Blog

Page: 1

Category / Spotlight on QBD


Hurstville’s Hot Reads

Today our Hurstville team give us the low-down on their favourite and latest reads!

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli:

If you're after a cute book that will leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy, then look no further! Simon, a teenage boy, is too afraid to come out to his friends and family, but this doesn't stop him having an anonymous pen pal - and it's someone who goes to his school. This pen pal knows everything about Simon, including, and especially, his sexuality. In an enthralling read, Simon has to deal with how to come out to friends and family, how to deal with his crush on the cute boy in his class, and trying to figure out who his pen pal is. It's adorable and it's just plain fun. With summer and the holidays coming up, it's the perfect book to have with you at the beach or by the pool. -Mersini

Looking for Alaska by John Green:

In honour of John Green’s first novel in 6 years, Turtles All the Way Down, being released today I have decided to review Looking for Alaska which is my all-time favourite book.
Looking for Alaska is about 3 friends whose lives are so transformed by a certain experience that they now only see time as ‘before’ and ‘after’ that event.
Before: Miles “Pudge” Halter is sick of his boring, predictable life so he attends Culver Creek boarding school in Alabama to seek his “Great Perhaps” and get more out of life. There he meets Alaska Young and Chip “The Colonel” Martin. Together they go on a whirlwind of adventures.
After: Nothing is ever the same.

This book is very memorable with a powerful impact. I read it many years ago and I’m still recommending it to a lot people. It’s the first book where the plot twist just completely shocked me. This fantastic coming of age novel that doesn’t have a predictable happily ever after ending is a must read! - Bel

I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson:

I’ll Give You The Sun is a captivating story told from the alternating perspectives of twin siblings. This novel follows Noah and Jude as they take us through the tragedies that tore them apart and the complications of family and friendship. Filled with heartbreak, wisdom, and joy, this story is very hard to put down. While the writing style is different to the ‘norm’, I really think that this may be what makes the story so intriguing. Nelson has written an amazing story that is definitely worth a read! - Lara

Force of Nature by Jane Harper:

I thought Jane Harper's debut novel The Dry was fantastic but Force of Nature has definitely topped it!

What has happened to Alice Russell?
Five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along the muddy track. Only four come out the other side.
The hike through the rugged Giralang Ranges is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and teach resilience and team building. At least that is what the corporate retreat website advertises.

Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a particularly keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing bushwalker. Alice Russell is the whistleblower in his latest case. She knows all the secrets: about the company she works for and the people she works with.

Far from the hike encouraging teamwork, the women tell Falk a tale of violence and disintegrating trust. And as he delves into the disappearance, it seems some dangers run far deeper than anyone knew.

Absolutely mind blowing unput-a-downable mystery thriller from one of our home grown authors,I highly recommend Force of Nature to anyone who listens! - Sal

Cosy up with QBD Carindale’s must-reads!

 

Our Carindale team have put together a great selection of their favourite reads for you to cuddle up with in the air-con this Summer!

 

The Beach Cafe by Lucy Diamond:

A gorgeous novel about love and life; family and tragedy and ultimately finding your place in the world. Perfect for fans of Sophie Kinsella, Jill Mansell and Giovanna Fletcher. - Emily (Store Manager)

The Dry by Jane Harper:

An awesome murder mystery, set in a rural town in Australia. Full of twists and turns and deep dark secrets, this is one book that is impossible to put down. Read it before seeing the movie! - Tia

The Beach by Alex Garland:

The Beach follows Richard, a gap-year student who has embarked on a trip to Vietnam that will change his perception on day to day life. The Beach is a dark but riveting adventure that really gets you thinking about the price of paradise. This was made into a movie starring Leonardo Dicaprio. - Nick

Leading by Alex Ferguson:

A no-nonsense and insightful look into the life of a great sporting leader of our time. This book draws many similarities to how Fergie's leadership principals can be adapted in other businesses and the importance of a strong work ethic. A fantastic read for Manchester United supporters and the neutral fan alike. It's hard to argue with the results Fergie has produced. -Charles

Northern Lights by Nora Roberts:

A romantic mystery that has it all; A dark hero, a tough independent female, breathtaking description of Alaska and a criminal investigation with lots of danger. Put it all together and you have a fast paced intense read which will keep you turning pages to the end. - Gina

Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh:

This book gives stark, raw insight into the lives of Scotland's undesirables. An incredible, fast paced read that explores the battle between addiction and the will to live. - Kara

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead:

When I first started reading Vampire Academy, I was worried it would be the typical vampire/werewolf love story but thankfully it wasn't. Compared to other paranormal authors, Richelle Mead doesn't focus on the romance between characters so much that the plot line gets lost in between. The character development is one of the amazing factors of this series along with hilarious scenes. I would definitely recommend it for anyone who wants to get away from focused love triangles without a story. - Cassandra

Join our Chatswood team in a world of pure imagination….

Our Spotlight has lit up all the great reads our Chatswood team have been enjoying!
From thrillers to fantasy there's something here that everyone will enjoy.

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch:

If you enjoy heist movies like Ocean's Eleven and TV shows like Hustle or Leverage, you'll love Scott Lynch's The Lies of Locke Lamora. Set in a gritty Venice-like city where the rich live in high alchemical glass towers and the poor live by the squalid canals, the book follows the adventures of the sometimes incompetent and vastly unlucky Locke and his gang of thieves as they prey on the rich and powerful. The story is grim at times, with some truly awful events visited upon the main characters, but it is told with a great wit and is ultimately intensely satisfying. There are three books so far in the series, each one following on seamlessly from the last, while at the same time being a self-contained story. With a fourth one due out at some point in the future, I recommend this to anyone who enjoys a darkly humorous fantasy series.
- Eleanor, Store Manager

The Martian by Andy Weir:

Both an action story and a sci-fi thriller, The Martian is a suspenseful book which you won't be able to stop reading. Each chapter leaves you hanging as Mark, stranded on Mars after a catastrophe, struggles to survive and make his way home. Written in first person, you really get to know the main character and appreciate his dark yet optimistic sense of humour. Not many people could make jokes about being stranded on Mars with only a very slim chance of rescue! The author, Andy Weir, has done an incredible amount of research to deliver a scientifically feasible story which appeals to people of all ages and reading habits.
- Shoshana, Assistant Manager

The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons:

The Bronze Horseman by Paullina Simons is a wonderful novel that takes you through the chaos of World War 2 communist Russia to give a realistic perspective of the country's experience. The historical setting is gripping with just the right mix of drama and romance. I would definitely recommend this as it is a great read and I was compelled to continue on and finish the series. This is also a great read for those interested in historical fiction and is a terrific introduction to the period of WW2 Russia.
- Bianca

The Secrets She Keeps by Michael Robotham:

This is how a psychological thriller should be written. Michael Robotham’s new novel is a dark, twisted and shocking page turner. Agatha and Meghan, both pregnant, are both due at the same time but, like most psychological thrillers, things aren't always as they seem. Agatha admires Meghan's perfect little family from afar until one day while she's at work in the grocery store, Meghan comes in and they meet. They become unlikely friends but Meghan has no idea that Agatha is possibly not the friend she thought she was. The Secrets She Keeps provides shocks, thrills and real ‘deep intake of breath’ moments.
- Tina

Perfume by Patrick Suskind:

Patrick Süskind's Perfume: The story of a murderer, opens in the slums of 18th century Paris, where Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born as an unloved orphan. Yet he has been endowed with an extraordinary sense of smell. Perfume follows the obsessive genius Grenouille, as he murders unsuspecting young women in the pursuit of the ultimate perfume. Perfume is a dark, brooding and very unique novel. It feels similar in tone to the gloom, mystery and horror of Graeme Macrae Burnet's His Bloody Project, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize in 2016. I have heard Perfume accurately described as 'a cross between The Silence of the Lambs and a period drama.' Perfume is a horror at its core but its exploration of the cites, towns and landscapes of France create a mysterious and unique setting for the murderous plots of Grenouille. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to explore a more modern kind of gothic classic, inspired by the likes of Bram Stoker and Edgar Allan Poe.
- Sacha

House of Names by Colm Toibin:

