Memoir

Richard Walsh reviews 'Memoirs' by Mike Willesee

Richard Walsh
19 December 2017

Mike Willesee has been one of the giants of the Australian media for over half a century. He was a major force in television for most of those years; but he began his life in print journal More

Brenda Niall reviews 'A Life of My Own' by Claire Tomalin

Brenda Niall
19 December 2017

When a biographer tells her own story, the rules change. Because the subject is the self, the problem is not so much a search for the unknown, but what to tell about the known and how to t More

James McNamara reviews 'How Not To Be A Boy' by Robert Webb and 'This Is Going To Hurt: Secret diaries of a junior doctor' by Adam Kay

James McNamara
24 November 2017

The literary world too often disdains comedy writing as unserious. It rarely features in our grander prizes, and is usually relegated to literature’s cheap seats. This is, of course, sil More

Ceridwen Spark reviews 'The Book of Thistles' by Noëlle Janaczewska

Ceridwen Spark
24 November 2017

Every Saturday around Australia, the suburbs hum with the sound of lawnmowers. While cutting grass, the mowers simultaneously decapitate the milk thistles (also known as sow thistles) that More

Carol Middleton reviews 'The Rules Do Not Apply: A memoir' by Ariel Levy

Carol Middleton
26 October 2017

In the first chapter of her memoir, The Rules Do Not Apply, Ariel Levy writes, ‘Daring to think that the rules do not apply is the mark of a visionary. It’s also a symptom of More

Brian Matthews reviews 'A Führer for a Father: The Domestic Face of Colonialism' by Jim Davidson

Brian Matthews
30 August 2017

When some years ago I read Jim Davidson’s outstanding biography, Lyrebird Rising (1994), I was initially concerned by what seemed to be his potentially distorting fascination with the scene-stealing Louise Hanson-Dyer. But I soon discovered I needn’t have worried. Jim Davidson is not the sort of biographer whose obsession with his subject overcomes prop ... More

Tali Lavi reviews 'Once We Were Sisters' by Sheila Kocher

Tali Lavi
23 July 2017

As Nadine Gordimer once mused, ‘Writing is making sense of life. You work your whole life and perhaps you’ve made sense of one small area.’ Sheila Kohler’s site of personal hauntin More

Crusader Hillis reviews 'Finding Nevo' by Nevo Zisin

Crusader Hillis
31 May 2017

‘Coming out’ stories remain one of the most potent sources for young people to understand their own relationship to sex, gender, and sexuality. Living in a largely heteronormative society, many young people find a place in these stories to validate and challenge their thoughts and experiences. Nevo Zisin’s memoir, written at the age of twenty, covers these areas but also speaks to those l ... More

Kevin Rabalais reviews 'Between Them: Remembering my parents' by Richard Ford

Kevin Rabalais
26 May 2017

'Our parents intimately link us, closeted as we are in our lives, to a thing we’re not, forging a joined separateness and a useful mystery, so that even together with them we are also alone,’ writes Richard Ford early in ‘My Mother, In Memory’, the first of the two memoirs that comprise Between Them, the Pulitzer Prize winner’s bewitching first bo ... More

Suzy Freeman-Greene reviews 'Insomniac City: New York, Oliver, and me' by Bill Hayes

Suzy Freeman-Greene
30 April 2017

When Oliver Sacks began seeing Bill Hayes in 2009, he had never been in a relationship. He wasn’t out as a gay man and hadn’t had sex for thirty-five years. Sacks, the celebrated author and neurologist, was almost thirty years older than Hayes, who had moved to New York from San Francisco after the sudden death of his partner. The two visited the Museum of Natur ... More

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