Pages Menu
Abbey's Bookshop
Plain engish Foundation
Categories Menu

About Newtown Review of Books

Who we are | What we do | Get hold of the books | Quoting from NRB
Contribute | Get Reviewed

The Newtown Review of Books was established in March 2012 by Jean Bedford and Linda Funnell as an independent site for book reviews.

We believe that a strong reviewing culture is important for both writers and readers.

The Newtown Review of Books is produced entirely by volunteers.  You can support us by buying books via the links on the site, or by making a donation.

We are actively seeking advertisers, affiliates and syndication partners to generate income to pay contributors. If you are interested in working with NRB please contact us.

Who we are

Jean Bedford

Jean Bedford is a prizewinning novelist and short-story writer. She was Literary Editor of the National Times and has been a freelance and in-house publisher’s editor as well as a teacher of Creative Writing. She has been a judge for many local, state and national literary awards and prizes. Her acclaimed novel Sister Kate will be re-released by Melbourne University’s Untapped program at the end of 2021.

Linda Funnell

Linda Funnell is a publisher and editor, and has taught courses in publishing, editing and writing for UTS, the ASA and the NSW Writers’ Centre. For ten years she was a publisher with HarperCollins, and  previously worked with Random House and Pan Macmillan.  From November 2012 to December 2015 she was Chair of the New South Wales Writers’ Centre.

Peter Corris

Foundation guest contributor: Peter Corris. Creator of PI Cliff Hardy and known as ‘the Godfather of Australian crime fiction’, Peter was married to Newtown Review of Books editor Jean Bedford and wrote ‘The Godfather’ column for NRB from 2012 to 2018.  You can read his columns here, including tributes following his death in September 2018.

NRB gratefully acknowledges the support of the Plain English Foundation, which has enabled us to undertake important behind-the-scenes upgrades to our website. The Plain English Foundation is a leader in clear communication and training in plain English writing for all workplace professionals.

What we do

The Newtown Review of Books reviews fiction, memoir, biography, history, politics and true crime. Our tastes are eclectic, and we aim to provide intelligent reviews of books people will want to read. We post new reviews twice a week.

We do not review poetry or children’s books.

Get hold of the books

We hope that if you like a review you might want to read the book. We have provided links to some of our favourite bookshops, who offer books at a discount. (We receive a small commission on sales made via our site, so if you shop via the NRB links, you are helping to support the work we do.)

But you might prefer to borrow a copy rather than buy, so we’ve also provided links to the Newtown Library.

Quoting from NRB

Please note that copyright in all reviews and articles is retained by the author of the individual review or article.

If you would like to quote from something published in the Newtown Review of Books please credit the author of the review and the Newtown Review of Books. Including a link to the original article would make us even happier.


Contributions of reviews are welcome but please be aware this review is run by volunteer labour and we cannot afford to pay you!

If you would like to submit a review, please read our guidelines first.


Copyright in all reviews remains with the reviewer.

Get Reviewed

We are always delighted to receive books for review, though cannot guarantee we will be able to review everything.

Please send review copies to:

The Newtown Review of Books, PO Box 1125, Newtown NSW 2042

We also love to get press releases about new books, so if you are a publisher please add us to your mailing list:

Our designer

Thanks to Ellen Kronen for invaluable assistance with the design of this site.  If you would like to see all the wonderful things Ellen can do, visit her at Leumesin Design.


  1. Much better than The Age.

  2. Hi Jean and Linda,

    Congrats on the great blog. I’ve added Newtown Review of Books to the Boomerang Books Blogroll here: because your reviews are likely to be of interest to our own readers.

    Clayton Wehner
    Managing Director
    Boomerang Books
    Australia’s Online Bookstore

    • Thanks, Clayton – always appreciate links that help us reach new readers!