What’s new in the AHL  in June

The Library team’s top recommendations






Heroes of the secret underground   by Suzanne Gervay

A timely and powerful time-slip story inspired by the author’s family in Budapest during the Holocaust.

Louie lives with her brothers, Bert and Teddy, in a hotel run by their grandparents. It is one of Sydney’s grand old buildings, rich in history … and in secrets.

When a rose-gold locket, once thought lost, is uncovered, it sends Louie and her brothers spinning back in time. Back to a world at war: Budapest in the winter of 1944, where their grandparents are hiding secrets of their own …

From bestselling children’s author Susanne Gervay comes a heart-racing timeslip story inspired by her own family’s escape from Budapest during the Holocaust.

Library Call Number:  HIST F GERV


Smokehouse  by Melissa Manning

Set in southern Tasmania, these interlinked stories look at the inhabitants of small communities, and capture the moments in everyday life.

With insight and empathy, Melissa Manning looks at how the people we meet and the places we live, shape the person we become.

A man watches a boy in a playground and pictures him in the grey wooden shed he’s turned into a home. 

A woman’s adopted mother dies, reawakening childhood memories and grief. 

A couple’s decision to move to an isolated location may just be their undoing.

A young woman forms an unexpected connection at a summer school in Hungary.

Beautifully written, this book envelopes you like a warm blanket on a cold day.   I couldn’t put this one down.

Library Call Number: F MANN


That will never work  by Marc Randolph

Netflix co-founder and first CEO,  March Randolph,  shares the behind-the-scenes origin story of the major international brand that has changed everything about how we consume TV and film.

In the tradition of Phil Knight’s Shoe Dog comes the incredible untold story of how Netflix went from concept to company.

Once upon a time, brick-and-mortar video stores were king. Late fees were ubiquitous, video-streaming unheard of, and widespread DVD adoption seemed about as imminent as flying cars. These were the widely accepted laws of the land in 1997 when Marc Randolph had an idea.

It was a simple thought – leveraging the internet to rent movies – and was just one of many more proposals, like personalised baseball bats and a shampoo delivery service, that Randolph would pitch to his business partner, Reed Hastings, on their commute to work each morning.

But Hastings was intrigued, and the pair – with Hastings as the primary investor and Randolph as the CEO – founded a company.

Now with over 150 million subscribers, Netflix’s triumph feels inevitable but the twenty-first century’s most disruptive start-up began with few believers and calamity at every turn. From having to pitch his own mother on being an early investor, to the motel conference room that served as a first office, to server crashes on launch day, to the now-infamous meeting when they pitched Blockbuster to acquire them, Marc Randolph’s transformational journey exemplifies how anyone with grit, gut instincts and determination can change the world – even with an idea that many think will never work.

What emerges, however, isn’t just the inside story of one of the world’s most iconic companies. Full of counter-intuitive concepts and written in binge-worthy prose, it answers some of our most fundamental questions about taking that leap of faith in business or in life: How do you begin? How do you survive disappointment and failure? How do you deal with success? What even is success?

An entertaining read.

Library Call number  384.55 RAN 


The Lego Book  – 60th anniversary edition

If you are one of the many enjoying Lego Masters, then this is the book for you.

Take a dazzling visual tour through all the ground-breaking moments in LEGO history, from the company’s humble beginnings in a carpenter’s workshop to the invention of the iconic LEGO brick and LEGO minifigure, through to the stunning toys, video games and movies of today, including LEGO Star Wars , The LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE , and LEGO Dimensions.

This special edition of The LEGO Book has been fully updated and expanded with the latest LEGO sets and fascinating facts to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the LEGO brick and the 40th anniversary of the minifigure. Go behind the scenes to learn how LEGO bricks are made; find out how amazing fan creations become real-life LEGO sets, and marvel at how LEGO bricks made it to the computer screen and the big screen.

Created in full collaboration with the LEGO Group, The LEGO Book is a treasure trove for LEGO fans of all ages. 

In fact, our first borrower was a staff member!

Library Call number  688.7 LIP


Toxic  – by Richard Flanagan

My Sunday ritual of going to Claudio’s at the Sydney Fishmarket to get my weekly fix of salmon is in jeopardy after reading this eye opening expose of the Tasmanian salmon industry.   We are not eating what we think we are eating and what we are eating is not pretty.

The book poses the question – is Tasmanian salmon one big lie?

In a triumph of marketing, the Tasmanian salmon industry has for decades succeeded in presenting itself as world’s best practice and its product as healthy and clean, grown in environmentally pristine conditions. What could be more appealing than the idea of Atlantic salmon sustainably harvested in some of the world’s purest waters?

But what are we eating when we eat Tasmanian salmon?

Richard Flanagan’s exposé of the salmon farming industry in Tasmania is chilling. In the way that Rachel Carson took on the pesticide industry in her ground-breaking book Silent Spring, Flanagan tears open an industry that is as secretive as its practices are destructive and its product disturbing.

From the burning forests of the Amazon to the petrochemicals you aren’t told about to the endangered species being pushed to extinction you don’t know about; from synthetically pink-dyed flesh to seal bombs . . . If you care about what you eat, if you care about the environment, this is a book you need to read.

Library Call number  639.37 FLA


The long, long afternoon   – by Inga Vesper

It’s the summer of 1959, and the perfectly manicured lawns of Sunnylakes wilt under the hot California sun.

At some point during the long, long afternoon Joyce Haney, a seemingly happy housewife and mother, vanishes from her home, leaving behind only two terrified young children, a bloodstain on the kitchen floor and a shocked housekeeper, Ruth.

When city cop, Detective Michael Blanke comes to town, he discovers the sunniest places can hold the darkest  of secrets.

The Long, Long Afternoon is a page-turning mystery and throws a spotlight on the culture of the times.   It illustrates the  ways in which women everywhere were diminished, silenced, underestimated and misunderstood. 

A great choice for the crime/mystery fan.

Library Call number  CRI F VESP

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