Forgotten Great-Aunt Elsie’s Christmas gift? Booktopia’s got your back!

Merry Christmas from Booktopia!

merry christmas

We know that you had a thousand things on your mind in the lead-up to Christmas. Kids school holiday arrangement, tying up loose ends at work, getting that barbecue working before the in-laws arrive… It’s understandable that you forgot the last relative on your present list.

We can help you avoid those awkward moments under the Christmas tree. Simply click the link below to download a Booktopia Gift Certificate in less than a minute and preserve that Christmas magic.

You can thank us later.

Click here to grab a Gift Certificate!

… and happy holidays!roger-ascham-and-the-king-s-lost-girl

Haven’t planned your summer reading yet? We have a huge range of eBooks that can be yours in a matter of seconds.

This year millions of people will receive or buy themselves a very cool device. Whether that device is a tablet (an iPad, or a Samsung, or a Google Nexus or a Microsoft Surface) or a cool new smart phone, or even an eReader, it doesn’t really matter. What does matter is that with every new device sold a potential new eBook reader is born.

And Booktopia is right here to help you find the book and the format you desire.

And to show you just how easy eBooks can be, why not download this FREE eBook  from one of Australia’s most exciting writers – MATTHEW REILLY!

You’ll find buying eBooks from Booktopia is quick and easy. So if you have a device with you, you’ll never be stuck with nothing to read again.

Download our Booktopia Reader for iOS – an ePub and PDF eBook reader for Booktopia customers, suited for iPhone, iPad and iPod or our Booktopia Reader for Android – an ePub and PDF eBook reader for Booktopia customers, suited for all Android devices.

The reading world isn’t an either/or kind of place. Books and eBooks can and will live side by side quite happily. You don’t have to choose sides. We can now read in whichever format that suits.

Click here to download an e-Book today!

android apple-app-store

The 20 Best Fantasy Titles To Help You Escape The Christmas Mayhem – Part One (A Personal Selection By Guest Blogger Mark Timmony)

Christmas is coming!

Given the way the last couple of months have sped by it will be here before you know it. It’s rather easy at this time of year to see the new release books put at the top of catalogues, and piled in big displays – publishers throw fireworks around the newest blockbuster from the big name authors – and those of us with loved ones who read can easily pick up the latest release to help sate what is in fact an unquenchable thirst for the next book.

Unfortunately there is not always a big list or blinking lights over the latest thing for those loved ones who walk on the wild side and read stories of dragons and magic, swords and heroes, gods and monsters.

Well fear not gentle shopper and/or reader! Here at Booktopia we have such beasties well in hand, and a map to guide you to possible purchases that would otherwise leave you scratching your head.

Come this way…


Cold Days

by Jim Butcher

What can possibly be said about Jim Butcher and his Dresden Files that hasn’t been said before? The yard mark by which most urban fantasy is measured today, Butcher’s Dresden Files now strides into its fourteenth full-length novel and remains as fresh and as exciting as it did at book one. With consummate skill Butcher has unveiled his imagination on to the page and gifted we lucky readers with Harry Dresden, Private Detective and Wizard, whose legend now easily matches that of Gandalf the Grey and Pug of Midkemia. Weaving a series of heady adventures wedged between life and death action, and a world threatening war with the vampires of the Red Court, Butcher now turns his considerable talents to reworking his story with smarts and flare as new powers emerge to fill the vacuum left after the war, and Harry must now pay the piper.

Click here for more details or to buy


A Blink of the Screen (Collected Short Fiction)

by Terry Pratchett

One of fantasy’s most popular authors, this collection of Sir Terry Pratchett’s short stories is a must for all of his diehard fans, and for those new to his work who are looking for a good place to start. Pratchett’s wit has thrilled millions of readers around the world, and having been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s in December 2007, everything he continues to work on has become more and more precious to those who have found such joy in his writing. This is a collection that will take pride of place in the library and bring hours of reading and re-reading for years to come.

