All Great Libraries Must Start Somewhere

by |May 28, 2010

I have the greatest of luxuries – a personal library of over 5000 wonderful books. But I wouldn’t have been able to amass such a delicious collection if I had been forced to pay retail!

All of Booktopia’s fiction titles are reduced by at least 10% – everyday, all year round. But we also have thousands of titles reduced by up to 80%!

Here is a small selection of literary gems reduced to clear… (only while stocks last!)

The Old Man And The Sea

by Ernest Hemingway

Set in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Havana, Ernest Hemingway’s magnificent fable is the story of an old man, a young boy and a giant fish. It was THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA that won for Hemingway the Nobel Prize of Literature. Here, in a perfectly crafted story is a unique and timeless vision of the beauty and grief of a man’s challenge to the elements in which he lives.

‘The best story Hemingway has written – No page of this beautiful master-work could have been done better or differently’ Sunday Times.

RRP: $19.95

Booktopia Price: $12.95

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The Famished Road : A Man Booker Prize Winning Title

by Ben Okri

In the decade since it won the Booker Prize, Ben Okri’s Famished Road has become a classic. Like Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children or Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, it combines brilliant narrative technique with a fresh vision to create an essential work of world literature.

The narrator, Azaro, is an “abiku,” a spirit child, who in the Yoruba tradition of Nigeria exists between life and death. The life he foresees for himself and the tale he tells is full of sadness and tragedy, but inexplicably he is born with a smile on his face. Nearly called back to the land of the dead, he is resurrected. But in their efforts to save their child, Azaro’s loving parents are made destitute. The tension between the land of the living, with its violence and political struggles, and the temptations of the carefree kingdom of the spirits propels this latter-day Lazarus’s story.

Retail Price: $14.95

Booktopia Price: $9.95

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Gulliver’s Travels :
and Alexander Pope’s Verses on Gulliver’s Travels

by Jonathan Swift

‘Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own’ Jonathan Swift.

In the course of his famous travels, Gulliver is captured by miniature people who wage war on each other because of religious disagreement over how to crack eggs, is sexually assaulted by giants, visits a floating island, and decides that the society of horses is better than that of his fellow man.

Swift’s tough, filthy and incisive satire has much to say about the state of the world today and is presented here in its unexpurgated entirety.

Retail Price: $7.95

Booktopia Price: $6.49

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by Sebastian Faulks

Mike Engleby says things that others dare not even think.

When the novel opens in the 1970’s, he is a university student, having survived a ‘traditional’ school. A man of devoid of scruple or self-pity, Engleby provides a witheringly frank account of English education. In the course of his subsequent career, which brings us up to the present day, he and the reader encounter many famous people – actors, writers, politicians, household names – but the most memorable is Engleby himself.

For beneath the disturbing surface of his observations, lies an unfolding mystery of gripping power. When one of his contemporaries unaccountably disappears, the reader has to ask: is even the unembarrassable Engleby capable of telling the whole truth? Engleby can be read as a lament for a generation and the country it failed. It is also, in passing, a consideration of the limits of science, the curse of human consciousness and some of the odder lyrics of 1970s rock music.

Retail Price: $32.95

Booktopia Price: $15.95

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House Of Meetings

by Martin Amis

There were conjugal visits in the slave camps of the USSR. Valiant women would travel continental distances, over weeks and months, in the hope of spending a night, with their particular enemy of the people, in the House of Meetings.

The consequences of these liaisons were almost invariably tragic. House of Meetings is about one such liaison. It is a triangular romance: two brothers fall in love with the same girl, a nineteen-year-old Jewess, in Moscow, which is poised for pogrom in the gap between the war and the death of Stalin.

Both brothers are arrested, and their rivalry slowly complicates itself over a decade in the slave camp above the Arctic Circle. As one brother, finally, writes to the other, ‘You know what happened to us? It wasn’t just a compendium of very bad experiences. That was general and standard-issue. That was off the rack. What I’m referring to is the destiny that is made to measure. Something was designed inside us, blending with what was already there. For each of us, in different ways and settings, the worst of all possible outcomes.’

A short novel of great depth and richness, House of Meetings finds Martin Amis at the height of his powers, in new and remarkably fertile fictional territory.

Retail Price: $27.95

Booktopia Price:  $12.95

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Alfred, Lord Tennyson : Selected Poems

by Alfred Tennyson

Treasury of verse by the great Victorian poet, including the long narrative poem, Enoch Arden plus The Lady of Shalott, The Charge of the Light Brigade, selections from The Princess, Maud and The Brook and  more.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson is among the most beloved English poets of all time. This edition of his selected poems includes classics like: The Lady of Shalott, Charge of the Light Brigade, Maud, Morte d’Arthur, Ulysses, The Lotus Eaters.

Elegantly packaged with a ribbon marker, this volume is the perfect addition to any poetry library.

Retail Price: $37.95

Booktopia Price $19.95

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The House of Spirits very limited stock!

by Isabel Allende

Here is the magnificent saga of proud and passionate men and women and the turbulent times through which they suffer and triumph. They are the Truebas. And theirs is a world you will not want to leave, and one you will not forget.

Esteban – The patriarch, a volatile and proud man whose lust for land is legendary and who is haunted by his tyrannical passion for the wife he can never completely possess.

Clara – The matriarch, elusive and mysterious, who foretells family tragedy and shapes the fortunes of the house of the Truebas.

Blanca – Their daughter, soft-spoken yet rebellious, whose shocking love for the son of her father’s foreman fuels Esteban’s everlasting contempt… even as it produces the grandchild he adores.

Alba – The fruit of Blanca’s forbidden love, a luminous beauty, a fiery and willful woman… the family’s break with the past and link to the future.

In a triumph of magic realism, Allende constructs a spirit-ridden world and fills it with colourful and all-too-human inhabitants – the Trueba family, whose passions, struggles and secrets span three generations and a century of violent social change. Against a backdrop of revolution and counter-revolution, Allende portrays a family whose private bonds of love and hatred are more complex and enduring that the political allegiances that set them at odds.

Retail Price: $28.95

Booktopia Price: $15.95

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by Daphne Du Maurier

Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . .

Working as a lady’s companion, the heroine of Rebecca learns her place. Life begins to look very bleak until, on a trip to the South of France, she meets Maxim de Winter, a handsome widower whose sudden proposal of marriage takes her by surprise. She accepts, but whisked from glamorous Monte Carlo to the ominous and brooding Manderley, the new Mrs de Winter finds Max a changed man. And the memory of his dead wife Rebecca is forever kept alive by the forbidding Mrs Danvers . . .

Not since Jane Eyre has a heroine faced such difficulty with the Other Woman.

An international best-seller that has never gone out of print, Rebecca is the haunting story of a young girl consumed by love and the struggle to find her identity.

Retail Price: $22.99

Booktopia Price $17.95

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About the Contributor

While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. ​Now, as the Director of Books at, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection. His novel, The Girl on the Page, will be published by HarperCollins Australia in October, 2018.

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