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Author Archive: Stephanie O'Connell

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BOOK REVIEW: Ghost Species by James Bradley

BOOK REVIEW: Ghost Species by James Bradley

| 18 June 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Ghost Species by James Bradley Penguin | Hamish Hamilton April 2020 Paperback $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Speculative Fiction / Climate Fiction 80% Rocking An exquisitely beautiful and deeply affecting exploration of connection and loss in an age of planetary trauma. In the night, she wakes. Something has woken her but […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Warlow Experiment by Alix Nathan

BOOK REVIEW: The Warlow Experiment by Alix Nathan

| 9 May 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Warlow Experiment by Alix Nathan Serpents Tail August 2019 Hardcover, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Historical Fiction 30% What kind of person keeps a man underground for seven years? And who would agree to be part of such an experiment? The year is 1792 and Herbert Powyss is set on […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

BOOK REVIEW: The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

| 20 April 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave Picador January 2020 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Historical Fiction 100% After a storm has killed off all the island’s men, two women in a 1600s Norwegian coastal village struggle to survive against both natural forces and the men who have been sent to […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Nelson – Pumpkins and Aliens by Andrew Levins, illustrated by Katie Kear

BOOK REVIEW: Nelson – Pumpkins and Aliens by Andrew Levins, illustrated by Katie Kear

| 18 April 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Nelson – Pumpkins and Aliens by Andrew Levins, illustrated by Katie Kear Puffin Books March 2020 Paperback, $12.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Middle Grade / Humour 65% Rocking   Meet Nelson . . . he’s an ordinary kid, just like you. Everyone thinks he’s shy but, really, he’s just bored. Nelson hates vegetables. […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Familiar Dark by Amy Engel

BOOK REVIEW: The Familiar Dark by Amy Engel

| 16 April 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Familiar Dark by Amy Engel Hodder & Stoughton March 2020 Paperback, $32.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Crime / Mystery / Fiction 95% Rocking From the bestselling author of The Roanoke Girls comes a new novel with the same incredible atmosphere, strong sense of place and dark heart. The Familiar Dark will blow […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Providence by Max Barry

BOOK REVIEW: Providence by Max Barry

| 15 April 2020 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Providence by Max Barry Hachette Australia March 2020 Paperback, $32.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Science-Fiction / Thriller 75% Rocking An inventive, speculative adventure and the intimate tale of four people facing their most desperate hour – alone, together, at the edge of the universe. The video changed everything. Before that, we could believe […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Escape from Earth: A Secret History of the Space Rocket by Fraser MacDonald

BOOK REVIEW: Escape from Earth: A Secret History of the Space Rocket by Fraser MacDonald

| 10 October 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Escape from Earth: A Secret History of the Space Rocket by Fraser MacDonald Profile Books August 2019 Hardcover, $39.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Non-Fiction / Space / Science / History 60% ESCAPE FROM EARTH is the untold story of the engineers, dreamers and rebels who started the American space programme. In particular, it […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

BOOK REVIEW: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

| 19 September 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff Allen & Unwin May 2019 Paperback, $19.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult / Science Fiction 60% From the internationally bestselling authors of THE ILLUMINAE FILES comes an epic new science fiction adventure. The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Last by Hanna Jameson

BOOK REVIEW: The Last by Hanna Jameson

| 29 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Last by Hanna Jameson Penguin | Viking February 2019 Paperback, $32.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Mystery / Dystopia 65% Rocking For fans of high-concept thrillers such as Annihilation and The Girl with All the Gifts, this breathtaking dystopian psychological thriller follows an American academic stranded at a Swiss hotel as the world descends […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Emily Eternal by M.G. Wheaton

BOOK REVIEW: Emily Eternal by M.G. Wheaton

| 23 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Emily Eternal by M.G. Wheaton Hodder & Stoughton April 2019 Paperback, $32.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Science Fiction / Artificial Intelligence / Oncoming Apocalypse 80% Rocking Meet Emily – she can solve advanced mathematical problems, unlock the mind’s deepest secrets and even fix your truck’s air con, but unfortunately, she can’t restart the […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Need by Helen Phillips