Click here for more details or to buy


Malice

by John Gwynne

Already being heralded as the next big thing, Gwynne’s debut novel is an exciting addition to the ranks of fantasy fiction. Marching forth boldly Gwynne builds his world in a medieval Europe-like setting and pushes the reader into a long conflict of good versus evil, delving into a Gods War and peppering his mythology with angels and demons. For a new voice in the field Malice moves Gwynne to stand shoulder- to-shoulder with the likes of Terry Brooks and David Eddings, marking this the debut of a writer to watch.

Click here for more details or to buy


Portlandtown

by Rob DeBorde

Rob DeBorde offers a supernatural ‘alternate western’ of dark fantasy that blends horror, magic and zombies into a rip-roaring tale and is already drawing comparisons to Stephen King’s Dark Tower series. What more could you want? Set in – you guessed it – a spookily twisted version of Portland, the first book in the Oregon Wyldes introduces an ‘olden-time’ twist on the urban fantasy market sure to please fans of steampunk and spaghetti westerns.

Click here for more details or to buy


Red Knight

by Miles Cameron

Miles Cameron’s debut novel is surely the start of big things for this author. Set in a very different yet strangely familiar England, for the most part, this is the tale of man’s battle to impose order on the Wilde. Full of knights and hermetic mysticism, which both clashes and melds with the very strong Christian faith, this is an epic first novel from an exciting new voice and perfect for those of you who like the chivalry of Martin’s Game of Thrones and Joe Abercrombie’s ‘take-no-prisoners’ approach to warfare.

Click here for more details or to buy


Tomorrow, the Killing

by Daniel Polansky

Debuting in 2011 with The Straight Razor Cure Polansky burst onto the fantasy scene introducing us to the fallen hero Warden. Once a war hero and member of the city’s elite police force he now trawls the streets of the aptly named Low Town and hides from his past glory. Shaping his style to meld the best of the noir crime novel and epic fantasy, with the Low Town being as big a part of his world as the characters themselves, Polanksy’s novels are dark and brooding yet serve as many moments for the reader to cheer a hero who doesn’t let heroics and moral ‘right action’ get in the way of getting the job done – as you might find in Mel Gibson’s Payback. An awesome book, as well as being powerfully and compellingly written, Polanksy’s Low Town series is shaping up to be an edgy spin on epic fantasy offering a fresh direction in a genre fit to bursting with well trod paths.

Click here for more details or to buy


Blood and Bone

by Ian Cameron Esslemont

Co-creator of the Malazan world with friend and bestselling author Steven Erickson, Esslemont has been quickly carving a name for himself in the same gritty fields of Malaz – though he did admittedly have a slower start. Working in tandem Esslemont is following the storylines adjacent to Erikson’s own and weaving tales that add to the Malazan Empire series and stand-alone as thrilling new adventures in ‘epicness’. Rich, detailed, complex and often confronting, Esslemont is the perfect read for someone who likes to think as much as they enjoy epic scenes of brutal battles and the clash of mortals against Gods.

Click here for more details or to buy


The Lands of Ice and Fire

by George R. R. Martin

Unfortunately we are still waiting for the next installment of GRRM’s Song of Ice and Fire, (no, he hasn’t finished the next book yet) but for those eager fans who just can wait for their next fix of the massive world of Westeros this brilliant atlas has been created by both George and artist Jonathan Roberts. Most impressively, for the first time in the history of the series, this title presents a complete map of the known world of A Game of Thrones, joining the lands of the Seven Kingdoms and those across the Narrow Sea. I can’t wait to get my hands on this one!

Click here for more details or to buy


Devil Said Bang

by Richard Kadrey

Grit in fantasy, urban or otherwise, is the new black. And one writer making a name for himself with his no-holds barred depiction of a hero who’s been to hell and back – literally – is Richard Kadrey. The Sandman Slim novels are filled with real and fallible characters in an alternate modern day earth that takes all that’s ‘hard’ in Jim Butcher, Mike Carey and Neil Gaiman, throws petrol over it and lights a match. Compelling and disturbing in equal measure, if you have had enough of sparkling vampires and heart of gold werewolves you’ve come to the right place. Here monsters are monsters, and one man battles his own demons –inside and out – to keep himself and those he cares for safe.

