BIOGRAPHIES
&
MEMOIRS

Welcome to our Biographies & Memoirs collection, where you'll find spectacular titles by Australian authors ready to share amazing true life experiences...

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Essential reading for everyone, especially in the wake of #BlackLivesMatter.

 

This second edition of The Cherry Picker’s Daughter is an exquisite portrait of growing up Aboriginal on the fringes of outback towns in NSW in the mid-twentieth century. It offers profound insights into the extraordinary strength, resilience and ingenuity of Aboriginal families to overcome extreme poverty, persecution, racism and cultural genocide.

 

 “Australia has waited too long to read this book of courage and truth. It heralds a timely change in our thinking of Aboriginal activism.” – Jeanine Leane, Wiradjuri writer and academic.

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Optimism, resilience, audacity, hope, surviving daily challenges for themselves and those they love - carers embody all of these qualities.

 
Cheryl Koenig’s fifth book, a memoir, deals with all those human qualities necessary to not only survive a life-threatening diagnoses and a subsequent insidiously painful disease, but to thrive in spite of them.
Cheryl’s is a story about never giving up, nor giving in. Most importantly, however, it is a love story that knows no limits.

 

It is the sequel to her fourth book, With Just One Suitcase, where she met her soulmate, Rob, at fifteen and is still happily married to him after a turbulent life where hers, and her eldest son’s mortality was questioned.

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His car was firebombed by corrupt cops, and contracts taken out by notorious hitmen, but no one was off-limits to ‘Skull’ Murphy’s fearless fight against crime.

Vicki Petraitis explores the many facets of The Skull’s story. Starting on the mean streets of South Melbourne, to his early years as a policeman, then his fight against police corruption. Dodging crooks and corruption on both sides of the thin blue line, The Skull carefully cultivated a reputation for being a ‘mad bastard’.

 

Much has been written about The Skull’s escapades, but few have explored the method behind the madness.

This is his story.

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I slept through my first labour.

 

With her career down the toilet, a husband who was never home, a baby screaming non-stop and her cries for help falling on deaf ears, Megan Blandford spent years saying, “I’m fine”.
 
Spoiler alert (not really): she wasn’t fine.
 
I’m Fine (and other lies) is Megan Blandford’s honest, hilarious and arresting account of postnatal depression and early motherhood.

 

This book is a lifeline to new mums, and invaluable to those who want to understand their experience.

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Life is Funnier than Fiction. It certainly is for one Australian woman living in Bali...

 

The Ibu Chronicles are blog-like snippets of the daily life of an Australian woman and her Dutch husband living in Bali, Indonesia, as they find themselves assimilating into a Traditional Balinese life.
 
These are honest and humorous accounts of this couple's constant mistakes and constant lessons that come from living and working with a nagging Balinese Mother, Ibu.
 
Ibu means mother in Indonesian. Ibu is blunt, Ibu is demanding and Ibu makes sure working in Bali is never boring.

 

Immerse yourself in these true stories of Ibu, the writer and her husband doing business in Bali, Indonesia.

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She suffered an unimaginable loss. Her journey back from darkness would make her whole again.

 

Isolated in a small country town, Veronica is already struggling with motherhood, trapped under the yoke of an ordinary life. After her second daughter, Jacqueline is born with severe disabilities, every moment of every day becomes crowded with people and interventions to keep her alive and well. Despite all the intense love and care - and just before her fifth birthday - Jacqueline dies, and Veronica falls into an ocean of grief.

 

Wishing to never feel the pain of loss again, her grief builds a wall that keeps her emotions safely locked away, until a brave confession offers the first chink of light in that impenetrable barrier. Gradually, aided by friends, mentors, books, and her own cathartic writing, Veronica feels the cold, hard lump of her heart respond. She begins to heal. Inside this poignant memoir, you’ll travel the ten stages of the Heroine’s Journey and learn how to acquire healing along the way. You'll discover how to find feeling and connection to the person you want, and need to be.

 

Raw journals, tools, and powerful lessons will guide and inspire you to follow your own quest for wholeness—in your own way, at your own pace.

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How do children survive a mother’s abandonment and a stepmother’s cruelty in an outback town in the 1950s?

