the weight of the world and deals with it quite calmly, which is a good thing, given his neighbours. There’s also Guilhem-the-knight, who only thinks he bears the weight of the world and really needs to get over himself.
What drives you write?

I love meeting all these people in my mind. I love putting them in odd situations and seeing how they react. All my novels, whether they’re fantasy, SF, or something else are about small lives and how big they are for the people who live in them. This means I get to play out problems that I see in the bigger world around me and find out what happens when I give them time in the sun. It also means I get to turn traditional narratives inside out (gently) and see how they work.

       Do you have a name for your computer?

Sometimes I have names for my desktop computer. They’re not polite. This is when my computer does idiot things like download an update and need reconfiguration when I’m on a tight deadline, or lose the internet in the middle of final edits which I’m doing live with my editor.

My netbook is called “portaoffice” mainly because Sharon Penman calls her computers exciting names and they all do vile things to her, so I thought that if I called my travelling computer something unexciting and reliable it would behave accordingly. So far it’s worked.
  How did you come up with the title?

I didn’t! My title was exceptionally dull and Janeen Webb suggested that Langue.doc 1305. My publisher changed the full stop, to make it less confusing to look up. It’s such a wonderful pun – I love this title!

·         What was it like getting into the nitty gritty of 1305 France, was it hard coming back to 2014?

Because I’m a middle-aged Medievalist, I’ve been in Medieval France on and off for 25 years, so it wasn’t hard at all. What was hard was convincing everyone that I’m not still there…

  What type of books do you like reading?

So many! I love reading. My paper library is about 6,500 books and my e-library is many times that and it’s not enough, for I am a sad book addict. Or a happy book addict. A book addict, anyhow.

I read broadly, and with great pleasure. I always come back to speculative fiction and to favourite authors. I have hundreds of favourite authors, though, and they range from Georgette Heyer to Mikhail Bulgakov (The Master and Margarita is intense and luminous and dangerous) and George Gissing and Jane Austen. Favourite Australian new books include a collection of short stories by Kim Wilkins (The year of Ancient Ghosts) and a spectacular novel by Alysse Near (Fairytales for Wilde Girls).

 What was your favourite chapter (or part) to write and why?

I remember that my favourite parts of the writing were immersive but each time I think of a moment I’m back in it. Comparing one with another is tough. When Artemisia explains to Geoff how people in the Middle Ages might see the sky that the two of them are looking at during that Medieval moment, even though I was at my desk in Canberra it felt as if I was lying on the ground and looking up at that sky and feeling the soft breeze. I knew the sky because an astronomer-friend – Lara Eakins showed me those skies, and I knew the land and the breeze because I’ve visited them, but in that moment, for my writing, the research came together and created something quite different. When I’m writing a novel, I’m inside the world of the novel to an extent and every bit is both wonderful (being in that world) and quite difficult (translating what’s happening in that world into a story for readers). What this means, though, is that by the time the book is published I’m in a different place entirely.

 Artemisia is a beautiful and unusual name, how did you find it?

I’ve seen it as a name in Italian works for ages (Artemisia Gentileschi was a famous artist, for instance), and I’ve loved it for ages. I needed a name with a twist and it had to be an Italian name, so Artemisia was perfect. It also meant she got to choose a surname that is actually a pun. Why did she need to choose a surname and what joke did she make and why is that joke a bit bitter? For that you’ll have to read the book, I’m afraid.

 What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer?

I’m not sure that one remains sane as a writer. I would rather be grounded than sane, anyhow. In touch with reality, not necessarily a part of it. For this, I have friends. I also try to remember that there is an outside world and that the worlds in my mind are just invented, and that tomorrow could well be even more interesting than yesterday, and that I need to ring my mother at least once a day. Also, chocolate helps.

  If you could have a cuppa with anyone from history, who would it be?

I want to meet the ancestress who left London with many children and came to Australia 150+ years ago. I have her eyes and I look at her picture and think “What an interesting woman.” She has an amazing presence in the single photo we have of her. I would love to drink tea with her.

  Do you have a writing routine that you need to do before you start to write?

Sometimes. Each book develops its own work-patterns and two of my novels have demanded routines. One was exactly the opposite though (that was The Art of Effective Dreaming, which Satalyte will release next year) and insisted on being written anywhere and anytime. With Effective Dreaming, I had scraps of notes on all kinds of strange material and the novel changed whenever I entered them into my system.

The only thing all my novels have in common is a little spreadsheet Jennifer Fallon gave me. I track y deadlines and my wordcount. This is more a signing-off routine (do a wordcount and update the spreadsheet at the end of a session) than a starting-up one.

  How much research goes into your writing?