Click here for more details or to buy


Stone of Tymora

by R. A. Salvatore, Geno Salvatore

Teaming up with his son, bestselling author R.A. Salvatore lends his most popular character, the dark-elf ranger Drizzt Do’Urden and companions, to this swash-buckling tale aimed at younger readers. Full of Forgotten Realms lore, fast paced battles and high adventure the Salvatore team provide an entertaining tale and the perfect gift for Young Adults impatiently awaiting the next Rick Riordan novel, while also having enough content and self-possession to offer adult fans of the Drizzt books something to look forward to as well.

Click here for more details or to buy


Stay tuned for the second instalment tomorrow!

Check Mark out on twitter on @MarkTimmony

Christmas Gift Ideas: Everything Lavish

Our Everything Lavish collection is a range of stunning titles to make you tremble, drool and sigh with envy.  From the breathtaking marine photography of  Sea to the exquisitely sensual anthology Reflections to cheeky familiarity of The Complete Collection of Calvin and Hobbes, these are books you will want to run your fingers over again and again. Continue reading

A Guide for the Perplexed – with Christmas in mind

Way back when, when I was working in bricks and mortar bookshops, I was constantly bemused by the (dare I say it?) mainly blokes who would wander in on,

Merry Christmas....or not

say, December 24, looking dazed and confused. Poor souls! They would need to be taken firmly in hand and told to buy whatever was left on the shelves, which they would duly do, paying in cash, and then requesting at the last minute, gift wrapping.

They were lucky to escape the shop alive. At the same time, it was not a very satisfying shopping experience for them because, strangely enough, on December 24, we never had left the limited edition signed copy of the one book that their partners were relying on as proof of their undying devotion or the boxed set of the must-have teen author that was going to be the next “people who love blah blah blah” group sensation on Facebook by the time they unloaded their parcels from the car. Serving them, I knew that Christmas day would be one of cruel disappointment for the recipients, and simmering resentment for them.

Enter Booktopia, oh happy days!

The choosing, buying, wrapping, delivery process could not be easier and best of all, you don’t have to deal with the horror of the Westfield carpark, or that crestfallen feeling when you realise that your choice of MasterChef 2 was perhaps not the right choice for your new in-law who is in fact a breatharian.

Best of all, we have designed everything so that you no longer have to be perplexed by Christmas.

You’ve got five choices:

If you want something that is freshly hatched, go here – the pick of December releases all culled down to the best of the best.

 

The best of December releases

If you want to choose from the very best of the last few months, neatly sorted into types of fiction, classes of non fiction, the very best of the classy coffee table books sorted by prices, books about Christmas, a terrific range for kids of all ages, go here.

If that is too hard, and you want a range of books that I can personally vouch for, my gift guide is the answer.

If you just want to see up-to-the-minute books for kids of all ages, go here.

And if you are really perplexed, let our Bookguru hand feed you – he has every dysfunctional relationship sorted (and no, you really don’t want to meet him).

THE BOOKTOPIA BOOK GURU’S

GIFT GUIDE FOR THOSE IN A HURRY

Or… How to shop for everyone you know in next to no time!

Think of the Booktopia Book Guru as your Evil Genius Twin and let him do the choosing for you – all you need to do is click on the books you want and buy them. Too easy. No really, it’s too easy. I should make it a little harder… just kidding – have fun!

Read more ….

No more excuses, do it today! We can gift wrap, we can deliver as many books as you like within Australia for a song.

There is only one “but”….

Get your order in by TOMORROW people so we can get it through the warehouse and out to you in time.

Making your list and checking it twice – our Christmas gift catalogue is up!

Must be book buying season....

When I look out the window and across the valley, the grey-green of the eucalypts is suddenly punctuated by golden silky oaks and purple jacarandas. Despite the undeniable beauty of these flowers, for many people, their strongest association is with annual exams rather than the magnificence of nature. When I was a student, we all knew that if you weren’t on top of it by the time suburbia flecked gold and purple, you were never going to get it together. Of course, now that I have been in the book industry for many years, I associate the flowering of these two spectacular trees with a different kind of panic. I have replaced exam panic with Christmas panic.  If you don’t have your shop/site looking spesh by flowering time, you know that the foot traffic simply isn’t coming your way.

