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Welcome to August! Wait, August?! Nope, we can’t believe it either (wasn’t time frozen back in March?).

If you’re steadily making your way through your TBR list in iso and are feeling panicked that you can start to see the bottom, have no fear. Our fantastic speakers have been busy at work, writing exciting and engaging stories for all readers. Read on for new and upcoming releases from Booked Out speakers this week!

Archie Fusillo – Tribal Lores
When the “new” neighbours, Frankie Rescio’s newest mate Lochie Marsh’s parents, invite his family over for an Australia Day BBQ, Frankie knows the idea is fraught with danger. It’s not just that the two families have their own take on the world and how it functions. They have each created a suitable veneer of respectability to mask the fractures and dysfunctions that might otherwise tear their lives apart. Each family holds fast to its own tribal lores of what is and isn’t ‘normal’ in a world that needs to be held at arm’s length for the sake of survival-the individual and the family’s both. Frankie Rescio is in Year 10. His sister is dead. His younger brother is about to start Year 7 at Frankie’s school, and next door, Lochie is about to have his already less-than-perfect world invaded by an estranged family member, his now pregnant half-sister Emma and her layabout boyfriend. Just when it seems each family’s life had found a safe passage between ‘them’ and ‘us’, Frankie and Lochie inadvertently construct a rickety bridge that may prove too perilous to cross, even as everyone is forced to.

Deb Abela – Bear in Space (ill. Marjorie Crosby-Fairall)
Bear has plans to change his world, one space adventure at a time, and discovers just how far you can go with someone by your side.

Bear is different. When he dreams of going into space, the other bears laugh. But Bear has plans to change his world, one space adventure at a time. In space he feels at home, but also alone, until something extraordinary happens. He discovers just how far he can go with someone by his side. A richly imagined story that celebrates difference, self-belief and the way friendship and acceptance can empower someone to build a better world.

Tim Harris – Toffle Towers 3: Order in the Court
The adventures at Toffle Towers hotel continue as the manager – 10-year-old Chegwin Toffle – battles with blizzards, rioting guests and hostile takeover attempts!

Join Chegwin Toffle for more fun and frolics as Toffle Towers gets snowed in. Amid the snowball fights, things start to go wrong when guests’ precious belongings go missing and Brontessa Braxton launches yet another assault to take over the hotel.

Will Chegwin catch the culprit? Will he be able to beat Brontessa in court to save his beloved hotel and staff? And will he ever find the missing room 50 and the hotel’s mystery guest?

Adrian Beck – Derek Dool Supercool 2: Going Viral (ill. Scott Edgar)
DEREK DILBERT DOOL returns in another SUPERCOOL adventure! Thankfully, so do his friends Booger and Big Denise.

After accidentally going viral, Derek is now on a mission to DELIBERATELY go viral! After all, what’s more SUPERCOOL than being an internet hit? The only problem is, none of his ideas are quite working out as he expected. But Derek’s not the type to give up. No way! He is determined to achieve VIRAL VICTORY – even if it’s the last thing he ever does.

With lockdown back on the cards for Victoria, Booked Out always encourages buying books from your wonderful local booksellers, many of whom are offering delivery or contactless pick up! Take care everyone!

Melbourne Writer’s Festival have announced their digital program!

This August the festival will focus on the theme Attention, unpacking how crises and other major events force us to reconsider how we connect with each other and our environment, and celebrating the books and writing that get us through.

The festival will host a series of conversations, workshops, podcasts and more – all taking place online. The lineup has more than 100 brilliant writers and thinkers from Australia and abroad, including Booked Out speakers Thomas Mayor, Alice Pung, Sally Rippin, Sally Warhaft, Ellie Marney, Andrew McDonald, Favel Parrett, Ben Wood, Nevo Zisin and more!

The MWF Schools’ Program

The Schools’ Program brings a series of free videos and education resources to teachers and students, available online from 10–28 August. Featuring a stellar line-up of authors, including Gregg Dreise, Lee Constable, Zana Fraillon and Lili Wilkinson for Primary, and Zana Fraillon, Will Kostakis, Rawah Arja and Lisa Fuller for secondary.

Lili, Rawah and Lisa are available for online sessions throughout the year. Check out these wonderful speakers in action at MWF, and if you’d like to book an individual session for your school, get in touch at or (03) 9824 0177.

Speaking of the world becoming increasingly digital, check out our cyber safety expert Leonie Smith. Cyber Safety is more important now than ever with the numbers of students online increasing significantly due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

Leonie is now taking webinar and video presentation bookings to help you navigate the increase in online exposure during the current climate. The interactive online sessions are available for students, parents and educators. You can find out more about The Cyber Safety Lady sessions here and contact us to make an enquiry.

Despite a challenging lockdown, our speakers have been busier than ever! With planners bursting at the seams, our speakers are taking COVID-19 in their stride, and we can’t be more excited about what’s to come.

Firstly, we’re still raving about Danielle Binks’ new middle-years title, The Year The Maps Changed. With incredibly believable characters and a well-written story, it’s a book made all the more enjoyable by it’s all too familiar setting (post-iso trip to Mornington or Sorrento, anyone?). With glowing reviews from our friends aged 10-12, we’re not surprised it’s been very successful.

The clever and creative Trace Balla is also back with a new title, The Heart of the Bubble: A Story With 2020 Vision Set in the Time of Corona. As a very timely and comforting story, we are also loving Trace’s much-needed inclusion of first nations peoples, messages of resilience and kindness to each other during these tricky times.

Mark Carthew has also been interviewed by the fantastic Weekend Notes, talking all things writing and life in isolation. Click here to read all about what Mark’s been working on, including an exciting overview of his next picture book to be released – The Thing that Goes Ping! We can’t wait.

