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Sunday, 2 July 2017

James Maclean Opens Up About "Mordialloc": An Author for All Seasons: Series Seven - 11am, Saturday, 29th July 2017

James Maclean Opens Up About 
An Author for All Seasons: 
Series Seven 
- 11am, Saturday, 29th July 2017 

Mentone Public Library's

continues this month 


 “Growing Up Ain't Easy”
Released in 2016
With year 12 in the rear view mirror, Floyd decides to throw a party for his graduating class. Hard liquor, inexperience and a testosterone-fueled peer group are seldom a good mix. What seems funny at the time isn’t always funny in the morning and a court case suddenly looms on the horizon. The boys find themselves scrambling; all for one and one for all.  Well, maybe not this time.
Bookings are essential due to

the cozy nature of our space.

Phone Tony: 03 9583-8494
Entry: Gold Coin 

Time and Date: 11am, Saturday, 29th July 2017
RSVP: Thursday, 27th July 2017


* Book signings and sales

*Complementary tea & coffee

* Biscuits and banter!

Mentone Public Library…

Where Print Becomes Personable   

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Calmer Suits Suzy J Brown Superbly: An Earnest and Refreshing Reflection - 11am, Saturday, 24th June 2017

Calmer Suits Suzy J Brown Superbly: 
An Earnest and Refreshing Reflection 
- 11am, Saturday, 24th June 2017
 Life's hard knocks often make for the better, more enlightened person...and writer.

The engaging and charismatic, yet down-to-earth and sincere Suzy J Brown proved no less in her recent appearance at our library.
Thank-you ever so much, Suzy.

Here she is below in her own words.

Suzy J Brown Reflects on her 
Morning at 
Mentone Public library:

Being invited to be part of the Author For All Seasons program at Mentone Public Library was both a humbling and enjoyable experience. Julia Reichstein put endless hours in to promote the event, source information, invite distinguished guests and organise the day, to whom I am eternally thankful. 

She revealed the reason why she invited me to participate in the program, as she had seen me previously at the Bayside Author’s Expo and my book launch at the Sandringham Library in 2016. She found that I was candid, honest and acknowledged hardships that I encountered in my writing journey that most authors do not reveal. To me, I am just being me… I wear my heart on my sleeve, I don’t sugar coat or embellish my experiences, I am who I am, and if you don’t like it, that’s OK with me. It was nice to know Julia saw something in me to be part of the program. 

Graeme Johnstone of 88.3 Southern FM's "Friday Magazine"
sits enthralled with wife and fellow author Elsie Johnstone at Suzy J Brown's Author talk
A highlight for me was being invited to Southern FM to do a radio interview with 
Graeme Johnstone on his Friday Magazine program. I had spent 5 years at Southern FM in the early Nineties, so it was amazing to go back and be part of the sound stage, and be interviewed by Graeme, who was intently interested in my writing and background, so much so, that he brought his wife to the Author’s Talk. It was a true honour.

On the day, I was overwhelmed with the numbers who came to see me… for someone who writes for the 35-50 year age group, and is encountered by a mostly senior audience who have had many more life experiences than me, I felt I had to throw away my prepared speech that was designed to inspire those who were feeling in a rut in life and needing to begin a new chapter. 

I ended up talking about my writing journey and how I’ve overcome some major incidents in my life, and how I’ve used those moments, those emotions and those energies to bring out the best in my writing and learn the life lesson that no matter how many downs we have, we will always have some ups. 

It was lovely to get a great deal of positive feedback from the audience, including the observation that I’m too trusting in a world where it’s hard to find trust in anyone. That observation, is something I will now reflect on in my everyday thoughts.

I thank Julia Reichstein, Tony Brooker, Paul Karp and Graeme Johnstone for their efforts in making the Authors for All Seasons program available at the City of Kingston libraries and the promotion in forwarding my writing career. I look forward to being more involved in the future.

Paul Karp's Vantage Point on the Morning that was 
with Suzy J Brown:
Visit Paul Karp's Poetry Website at:

On her 36th birthday Suzy decided she wanted more from life than just a marriage, kids, a job, and a mortgage. She bravely embarked on an unconventional journey that resulted in her first novel with the most arresting title 'On the road to the best orgasm ever' aka 'Freedom finds her'. Four years later came her second novel 'Calmer Suits Her'

Her first novel celebrated 'finding happiness', and the second was about 'how I'd like life to be', where 'plans change to become more perfect'.

Her success as a single mum developing her own real estate listing business has been tempered with the challenges of exploitation by her first publisher and by others she supported who were in a similar situation to her own.

Her reading of Chapter 3 of 'Calmer Suits Her' gave the audience an example of her craft, in which her protaganist Sarah meets Jamie, the ‘perfect man’.

Suzy has donated a copy of each of her novels to Mentone Public Library for members to enjoy.

Contact, Keep in Touch and Purchase 
Suzy J Brown's Works: 

If you missed out on Suzy's 

June appearance at Mentone Public Library, 

copies of Suzy's books can still be obtained directly from her website:



Thursday, 29 June 2017

PAUL'S PICKS [Book Reviews of Publications by Local Authors]: "A Resilient Life: One Woman's Refugee Journey" by Mariam Issa

Visit Paul Karp's Poetry Website at:

 [Book Reviews of Publications Penned by Our Community's Local Authors]

Mentone Public Library is committed towards promoting local history and the local literary talent of the City of Kingston and surrounding municipalities; the Cities of Bayside, Glen Eira and Port Phillip in the Bayside region of Melbourne Australia.

Mentone Public Library is pleased to have recruited Paul "Percussion & Poet" Karp to source and review the local literary pearls of publications you might be yet to discover.

This month Paul's book review pick is:

by Mariam Issa

 Mariam Issa's 2012 autobiography is a vivid account of her life, from a simple, largely idyllic early family life with her mother (Hooya) and siblings growing up in Somalia and coastal Kenya. Her school years kindled her love of reading and her thirst for knowledge. The epic-scale wedding preparation, then celebration, of firstly her sister's arranged marriage, followed by her own wedding, are entertainingly detailed. She briefly enjoyed a more prosperous life starting a family when Somalia became war-ravaged and she fled with her children by overcrowded boat to Kenya and became a refugee. Ever thankful for the providence of gaining an Australian visa she embraced the challenges and greatly appreciated the rewards of a new life for her family. Mariam's story is a rewarding read by a bayside author from a unique cultural perspective.



We were privileged to have Mariam speak at Mentone Public library 
on Saturday, 3rd August 2013.
Mariam spoke candidly about her traumatic experiences of oppression and forging a new life in Australia. 
Despite the hardships earnestly presented, Mariam was anything but a beaten down woman.
Before us stood an inspiring woman emulating empowerment, strength, warmth and love through her daring to be open and vulnerable.

Miriam's biographical brief on her website describes her odyssey to emancipation as follows:

"Mariam Issa arrived in Melbourne from her Somali homeland in 1998 with her husband, four children and a fifth on the way, and little knowledge of Australian life. Today she has established herself in Melbourne as an inspirational public speaker, author, storyteller, intercultural facilitator, dedicated community builder, social cohesion champion and social entrepreneur.
In 2012 Mariam launched her autobiography - A Resilient Life- which shares her refugee experience and story of determination to persevere despite immense hardships she faced growing up in a culture and nation dominated by clans and tribalism, patriarchy and superstition, to then overcome the vast cultural differences and challenges of inclusion in Australian life.
In that same year she co-founded and incorporated the not-for-profit organisation and community garden RAW (Resilient Aspiring Women) in the backyard of her own home in Brighton, where the Australian government settled her and her family. Forged from Issa’s inspirational trust and determination to serve and build community around her RAW aims to support women’s resilience through intercultural dialogue and exchange faciliated by activities of storytelling, cooking and gardening.
Mariam continues to share her experience and commitment to improving refugee’s lives by sitting on the board of Asylum Seekers Resource Centre, serving as an ambassador for Refugee Council of Australia and a Director at Family Peace. She is an International Women's Forum member and co-founder of Space2b, an art and design based social enterprise established to support asylum seekers, refugees and newly arrived migrants. She was recently awarded the Ambassador of Peace award from the Universal Peace Federation - in recognition of her on-going work promoting social cohesion amongst Melbourne’s culturally diverse population.  She is regularly invited to speak to different community groups and featured in national Australian TV, radio and press."