So people, despite it being the coldest, wettest spring on the east coast for three decades, can I tell you that the jacarandas are in full bloom, the silky oaks are looking stunning, and yes, our Christmas catalogue is live on site.

Go to our stunning range of books for the festive season

I have expanded our catalogue this year to be a lot more specific, so it should be easy for you to find exactly what you are looking for. With the exception of perennial bestselling fiction, and some of the titles in Books about Christmas, the catalogue is full of titles that have been published in the three months to December, so you can be pretty confident that your gift won’t be greeted with “I’ve already read it”. Continue reading

Booktopia Buzz – The November Issue


Can you believe it? It’s November. The count-down is on for all things festive – family, friends, and a lovely long break in the sun.

This issue of Bookopia Buzz is huge! There are two fantastic Patricia Cornwell collections to be won, as well as a swag load of great new books. Whether you are the “airport read” type or really get into literary fiction, I’ve got you covered.

I have a “heads-up” on our Christmas ordering cut-off dates and don’t forget, we will have our extensive Christmas catalogue live on site next week so you can get started with making your list and checking it twice. Yes, it’s that time of year! Oh, and if you are interested in my absolute favourites for the month – they are How It Feels, The Hundred-Foot Journey and Dark Matter.

Happy shopping all,

Toni Whitmont
Editor-in-Chief
Booktopia

To read the rest of the newsletter, with reviews, reviews and more reviews, click here

The Australian Book of Atheism – Edited by Warren Bonett

With Christmas looming two annual dilemmas re-emerge – what do I serve the one vegetarian at Christmas lunch and what can I possibly buy the cantankerous atheist of the family, something which will silence their snide remarks  and keep them out of the way for much of the day?

In answer to the first, do what you always do, seat them at the kiddies table and pretend you forgot they were still vegetarian and ask them to make do with the baked potatoes, salad and bread.

In answer to the second, instead of treading the well worn path of antagonism (remember the time you all put together to buy the atheist one of those stone Buddhas for their garden?) – instead of treading that path, get into the spirit of Christmas and give them something they might want. Come on, rise above the joys discord.

Give them The Australian Book of Atheism:

The Australian Book of Atheism is the first collection to explore atheism from an Australian viewpoint. Bringing together essays from 33 of the nation’s pre-eminent atheist, rationalist, humanist, and sceptical thinkers, it canvasses a range of opinions on religion and secularism in Australia.

Ranging across a broad range of issues including education, euthanasia, abortion, politics, philosophy, and even neuroscience, this is a diverse and entertaining collection of thoughts on a world without God.

Essays from Robyn Williams – On Being a Part-time Atheist, Tim Minchin – Storm, Dr Philip Nitschke – Atheism and Euthanasia, Lyn Allison - Ever Wondered Why God is a Bloke? and many, many more.

A variety of prominent overseas authors have made significant contributions to the general public conversation on belief and religion, but Australians have been somewhat less heard.

The Australian Book of Atheism aims to change that, gathering together an impressive collection of essays from pre-eminent Australian atheist, rationalist, secular, humanist, and sceptic thinkers, many of whom participated in the 2010 Global Atheist Convention in Melbourne.

The collection showcases a range of published authors,  as well as new voices from the blogosphere and beyond, culminating in a diverse and entertaining read that canvasses the political, philosophical, educational, personal, historical, and social and cultural realms of belief and religion.

Booktopia’s Christmas Clearance Sale – Our Biggest Yet

Prices Seriously Slashed

OUR BIGGEST SALE YET!

This has been a big year for Booktopia – we’ve experienced incredible growth, we’ve moved into massive new premises, we’ve revamped all of our systems, and we’ve won more buying power than ever before, which means we can offer you even better discounts…

In short, having come so far, so quickly – we want to celebrate.

As this is the season for giving, we have decided to share our success with you, our customers, by having a Clearance Sale on a scale which would have been impossible a year ago.

Let me repeat – this is

OUR BIGGEST SALE YET!

