> Skip to content

For anyone who loves the enchanting old-world charm of I Capture the Castle and the wartime adventure of How I Live Now, this is a book to be treasured.

For anyone who loves the enchanting old-world charm of I Capture the Castle and the wartime adventure of How I Live Now, this is a book to be treasured.

'I need to write down what has just happened. I need to set down the truth. If I write lies or if I write nothing at all, this journal is worthless. I must do this, in case anything happens. All right. This is what happened tonight, every single terrible thing that I can remember . . .'

Sophie FitzOsborne lives in a crumbling castle in the tiny island kingdom of Montmaray, along with her tomboy younger sister Henry, her beautiful, intellectual cousin Veronica, and Veronica's father, the completely mad King John.

When Sophie receives a leather journal for her sixteenth birthday, she decides to write about her life on the island. But it is 1936 and bigger events are on the horizon. Is everything Sophie knows and loves about the change?

From Sophie's charming and lively observations to a nailbiting, unputdownable ending, this is a book to be treasured.

Reviews

Winner

Ethel Turner Prize for Young Adult Fiction in the NSW Premier's Literary Awards 2009

Shortlisted

Golden Inky Award, Australian Centre for Youth Literature

Once in a while, a special book will cross our paths and make us grateful for life and the ability to read. Such a book should be celebrated and used to teach in schools. No, I'm not talking about the Bible or the Koran. I'm talking about A BRIEF HISTORY OF MONTMARAY by Michelle Cooper. I'm calling her Australia's next stroke of literary brilliance.

Soo Lee Tan, Viewpoint

A smart and stirring choice to usher fans of the Brontës into the twentieth century.

Starred review, Booklist

Fabulous storytelling.

ABA Kids' Reading Guide 2008-2009

It has everything: a love story, a war story, a spy story, an adventure story and is well researched with convincing historical detail of the 1930's, complete with the satirical outlook of the narrator. I was completely taken away by the pace of the narrative and my interest in the characters.

Ernie Tucker, English in Australia

A thundering good yarn ... Recommended.

Magpies

An endearing narrator and a nail-biting adventure will leave readers on tenterhooks for the sequel that is scheduled to follow.

Sunday Telegraph

Michelle Cooper draws on history, literature, politics, religion and mythology, as well as the smaller moments of a life, and delivers a story that has more facets than a well-cut diamond. Adventure, intrigue, romance, and the supernatural - it's all here, bound together by a ripping plot.

Sunday Age

This book should be cherished.

Woman's Day

Read More

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781742757414

    August 1, 2012

    Vintage Classic Children's

    304 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Paperback

    9781864718874

    August 2, 2010

    Random House Australia Children's

    304 pages

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781864715521

    May 1, 2010

    Random House Australia

    306 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Awards and Recognition

  • Australian Centre for Youth Literature
    2008
    Shortlisted
    Golden Inky
  • NSW Premier's Literary Awards
    2009
    Winner
    Ethel Turner Prize for Young Adult Fiction

Also by Michelle Cooper

The Montmaray Journals 3: FitzOsbornes At War
The Montmaray Journals 2: The Fitzosbornes In Exile
The Rage Of Sheep

Recommendations

Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life
La Belle Sauvage: The Book of Dust Volume One
Munich
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
Voyager
Our Australian Girl: The Lina Stories
Our Australian Girl: The Rose Stories
Our Australian Girl: The Poppy Stories
The Getaway: Diary of a Wimpy Kid (BK12)
The Tea Gardens
Undercover Princess
The Award
Alice-Miranda At School 1
Midnight Jewel
Charlie And The Great Glass Elevator
An Uncommon Woman
Trash
The Whiz Mob and the Grenadine Kid
Tulip Fever
Beauty in Thorns