100 books like Miss Muriel Matters

By Robert Wainwright,

Here are 100 books that Miss Muriel Matters fans have personally recommended if you like Miss Muriel Matters. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of A Spanner in the Works

Samantha Battams Author Of The Secret Art of Poisoning: The True Crimes of Martha Needle, the Richmond Poisoner

From my list on Australian women in history.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dr. Samantha Battams is an Associate Professor and has been a university lecturer, researcher, policy professional, community development worker, advocate, health service administrator, and management consultant. Samantha resides in Adelaide, South Australia, is widely travelled, and has lived and worked in Switzerland in global health. She has published academic articles and book chapters in the fields of public health and global health, social policy, and sociology. She has a passion for history and writing and has written a self-published family history and three non-fiction books.

Samantha's book list on Australian women in history

Samantha Battams Why did Samantha love this book?

I really enjoyed reading this tale about Australia’s first female-owned and all-female garage in Melbourne in the 1920s. I was given the book twice, once as a gift and once as I presented with the author, so knew that I just HAD to read it. I was astounded to find that the subject of my book (with Les Parsons) The Red Devil - pioneer aviator Harry Butler – had a garage (Butler and Nicholson) which had sponsored Alice Anderson’s (garage owner’s) adventurous trip from Melbourne to Alice Springs after his death.

Book cover of The Fabulous Flying Mrs Miller: A True Story of Murder, Adventure, Danger, Romance, and Derring-Do

Samantha Battams Author Of The Secret Art of Poisoning: The True Crimes of Martha Needle, the Richmond Poisoner

From my list on Australian women in history.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dr. Samantha Battams is an Associate Professor and has been a university lecturer, researcher, policy professional, community development worker, advocate, health service administrator, and management consultant. Samantha resides in Adelaide, South Australia, is widely travelled, and has lived and worked in Switzerland in global health. She has published academic articles and book chapters in the fields of public health and global health, social policy, and sociology. She has a passion for history and writing and has written a self-published family history and three non-fiction books.

Samantha's book list on Australian women in history

Samantha Battams Why did Samantha love this book?

I was amazed to read about the adventures of Mrs ‘Chubbie’ Miller, whom I had never heard about previously. She was an Australian woman aviator who competed in the US National Women’s Air Race (the so-called ‘Powder Puff Derby’) and other Women’s Air Derbys with Amelia Earhart and others. Why had I not heard of her before? Because she was embroiled in a scandalous love triangle that saw the end of one life?

By Carol Baxter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Fabulous Flying Mrs Miller as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The remarkable true story of a beguiling Melbourne housewife who in the 1920s seeks international fame, fortune, and adventure as an aviator and finds herself as the central figure in a sensational American murder trial.

'Mrs Keith Miller, internationally known aviatrix, was taken to the county jail here today and held for investigation by State Attorney's investigators. Jail attendants said they understood she was held in connection with the shooting of an airline pilot.'

Petite, glamorous, and beguiling, Jessie 'Chubbie' Miller was one remarkable woman ... flyer, thrill seeker, heartbreaker. No adventure was too wild for her, no danger too…


Book cover of A Cargo of Women: Susannah Watson and the Convicts of the Princess Royal

Samantha Battams Author Of The Secret Art of Poisoning: The True Crimes of Martha Needle, the Richmond Poisoner

From my list on Australian women in history.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dr. Samantha Battams is an Associate Professor and has been a university lecturer, researcher, policy professional, community development worker, advocate, health service administrator, and management consultant. Samantha resides in Adelaide, South Australia, is widely travelled, and has lived and worked in Switzerland in global health. She has published academic articles and book chapters in the fields of public health and global health, social policy, and sociology. She has a passion for history and writing and has written a self-published family history and three non-fiction books.

Samantha's book list on Australian women in history

Samantha Battams Why did Samantha love this book?

Thoroughly enjoyed reading about the various fates of a shipload full of convict women who at the time were barely more than chattels of men. Susannah Watson was one of many women who stole in England to feed her starving children and found herself transported for 14 years (which in reality became a lifetime). These survivor women were inspiring and resilient in a pioneering time.