We have been busy buying up stock – buying in bulk – so that we can bring you bargains all year round  – our massive new warehouse in filled to the roof – but starting this afternoon all of our bargain books will be further reduced – some to ridiculously low prices.

These bargain books are well known authors and popular titles at dramatically reduced prices.

Romance Fiction, Crime Fiction, Thrillers, Sci-fi, Literature, Adventure, Action, Classics…

And in Non-Fiction… well… every subject under the sun – from Web Design to FengShui, from Battle Cruisers to Stamps, from Sailing to Noodles, Candles to Dreams.

Gardening, Cooking, Travel, Art, Self-help, Craft, D.I.Y

I’ve just been in the warehouse and have been walking up and down the aisles… so much good fiction

I saw great light holiday reads for women (and some men) like Catherine Cookson, Johanna Lindsey, Sheila O’Flanagan, Danielle Steel, Virginia Andrews, Katie Fforde, Marian Keyes, Cathy Kelly, Barbara Taylor Bradford and Joanne Harris.

There is great literature there too! Modern writers like : Anita Shreve, Alice Sebold, Douglas Kennedy, Tony Parsons, Philip Roth, Thomas Keneally, Hilary Mantel, Ann Patchett, Tom Wolfe, Carol Shields, Irene Nemirovsky, A.L.Kennedy, Roddy Doyle, Anne Enright, Edward St Aubyn, Anne Tyler and Paullina Simons.

And Classic Literature : Arthur Conan Doyle, Tolkien, Margaret Mitchell, John Galsworthy, Edith Wharton and Charles Dickens.

With so many books I could only note down a few in each section… (check the website for more…)

So much crime!

Shelves and Shelves of Crime!

I saw some of the best names in the business:

Mystery writers likeDick Francis, Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, RD Wingfield, Peter Robinson, Minette Walters, Val McDermid, Andrea Camilleri, Colin Dexter, Henning Mankell, Lindsay Davis and Ian Rankin.

And Thrillers like - James Patterson, Kathy Reichs, Karin Slaughter, Peter Temple, Janet Evanovitch, Robert Crais, Michael Connelly, Sidney Sheldon, Dean Koontz and Greg Isles.

Everywhere I turned there were more and more books…

I found a section with great adventure stories – perfect for the holidays too! Patrick O’Brian, Bernard Cornwell, Alexander Kent, Jack Higgins and Chris Ryan.

All of these fabulous authors, and many more, will be radically reduced in our sale.



But be quick.

Last year many people missed out.

These titles are available until stocks run out.

Get in early to ensure you get all the books you want.

Making a list, checking it twice, gonna find out who’s naughty or nice

You’ve eaten too much candy at Christmas…but have you ever eaten the face off a six-foot stuffed Santa? You’ve seen gingerbread houses…but have you ever made your own gingerbread tenement? You’ve woken up with a hangover…but have you ever woken up next to Kris Kringle himself? Augusten Burroughs has, and in this caustically funny, nostalgic, poignant, and moving collection he recounts Christmases past and present, as only he could. With gimlet-eyed wit and illuminated prose, Augusten shows how the holidays bring out the worst in us and sometimes, just sometimes, the very, very best. Read an excerpt of You Better Not Cry below.

The sunlight on the bed was that clean, white light of winter without any tinge of yellow or gold; it was a lensed, glassy light that erased the shadows. So much pure, diffused sun felt like a shoplifted luxury; like sleeping until eleven on a Monday morning. Even without my glasses, I could make out the heavy drapes and see that they were pulled all the way open.

My first thought, What a spectacular morning,was followed immediately by, But I don’t have drapes.

Even out of focus, a seven-foot armoire was difficult to miss, especially when it was exactly where my beer-can pyramid should have been.

I blinked.

A marble-topped nightstand was on my left. Once again, Where was my upside-down white plastic laundry hamper bedside table? The only marble in my apartment was the threshold at the bathroom door.

There was a delicate, pale green china cup and saucer on top of the nightstand. The cup was half-filled with coffee and two spent Sweet’N Low packets lay on the marble beside the saucer.

