christmas nonfiction 2018

Boys Will Be Boys by Clementine Ford is the follow up to her immensely successful and terrific Fight Like a Girl. Ford is an intelligent and courageous thinker who is also regularly subjected to a lot of the worst kind of online abuse I’ve seen. You’ll hear her read out some of those comments in the video below.

‘Boys will be boys’ is an expression that’s long needed an examination and Ford has taken on the task of showing what’s horrible about toxic masculinity, how it hides within similar idioms and asks what can be done because society deserves better. It won’t be an easy or comfortable read for many, but it’s an important one. 

If you haven’t heard of Eddie Woo and have a half hour to spare, feel free to enjoy this episode of ABC’s Australian Story.

Woo’s Wonderful World of Maths is an extension of the infectious enthusiasm he has for maths and education; when first you could watch his YouTube channel, now there’s a book too.

After her success with the wonderful Small Acts of Disappearance, Fiona Wright is back on the new release shelves with The World Was Whole. This is a Good Thing because Wright is a wonderful writer and I especially love how her work is concerned with “how all-consuming the engagement with the ordinary can be”. That quote from the New South Books website is spot on.

I have a question: am I the last person to find out about Matt Haig? Where was I hiding when Reasons To Stay Alive came out? Or his previous fiction for adults and children, for that matter. His latest book, Notes on a Nervous Planet, continues his examination of the important topic of self-care and mental health in this day and age. You can see him talk more about that below.

This book is structured similarly to several others I’ve seen on the subject – lots of lists, short chapters. Great for those of us anxiety-folk who rely on lists and have short attention spans. Whether or not this material will be new or revelatory will depend on how much you’ve read on the subject by other authors, but Haig has an accessibility, an every-man-ness that stands it apart.

Dark Emu by Bruce Pascoe came out in 2014 and its resonance continues, garnering awards, reprints and respect. Why? If you haven’t heard of it yet, Pascoe’s years of groundbreaking research challenged accepted western categorisation of Aboriginal Australians as hunter-gatherers. Dark Emu is the book about what he discovered: they were farmers.

It’s an epochal text that should be on shelves across the country – homes, libraries, schools and more.

Full disclosure: I am an affiliate of Booktopia, which means I earn a small commission if you click through from this site and make a purchase. Just so you’re aware, the Christmas cut-off date for non-stocked items is the 29th November and the cut-off for stocked items will be the 13 December for New Zealand, NT, SA, WA & other non-metro areas and 16th December for Metro areas in ACT, NSW, QLD, TAS & VIC.
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Karen Andrews is the creator of this website, one of the most established and well-respected parenting blogs in the country. She is also an author, award-winning writer, poet, editor and publisher at Miscellaneous Press. Her latest book is Trust the Process: 101 Tips on Writing and Creativity