By Babette Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Cargo of Women as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Intrigued to discover a convict ancestor in her family tree, Babette Smith decided to investigate her life and the lives of the 99 women who were transported with her on the ship Princess Royal in 1829.Piece by piece she reveals the story of her ancestor the indomitable Susannah Watson who, trapped in the crowded filthy slums of Nottingham, stole because she could not bear to see her children starving'. Separated forever from her husband and four children, she was transported to Australia for 14 years. She endured the convict system at its worst, yet emerged triumphant to die in her…


Book cover of Truganini: Journey Through the Apocalypse

Samantha Battams Author Of The Secret Art of Poisoning: The True Crimes of Martha Needle, the Richmond Poisoner

From my list on Australian women in history.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dr. Samantha Battams is an Associate Professor and has been a university lecturer, researcher, policy professional, community development worker, advocate, health service administrator, and management consultant. Samantha resides in Adelaide, South Australia, is widely travelled, and has lived and worked in Switzerland in global health. She has published academic articles and book chapters in the fields of public health and global health, social policy, and sociology. She has a passion for history and writing and has written a self-published family history and three non-fiction books.

Samantha's book list on Australian women in history

Samantha Battams Why did Samantha love this book?

I have been intrigued by the story of Truganini since living in Tasmania. There are many myths about Truganini, including that she was the last Aboriginal Tasmanian. This is her full story, based on eyewitness accounts researched by a writer whose ancestors had a connection to her subject. It depicts a devastating time for Aboriginal Tasmanians, including the Nuenonne clan of Bruny Island which Truganini was from. Truganini was a survivor who experienced profound upheavals and many personal tragedies. She was part of the team of guides for missionary George Augustus Robinson’s trip around Tasmania and with other Aboriginal survivors was exiled to a Christian settlement on Flinders Island for a time. This was part of a broken agreement with surviving Tasmanian Aboriginal people removed from their homelands. Returning to Oyster Cove and dying in 1876, Truganini was not put to rest until 1976 when her ashes were scattered in…

By Cassandra Pybus,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Truganini as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

*Winner of the 2021 National Biography Award and shortlisted for the 2020 Queensland Literary Awards*

Cassandra Pybus's ancestors told a story of an old Aboriginal woman who would wander across their farm on Bruny Island, in south-east Tasmania, in the 1850s and 1860s. As a child, Cassandra didn't know this woman was Truganini, and that Truganini was walking over the country of her clan, the Nuenonne.

For nearly seven decades, Truganini lived through a psychological and cultural shift more extreme than we can imagine. But her life was much more than a regrettable tragedy. Now Cassandra has examined the original…


Book cover of The Singing Line

Peter Grose Author Of Ten Rogues: The unlikely story of convict schemers, a stolen brig and an escape from Van Diemen's Land to Chile

From my list on the history of Australia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve now written four books, of which three are Australian history. My first two books were World War 2 military history. My publishers persist in calling each book a best-seller, and who am I to disagree? I live in France and my third book A Good Place To Hide is about a French community that rescued Jews from the Nazis. My fourth book Ten Rogues took me back to Australian history, telling the story of a bunch of ten convicts who in 1834 nicked a brig and sailed it from Tasmania to Chile without a map or a compass.

Peter's book list on the history of Australia

Peter Grose Why did Peter love this book?

This really is quite an extraordinary book, published on 1 January 1999. Alice Thomson is a British journalist who came to Australia to write a history of the overland telegraph line connecting Darwin to Adelaide. The line was built by her great-grandfather Charles Todd, a young English engineer. It is partly a touching love story, part a great historical narrative, and part a fascinating travel book. To do her research, Alice Thomson and her husband came to Australia and drove the length of the old telegraph line, picking up anecdotes and atmosphere along the way. As an aside, I mention that a seamless line of women in Alice Thomson’s family have borne the name Alice. Alice Springs was named after Charles Todd’s young wife Alice. The dry river that runs through Alice Springs is called the Todd River.

By Alice Thomson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Singing Line as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This work charts the author's journey in the footsteps of her great-great grandfather, Charles Heavitree Todd, the man who strung the telegraph across Australia. It brings together a mix of family history and exploration with a young couple's trek, as they follow the same line 150 years later.


Book cover of Salt Creek

Alison Booth Author Of The Philosopher's Daughters

From my list on historical women at the Australian frontier.

Why am I passionate about this?

