Monthly Archives

January 2010

1 January 2010


Winner, Canberra Critics Circle Award for Literature, 2011
Shortlisted, Most Underrated Book Award, 2012
Shortlisted, ACT Writing and Publishing Awards for Fiction, 2012

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut. What binds the characters in Two Steps Forward is an indomitable desire to climb their way out. Located in familiar Australian settings, this collection of stories brilliantly weaves together authentic characters and adverse scenarios. You’ll encounter battlers, underdogs and people who are doing it tough. Folks to applaud and causes to cheer. In this moving, assured debut, Irma Gold celebrates courage and challenges our notions of what it takes to be happy.

Buy Two Steps Forward direct from the publisher (no postage for Australia) here. Ebook also available here.

Praise for Two Steps Forward
A collection of bittersweet, beautifully written short stories…one can only hope a
full-scale novel in which she develops her talents will be next.  Sydney Morning Herald (read full review here)

Gold’s themes are refreshingly varied and hers is a welcome new voice…her longest stories are excellent.  The Australian

A beautifully crafted volume.  The Age

Gold uses her stories in the way I like best: the whole of a life distilled into one moment, myriad consequences and possibilities still shimmering at the end, but still somehow finely tuned so that all that must be said is said, and nothing more.  Southerly

A virtuoso performance in the fine art of the short story…The stories are so deft, elegant and compelling that I was disappointed when I finished them. I wanted more and I eagerly await her second collection.  NSW Writers Centre magazine  (read full review here)

A lush account…She is consistently good at producing vignettes.  The Canberra Times

‘authentic’, ‘finely observed’ and ‘engrossing’  Whispering Gums  (read full review here)

Precise prose, assured use of voice and deft treatment of private tragedy.  Verity La

I was browsing the ‘Australian writers’ shelf at Readings and this small book caught my eye — and I’m glad it did. It’s proved to be a terrific find. Every short story in Gold’s debut short story collection is well crafted. Each story is told in a different voice, without smacking of the experimental, uneven tone of some short story collections. The characters are deftly drawn and believable, from an old man wanting to see his mate to the single parents trying to rebuild relationships, from an aging junkie coming unstuck at the sight of his son to a woman who works at a detention centre, having wanted to ‘go inside, to help, to see what it’s really like’. Gold’s characters, deep in everyday life, are often struggling with loss and always reaching for connection…This collection is a fantastic debut.  Goodreads

These stories catch the poignant sensuousness of difficult lives, their daily tragedies and unexpected joys.  Marion Halligan

With prose that’s both sharp and ravishingly metaphorical, Gold burrows into her characters’ lives until walls give way and emotion rushes in.  Steven Conte

Gold seamlessly inhabits the lives of single mothers and fathers, a shell-shocked immigration detention centre worker, the poor, the homeless and the dispossessed. Many of the stories made me long for more, which is the mark of a masterful writer.  Rebecca Lim

This book knocked my socks off. Irma Gold writes pain and hope so well (amongst much else). The characters in these stories are full bodied and easily conjured. There were tears…I will be looking out for more by this author.  Goodreads

Selected links
Read a review in Readings magazine here.
Read an interview with Overland literary journal here, and BMA magazine here.
Read an extract here, and listen to Irma reading an extract here.

Listen to Irma being interviewed on Triple RRR about Two Steps Forward:

1 January 2010


Buy Seree’s Story.

Get the teachers’ notes.

Listen to Irma talk about Seree’s Story on ep 73 of the One More Page podcast, starting at 3.05.

Shortlisted, then Highly Commended, ACT Notable Awards for Children’s Fiction

Seree loves nothing more than eating sweet mushy bananas, rolling in squelchy mud and playing with her family in the jungle. But one day she is captured and put to work in a circus. All she wants is to find her mother, and freedom. Will she succeed?

A heart-warming story from author and Save Elephant Foundation Ambassador Irma Gold and celebrated illustrator Wayne Harris.

Praise for Seree’s Story

Seree’s Story delivers a powerful and important message about animal cruelty and exploitation. Irma Gold is an ambassador for Save the Elephant Foundation and her passion for elephants, their welfare and the need to raise their often disgusting treatment trumpets loudly in this moving picture book … It provides a brilliant and thought-provoking platform for discussions around animal welfare and our roles and responsibilities to prevent animal cruelty in all its forms.’  A Word About Books, read the full review

Seree’s Story is beautifully written and shines a light on the sometimes sad fate of elephants in place like Thailand, encouraging readers to make more thoughtful choices … The author brings her passion for the subject to the page. The story is full of feeling and the earthy illustrations have a timeless quality.’  Liz Ledden, One More Page podcast

‘An important environmental resource to show readers the importance of protecting endangered elephants.’  Sandy Fussell, Sunday Telegraph

Seree’s Story is a heartwarming tale … it definitely pulls at the heartstrings, with Irma gently exploring the sad truth about elephants in captivity around the world.’  Honeybee Books

‘Elephants and their matriarchal bonds fascinate me so I couldn’t wait to read this book! Written by book author and active elephant conservationist Irma Gold, this picture book offers hope.’  Love Four Reading

‘Irma Gold is an ambassador for the Save Elephant Foundation and puts her heart on her sleeve in this heartwarming story. Seree means freedom and is an appropriate name for a little elephant who dreams of her home while forced to live away from her family.’  Read Plus, read the full review

‘With Irma’s stunning lyrical text and Wayne’s moody, emotionally stacked illustrations, this book won’t fail to bring tears to your eyes. Better yet, it will so beautifully highlight the plight of elephants in Thailand, which is something kids not only need to learn about, they will thoroughly champion.’  Tania McCartney

1 January 2010



Count from 1 to 10 with fantastical creatures and brightly coloured bugs and beetles in this counting book with rhyming text. See bunyips having muddy fun, lions lazing in the sun, snakes slithering on the ground and sea monsters swimming round and round! On each page you will find a fact about these interesting creatures and at the end of the book you will find information about the illustrations, all of which can be found in the National Library of Australia’s collections. This book is beautifully illustrated and designed with bright, clear colours on sturdy, wipe-clean pages.

Take a journey through the alphabet and discover the wild, cheeky and delightful bugs and beasts that are hiding in the National Library of Australia. You’ll find everything from dinosaurs, whales and tigers to unicorns, fireflies and spiders. Young readers will learn the alphabet and enjoy the rhyming text while exploring the Library’s diverse collections. And don’t forget to test your knowledge with the fun facts that accompany each creature. Find out why vultures vomit at their attackers, how iguanas use their tails as weapons, and which animal has a heart the size of a small car.

Buy Bugs and Beasts ABC and Bugs and Beasts 123 here.

Praise for the Bugs and Beasts series
What better excuse to use the extensive and utterly beautiful collection of artworks and photographs at the National Library of Australia than in ABC 123 books? Using luminescent colour, a fabulous collection of artwork and really superb layout and design, these two beautiful books are works of art in themselves…Bugs and Beasts ABC features an alphabet line-up of creatures and critters from all over the world. Author Gold has added to this some rhyming text that gives a well-paced rhythm to reading—something adults enormously appreciate…Visually, these books are splendid and will easily engage young readers while giving them a good old fashioned dose of glorious and heart-pounding art history…oh dear, what a shame (!).  Kids’ Book Review

Selected links
Read a review of both books in Kids’ Book Review here.

Watch a reading of Bugs and Beasts 123 on the Read to My Child site: