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Book Club Picks: Six Great Reads That Will Get Your Book Club Talking

Better Reading loves book clubs. We love book clubs so much that we intend to focus on book clubs a little more now. We want to hear about your book club. We plan regular posts on Facebook where you can show photos of your own book club… a members shot. Plus, we want to share with you what we think are great book club reads. Here’s a list of books we think would be perfect for your next book club read.

Room for a Stranger by Melanie Cheng

Room for a Stranger is about two ordinary people living unremarkable lives, and yet the reader is captivated by both characters. Cheng alternates between the perspectives of each character, bringing two completely different people to life for the reader.

Meg is in her 70s and lives in the same home she grew up in. Andy is a 21-year-old biomedicine student from Hong Kong. Until Andy came along via a homeshare site, Meg had been living alone. These two lonely housemates awkwardly circle around each other, as we wait desperately for them to bridge the divide. Room for a Stranger addresses some big themes through the simplicity and humanity of Cheng’s astute observations. Read our review here. 

Little Darlings by Melanie Golding

Little Darlings by Melanie Golding is an unsettling, thought-provoking, and utterly addictive read that will send chills up every mother’s spine. Compulsive, creepy, and inspired by some our darkest fairy tales, this book will have you checking―and rechecking―your own little ones. Just to be sure. Just to be safe.

Lauren Tranter is exhausted after a traumatic birth, following which, a strange woman tried to take her babies and replace them with her own. “I’ll take yours and you can have mine.” Everyone, from her doctor to her husband, thinks she’s imagining things. Everyone, that is, except for Joanna Harper, a detective sergeant who has her own interesting backstory, and a gut feeling that Lauren is telling the truth… Read our review here.

The Van Apfel Girls are Gone by Felicity McLean

On all levels, The Van Apfel Girls are Gone is an excellent read, gorgeously written, atmospheric and full of shrewd observations. Of course, like all good books, it leaves you wanting to know more.

Part coming-of-age tale, part thriller, this is the story of a young woman returning home to try and make sense of her childhood and of the mysterious disappearance of the three best friends she never forgot… Read our review here.

The Place on Dalhousie by Melina Marchetta

Marchetta’s tale of family, love, estrangement, motherhood and grief is full of many wonderful, very human moments. She writes about our frailties with great warmth, getting behind the outer shell we all project to the world, to get to the heart of things that really matter.

Melina Marchetta’s new book, The Place on Dalhousie, is funny, sad and wonderful. On the surface it’s about who has the right to live in the house. Clearly, one man’s decision to remarry after the death of his first wife, is another source of resentment and deep heartache for his daughter. Read our review here.

The Land Girls by Victoria Purman 

Moments of great sadness and grief, as well as moments of pure, radiant joy, unfold in this gentle, charming tale and reading it is a cosy experience, a bit like pulling up a soft doona and settling in on a cold winter’s day.

Victoria Purman’s The Land Girls is a story of three women who strike out and leave home to do their bit for the thousands of young Australian men away fighting WWII. At a time when women only ever left home to get married, it is a radical act. Read our review here.

Eight Lives by Susan Hurley

Eight Lives is a stand-out debut thriller from Melbourne-based author Susan Hurley. Hurley has worked in medical research and the pharmaceutical industry for over thirty years, and her expertise and knowledge shine through in Eight Lives.

David Tran is the golden boy of Australian medical research. A former refugee, David arrived in Australia in the late 1970s with his mother. Inspired by a real-life ‘wonder drug’ whose first clinical trial ended in tragedy, Eight Lives is also a heartrending story about the refugee experience. Read our review here.


Still after more book club reads? Our Better Reading Book Club this month will be all about titles to get your book club talking. Tune in on our Facebook page on Weds 26 June at 8pm AEST.


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