What makes me passionate about this topic is the racism I’ve witnessed, the books I’ve read, and my deep love of landscape. Australia is a nation built on immigration but it’s also a land with an ancient Indigenous culture, and this is reflected in the books on my list. Born in Melbourne, I grew up in Sydney, and then lived for some years in the UK. I hold a PhD from the London School of Economics and I’m a professor at the Australian National University. I do hope you enjoy the books on my list as much as I have.

Alison's book list on historical women at the Australian frontier

Alison Booth Why did Alison love this book?

I love this novel for its beautiful imagery, its character development, and its deeply sensitive portrayal of the clash of civilisations that was to prove so devastating to the countryside as well as to its original inhabitants. Salt Creek tells the story of the European settlers’ incursion in the mid-1850s into a remote coastal region of South Australia, and it focuses on one particular family’s struggles with establishing themselves in a land that already belonged to others. 

By Lucy Treloar,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Salt Creek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A part of me will always live at Salt Creek though it is on the far side of the world...'The comfortable and respectable life Hester Finch now leads in Chichester, England, could not be further from the hardship her family endured on leaving Adelaide for Salt Creek in 1855. Yet she finds her thoughts drawn back to that remote, beautiful and inhospitable outcrop of South Australia and the connections she and her siblings forged there, far from the city society in which they had been raised: encounters with the few travellers passing along the nearby stock route and the local…


Book cover of Memoirs of an Infantry Officer

Stephen Kelly Author Of The Language of the Dead

From my list on why World War I changed everything forever.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a former newspaper guy who always wanted to write novels and finally took a serious crack at fiction a few years before I retired from journalism. I’m also a World War II buff, a fact that stems from my having grown up around veterans of the war — fathers, uncles, grandfathers — who told me their stories. As a novelist writing about World War II, I realized I couldn’t fully understand that war until I understood the one that preceded it, hence my focus on books related to the earlier conflict.

Stephen's book list on why World War I changed everything forever

Stephen Kelly Why did Stephen love this book?

Sassoon chronicled the war’s psychological, emotional, and physical landscape in several books of poetry and a three-part, partly-novelized memoir in which he cast himself as a typical well-off Englishman, George Sherston. The tale — of which Memoirs of an Infantry Officer is the second installment — follows Sassoon’s/Sherston’s evolution from a dreamy, poetic youth into a brave and loyal officer who eventually comes to publicly oppose the war. (An act that famously landed in him a psychiatric hospital, where he met a budding poet named Wilfred Owen.) 

Sassoon’s matter-of-fact depiction of life in the British trenches, with its wild and sudden swings between boredom and terror, is indispensable. His literal description of that life gradually takes on the quality of a hallucination as the reality of the war hardens in his mind and in the reader’s.

By Siegfried Sassoon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Memoirs of an Infantry Officer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The second volume in Siegfried Sassoon’s beloved trilogy, The Complete Memoirs of George Sherston, with a new introduction by celebrated historian Paul Fussell

A highly decorated English soldier and an acclaimed poet and novelist, Siegfried Sassoon won fame for his trilogy of fictionalized autobiographies that wonderfully capture the vanishing idylls of Edwardian England and the brutal realities of war.

The second volume of Siegfried Sassoon's semiautobiographical George Sherston trilogy picks up shortly after Memoirs of a Fox-hunting Man: in 1916, with the young Sherston deep in the trenches of WWI. For his decorated bravery, and also his harmful recklessness, he…


Book cover of The House

Louise Burfitt-Dons Author Of The Missing Activist

From my list on spilling the beans on the political system.

Why am I passionate about this?

If a book is based on personal experience it has an edge to it. So when I write my thrillers, even though they contain ample doses of make-believe, I try to anchor them to something which has happened to me. When I stook as a parliamentary candidate for the Conservatives in the 2015 UK General Election, a young supporter took his own life because of excessive bullying from within the party itself. This inspired me to write my first political thriller. It's important to me as a writer to make my stories as believable as possible.

Louise's book list on spilling the beans on the political system

Louise Burfitt-Dons Why did Louise love this book?

Check out Tom Watson’s insider account of similar behaviour within the Labour Party as in House of Cards. Once Deputy Leader, he quit his position because of the “brutality and hostility” within the ranks. It is a good depiction of the sacrifices and betrayals required and shows no party system has the moral high ground when it comes to bullying and duplicitous behaviour.