If you're looking for a book that blends historical fiction with the backstabbing family drama and 'domestic noir' that is so popular right now (e.g. Gone Girl and Pretty Baby), then this is it. House of Names by Colm Toíbín retells the classic Greek myth of Clytemnestra, who plots to kill her husband Agamemnon after he sacrifices their daughter, Iphigenia, to the gods. It's a chilling re-imagining that reads like a thriller and mystery. Each chapter gives the perspective of different members of Clytemnestra's family, all of which have been irrevocably affected by Iphigenia's death and Agamemnon's murder. The story masterfully interweaves the tale of a broken wife and mother with that of a vengeful daughter and naïve son, centring around the house of lies that they tiptoe within.
- Jamaica

Cloudstreet by Tim Winton:

Tim Winton’s Cloudstreet is a sprawling saga of two families unexpectedly brought together by unfortunate events. Each distinct character endures their own personal struggle and travels through life, coping with loss, poverty, and a struggling sense of identity. The exploration of race, class, family, unity and discovery defines the novel as uniquely Australian. The twists and turns of life are perfectly captured by Winton’s skilled writing. The relatability of each character drives this phenomenal novel, allowing any reader to thoroughly enjoy the book. The story of personal struggle ultimately leading to enlightenment and self-actualisation, is an inspiring, heart-warming novel that perfectly represents Australian literature.
- Tara

I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh:

I Let You Go is an excellent psychological thriller that has twists and turns in ways that you won't expect. After a tragic accident, Jenna decides to move to the Welsh coast in a desperate attempt to flee her past. While all seems to be going smoothly, you can't always escape those that you're running from. In a split second, it seems that Jenna's past has caught up with her. This has to be one of the best books I've read this year. I've really sunk my teeth into the thriller genre, but if you're looking for something a bit different, something a little more unusual, I would definitely recommend giving 'I Let You Go' a read - you won't regret it!
- Jackie

Each week a different store tells us what they have been reading!
Keep an eye out for your local QBD team.

You won’t be able to put these books down!

 

Great literature you can't put down, as reviewed by our Tweed Heads Team!

 

Two Brothers by Ben Elton:

Historical fiction doesn't get better than this! Two Brothers is a fascinating blend of the horrors of war and the infallible strength of family ties. Following the story of two young boys, brothers in all but blood, navigating their way through life in Nazi Germany, this novel is packed with many twists and turns but no mystery is as prominent as the question that hangs over you the entire novel – which brother has survived the war to tell their tale? Perfect for fans of The Book Thief, Two Brothers is a rich, immersive read that will linger in your mind long after you finish it – Karen, Store Manager

The One Who Got Away by Caroline Overington:

A psychological thriller with unsettling twists and turns throughout. A page turner leaving you questioning many aspects of the characters. Caroline Overington has brought her characters to life highlighting peoples' hidden agendas and motivations for the things they say and do. What lengths would you go to to have the life that you have always dreamt of? The author has managed to create diverse characters evoking emotion from the reader, however, as readers, are we gunning for the right person? Which characters do you or should you believe, who can you trust and who is really to blame? Lies, deceipt and betrayal....but who is really the villain in manipulating the situation for their own gain? I did not anticipate the ending and you are left asking so many questions! - Sheridan

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne:

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is a novel that provides the reader with an exclusive outlook on how ignorance and violence affect innocent people. Bruno an eight year old boy, the son of a Nazi commandant of world war II, is forced to move to a new home with his family on a property only miles away from a Jewish concentration camp. Bruno is limited to exploration at his new home and is forbidden to leave the grounds of the front court yard. He disobeys his parents and decides to explore the new place he calls home and comes across a barbed wire fence, where he meets a young boy Shmuel. Shmuel; captive to Bruno's father's inhuman acts; loses his father inside the camp and becomes worried he will never see him again. Bruno feels for Shmuel and decides he will crawl under the wire to help him find his father. Through the eyes of an eight-year-old boy readers observe a forbidden friendship. Bruno and Shmuel shed light on the brutality, senselessness and devastating consequences of war from an unusual point of view. Together their tragic journey helps recall the millions of innocent victims of the Holocaust. - Ashley

Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch:

I have been reading Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch, and I was captivated from the first page. By skilfully combining the real and fantastical worlds, Aaronovitch has created a unique sector of the London police force that is the vehicle for Peter Grant's strange, quirky, and often times dangerous adventures as a rookie policeman. Rivers of London is only the first book in Peter Grant series, and it is a great book for those who enjoy crime and fantasy. I personally can't wait to dive further into the world Aaronovitch has created - Bridie

