Books of the Year 2014

Robert Adamson et al.

Robert Adamson

Where Song Began - colour

Tim Low’s Where Song Began: Australia’s Birds and How They Changed the World (Penguin, reviewed in ABR, 11/14) is a book where science and natural history blend with rare clarity. Low makes what seems, at first, an extraordinary claim: that Australian birds created the first song – however, the book is convincing. On closing this stunning volume I wondered about the influence of birds on the first human song. Samuel Wagan Watson’s Love Poems and Death Threats (UQP) is a great collection from a poet ‘mapping the songlines’: inventive, satirical, tender. David Malouf’s Earth Hour (UQP, 3/14) is poetry of mastery and clear-eyed praise, a book to read now and into the future. The Unspeak Poems and Other Verses (Walleah Press, 10/14) is one of Tim Thorne’s most impressive volumes – technically brilliant, politically engaged poetry. Petra White’s A Hunger (John Leonard Press) collects White’s previous volumes along with an exciting section of new poems with depth and bite.

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Published in December 2014, no. 367

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