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  • Published: 15 May 2014
  • ISBN: 9780670077557
  • Imprint: Hamish Hamilton
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $29.99

The Feel-Good Hit of the Year: A Memoir

Hilarious, compelling and sometimes heartbreaking, The Feel-Good Hit of the Year is a memoir about family, addiction and learning how to live with yourself, from a sharp and original new Australian voice.

'Will break your heart and give you chuckles. What more do you want?' John Safran

'The most achingly funny, heartsplittingly tragic and brilliantly written book you'll read this year.' Benjamin Law

Liam Pieper was raised by his bohemian parents to believe in freedom and creativity, and that there's nothing wrong with smoking a little marijuana to make life more interesting.

A fast learner, Liam combined hippie self-actualisation with gen Y entrepreneurialism. By his early teens he had a fledgling drug habit, and a thriving business selling pot around the suburbs of Melbourne from the back of his pushbike. He picked up important life skills, like how to befriend a deranged jujitsu master, how to impress his girlfriend's mother by getting arrested in front of her, and how to negotiate pocket money based on how much he was charging his parents for an ounce.

But from these highs (chemical, financial and otherwise), Liam's life fell to dramatic lows. The muddled flower child became a petty criminal and an amoral coke monster. After a family tragedy and then his arrest on several counts of possession and trafficking, Liam had to consider: had it been a mistake to adopt the practices of a counterculture without any of its ethics?

Hilarious, compelling and sometimes heartbreaking, The Feel-Good Hit of the Year is a memoir about family, addiction and learning how to live with yourself, from a sharp and original new Australian voice.

'Terrific. I'm pressing it on all my friends.' David Marr

  • Published: 15 May 2014
  • ISBN: 9780670077557
  • Imprint: Hamish Hamilton
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 272
  • RRP: $29.99

About the author

Liam Pieper

Liam Pieper is an author and ABIA-winning ghostwriter of global bestsellers as well as more modest successes with his name on the cover. The first was a memoir, The Feel-Good Hit of the Year, shortlisted for the National Biography Award and the Ned Kelly Best True Crime award. His second was the Penguin Special Mistakes Were Made, a collection of funny true stories. He was co-recipient of the 2014 M Literary Award, winner of the 2015 Geoff Dean Short Story Prize, the inaugural creative resident of the UNESCO City of Literature of Prague, and the 2018 National Library of Australia Creative Arts Fellow for Australian Writing. His novels are The Toymaker, Sweetness and Light and Appreciation, which is objectively the most fun of the three.

Also by Liam Pieper

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Praise for The Feel-Good Hit of the Year: A Memoir

Could this be Australia's answer to James Frey's A Million Little Pieces? The tales in Liam Pieper's memoir certainly hint it could – the story of how this Gen Y flower child became a drug dealer selling pot from his pushbike, a petty criminal and a down-at-the-heels cocaine addict will shock and awe you. It will also make you laugh. A lot.

Time Out

An entertaining look at family dynamics as much as it is an insight into counter-cultural lifestyles.

Sunday Age

Pieper is a terrific storyteller with a great turn of phrase.

South Coast Register

Powerful images that challenge without moralising ... The journey to Liam Pieper's rehabilitation is worth experiencing with him.

Good Reading

Pieper's comic genius is sharpened by the tragedies that befall his family, and he swoops the reader from laugh-out-loud comedy to break-your-heart tragedy with astounding ease. A riveting debut.

Sunday Mail


West Australian

Sad, tender, funny and bursting with strange charisma ... marks the arrival of a major new Australian writer.

Jo Case

Liam Pieper is a truly gifted writer and storyteller. The Feel-Good Hit of the Year is often hilarious, at times heartbreaking and always a fascinating view into an unconventional but compelling life.

Lally Katz

Made my skin clammy and heart palpitate like all good memoirs of a misspent youth should.

Tim Rogers

I always knew Liam was talented and I'd always suspected he had a couple screws loose, and now I have proof of both. The Feel-Good Hit of the Year is a brilliant piece of work.

Anna Krien

To lead a deranged, tragic and funny life is one thing, but to make a book this unsentimentally beautiful out of it is nothing short of criminal. Read it before every other goddamn person does.

Benjamin Law

This carefully constructed memoir deftly touches on some of the most difficult subjects: addiction, shame, guilt and the bitter-sweet troubles of family relationships. This is a clever book executed by a skilful writer with a razor-sharp wit ... Pieper's book is crazy good. He had me hooked from the first page to the last.

Krissy Kneen

This book is so good that it makes reading other books less enjoyable. Boy, can he write.

Angie Hart

Very funny and packed with inventive expressions ... This reads like a wittier, Gen-Y answer to perennial sellers such as Howard Marks' Mr Nice and James Frey's A Million Little Pieces.

Australian Bookseller+Publisher

This is a book to be devoured quickly and then reflected on slowly. It's intimate, raw and occasionally heartbreaking. Pieper is a fiercely talented writer, and The Feel-Good Hit of the Year stands as one of the best Australian memoirs of the past few years.


Pieper is a sharp, smart and classy writer.

Saturday Paper

A revelatory memoir told with great poise.

Men's Style

It will make you laugh out loud, and cry, as Pieper talks about his crazy life. You'll be amazed in so many ways. Lucky your chair is so comfy as you won't want to leave it until you're finished the book.

Sunday Canberra Times

This is one of those 'you had me at hello' reads. The title, with its tongue-in-cheek meaning, signals a refreshingly cheeky take on life but nothing quite prepared this reader for the comic absurdity of a teen drug dealer selling dope to his hippy parents. A disarmingly charming rogue, Liam Pieper documents his precocious entrepreneurial talent as he slides out of school and into dealing, with hilarious deadpan understatement and the delivery of a seasoned raconteur.

Caroline Baum, Booktopia.com.au

Like all memoirs worth reading, Pieper's beautifully uncomplicated writing leaves you feeling nostalgic for a time and place you never even experienced.

Elle Australia

A fast-paced, funny memoir.


Compelling, funny and heart-rending.

Herald Sun

Awards & recognition

Ned Kelly Awards

Shortlisted  •  2015  •  Best True Crime