I tend to assess according to Australian literature according to four cruel criteria:
- Was it worth writing?
- Was it worth publishing?
- Is it worth reading?
- Is it worth reviewing?
Many books slip past criterion 1: getting a book out of the system can bring the ex-adman, single mother, or jaded journo – addled with years of quixotic literary imaginings – into a useful contact with exterior reality. But not many, in my estimation, get past criterion number 2. Memoirs of an Old Bastard, though written by one of our most distinguished playwrights, is no exception.