Our non-fiction readers had plenty to choose from this year, with books that run the gamut from cerebral to hilarious to heartbreaking.
- All Fall Down, Matthew Condon: The final installment in Condon’s meticulous recreation of the events leading up to the Fitzgerald Inquiry, shedding fascinating new light on the scandal’s major players.
- Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates: A devastating letter from a father to his son, this slim volume lands with devastating impact. A deserving winner of the National Book Award.
- Flesh Wounds, Richard Glover: Somehow breaking new ground in the dysfunctional family memoir genre, Glover’s autobiography is hilarious, conversational and absurd.
- Island Home, Tim Winton: A timely memoir by Australia’s unofficial writer laureate that explores his personal connection to the natural world, as well as his country’s neglected responsibility for it.
- The Road to Little Dribbling, Bill Bryson: Fans of Bryson – of which there are no shortage – will love this unofficial sequel to Notes From a Small Island, which showcases the writer’s trademark wit.
- Not Just Black + White, Lesley and Tammy Williams: An account of the horrific treatment faced by aboriginal women, this is a breathtakingly powerful book combining the parallel stories of mother and daughter.
- Reckoning, Magda Szubanski: The year’s most pleasant surprise is this deeply serious memoir from one of Australia’s favourite funnywomen. Frequently heartbreaking and stunningly well written, it announces Magda as a new literary voice.
- The Bush, Don Watson: This much awarded book is the story of Australia’s relationship with the bush, an expansive and thoughtful exploration of how it informs our national identity.
- These Things Happen, Greg Fleet: A comedian’s story of his secret, decades-long battle with drugs, this is a brave and willfully unglamourous portrait of addiction.
- We Are Stardust, Stefan Klein: This anthology of interviews with some of the most brilliant scientific minds alive is a fascinating and accessible compendium of big ideas.