Staff Picks What We Read in May

Wow! May certainly was a great month for reading.

In fact, our lunch room has been abuzz with all the book talk. Each one of us eager to share with the other what amazing book we have been reading. The upside of all our book discussions is we then get to share with you our fellow readers just what books have caught our attention this month.

It is our hopes you will then share with your book buddies, enabling every one of your book loving friends to have an endless supply of good books to get lost in over the coming colder months.

So, what have we been reading over the last month? We have listed them below for you to browse and find your next great read!

Recommended Reading

Sistersong by Lucy Holland (Fiction) – I absolutely adored this book! The perfect mix of British folklore and fantasy. Beautifully written, and at times heartbreaking, Lucy Holland manages to weave a brilliant story web that keeps you ensnared until the very last word has been read! (Jody)

The Prison Healer by Lynette Noni (Book 1) – Young adult fantasy at its best! (Jody)

Life’s Too Short (Friend Zone, 3) by Abby Jimenez – Amazing! Definitely my favourite book in the series. (Kate)

The Disappearance of Stephanie Mailer by Joel Dicker

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

The Solstice Countdown by Lisa Shearin – The 7th book in the urban fantasy SPI Files series featuring seer Makenna Fraser and her goblin dark mage partner Rake Danescu protecting the world from evil – great continuation of the series.

Heartsick, three stories about love and loss, and what happens in between by Jessie Stephens

The Fix, how to overcome the invisible barriers that are holding women back at work by Michelle P. King

The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave

Miles Franklin Literary Award Longlist 2021

The Miles Franklin Literary Award was established by feminist and author of My Brilliant Career, Stella Maria Sarah Miles Franklin. First presented in 1957, the Award celebrates novels of the highest literary merit that tell stories about Australian life, shining a light on some of the country’s most talented writers.

“The 2021 Miles Franklin longlist is a rich mix of well-established, early career and debut novelists whose work ranges from historical fiction to fabulism and psychologism. Through an array of distinctive voices these works invite their readers to engage with questions regarding the natural and animal worlds, asylum, sexual abuse, colonialism, racism and grief. These are stories about trauma and loss, and also about beauty, resilience and hope,” said Richard Neville, State Library of NSW Mitchell Librarian.

The shortlisted finalists will be revealed on 16 June 2021 and the winner announced on 15 July 2021. Why not read one, or more, and judge for yourself which one you think deserves to win!

Amnesty by Aravind Adiga
The Rain Heron by Robbie Arnott
At the Edge of the Solid World by Daniel David Wood
Our Shadows by Gail Jones
Infinite Splendours by Sofie Laguna
The Labyrinth by Amanda Lohrey
The Animals in the Country by Laura Jean McKay
Lucky’s by Andrew Pippos
Stone Sky Gold Mountain by Mirandi Riwoe
The Fifth Season by Philip Salom
Song of the Crocodile by Nardi Simpson
The Inland Sea by Madeleine Watts

Even More YA Reads

Spanning the last years of primary and all the way up to early adulthood, young adult fiction has an appeal that knows few bounds. Back by popular demand, this is the third in our series of YA book chats. Join Nisa and Antonia as they discuss the following titles:

Listen Layla by Yassmin Abdel-Magied. Penguin Books, 2021

Catching Teller Crow by Ambelin Kwaymullina and Ezekiel Kwaymullina. Allen & Unwin, 2018

Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas. Walker Books, 2021

The Selection by Kiera Cass. Harper Collins, 2012

HAPPY LISTENING!

Thrilling April Reads

Wow! What a month of books. I really enjoyed reading, ‘Peace‘ by Garry Disher, ‘You Don’t Know Me‘ by Sara Foster and ‘The Ruin‘ by Dervla McTiernan. All very different, but great thriller/crime reads.

If you were looking for a light easy read, then my recommendation would be ‘Peace‘ by Garry Disher. Constable Paul ‘Hirsch’ Hirschhausen, was such a likeable character and while this was the second book in a series of books about Paul Hirschhausen, ‘Peace’ can definitely be read as a standalone. The dry Australian outback and the problems that plague that environment and its people, is something I never tire reading about. ‘Peace’ is the second book in the Paul Hirschhausen series of books. ‘Bitter Wash Road‘ (book one), ‘Consolation‘ (book three).

Anyone, who is a regular reader of Parra Reads will know that Sara Foster is one of my all-time favourite writers. All her books seem to have the perfect mix of great settings, likeable characters, and enough mystery to keep you guessing. If you haven’t read any of Sara Foster’s books, ‘You Don’t Know Me’ is a good one to start with.

The Ruin‘ by Dervla McTiernan is an awesome thriller set in Ireland. I don’t know if it was the setting, the characters or the mystery that caught my attention the most. Maybe it was the masterful way in which Dervla McTiernan mixed them together to create a brilliant crime read. I think I might classify this as my first real crime thriller read. The depth the author has devoted to the setting and character building really sets it apart from other books in the same genre. I can’t wait to read the next two books in the series.

Continue reading

Must Read Newly Released Fiction

Just when we thought our ‘to be read’ piles could not grow any larger, another month ticks over and a completely new lot of amazing books are released out into the world for us all to read.

It probably won’t surprise any of you that there are quite a few of us here at City of Parramatta Libraries who love to read. In fact, we love nothing better than catching up over lunch or online via our Goodreads page to discuss books, books, and more books.

After one recent discussion, we decided to share with everyone these newly released books we simply cannot wait to get our hands on.

If like us, you love books and reading and you currently find yourself at a reading crossroads, you might enjoy exploring some of our top picks for newly released fiction titles.

We have ordered copies of the below recommended new releases, so place a Hold on your pick now. Holds are free and you can now place up to ten (10) Holds and collect from any one of our Libraries.

We hope you find your next great read to share with your reading buddies.

Happy Reading!