By Tom Watson, Imogen Robertson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The House as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A prescient page-turner about secrets, lies, ruthless ambition and betrayal' SARAH VAUGHAN

'A rare view from the inside of the Machiavellian machinations for power . . . Fascinating' HARRIET TYCE

__________

In their remarkable debut political thriller, Tom Watson, former Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, and Imogen Robertson open the doors to The House, a place of ambition, hope, friendship . . . and betrayal.

Once allies, Labour MP Owen McKenna and Conservative Minister Philip Bickford now face each other across the House of Commons as bitter enemies. Then the reappearance of a figure from their past forces them…


Book cover of Nest

Sarah R. Pye Author Of Saving Sun Bears: One man's quest to save a species

From my list on improving your connection with nature.

Why am I passionate about this?

My parents took my brother and me out of school on April Fool’s Day 1979 (when I was 13). We spent the next eight years sailing from the UK to the Americas. Our ‘boat-schooling’ was informed by the world around us: trying to plot our position with sextant taught me mathematics; squinting at a scooped bucket of seaweed taught me about biodiversity; hunkering down in horrendous storms made me realise my insignificance; and finding a way to communicate in local markets took away my fear of difference. April 1st is my most significant anniversary. I'm indebted to my courageous parents for helping me understand I'm a small part of of an incredible planet.

Sarah's book list on improving your connection with nature

Sarah R. Pye Why did Sarah love this book?

In my living room, I have a shelf of discarded birds’ nests, and my sofa is a beachy aqua colour. It’s no wonder then, that I was initially drawn to this book’s cover. The story itself was a pleasant surprise. I can best describe this novel as a nature meditation because, when I started reading, Inga Simpson’s prose seemed to slow time. I became less interested in achieving my daily tasks and paid minute attention to the birds and trees outside my window. Although a story of loss and heartache is weaved through this Nest, it is less important than the gaps between the plot. I am convinced this delightful novel about an art teacher and her garden added a year or two to my life! 

By Inga Simpson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Nest as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'[a] truly rich novel' SYDNEY MORNING HERALD

Once an artist and teacher, Jen now spends her time watching the birds around her house and tending her lush sub-tropical garden near the small town where she grew up. The only person she sees regularly is Henry, who comes after school for drawing lessons.

When a girl in Henry's class goes missing, Jen is pulled back into the depths of her own past. When she was Henry's age she lost her father and her best friend Michael - both within a week. The whole town talked about it then, and now, nearly…


Book cover of The Right to Vote: The Contested History of Democracy in the United States

John G. Matsusaka Author Of Let the People Rule: How Direct Democracy Can Meet the Populist Challenge

From my list on understanding why American democracy is struggling.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am an economist by training, who has researched and taught classes related to business, governance, and democracy for more than 30 years at the University of Southern California. My work is multidisciplinary, spanning economics, finance, law, and political science, with a grounding in empirical analysis. In addition to two books and numerous scholarly articles, I am a frequent op-ed contributor and media commentator on topics related to democracy. I also direct the Initiative and Referendum Institute, a nonpartisan education organization focused on direct democracy.

John's book list on understanding why American democracy is struggling

John G. Matsusaka Why did John love this book?

At the most basic level, this is a history book that describes the evolution of voting rights in the United States. But it also yields a deeper lesson—that democracy is not a static thing; it is a continually evolving set of practices that each generation of Americans has updated. The book is ultimately encouraging about the potential of American democracy to renew itself and reminds us that democracy is something we choose, not something we are given. This is not a page-turner but for those who think that the struggle over voting rights is a modern development, the layers of detail will help form a more nuanced and richer picture.

By Alexander Keyssar,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Right to Vote as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Originally published in 2000, The Right to Vote was widely hailed as a magisterial account of the evolution of suffrage from the American Revolution to the end of the twentieth century. In this revised and updated edition, Keyssar carries the story forward, from the disputed presidential contest of 2000 through the 2008 campaign and the election of Barack Obama. The Right to Vote is a sweeping reinterpretation of American political history as well as a meditation on the meaning of democracy in contemporary American life.


5 book lists we think you will like!

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