Accessibility Tools

  • Content scaling 100%
  • Font size 100%
  • Line height 100%
  • Letter spacing 100%

Iain Topliss

Iain Topliss is senior lecturer in the English Program at La Trobe University.

Iain Topliss reviews ‘Heart Cancer’ by Bill Leak and ‘Moments Of Truth’ by Bill Leak

December 2005–January 2006, no. 277 01 December 2005
Bill Leak’s first novel, Heart Cancer, is a quasi-picaresque larrikin’s progress that unexpectedly turns into a tale about addiction and self-destruction. It is an enterprising book, but Leak has the difficulty any novelist might in getting the two tones – the comic and the serious – properly balanced. The larrikin is Frank Thornton, a working-class boy born in the 1950s and raised in a h ... (read more)

Iain Topliss reviews ‘Will Dyson: Australia’s radical genius’ by Ross McMullin

August 2006, no. 283 01 August 2006
Ross McMullin’s Will Dyson is a new edition of a book that first appeared twenty years ago. Over that time,  the author has promoted his subject, according to the book’s subtitle, from ‘Cartoonist, Etcher and Australia’s Finest War Artist’ to ‘Australia’s Radical Genius’. ‘Genius’ is a strong word, and the new edition does not make a case for its use any more than the old ... (read more)

Iain Topliss reviews 'Comic Commentators: Contemporary political cartooning in Australia' edited by Robert Phiddian and Haydon Manning

December 2008–January 2009, no. 307 01 December 2008
Like many people, I am addicted to a segment called ‘Talking Pictures’ on the ABC’s Insiders programme, hosted by Mike Bowyers. The three minutes are over in a flash. In fact, the brevity is well judged: humour needs understatement, not overkill. Watching those cartoonists for that short time, cheerful and amused as they invariably are in the face of folly, bastardry and disaster, the viewer ... (read more)