Best Books About Brisbane

From the fascinating story of a gruesome murder that indirectly led to the making of University of Queensland to the intriguing trilogy of books by Matthew Condon about how Brisbane society was shaped by almost half a century of corruption, culminating in the Fitzgerald Enquiry (which brought down the Queensland government), to the dark tales of Brisbane's worst crimes and haunted sites, and an account of life during the Spanish flu epidemic, after reading these books you'll never see Brisbane in the same light again. 

The Mayne Inheritance by Rosamund Siemen 

Opening with a macabre mid-nineteenth century murder, this gothic thriller attempts to shed light on a 150 year old unsolved mystery involving allegedly insane butcher Patrick Mayne and his family. Was it the murder victim's money that founded Patrick Mayne's business empire including the Regent Theatre & Brisbane Arcade, and later, the University of Queensland?  Buy here

Three Crooked Kings by Matthew Condon 

The first in a fascinating trilogy - at its core is Terence Murray Lewis, deposed and jailed former police commissioner. From his entry into the force in 1949, Lewis rose through the ranks, becoming part of the so-called Rat Pack. Buy here

Jacks and Jokers by Matthew Condon

The follow-up to Three Crooked Kings, the story continues as Terry Lewis becomes police commissioner and the era of corruption at the highest levels of the police and government continues. Buy here

All Fall Down by Matthew Condon

The final in the trilogy offers an unprecedented insight into the Fitzgerald Inquiry and Lewis's subsequent years in prison, and explores the real story behind the dramatic exit of Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen. Buy here

Haunted Brisbane: Ghosts & Hauntings of the River City by Jack Sim 

Dark historian and writer Jack Sim of Ghost Tours infamy, reveals the location of the River City's most haunted sites including cemeteries and former graveyards, jails, hospitals, parks, tunnels, hotels and landmarks, from the convict era to the present day. Buy here

Bloody Brisbane Volume 1 & 2 by Jack Sim 

Vol 1 details 13 crime scenes around Brisbane - including the Mayne Murder, Whiskey Au Go Go, Betty Shanks, Wickham Terrace Bomber and the Vampire Killer. Vol 2 covers 10 more infamous crime scenes, including Sharron Phillips & The Teenage Tomahawk Murder. Buy here

Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden by Andrew Stafford

From cult heroes the Saints and the Go-Betweens to national icons Powderfinger and international stars Savage Garden, Brisbane has produced more than its share of great bands. But behind the music lay a ghost city of malice and corruption.the shifts in musical, political and cultural consciousness that have shaped the city's history and identity. Buy here

Brisbane by Matthew Condon 

Having returned home after many years, Condon takes the reader on a unique and personal journey through contemporary Brisbane, unearthing its history — sometimes literally — and painting a portrait of the contemporary transformation of the city. Buy here

Brisbane Art Deco 

From inner city landmarks such as the striking McWhirters department store to lesser-known gems further afield like the streamlined Archerfield Airport administration building, Brisbane has a significant range of intriguing and beautiful Art Deco buildings.This book documents and celebrates a selection of the best residential and commercial examples. Buy here

City in Masks by Matthew Wengert

The story of the impact of the Spanish Flu in Brisbane has been documented in this book about Brisbane’s experience during the Pneumonic Influenza epidemic in 1919. It is the story of one small city’s fight against the biggest outbreak of infectious disease in history. Buy here

Need to know - The Mayne Inheritance, Three Crooked Kings, Jacks and Jokers, All Fall Down and Pig City are all available as e-Books from Brisbane City Council Libraries.




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