The Dry by Jane Harper:

Australian Journalist Jane Harper's crime novel The Dry could be set in any drought stricken, small rural town in Australia. A tragic accident sees protagonist Federal Agent Ryan Faulk reluctantly returning to his childhood home town after a long absence. Are things what they seem? Will he stay to find out? Cleverly narrated, exploring the complex relationships within a small fractured community the plot unfolds painting a picture of a town and its inhabitants as desolate as the unchanging landscape. Keeping you turning the pages until the last and satisfying conclusion. - Raychel

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee:

To Kill a Mockingbird is a beautifully written novel told from the perspective of Scout, the young daughter of lawyer Atticus Finch. Set during the Great Depression in the fictional town of Maycomb, Alabama, Scout and her older brother Jem are quickly pushed into the public spotlight when their farther is given a morally challenging court case. In charge of representing a black man for the alleged rape of a white girl Atticus has no choice but to expose his children to the racism and prejudice that thickly veil the town, topics they themselves don't fully understand - Emma

Each week our QBD Spotlight falls on a different store.
Keep your eyes open for your local QBD team!

Hornsby’s Hot Reads

 

Today our Hornsby team showcase their latest reads under our QBD Spotlight!

 

It by Stephen King:

This would have to be one of my favourite Stephen King novels. I read this when I was in early high school growing up in a small town, so it was easy to identify with the characters. The story follows a group of kids known as the Loser's Club. They notice a lot of unusual creepy occurrences involving a demonic clown known as Pennywise. The other problem is that they (and children only) seem to be the only ones who can see Pennywise. As each member of the Loser's Club encounters this evil clown they know they will have to come up with a plan to take down this clown before it's too late. But this is only the beginning as these kid's have to also deal with school bullies, abusive family relationships and a lot of other life hurdles which just seem to keep this Loser's Club closer together. - Chris, Store Manager

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson:

Absolutely fantastic read, and with the new book in the series on its way out soon, it's the perfect time to try the first one!
These captivating and flawed characters are the perfect lens through which to solve an intense murder mystery that has spanned several decades. While early chapters are slower and crammed with details, it all pays off as the plot comes together at a gut wrenching pace.
The book tactfully handles its darker themes and it was very interesting to read about the controversial topics covered through the eyes of two very different protagonists. I've recommended this book to many fans of thrillers and I will continue to do so for a very long time! - Alex, Assistant Manager

Odd Thomas by Dean Koontz:

Odd Thomas, a fry cook in Pico Mundo, can see the lingering dead. In love with his girl Stormy Llewellyn, Odd keeps his life simple, as he helps the dead cross over. However when Odd sees Bodachs – hyena-like shades – arrive, following a mysterious new man, there's trouble brewing. Big trouble. In less than 24 hours, catastrophe will occur, unless Odd Thomas can stop it. This is a fantastic read and for anyone looking for something a little different. - Beth

The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee:

In a world where your social class (or floor level) is everything, having a girl fall off the roof of the thousand floor building you live in can really damage your reputation. Told from the perspectives of six teenagers as they try to deal with the scandals and secrets of the towers elite. This is my favourite book this year as it is easy to relate to every character and is fantastically written.- Amber

#GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso:

#GIRLBOSS is Sophia Amoruso's part-autobiography, part-manifesto on how she went from a struggling 20's-something to become the CEO of her own company. The combination of wit and honesty makes this a must read. This book is the kick up the bum every young woman needs in order to reach her full potential! - Eleanor

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern:

The Night Circus is a work of literary genius. It tells the story of two young sorcerers battling against each other in a show of power and creativity. The Arena – a circus that opens at dusk and closes at dawn, with tents and performances so enchanting it's almost like 'magic'. This story will sweep you up into a beautifully written romance, a breathtaking tribute to mystery and love. Reading this book felt like being lulled gently to sleep, and filled me with a strange sense of homesickness when I finished. For anyone with a keen imagination or strong sense of wanderlust (and a sucker for romance), your ticket is waiting. - Jaime

Every week a new store hits centre stage!
Keep an eye out for your local QBD team.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.