BOOK REVIEW: The Need by Helen Phillips

| 21 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Need by Helen Phillips Penguin | Viking July 2019 Paperback, $29.99 AUD Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Thriller / Speculative 80% Rocking Molly is exhausted, anxious, losing her grip on reality. Her husband is away and she is running between her children and her job, where things are unravelling. She’s a […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Haunted Heart of America by Logan Corelli

BOOK REVIEW: The Haunted Heart of America by Logan Corelli

| 19 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Haunted Heart of America by Logan Corelli Llewellyn Publications April 2018 Paperback, $16.99 USD Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Non-Fiction / Hauntings / Ghosts / Paranormal Investigations 60% Rocking IN-DEPTH INVESTIGATIONS OF THE VILLISCA AX MURDER HOUSE, MYRTLES PLANTATION & OTHER FRIGHTFUL SITES Experience the Heartland’s Most Memorable and Thrilling Paranormal Cases You […]

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BOOK REVIEW: A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews

BOOK REVIEW: A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews

| 18 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews Orchard June 2018 Paperback, $16.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult / Contemporary 90% Rocking An emotionally charged story of music, abuse and, ultimately, hope. Beck hates his life. He hates his violent mother. He hates his home. Most of all, he hates the piano that […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Exhalation by Ted Chiang

BOOK REVIEW: Exhalation by Ted Chiang

| 17 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Exhalation by Ted Chiang Picador May 2019 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Science Fiction / Short Stories / Novellas 84% Rocking   From the award-winning science fiction writer (whose short story “The Story of Your Life” was the basis for the Academy Award-nominated movie Arrival), the long-awaited new collection of stunningly original, […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Recursion by Blake Crouch

BOOK REVIEW: Recursion by Blake Crouch

| 4 August 2019

Pan Macmillan June 2019 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Science Fiction / Thriller 90% Rocking   What if someone could rewrite your entire life? ‘My son has been erased.’ Those are the last words the woman tells Barry Sutton before she leaps from the Manhattan rooftop. Deeply unnerved, Barry begins to investigate her death […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Dry by Neal and Jarrod Shusterman

BOOK REVIEW: Dry by Neal and Jarrod Shusterman

| 2 August 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Dry by Neal and Jarrod Shusterman Walker Books October 2018 Paperback, $16.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult / Dystopia 50% Rocking When the California drought escalates to catastrophic proportions, one teen is forced to make life and death decisions for her family in this harrowing story of survival from New York Times […]

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BOOK REVIEW: The Familiars by Stacey Halls

BOOK REVIEW: The Familiars by Stacey Halls

| 15 March 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Familiars by Stacey Halls Bonnier Zaffre February 2019 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Historical Fiction / Magical Realism 79% ‘Assured and alluring, this beautiful tale of women and witchcraft and the fight against power was a delight from start to finish’ – Jessie Burton, bestselling author of The Miniaturist. Fleetwood Shuttleworth is […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Yahoo Creek by Tohby Riddle

BOOK REVIEW: Yahoo Creek by Tohby Riddle

| 15 March 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Yahoo Creek by Tohby Riddle Allen & Unwin March 2019 Hardcover, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Picture Books / Australian Culture / Aboriginal 90%     Luminous images accompanied by newspaper extracts dating back to the early 1800s and words by Ngiyampaa Elder Peter Williams explore the ongoing mystery of yahoo encounters. ‘He […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Wish by Chris Saunders

BOOK REVIEW: Wish by Chris Saunders

| 12 March 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Wish by Chris Saunders Words & Pictures March 2019 Hardcover, $21.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Picture Book / Friendship 80% Once every year, wishes take flight, filled with hope and twinkling light… Rabbit has never caught a wish before, then one day he catches three! But what amazing things should he wish for? […]

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BOOK REVIEW: Peach by Emma Glass

BOOK REVIEW: Peach by Emma Glass

| 8 March 2019 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: Peach by Emma Glass Bloomsbury Circus January 2018 Hardcover, $24.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Literary Fiction / Surrealism 50%   ‘An immensely talented young writer’ – George Saunders Slip the pin through the skin. Start stitching. It doesn’t sting. It does bleed. White thread turns red. Red string. Going in. Going out. I […]

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