Impossible amounts. Seriously. I’m a researcher the same way I’m a wordsmith. It’s something I’ve just done for such a long time I don’t know how not to research or how to quantify it. I collect possible material for novels wherever I am. I have a self-created picture library, for instance, just in case I need material for something, later on. Occasionally those pictures get published. A couple of my photos were modified for use on the cover of Langue[dot]doc 1305, for instance. I’m not a photographer, though – I’m a writer and a historian and love the research side of both.

    What would be your ideal century and why?

I used to have a clear answer to this. I always said “twelfth century” because it was a time of pivotal cultural change. So many cool things happened and they produced a culture that eventually became ours. Right now, though, I’m fascinated by the seventeenth century. I think I don’t love centuries, but humans and when humans do interesting things, I get fascinated and the times and places I’m looking at become my new BFF. I’d be a lousy time traveller!

 How did you become interested in history?

I wish I knew the answer to this. I’ve always been interested in history. By ‘always,’ I mean that when I was a child I dragged my family into museums and looked for old buildings and asked questions about clothes that were different to the ones we were waring and jumped up and down with joy when I discovered pre-electric irons. Seriously, I did. When I was ten, I think it was. A country museum in rural Victoria had a display cabinet with irons that covered a century of change. I think my family thought I was mad. This latter bit hasn’t changed. And I still get excited in museums.

 What makes this book different to the other books written about the Languedoc?

It’s the Middle Ages of historians (or as close to that as I could get) not the Middle Ages of high fantasy or grimdark. Also, it’s the Languedoc of someone who has been there and asked many questions. And it’s unashamedly Australian – there’s even two-up. I can’t think of another time travel novel that has two-up, much less a time travel novel set in the Languedoc.

Has the dog ever eaten your manuscript?

No, but the cat once ripped up a few pages to make a nest. I don’t know why cats like to nest in fiction (or indeed, why they nest at all), but it shows they have good taste. I can’t have a cat now (I live on a major road) and my stories are the worse for it.

Thank you Gillian for enticing us with your wonderful novel. 

 Gillian's book is now available to be ordered in store or if you are after the E-Book version then head over to the Satalyte Publishing Website and they will help you out :D 

Gillian lives in Canberra, Australia and has three published novels, two anthologies and a historical cookbook. One of the novels (Ms Cellophane/Life through Cellophane) was a Ditmar Finalist, as was one of the anthologies (Baggage). She was awarded the Best Achievement Ditmar in 2010. Her PhDs are in Medieval History and in Creative Writing and she claims she needs a third to ‘round things out.’

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Collins Booksellers Edwardstown in the Spotlight!

Jen Campbell, author of 'Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops' is celebrating the release of her new book 'The Bookshop Book' in October. In honour of this, Jen has been interviewing booksellers across the world and posting about them. I am excited to say that Jen's interview with me about our store is now live.

Please check it out and come back and comment on this post :D

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Author Event - Morning Tea with Fiona Palmer


We will be hosting Fiona Palmer for a morning tea!! As one of the Queens of Outback Fiction, Fiona tells life as it is living in country Australia. Fantastic characters, real life situations - there is something for everyone in her books. 
Bookings Essential!

Author Event - Beck Nicholas

We will be having local author Beck Nicholas in store with us to help celebrate the release of her new book 'Fake' on the 3rd of October at 1pm! We would love to see you here!

Seventeen-year-old Kath McKenny has a date to the end-of-term party with her since-forever crush. He publicly messaged her to confirm, but there’s been a recent status update: he’s taking the new girl — giggly, pretty, well-developed Lana Elliot — instead.

After being thoroughly humiliated in front of half the school, best friend Chay talks Kath into revenge: a scheme to create the perfect — and very fake — online guy for Lana. Once she falls for him, they’ll show her what it’s like to get brutally dumped.

Everything is going to plan until Kath starts spending more-than-just-friends time with the other new kid in town — Lana’s dreamy older brother, Sebastian. Kath finds herself getting in deep — in love and drowning in guilt, she tries to put an end to her prank, but it’s taken on an unstoppable momentum of its own, with very real consequences.

As her plotting begins to unravel, so do the people Kath thought she knew:
Her mother has a secret online life.
Her father has a whole new family.
Her best friend is barely recognisable.
Her boyfriend has a disturbing hidden past.
And her enemy is more familiar than she knew.

Andy Griffiths Event Photos

Friday, August 22, 2014

Book Review - Clariel - Garth Nix

Clariel (Abhorsen, #4)Clariel by Garth Nix
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I really enjoyed this book.

It has been years since I read any of the Old Kingdom series by Garth Nix but this book threw me back and didn't let go until I had finished it.

