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Happy Birthday George Bernard Shaw!

Happy Birthday to George Bernard Shaw, born 160 years ago today.

One of our favourite playwrights, he was famous for his acerbic observations and wit.


About our quoted book:

9780141195070A barbed attack on the British class system, Pygmalion both delighted and scandalized its first audiences in 1914. Henry Higgins is the Pygmalion figure who believes he can transform Eliza Doolittle, a cockney flower girl, into a duchess at ease in polite society. The one thing he overlooks is that his 'creation' has a mind of her own.

It was later adapted as the film My Fair Lady starring Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison and Stanley Holloway.

Our friends at Penguin have an extract on their website. You can read it here.

Spotlight on QBD Toombul 2016

This weekend our Toombul team let us know what they have been reading as they steal the QBD Spotlight!

9780575079793The First Law Trilogy by Joe Abercrombie:

Set in age of strife between 3 hostile nations, Joe Abercrombie's First Law Trilogy charts the converging narratives of its three main characters; An infamous barbarian from the northern wastes, whose run out of luck and friends, A debauched and narcissistic captain of the Union army obsessed with nothing but himself, and a resentful and bitter torturer of the Royal Inquisition, once a rising star of the Union, now broken and crippled beyond repair. While the northern invasion presses further and further south, the democratic Union is teetering on the brink of collapse, the bloated weight of its own bureaucracy and petty noble's power squabbling, threatening its very survival. Abercrombie's dark gallows humour and gritty compelling characters will have you glued to every page as well as the edge of your seat. - Lindsay (Store Manager)

Neuromancer by William Gibson:

Neuromancer is the story of Hacker, Case who committed the unforgivable crime of stealing money from his employer. As punishment, his nervous system is destroyed and he is no longer able to access the global computer network. He becomes suicidal and ends on top of a powerful drug lords hit list. Unexpectedly he is offered a second chance in return for his hacking skills. One of the first cyberpunk novels written, this book is a great read for anyone who is looking for a rich world where many of the modern sci fi troupes are born. - Vanessa

9780552776639Life After Life by Kate Atkinson:

Ursula has lived many lives. This also means she has died many deaths. Set primarily in England in the interwar years, Life After Life follows Ursula, a woman for whom death only means a new life will begin with her having little more than a vague, instinctive memory of her past selves. As Ursula navigates each new life, she has the desperate desire to save her loved ones from the dangers that have befallen their past selves – only sometimes, she can't remember what that danger is. As the Second World War propels forward, tiny actions have huge consequences, and throughout her many lives, Ursula finds herself becoming many different women – including an air raid warden and a mother living in Nazi Germany. Life After Life is more than just a supernatural gimmick, though.

Kate Atkinson's characters are so vibrant and wonderful, and her writing is equally charming and poignant as she shows the sacrifices we make, and the many different people that we can become. I absolutely loved this book, would highly recommend it. Its sequel, A God In Ruins, follows Ursula's brother Teddy through his role as a fighter pilot in the Second World War.  - Maddie

When Michael met Mina by Randa Abdel-Fattah:

When Michael met Mina follows the story of two very similar teenagers who come from two very different backgrounds. When Michael and Mina first spot each other at a rally for refugees, both standing on opposite sides and when Mina wins a scholarship to Michael’s private school whole worlds are set to collide. - Kristy

9780007492541The Painted Man by Peter V. Brett:

This book is the first in the Demon Cycle series. The Painted Man follows Arlen Bales, Leesha Paper and Rojer Inn on their journey from childhood to maturity in a world that is overrun by demons, or as they are called in the book, corelings. Disgusted by his father’s cowardice during a Coreling attack, Arlen leaves home to seek training as a messenger, one who braves the unprotected paths to deliver messages between villages. Meanwhile, Leesha is living her own hell where a scandalous rumour destroys her chances of a respectable marriage, so she decides to dedicate her life to herb gathering and caring for the sick. Lastly, Rojer enters the story as a toddler, the only member of his family to survive a Coreling attack. He is adopted by an alcoholic Jongleur, a roaming jester, and aids in his performances by playing the fiddle. Though each of these characters have separate journeys, they will eventually combine their unique skills in order to find a new defence against the Corelings.

This is one of my favourite books to date, and is perfect for fans of fantasy. Brett’s writing allows the reader to experience the world he has created and feel like they are there with the characters. Fans of the series can see Peter V. Brett at Supernova this year in Brisbane and Adelaide as well! - Zoe

Hellboy by Mike Mignola:

I'm currently Obsessed with everything Mike Mignola has produced, especially Hellboy. He's such a great character in a world that’s a unique blend of detective novel, Lovecraftian horror and classic supernatural mythology. This mixed with the sarcastic humour of the characters and Mignola's gothic style and amazing talent as an artist makes for an unforgettable comic experience. Start your Magnolia adventure today! - Matt

Zoella Book Club: All The Bright Places


Today we start reading book 2 in our Zoella Book Club journey: Jennifer Niven's All The Bright Places 


A bit about the book:

9780141357034Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister's recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it's unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the 'natural wonders' of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It's only with Violet that Finch can be himself - a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who's not such a freak after all. And it's only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet's world grows, Finch's begins to shrink.

