Books, Flicks, Plays and Wild WA


What is it about WA’s harsh and beautiful northern coast that has inspired two novelists of late?
 Last week we brought you our interview with British writer Lizzie Pook about her book set in Broome. This time we’re interviewing NSW writer Emily Brugman about her new novel, The Islands, set in the Abrolhos Islands. We have three copies of The Islands to give away – just head to the post for details.
While on far-flung places, we enjoyed a tour of the Kimberley Quest II vessel, which has been docked at Freo before heading off to the stunning, pristine Kimberley coastline for the season. If you’re keen to take the tour you can get more information and booking details at
If you didn’t get your hands on lawyer Tom Percy’s debut, page turning novel The Curate’s Egg, you can get a taste of it in this issue. We run the first two chapters of the racy read.
And another new book which has just been released is former WA minister Julian Grill’s memoir, Secret State. We have no idea if it’s a riveting read as the hold-ups on the Nullarbor meant we weren’t able to get hold of a copy. We felt as though we were back in the ’80s when we dropped into a function at Kings Park last week where the book was being launched.
I found myself seated near a Sir Les Paterson look-alike who had the manners of, well, Sir Les. “You’re not one of those journos are you?” he scowled, through a mouthful of gravy. There was no time to react, as five men, including former Premier Brian Burke then got up to reminisce about the era in which WA’s Crime and Corruption Commission investigated Mr Burke and Mr Grill.
Perth in the 80s was of course, entirely run by men. Men ran the legal profession, the judiciary, the papers, the government, the opposition, the public service. Even hearing about this era in WA history, decades on, meant listening to all these males, with not one female perspective considered relevant. I suspect that in four more decades historians will look back and shake their heads about that too.
The Festival of Perth has finally kicked off, and last night we got to enjoy the much-awaited play Mary Stuart. What a treat to see two talented and experienced actresses at the top of their game, Caroline Brazier and Kate Walsh belting out world-class performances at our Heath Ledger Theatre. If you have a chance, get along to Black Swan and see this play.
Also in this issue Ros and Margot review two quality Festival films: After Love and Compartment No 6.
And we have a healthy, yummy vegetarian Thai curry recipe from Matt Preston from his cookbook More.

One thought on “Books, Flicks, Plays and Wild WA

  1. I’d hope if Julian Grill opened up his book launch to questions from the assembled media that some of the journos present with corporate memory of WA Inc asked some poignant questions (GRILLed him?) that may otherwise go unanswered for generations. I loved Jacqui’s reference to a Sir Les Paterson lookalike, slobbering with gravy….a reminder of WA Inc long lunches at The Mediterranean maybe?????

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