Set 600 years before the Old Kingdom series, Clariel is a slightly selfish teenage who is thrown into a city not of her choosing. No one seems to care that she is unhappy and it is that unhappiness which breeds dissent. All Clariel wants to be left alone and become a Borderer, a member of the forest guards who patrolled the woods and forests of the kingdom. Instead her entire family move the Capital of the Old Kingdom to further the ambitions of her mother and she feels trapped by all the stone and people.

Clariel has to make a choice and it is one that will lead to the events of Sabriel, Lirael and Abhorsen.

Well written and engaging, this stand alone prequel does credit to Garth Nix.

Now I am going to go back and re-read Sabriel again.

View all my reviews

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Minecraft Books

You're alone in a mysterious new world, full of hidden dangers. You have only minutes to find food and shelter before darkness falls and the monsters come looking for you. What do you do? The Official Minecraft Beginner's Handbook might just save your life. You can learn how to make a shelter, find resources, craft tools, armour and weapons, and protect yourself from monsters. With tips from Minecraft experts, as well as creator Notch himself, this is the definitive guide to how to survive your first few days in Minecraft.

It's time to wire up and get connected to one of the most complex areas of Minecraft–Redstone. Redstone experts guide you through all aspects of working with Redstone including mining, smelting, using repeaters, circuit components and circuit designs. This handbook also includes exclusive tips from game creator Notch himself and some of the most extraordinary Redstone creations ever made. So power up and get switched on to Redstone–it's electrifying!

The OFFICIAL Combat Handbook will teach you everything you need to know to defend yourself from hostile monsters and enemy players. In Minecraft, you're never alone and the threat of attack is constant. How will you survive? The Official Combat Handbook will teach you everything you need to know to defend yourself from hostile monsters and enemy players. You can learn how to build a fort, craft armor and weapons, set mob traps, defeat your enemies in one-on-one combat, and battle your way out of the Nether and the End. With tips from Minecraft experts, developer Jeb, and creator Notch himself, you'll be a Minecraft warrior in no time!

If you can dream it, you can build it in Minecraft! This OFFICIAL guide will give you tips and tricks on how to be a creative genius! You can make theme parks with incredible waterslide rides, or entire pirate coves complete with galleons! Is there nothing that can't be achieved in Minecraft? Here the experts talk you through amazing constructs which range from awe-inspiring cathedrals to wacky inventions--like the hilarious animal cannon that catapults cows out to sea! Find out which are Notch's personal favorites and get step-by-step instructions to fuel your own creative genius. Be ORE-some!

Fantastic Boxed Sets

RRP $69.95 Our Price $39.95
These are six best-selling books from one of the world's most famous children's authors of all time. This magical boxed set includes the classic stories The Magic Faraway Tree, The Folk of the Faraway Tree and The Enchanted Wood accompanied by The Adventures of the Wishing-Chair, The Wishing-Chair Again and More Wishing-Chair Stories. You can come on an amazing adventure to the Enchanted Wood where you can climb the Faraway Tree and meet Moon-Face, Saucepan Man and Silky the Fairy. There's always a new land at the top of the Faraway Tree. Then discover the most extraordinary thing: a chair that can fly and grant wishes. Whichever book you choose, there'll be adventures waiting to be read. Enid Blyton's funny, magical adventure stories have become true classics, loved by millions and still selling thousands of copies every year.

RRP $99.99
George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series has set the benchmark for contemporary epic fantasy. Labelled by Time magazine as one of the top 100 most influential people in the world, Martin has conjured a world as complex and vibrant as that of J.R.R. Tolkien's, populated by a huge cast of fascinating, complex characters, and boasting a history that stretches back twelve thousand years. Three great storylines weave through the books, charting the civil war for control of the Seven Kingdoms; the defence of the towering Wall of ice in the uttermost north against the unearthly threat of the Others; and across the Narrow Sea the rise to power of Daenerys Targaryen and the last live dragons in the world.

RRP $79.99 Our Price $49.99
Six of Dr. Seuss's sensational tales in this fantastic slipcase. Contains - Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose Marvin K Mooney Will You Please Go Now Hunches in Bunches The Cat in the Hat Yertle the Turtle and Other Stories Oh, the Places You'll Go!

RRP $49.95
Be part of the magic of storytelling all over again with these gorgeous classic gift sets full of stories to love. Includes 6 hardback books * All the books are stored in a stunning slipcase designed as a book that becomes the perfect place to store your stories - or your own secrets! * Matt lamination and spot UV to the case adds old-school glamour * Noddy and Sesame Street are brands that parents have loved for decades. Their appeal has hit the same sweet notes with the next generation and proves that classic stories never lose their appeal.

National Bookshop Day Photos

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