Parental advisory: Please be advised that this novel explores themes and issues that may be disturbing or upsetting to some individuals. These include self-harm, mental illness and grief.

Want to join in? Here’s how:

1. Join in on social media – we are @qbdthebookshop on Twitter and Instagram and can be found here on Facebook

2. Pick up a copy of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES. (Available in most stores/ online)

3. Start reading from chapter one today, Friday July 22 and aim to complete the book by Thursday, July 28
Can't get to a copy for a few days? We have you covered! our friends at Penguin have an extract online here.

4. Share your progress with us! Post your thoughts, favourite quotes etc. with us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram (you can tag us on Twitter and Insta at @qbdthebookshop)! Make sure to use the hashtag #ReadWithMe so we can see your progress!

We hope to see you round the interwebz!

Zoella Book Club Review: The Potion Diaries


In the magical world of Nova, the population is split into the Talented (those with magical abilities), and normal people. The Royal family, of course, is Talented. When Princess Evelyn accidentally poisons herself with a love potion meant for her crush, the Kingdom is thrown into disarray. A 'Wilde Hunt' is called and great riches and power will befall the alchemist clever enough to devise a cure.

Samantha Kemi, an apprentice alchemist, is ready to take up the Hunt. Hailing from one of the oldest alchemical dynasties in Nova, she is desperate to modernise the failing family business and give her Talented sister a good education. To do so, all she needs to do is divine what rare ingredients the Princess used for her potion, travel to the far reaches of the world to get them, and beat out her family's arch-nemesis ZoroAster Corp, while avoiding the weirdly-adoring gaze of the dashing Zain Aster. What could be easier?

Zain Aster has been dragged into the Hunt by his father. As leaders of ZoroAster Corp, the largest synthetic potions company in Nova, and personal physicians to the royal family, they have a responsibility to win the Hunt, or lose face. Constantly confronting danger & the alchemist-with-attitude Sam Kemi, Zain desperately wants to save his close friend, Princess Evelyn, but are other feelings getting in his way?

Just to add to the pressure the Hunt is being followed by everyone and is plastered all over social media. In the race to cure the Princess, can Sam find the cure and win the boy's heart?

The Potion Diaries (also known as Madly in the USA) is a quick, fun, light-hearted read that just makes you smile. Aimed at the younger end of Young Adult readers it has all the thrills of The Amazing Race, with a magical twist. Samantha Kemi is strong, smart, talented and resourceful. I haven't enjoyed a female character so much since Harry Potter's Hermione.

Perfect for ages 10+

It’s Space Exploration Day!

Space... The Final Frontier.

It's Space Exploration Day in the U.S. so we thought we would take a swim amongst the stars and visit some of our most popular astronomical titles.

Andy Weir's The Martian, recently a film starring Matt Damon follows the journey of an astronaut stranded on Mars attempting to survive long enough to get home.

9781785031137I'm stranded on Mars.
I have no way to communicate with Earth.
I'm in a Habitat designed to last 31 days.
If the Oxygenator breaks down, I'll suffocate. If the Water Reclaimer breaks down, I'll die of thirst. If the Hab breaches, I'll just kind of explode. If none of those things happen, I'll eventually run out of food and starve to death.
So yeah. I'm screwed.

In An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth, Colonel Chris Hadfield shows us how to make the impossible possible... and he rocks a mean David Bowie impression too!

9781447259947Colonel Chris Hadfield has spent decades training as an astronaut and has logged nearly 4,000 hours in space. During this time he has broken into a Space Station with a Swiss army knife, disposed of a live snake while piloting a plane, been temporarily blinded while clinging to the exterior of an orbiting spacecraft, and become a YouTube sensation with his performance of David Bowie's 'Space Oddity' in space. The secret to Chris Hadfield's success -- and survival -- is an unconventional philosophy he learned at NASA: prepare for the worst -- and enjoy every moment of it. In his book, An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth, Chris Hadfield takes readers deep into his years of training and space exploration to show how to make the impossible possible.

Through eye-opening, entertaining stories filled with the adrenaline of launch, the mesmerizing wonder of spacewalks and the measured, calm responses mandated by crises, he explains how conventional wisdom can get in the way of achievement -- and happiness. His own extraordinary education in space has taught him some counter-intuitive lessons: don't visualize success, do care what others think, and always sweat the small stuff. You might never be able to build a robot, pilot a spacecraft, make a music video or perform basic surgery in zero gravity like Colonel Hadfield. But his vivid and refreshing insights in this book will teach you how to think like an astronaut, and will change, completely, the way you view life on Earth -- especially your own.

Go an a galactic thrill ride with Space: The Definitive Visual Guide. Featuring the latest research and technology it's a great resource for any cosmic couch potato.

9780241243121Hundreds of incredible images take you on a spectacular tour through space, from Earth to the known limits of the Universe in this spectacular guide. Features the latest cutting-edge research and ideas about space, what's out there, how it all began, and where it may end . Unlock the secrets of space with clear, illustrated explanations of dark matter, black holes, and other awe-inspiring phenomena. Discover how and why today's scientists probe vast and distant realms, and understand our planets place in the cosmos.