BOOKSHOP: The season’s best books are ideal for Christmas!

CARTOON IMPRESSION: CHARLES MEERE’S SERIOUS WORK AUSTRALIA’S BEACH PATTERN WHICH WAS DONE 1940. MEERE WAS BORN IN 1890 AND PASSED AWAY IN 1961.

SELECTED BY FRANK MORRIS

CAROLINE CHISHOLM: AN IRRESISTIBLE FORCE

Sarah Goldman

She was a well-proportioned and determined woman, who was strikingly attractive. – Frank Morris.

What do we know of one of Australia’s most influential historical figures -- Caroline Chisholm?

Sarah Goldman’s lively biography offers a portrait of a complex and determined woman who advocated passionately and successfully for the rights and welfare of Australia’s earliest female immigrants.

EARLIST ACTIVISM

She also, left a lasting legacy on our approach to multiculturalism, employment and education. This is a timely and engaging interpretation about early activism; one can’t but wonder how Chisholm would respond to modern-day injustices.

She appeared on the five-dollar note, had suburbs named after her and even inspired a character in Dicken’s Bleak House. – Gleebooks.

Special price -- $34.99.

Illustration: Lasting legacy. She did her best for human kind.

ADVENTURES OF A YOUNG NATURALIST -- DAVID ATTENBOROUGH

David is on everybody lips! – Frank Morris.

First published in the 1950s, this is the enjoyable and engaging account of the explorations of a young David Attenborough.

Working as a television presenter, Attenborough was given the opportunity of a lifetime – to travel the world in search of unusual animals. They were for the London Zoo’s collection. David was set to present his new show, Zoo’s Quest for the BBC.

NATURAL WORLD

Written with Attenborough’s distinct humour and charm, the stories for Zoo’s Quest were not just tales of gripping adventure; but together form a fascinating portrait of the man who changed the way we value the natural world.

Now published in a beautiful gift hardback, this compelling and gently funny memoir will inspire and entertain. – Gleebooks.

Special price -- $34.99.

Next year: Sir David Attenborough: Dolphins surf for the sheer exhilaration of it.

Illustration: He’s the one. Attenborough knows more about animals than the average person.

KEATING

Kerry O’Brien

Here’s the book that should entertain the political mainstream. – Frank Morris.

Though it’s been more than 20 years since he left office, former Prime Minister Paul Keating is yet to release an autobiography or memoir. Fortunately, this book of revelations fills the gap.

Its author Kerry O’Brien, former host of the 7.30 Report and Four Corners, spent many hours with Keating teasing out stories and testing the man’s memories and assertions.

What emerges is a treasure chest of anecdotes, insights, reflections and occasional admissions from one of the most colourful political leaders Australia has known. -- Gleebooks.

Special Price -- $16.95.

lIIustration: A bag of tricks. Kerry catches up with a former Prime Minister Paul Keating.

Next month: More books for you to glean.


CLIMBING: THE ENOLA GAY AND THE DESTRUCTION OF HIROSHIMA.

ENOLA GAY PAPERS WERE AUCTIONED IN NY – DROPPED THE FIRST BOMB ON HIROSHIMA

“My God, what have we done?” The Enola Gay co-pilot’s log book, recording the dropping of the `bomb on Hiroshima on May 6, 1945, fetched a record price at the auction of US historical documents in 2002.

Next year: This will be published early next year.


THE AUTHORS: THIS BOOK HAS BEEN DESCRIBED AS “DENNING’S MONUMENT”

Denning reported the opening of the first Parliament House in 1927.

FRANK MORRIS

The year 1931 was a period to remember in Australian politics.

Since 1929 the Scullin Labour Government had been bogged in “the quicksands” of the Depression, and was sinking fast. After a further damaging series of setbacks an election was called, Scullin was defeated, the Depression raged on.

On the sidelines in Canberra was the veteran political reporter, Warren Denning. Denning reported the opening of Parliament House in 1927; and cut his teeth on reporting the Depression years for Sydney newspapers.

Two years after Scullin resigned the leadership, Denning wrote one of the first indigenous analyses of a political downfall – Caucus Crisis: The rise and fall of the Scullin Government, published in 1937.

AN INPEDENT NEWS SERVICE

The book was reissued by Hale & Ironmonger in 1982, with a contribution by Alan Reid. Reid called it a “little classic … Denning’s monument.”

Another well-known historian opined that the book was “a vibrant and a well-informed account of the downfall of a … government; a classic.”

He went on to become the first staff correspondent of the ABC and largely responsible for establishing the Commission’s independence as a news service.

Denning died, aged 68, in 1975, the year of the “overseas loans” scandal.

Writes Frank Morris, in Australian Book Collector: “(This) was the most startling sequence of events in modern Australian history and Australia’s best political story in decades,(but Denning would not be around to enjoy the spectacle!)”

lIIustration: Bogged: Prime Minister Scullin


GENTLY: EASY DOES IT!

FEELING INSPIRED? TAKE A LEAF OUT OF ANDREA’S BOOK!

Andrea Morris, retail manager, counts trekking Kokoda in 2012 as her most life-changing experience.

ANDREA MORRIS       Adapted by FRANK MORRIS

It was Peter Fitzsimons book Kokoda that first inspired me. I’d always had an interest in military history and after my marriage ended I decided it was time to do something for me. Kokoda was the itch I chose to scratch.

Before my first trek, I was already going to the gym. But I added regular weekend visits to the 1000 Steps in Victoria’s Dandenong Ranges. Up and down, up and down, carrying a backpack with weights; and on weeknights, I would run the local hills to make my legs as hard as possible!

My trek was led by Back Track Adventures and we had 17 trekkers, our leader and 30 porters. My second trek was with a private group of five other trekkers. We crossed the Owen Stanley Ranges and took a three-day sojourn in a village called Naduri to experience village life with the families of our porters.

I HOPE TO GO BACK

This was an incredibly enriching and rewarding experience.

The treks made me feel a connection with our war history and such an appreciation for the 39th battalion and our Armed Forces and all that they gave up. And the friendships I made with my fellow trekkers and the Papuans are wonderful.

I’ve been able to conquer fears and doubts I had about myself. After my first trek I got a small tattoo that reads “Courage Endurance Mateship Endurance” – it reminds me every day that I can do whatever I set myself to and that belief and strength comes from within.

The trek has been the most life-changing thing I’ve ever done. I hope to go back soon …

<< Fernwood, April 2017.

Illustration: Fateful fall? One step sideways! But a porter was there to break her fall.


COFFEE-BREAK CROSSWORDS – NO. 3. SOLUTION NEXT WEEK

SOLUTION NO. 2

Posted in: Grand Years with Frank Morris at 24 November 17

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