The Readings Children’s and Young Adult Book Prizes recognise and celebrate emerging early career voices in children’s and young adult literature.

The winner of this year’s Readings Children’s Book Prize is the enchanting The Girl, The Cat & the Navigator by Matilda Woods, for ages 7–12 years.

The judging panel commented: “We were unanimous in our love for this book. Woods has crafted a timeless fairytale that pays tribute to bravery, kindness, and the power of making your own family.”

The winner of the Readings Young Adult Book Prize is spooky thriller Ghost Bird by Lisa Fuller, for ages 14 through to adult.

The judging panel commented: “Fuller’s debut probes the deep tears in Australian culture, in its peoples and lands…This is a book that will get under your skin, in more ways than one.”

Congratulations to Matilda Woods and Lisa Fuller!

Previous winners include Booked Out speakers Trace Balla (Children’s Prize 2015), Erin Gough (YA Prize 2018) and Eleni Hale (YA Prize 2019).

Watch this space for an update on exciting new additions to the Booked Out list!

We are deeply saddened by recent events, and stand in solidarity with people of colour across the world. In our conversations about what is happening in the US, we must also remember to acknowledge the mistreatment of Indigenous people and injustice in Australia.

We can all do better by educating ourselves and supporting change however we can. Consider adding these books to your reading list, follow the authors online to show your support and deepen your understanding by listening.

Books that tackle race and racism:

If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin
The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas
White Fragility by Robin Diangelo
Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
The Hate Race by Maxine Beneba Clarke
White Teeth by Zadie Smith

Books by Indigenous writers:

Welcome to Country by Marcia Langton
Fire Country by Victor Steffenson
Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World by Tyson Yunkaporta
Blakwork by Alison Whittaker
Dark Emu by Bruce Pascoe
The White Girl by Tony Birch
The Yield by Tara June Winch
Growing Up Aboriginal in Australia edited by Anita Heiss
Too Much Lip by Melissa Lucashenko
Finding the Heart of the Nation by Thomas Mayor
Terra Nullius by Claire G. Coleman
Throat by Ellen Van Neervan
Inside My Mother by Ali Cobby Eckermann

Books by people of colour for children and young adults:

Young Dark Emu: A Truer Histroy by Bruce Pascoe
Respect by Aunty Fay Muir Sue Lawson and Lisa Kennedy
Baby Business by Jasmine Seymour
Ghost Bird by Lisa Fuller
Saved!!! by Lydia Williams
Catching Teller Crow by Ambelin & Ezekiel Kwaymullina
The Incredible Freedom Machines by Kirli Saunders
Wide Big World by Maxine Beneba Clarke
Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes Songs
That Sound Like Blood by Jared Thomas
Calypso Summer by Jared Thomas


Black lives matter. Indigenous lives matter.

Today is Sorry Day and our hearts are heavy with remembering and recognising those forcibly taken away from their families, communities and country. Today and always is the time to prioritise the healing and acknowledgement of the Stolen Generations on this stolen land.

❤️ 💛 🖤

We’re ready to take your call! ⁣☎️

If you’re looking to book a speaker for your online or in-person event, don’t hesitate to get in touch.⁣

Call (03) 9824 0177 to speak with one of our friendly booking coordinators.⁣

After working remotely for the past couple of months, our team is slowly adjusting back to normal. The office will be staffed Monday – Friday, as we continue to maintain social distancing.⁣

Get in touch today!

Are you currently browsing our list of virtual authors, illustrators and motivational speakers, but not quite sure who to choose? Jump on our Instagram and take a look through trailers instead!

With short clips from well-known and well-loved authors such as Tristan Bancks and Oliver Phommavanh, virtual trailers are a great way to get a glimpse in to what an online session can offer you and your students.

We’ll be uploading more trailers on the regular, so don’t forget to give us a follow! You can find us at @bookedoutagency. See you there!

Reaching Out – Booked Out is going digital!

From Monday 20th April, Booked Out will be running a range of online sessions as part of our new initiative Reaching Out.

We have a range of expert speakers with years of presentation experience who will be delivering sessions on a variety of topics. These will be high quality, engaging sessions designed by the speakers themselves with core links to the English curriculum. 

Online sessions will be delivered live through Zoom, Skype or whichever platform works best for your school, and will run for 30-45 minutes.

This is an Australia-wide project, so schools from all over the country can book any speaker offering online sessions. This is your chance to host an interstate speaker you’ve always wanted to meet!

Online sessions will be offered at a reduced price to support schools during these difficult times. Prices start at $250 ex GST per session, plus a booking fee. Some speaker exceptions will apply.

Many of our speakers have already signed up to deliver online sessions, with more to be expected. We have added a new category (‘Online – Virtual Visits’) to our search feature so you can now browse our speaker list and find the speaker best suited to your enquiry.

To see who is available, click on ‘Find a Speaker‘ and select ‘Online – Virtual Visits’ in the Audience, Speaker Type or Location categories.

We will organise these virtual sessions in the same efficient way we handle your in-person bookings. You can make an enquiry online or via a speaker page, send us an email at or call us on 03 9824 0177. 

We are hopeful that in-person school visits will resume in Term 3, so online sessions are a temporary measure to continue encouraging a love of literacy among your students.

This project is supported by the Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund.

⚠ ⚠ Book Week Update! ⚠ ⚠⁣

The CBCA have officially postponed Book Week from August to the 17-23 October 2020.⁣

For all queries about your Book Week bookings, please contact us via⁣.

On the bright side, now we have 2 extra months to make our costumes even more spectacular! 👕👗🕶 #cbca2020

To read the offical annoucement: