23 episodes

Top of the Pile is a Simon & Schuster Australia podcast where you'll find some of the most interesting authors in conversation about everything from their lives, their books and their big ideas. From Health, Science and True Crime, to Fiction, History and Romance, we'll bring you fascinating conversations about subjects you never even knew about, and some that you do.

Top of the Pile, Simon & Schuster Australia Author interviews with Simon & Schuster Australia

    • Arts
    • 5.0, 3 Ratings

Top of the Pile is a Simon & Schuster Australia podcast where you'll find some of the most interesting authors in conversation about everything from their lives, their books and their big ideas. From Health, Science and True Crime, to Fiction, History and Romance, we'll bring you fascinating conversations about subjects you never even knew about, and some that you do.

    Listen to the first chapters of The Matriarch: The Story of 'Granny Evil' Kathy Pettingill

    Listen to the first chapters of The Matriarch: The Story of 'Granny Evil' Kathy Pettingill

    Kathy Pettingill is a name that’s both respected and feared, not only by Australia’s criminal underworld, but by many in the Victorian police force. As the matriarch at the head of the most notorious and violent family of habitual offenders in Australian criminal history, her life has revolved around murder, drugs, prison, prostitution and bent coppers – and the intrigue and horror that surround such crimes.

    Her eldest son, Dennis Allen, was a mass murderer and a $70,000-a-week drug dealer who dismembered a Hell’s Angel with a chainsaw. Two younger sons were acquitted of the Walsh Street murders, the cold-blooded assassination of two police officers that changed the face of crime in Melbourne forever. One of the two, Victor, was gunned down himself in the street 14 years later, becoming the third son Kathy has buried.

    In this revised and updated authorised edition of Adrian Tame’s bestselling The Matriarch, Kathy Pettingill reveals the chilling truth behind many of the myths and legends that surround her family, including her experiences in the blood-spattered charnel house at the centre of Dennis Allen’s empire of drugs and violence.

    But this is no plea for pity. Forthright and deeply disturbing, like its subject, The Matriarch pulls no punches.

    Updated and revised for a new generation, this true crime classic is as terrifying and powerful as when it was first published.

    Read by Lewis Fitz-Gerald and Kelly Butler.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/The-Matriarch/Adrian-Tame/9781760852214

    • 24 min
    Mikey Robins reads from his book Seven Deadly Sins and One Very Naughty Fruit

    Mikey Robins reads from his book Seven Deadly Sins and One Very Naughty Fruit

    In this irreverent romp through the history of food via the Seven Deadly Sins, Mikey Robins uncovers the most bizarre food-related stories of all time. From the Ancient Egyptians to the Romans, from the medieval monarchs to our current obsession with celebrity chefs, our forebears have left their mark on our habits and social mores, our plates and our palates, telling us one truth above all: where there is food, there is folly.

    On the topic of GLUTTONY, Mikey exposes our obsession with outlandish overconsumption and the thrill of competitive eating. PRIDE reveals some of the most arrogant dinner hosts in history, and how the once humble chef has now achieved rock-god status. LUST sheds light on our aphrodisiac fixations and the most desired foods through time. SLOTH charts the curious evolution of the fork and the etiquette of flatulence. WRATH tells of sausage duels and poisonous spite, while GREED will make you blush at the indulgences of the rich and famous. And who hasn’t experienced ENVY when your dining companion’s plate sings while yours sputters?

    Mikey Robins is your personal guide down history’s gullet and into the underbelly of our wildest desires, darkest fears and guiltiest pleasures.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/Seven-Deadly-Sins-and-One-Very-Naughty-Fruit/Mikey-Robins/9781760852269

    • 9 min
    Mary Moody reads from her memoir The Accidental Tour Guide: Adventures in Life and Death

    Mary Moody reads from her memoir The Accidental Tour Guide: Adventures in Life and Death

    Mary Moody’s bestselling memoirs about her adventures in France, Au Revoir and Last Tango in Toulouse, inspired thousands of women. The Accidental Tour Guide completes the circle by sharing another major turning point in her life.

    When Mary loses her beloved husband, her world is turned upside down. Part of her journey to reignite her passion for living is to boldly go where she has never been before – in her travels and in her everyday life.

    A powerful, moving and inspiring true story about how to rebuild your life without the people who matter most.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/The-Accidental-Tour-Guide/Mary-Moody/9781760852559

    • 17 min
    Gianni Russo reads from his memoir Hollywood Godfather: My Life in the Movies and the Mob

    Gianni Russo reads from his memoir Hollywood Godfather: My Life in the Movies and the Mob

    Gianni Russo was a handsome 25-year-old mobster with no acting experience when he walked onto the set of The Godfather and entered Hollywood history. He played Carlo Rizzi, the husband of Connie Corleone, who set her brother Sonny?played by James Caan?up for a mob hit, which led to one of the most unforgettable moments in cinema. Russo didn't have to act. He knew the mob inside and out: from his childhood in Little Italy, where Mafia legend Frank Costello took him under his wing, acting as messenger for New Orleans mob boss Carlos Marcello during the Kennedy assassination, to being forced on the lam after shooting a member of the Colombian drug cartel in his Vegas club.

    Along the way, Russo befriended Frank Sinatra, who became his son's godfather, and Marlon Brando, had passionate affairs with Marilyn Monroe, Liza Minelli and scores of other stars, all the while walking the tightrope of mob life.

    A no-holds-barred rollercoaster ride of life lived on the edge: shocking, thoroughly entertaining, full of glamour, sex, violence, cheek - and fun.

    Read by Gianni Russo with Patrick Picciarelli.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/Hollywood-Godfather/Gianni-Russo/9781760852030

    • 29 min
    Virginia Trioli reads from her book Generation F: Why We Still Struggle with Sex and Power

    Virginia Trioli reads from her book Generation F: Why We Still Struggle with Sex and Power

    Twenty-five years ago, Australia was in the grip of another debate about sex and power.

    The Master of Ormond College at the University of Melbourne had been acquitted of indecent assault after complaints by two female students. Helen Garner’s bestselling book about the case, The First Stone, polarised readers over whether the students had been right to take their allegations to the law. Was the feminist movement poisoning gender relations?

    In Generation F, the young award-winning journalist Virginia Trioli offered a vigorous, incisive and compelling argument for the ongoing need for feminism, while exploring her own bewilderment and anger. She described the real state of sexual harassment, violence, the workplace and the law in Australia: how most women just copped it, but those who felt able to confront it needed all the support they could get.

    Now – as women around the world speak up about how sexual harassment has destroyed their work, families and lives – Trioli revisits that cultural moment in a new foreword, and in a new afterword considers the situation women face today.

    Dismayingly, her original text is just as relevant, and her call to action just as powerful.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/Generation-F/Virginia-Trioli/9781760855345

    • 21 min
    Shannon Molloy reads from his memoir Fourteen: My Year of Darkness, and the Light that Followed

    Shannon Molloy reads from his memoir Fourteen: My Year of Darkness, and the Light that Followed

    Fourteen is this generation’s Holding the Man – a moving coming-of-age memoir about a young man’s search for identity and acceptance in the most unforgiving and hostile of places: high school.

    This is a story about my fourteenth year of life as a gay kid at an all-boys rugby-mad Catholic school in regional Queensland. It was a year in which I started to discover who I was, and deeply hated what was revealed. It was a year in which I had my first crush and first devastating heartbreak. It was a year of torment, bullying and betrayal – not just at the hands of my peers, but by adults who were meant to protect me.

    And it was a year that almost ended tragically.

    I found solace in writing and my budding journalism; in a close-knit group of friends, all growing up too quickly together; and in the fierce protection of family and a mother’s unconditional love. These were moments of light and hilarity that kept me going.

    As much as Fourteen is a chronicle of the enormous struggle and adversity I endured, and the shocking consequences of it all, it’s also a tale of survival.

    Because I did survive.

    To purchase visit: https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/books/Fourteen/Shannon-Molloy/9781760855246

    • 29 min

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