Saturday, 3 June 2017

On the Air and Laughing: Meekings a Joy to Behold: Reflective Entry - 11am, Saturday, 27th May 2017

On the Air and Laughing: 
Meekings a Joy to Behold: Reflective Entry 
- 11am, Saturday, 27th May 2017

A bundle of joy personified by the beaming presence of Joy Meekings enriched our library for the launch of our seventh series of "An Author for All Seasons" on Saturday, 27th May 2017.
With a smile, a warmth and a humility concealing a life less than ordinary, Joy let it all burst open and run free with poetic antics, radio comedy and a vibrant recount of how she came to be a writer. But enough from us, let's hear from Joy.....

"I was delighted to be asked to participate in Mentone Public Library's series: An Author for All Seasons .
Organised by Julia Reichstein, the series and my talk was launched by City of Kingston councillors Geoff Gledhill and Tamsin Bearsley. 

Julia was wonderful to work with, as I have never done anything like this before so needed much guidance!  Her hard work, energy and her capacity for answering all of my questions was just fantastic.  

Members of Joy's writers group and choir look on with pride for their friend Joy. Also pictured in front row with blue scarf is Councillor Rosemary West (Central Ward) City of Kingston
I did a lot of promotion of the event among my friends and also my Writers Group and Choir and Julia did a huge amount of work also, getting local papers involved and through her technology skills was able to promote me and the event so very well.  

We had a full house on the day so that was a thrill......I was nervous at first but had made sure I knew what I wanted to talk about and had rehearsed at home so was able to, I think, make a good presentation.

Councillors Geoff Gledhill (Central Ward) & Tamsin Bearsley (North Ward)
of the City of Kingston prepare to perform in the radio play "Derek's Dilemma"
I also had my play 'Derek's Dilemma' performed using Julia, Tony the Library President, our two attending Councillors and two male members of the audience - it went over very well.  

My poems were also received with much laughter so all in all I had a wonderful experience.  

Thank you to Julia and Tony for asking me, and to Mentone Public Library for putting on this event each month (May-December). 
A great way to promote local writers and the arts......."

Library president Tony and Joy prepare for an encore!

If you missed out on seeing Joy, or did not get enough of her from her appearance at Mentone Public Library, be sure to save yourself a seat at Beaumaris Theatre when bookings open at the end of June to see Joy Meekings' radio plays live on stage for one weekend only in July!

Friday, 2 June 2017

Suzy J Brown Discusses "Calmer Suits Her" : An Author for All Seasons: Series Seven - 11am, Saturday, 24th June 2017

Mentone Public Library's

"An Author for All Seasons"

continues this month


Suzy J Brown 

Calmer Suits Her

“Where life on the lake makes
all unintended plans perfect”

Released in 2016

'Calmer Suits Her' is about friendships that are bonded through shared adversity, acceptance that life can change with a strike of a match, and a euphoric love that allows Sarah to breathe in new possibilities and sees that Calmer actually Suits Her.

Bookings are essential due to

the cozy nature of our space.

Phone Tony: 03 9583-8494

Entry: Gold Coin 

Time and Date: 11am, Saturday, 24th June 2017

RSVP: Thursday, 22nd June  2017


* Book signings and sales

*Complementary tea & coffee

* Biscuits and banter!

Mentone Public Library…

Where Print Becomes Personable