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Brooks, David

David Brooks is the author of five collections of poetry, three of short fiction, four highly acclaimed novels, and a major work of Australian literary history, The Sons of Clovis (UQP 2011). His The Book of Sei (1985) was heralded as the most impressive debut in Australian short fiction since Peter Carey’s, and his second novel, The Fern Tattoo (UQP 2007), was short-listed for the Miles Franklin award. The Sydney Morning Herald called his previous collection of poetry, The Balcony (UQP 2008), ‘an electric performance’. Until 2013 he taught Australian Literature at the University of Sydney, where he was also the foundation director of the graduate writing program. He is currently co-editor of literary journal Southerly, lives in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, and spends several months each year in a village on the coast of Slovenia. His most recent collection of poetry is Open House (UQP 2015).

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Napoleon's Roads

Picture of Napoleon's Roads
A writer questions the architecture of words, struggling to capture his ideas before they are lost; a husband excavating beneath his house becomes mesmerised by silence and disappears in search of solitude; a lighthouse keeper dreams that he is a man dreaming that he is the keeper of a lighthouse.


Open House

Picture of Open House
A striking new poetry collection from the author of The Conversation


The Balcony

Picture of The Balcony
From the snowy balconies of Central Europe to the white-hot suburbs of Sydney, these poems surface from the depths of a life learning to live to the fullest. Affirming that erotic love is one of the highest forms of contemplation, Brooks raises all that is beautiful in this world - and much that is not - so that it may be transformed into the body of the sacred.


The Best Australian Poetry 2008

Picture of The Best Australian Poetry 2008
Guest Editor David Brooks brings to this collection his reputation as a poet of distinction, as well as his acumen as the editor of Australia's oldest literary journal, Southerly. His selection of 40 poems from Australia's print and online journals captures a sense of poetry as passion, as lived experience, and momentary distillations into action. Together with comments from the poets discussing their work, The Best Australian Poetry 2008 takes stock of what's new and exciting in Australian poetry now.


The Conversation (Hardback)

Picture of The Conversation (Hardback)
A novel brimming with mystery, confessions, food and philosophy. Paperback edition coming soon.


The Conversation (Paperback)

Picture of The Conversation (Paperback)
A novel brimming with mystery, confessions, food and philosophy. Paperback.


The Fern Tattoo

Picture of The Fern Tattoo
Evidently she knew who I was, or thought she did, since I had apparently needed no introduction and certainly hadn’t received one… She told stories. One could almost say she rushed into them, on the merest of pretexts, as if the world was ending very shortly and they had to be got through before it happened. A century of family secrets starts to unravel when Benedict Waters is summoned to an audience with an old friend of his mother. He is seduced by her storytelling and it takes time and an astonishing revelation before he realises that it is his own family he has been hearing about, his own life that is being undone. From the Blue Mountains to the Hawkesbury and from Sydney to the south coast of New South Wales, The Fern Tattoo takes us on a kaleidoscopic journey through several generations of three families. We meet a range of extraordinary characters including a bigamist bishop, a librarian tattooed from neck to knee, a young girl who kills her best friend in a tragic shooting accident and a pair of lovers who live each other’s lives for years after they have separated. As with all families, there are lost loves, tragic passions and unspoken - sometimes unspeakable - histories. The Fern Tattoo is a beguiling novel about the certainty of fate and the randomness of love that announces David Brooks’ return as one of Australia’s most distinctive literary novelists.


The Sons of Clovis: Ern Malley, Adore Floupette and a secret history of Australian poetry

Picture of The Sons of Clovis: Ern Malley, Adore Floupette and a secret history of Australian poetry
The Sons of Clovis is a scholarly tour de force. It begins with the Ern Malley affair, establishing previously unrecognised connections between the Australian scene and French symboliste poetry, before embarking on a fascinating journey through literature, culture, and poetics. Making full use of his skills as novelist, poet, and scholar, David Brooks has created a page-turning literary history with the narrative tension of a thriller.


The Umbrella Club

Picture of The Umbrella Club
Inspired by barrage balloons on the battlefields of France in World War 1, two young Englishmen develop a mutual fascination that will change the course of their lives.