 

With imagination, a strong sibling bond, and humour to escape a bleak home life.

 

This book will take you on a comical and poignant journey.

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AN EXPLICIT AUTOBIOGRAPHY DEPICTING A LIFE LIVED DIFFERENTLY!

 

Jack started to hate his mother at age six. He adopted himself at eight. Had his first affair with a friends European wife at 15. From that point onward, everything was about getting to Europe to chase women and ski, not necessarily in that order.
 
This book reads like fiction until the reader realizes that it’s a true account of how to meld fun, adventures, business and addictions into a life most can only imagine.
 
Verbier, Monaco, New York, London and Tahiti, partying with the rich and famous, chasing one sexual exploit after the other while risking life and limb to achieve the most exhilarating experience.

 

Honestly written, based on memories with over forty photos and comments by those who were involved. If you read one autobiography, READ this one of a life lived differently that will make you wish you were a part of it.

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One Path, Many Lights takes you on the roller-coaster ride of twelve months in the life of author, counsellor, hypnotherapist and Reiki master teacher, Maria Lacey.

 

By sharing her story Maria has one aim; to encourage you to recognise that change and adversity can empower you to move forward in your life.

 

Experience the wonder of spiritual visions after the Chilean earthquake, the grounding fears and anxieties of everyday life, including a life-threatening rush to hospital, surgery a few months later and the personal struggle with anxiety, the ego-self and the mirrored reflection of those around her.

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A memoir is only a slice of a life.

 

This 'questory' (quest + history) covers more than the beloved cake-eating hippo. 'Not Just a Piece of Cake' is a candid memoir of the realistic process of the process of creativity, via anecdotes. 'Anecdultery' is a Hazel original term for story.
Hazel Edwards takes the reader behind the books. She shares the humour of a diverse work style and family life behind the beloved characters like the cake-eating hippo. Hippocampus is where memories are kept.

 

Collaborating with illustrators, performers, co-authors and even family, Hazel shares 'the process of the process of writing' and why storytelling matters culturally, and personally.

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Poor eyesight never impacted author Ken Brandt's vision of what life could be. Positive Vision makes a rollicking good read from cover to cover.

 

Whether galloping across the Montana range, exploring claustrophobic (and fiery!) caverns, chasing a thief through the streets of 1980s New York, or taking a plunge from a plane, his adventures are sure to entertain. Complementing the adventures are amusing and relatable anecdotes demonstrating the advantages of poor eyesight.

 

Enjoy the exciting escapades and interesting insights. Seeing the bright side makes life more fun for you and those around you.

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War Child is a true story that spans a hundred years, a tale of Nazi Germany, the lingering effects of war, the 1950s Australian migration experience and a modern-day search.

 
Magdalena (‘Leni’) is an illegitimate child born in pre-World War II Germany in a small town steeped in superstition. Spurned by her Catholic grandfather, Leni lives in poverty in a country sliding towards war.
 
At school she joins the Hitler Youth before going to work at fourteen to support her mother and two younger brothers. With no-one to protect her, a sadistic employer forces her to submit to secret systematic rape or face having her mother interned. She quickly learns to stay silent and keep her secret.
 
As the end of the war approaches, Leni flees the advance of the Red Army, surviving on her wits, transformed from a meek, cowed girl to protector of her family. In the post-war chaos she falls pregnant to her Yugoslav boyfriend, marrying him in a bid to avoid the hardship and stigma that blighted her childhood.

 

The little family migrates to Australia under the International Refugee Organization program, enduring appalling conditions in Bagnoli Refugee Transit Camp and the hardships of the Bonegilla Migrant Hostel, and now facing the enormous task of beginning a new life in an alien land.

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Known as one of the world's most spectacular and challenging treks, the Kokoda Track in Papua New Guinea, offers the experience of a lifetime.

 

On the 75th anniversary of the campaign between Australian and Japanese troops, author Nikki Moyes trekked the 96km of track where her grandfather acted as a translator. Known for its steep, rugged, and muddy mountain terrain, the track also offers stunning scenery, magnificent jungle plant life, and friendly locals.

 

This is what it is like to hike the Kokoda Track.