The handle of the cup faded away from me, and though I noticed this, I did not consider what it implied.

Beyond these few details, I could not see. Though, I did believe I could make out a form on the….Was it another bed? Right there on the other side of the nightstand.

One might have reasonably concluded I was not alone in that room.

I had consulted the Magic Eight Ball so frequently as a child, that even at twenty-six, the toy’s ominous answers floated to the surface of my internal window, even when I hadn’t consciously asked a question. SIGNS POINT TO YES came to mind.

The bedding had the depth of a snowstorm; I felt buried beneath the richest, most sumptuous mounds of fabric, layers of it: sheet, blanket, duvet, bedspread. All of this, too, was foreign.

There could be no doubt: this was not my futon.

It was a mounting sense of distress that my eyes traveled once again to the window where I saw now that the drapes and the bedding shared the same design.

That is when I knew that something in the universe had, indeed, malfunctioned; I was somewhere color-coordinated.

I scanned the nightstand but did not see the familiar glint of gold- a tiny lighthouse shining: HERE ARE YOUR GLASSES. So I leaned over to the edge of the bed and began to spider my hand along the carpeted floor. I’d stepped on enough pairs of glasses to know that mine seemed to prefer the floor.

Blind, and with my head upside down, I glanced toward the foot of the bed and saw a slash of red. Odd, I thought. What could that be?

And in reply, five words burned through the murky blue of Magic Eight Ball Juice: BETTER NOT TELL YOU NOW.

I thought, Seriously. What is that?

Finally, my fingers located the glasses tucked into an uncanny little crevice behind the front legs of the nightstand; a spot seemingly designed to attract and retain fallen objects. No human eyes would ever have found them there. I plucked them from the crevice, hoping not to find a bent temple. What I found instead was a pair of lenses so mental-patient filthy and caked with crud, it shocked me that I had been able to see through them. Pretending that that had not been a pubic hair on the left lens but only an exceedingly svelte and limber dust bunny, I fogged the lenses with my breath and attempted to polish them with the edge of the sheet. As I did this, I glanced over at the streak of red and as I stared, more detail was revealed, not unlike a word rising slowly to the surface of my internal Magic Eight Ball.

A band of white smoke seemed to surround the red cloud. And there was a luminous, tiny golden star-in the center.

Glasses were amazing.

Because the instant the mysterious floating blob was resolved in clarifying detail, there was no puzzle to what it was. Any kindergarten-aged child in America knew the answer.

The red velveteen, the white fur trim, and then the glossy flash of black. Yes, that would be the belt. The sun kicked a highlight off the buckle: a tiny golden star.

So. If that’s Santa’s suit, I wondered dangerously, where might Santa be?

For the answer, I needed only slide my eyes left, to the bed on the other side of the nightstand.

He was probably about sixty-five. A portly gentleman, apparently naked beneath the sheet, he had a full, white beard and silver, somewhat stylish reading glasses perched low on his nose. He was peering at me over the top rim of those glasses, with an amused little smile.

If the notepad next to the telephone was correct, I was naked in the bed next to Santa Claus at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City.

There was even a twinkle in his eye. “Ah bonjour!” he said. “Bonjour.” He took a noisy sip from the cup of coffee.

I removed my glasses and tossed them on the nightstand. Then I dropped my head

into my hands and groaned; undoubtedly rather rude as far as gestures went.

This was not happening to me.

YOU MAY RELY ON IT.

I still felt slightly drunk from the previous night. Of which I could remember absolutely nothing. I did know that a Long Island Iced Tea would have really hit the spot at that moment.

“Aww,” he said. “Not feeling so clear-headed this morning?”

When I slipped my glasses back on and looked at him, he raised his eyebrows.

“Oh, no,” I assured him. “I feel extremely clear-headed this morning, as a matter of fact. And that’s the problem.”

Oh.

My.

God.

It was apparent that something terrible had happened. I was at the Waldorf with Santa and I didn’t have even the vaguest idea how the hell this came to be.

From You Better Not Cry by Augusten Burroughs. Copyright © 2009 by the author and reprinted by permission of St. Martin’s Press, LLC.

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