SWF author recommendations

There were no shortage of book recommendations flowing from this year’s Sydney Writers’ Festival (SWF). Authors, festival-goers and volunteers all had wonderful reading moments to share. We couldn’t fit them all in one article, so we will spread them over three: SWF Part 1, SWF Part 2 and SWF Volunteers.

Richard Fidler’s best book read lately was Educated: A Memoir. We forgot to ask him about his favourite cookbook but did discover that his favourite meal is Icelandic Stew – we are going to have a crack at cooking it and posting it in our recipes section next week.

Annabel Crabb’s latest reading list comprised the SWF line-up, and her best book read lately was The Trauma Cleaner. Judging by our survey of festival goers, this was one of the most popular books at the festival. Annabel’s favourite cookbook was Mark Best’s Best Kitchen Basics (she is cooking a five-week recipe from the book called Kingfish ham), and she is also partial to Hetty McKinnon’s cookbooks (she is ‘beside herself’ waiting for Hetty’s latest offering), and Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbooks.

Of course, we also try and mix it up a bit by asking the festival-goers about their favourite books. The two recommendations from episode 1 were George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and Caitlin Maling’s Conversations I’ve Never Had.

We’ve listed the books recommended in this (the first SWF episode) below. There are more to come over the next couple of weeks. Message us on Facebook or Twitter and let us know if you are reading any of these in your book clubs. Happy reading!

SWF Part 1 – Recommended books

Educated: A Memoir
Tara Westover

An unforgettable memoir about a young girl who, kept out of school, leaves her survivalist family and goes on to earn a PhD from Cambridge University. #1 New York Times Bestseller

The Trauma Cleaner
Sarah Krasnostein

There is a little know vocation called the Trauma Cleaner in our society: those who clean up after murders, those who clean out 40 years of rubbish from the households of the mentally ill, and those who clean up all sites of trauma. Sandra Pankhurst is The Trauma Cleaner. Before she was a trauma cleaner, Sandra was many things: husband and father, drag queen, gender reassignment patient, sex worker, small businesswoman, trophy wife… But as a little boy, raised in violence and excluded from the family home, she just wanted to belong. Now she believes her clients deserve no less.

Best Kitchen Basics, Mark Best, Annabel Crabb
Best Kitchen Basics – A Chef’s Compendium for Home
Mark Best

Best Kitchen Basics beats the revolutionary drum in the domestic kitchen – no longer are high-end techniques or recipes the sole domain of award-winning restaurants. Here, Mark Best breaks it down, putting the individual elements of each recipe into the home cook’s hands and empowering them to think differently. It includes 100 original recipes built around 30 accessible ingredients – from eggplant to pumpkin to chocolate and eggs.

This I Would Kill For (Natalie King Book 3)
Anne Buist

The Cook’s Companion has established itself as the kitchen ‘bible’ in over 500,000 homes since it was first published in 1996.
The book contains information about ingredients, cooking techniques and kitchen equipment, along with inspiration, advice and encouragement and close to 1000 failsafe recipes.