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Jan and Ian Mitchell sailed their twenty-five foot yacht, Caprice, around the world between February 1974 and November 1977.

 

Jan writes about seasickness, gales, learning to navigate, coping with strong currents, rigging failure at sea and repairs. There are also the joys of friendships with other cruising folk, visits to tropical paradises and a stay on an uninhabited island.

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In the third volume of Jan Mitchell’s sailing memoirs, Hear the Ocean Sing she tells of her own and Ian’s sufficient recovery in health to return to ocean cruising.

 

They dream of sailing to Chile and Cape Horn in a sturdy steel yacht. But reality soon hits hard that Libelle and the Chilean channels are not for them. Three years later, they find Osprey A, a tough Brolga 33, at Scarborough Marina in Queensland.

 

In this volume, Jan takes the reader to sea with her and Ian, experiencing severe seasickness and a dismasting, but also wondering at the beauties of the ocean, its creatures and the pristine wildernesses they visit. She also observes the alterations in wind patterns, currents, water and air temperatures as well as the decrease in corals and other sea life.

 

These are all symptomatic of the changing climate that is altering our planet’s weather and the world of ocean cruising.

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Jan and Ian Mitchell (round the world sailors) bought Realitas in 1983 so they could take their two growing boys ocean cruising.

 

Crossings in Realitas tells of the trials and tribulations of raising their sons and teaching them to respect the ocean and sail her waves.

 

Realitas was a 32' ocean-going yacht on which the family voyaged up and down the coast, to Tasmania, New Zealand and out to Lord Howe Island several times.

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Short stories that are true and seek to offer advice.

PEEved (Truth) – Every man over 50 must read and heed. Girlfriends and wives should buy this book and compel their man to read it. It will not only save lives and relationships, but the explicit suffering expressed in this story.
 
BILL'S STORY (Truth) – This is guest author Bill Van Atten’s story of an issue that is as important as PEEved. Another serious narrative of how to understand, research, and make decisions that can literally save your life.
 
GEORGE (Advice) – Saddened and lost after the death of his wife, George decides to pick up the pieces and live. George tackles the confusing, frightening, and enlightening world of internet dating.
 
NOT ALL DAYS ARE THE SAME (Truth) – Some love holidays and birthdays. Others dread the thought. One man’s take on the days of the year that will shock some and encourage others.
 
OFF THE GRID (Advice) – A life of luxury comes to an end when the money is gone and the forced sale of the home of forty years is imminent. Shattered and facing homelessness, a friend comes to the rescue with a plan that defies the law.

 

BEING AN AUTHOR (Truth & Advice) – If you have ever thought about writing a book, here are some do’s and don’ts.

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Harry Williams from the age of ten years wanted to become a drover, like his father and grandfather before him.

 

This is his life story of leaving school at ten years old, operating his first droving plant at thirteen years and fully operational at twenty-one years old.

 

Droving is now a craft past its used by date. Harry Williams didn't think so.

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From Cornwall to an untamed South Australia...

 

Based on the true story of the Bryar family, who left their homeland in search of a better life. Richard and his son Thomas secure free passage to South Australia, where they dream of a new beginning working in the copper mine of Burra.

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Many twenty- and thirty-somethings intend to "do" an extreme adventure, somewhere exotic, but most just dream or join the coach tour. Trevelyan Edwards dared to cycle and walk alone.


‘Cycling Solo: Ireland to Istanbul’ explores five months of cycling soloacross Europe. From Ireland to Istanbul via the UK, France, Germany,the Swiss Alps, Serbia, Bulgaria, Hungary and Turkey, with9000 kilometres of forgettable camp-sites, punctures, falls and  random kindnesses in between, this is a journey worth sharing, particularly when told with such candour.
 
All on a budget of nothing.


In "Cycling Solo", Trevelyan has found his voice but the bike is in bits! Aimed at those seeking adventure and imaginative problem solving, this book  appeals to backpackers, travellers and those who enjoy "being there".

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The true story of Australia's first international Super Star, Dame Nellie Melba.

 

Part of the critically acclaimed Aussie Heroes series.

 

This book is a child friendly, informative and entertaining look at the life of Helen Porter Mitchell who became the Opera star, Dame Nellie Melba.

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