'The Mickelberg Stitch' - Book Launch - 12/08/2002

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Avon Lovell fields questions from the media throng present at the much awaited release.
Ray & Peter Mickelberg with Avon Lovell & Dymocks staff.
Avon signing copies of 'The stitch' at Dymocks Perth City Store.
The Rocket is Launched...

This was a unique occasion - Possibly the first time in history a book has been launched 17 years after publication. Never one to be swayed by tradition, Avon was determined to give the book a welcome into the literary arena - working on the better late than never principle - and we are glad he is not easily deterred! The book was launched by Bret Christian and Ray Mickelberg. The champagne was poured (over the book, at Avon's insistence!) by Peter Mickelberg and the books were bought by loyal fans and interested passers-by.

Everyone passing through seemed to have an opinion on the spectacle or the recent media attention.

The official launch of the first book in the trilogy, The Mickelberg Stitch took place at Dymocks in the Hay Street Mall in Perth. The crowd was large, the media was jostling for position and Avon was kept busy signing books for those brave enough to step in front of the cameras.

The book was originally published by Creative Research, Avon's own publishing company after other publishers - fearing legal action and police pressure - refused to take it on. It was published overseas, released onto the West Australian market and spent one week selling solidly. It was rumoured to have been climbing towards the best seller list when it was abruptly banned after injunctions were lodged against the book, claiming it to be defamatory of the police force and certain officers, in particular.
The ban was swift and effective. Large retailers and individual bookstore owners alike were under no misconceptions - to sell the book was to open oneself to litigation and possibly worse...
Incredibly, even once the ban was lifted, booksellers would not stock the book, fearful of the consequences. The unofficial ban continued until the official launch - until 2002!
Bret Christian, a highly regarded journalist and himself, a champion for human rights, spoke on the history of Avon's ongoing involvement with the affair. A copy of Bret's speech is available HERE. Thank you again for your continued support, Bret.