The Year It All Fell Down
Viking, $29.99 pb, 264 pp, 9780670077410
In The Year It All Fell Down, journalist Bob Ellis revisits 2011, a year that, as the title suggests, produced social and political change on a global scale. The text provides a month-by-month account of this dramatic time. Ellis covers the Queensland floods and the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. He describes the US-sanctioned execution of Osama bin Laden and the mass killings perpetrated by Anders Breivik. Readers are reminded that Julian Assange ‘won the Martha Gellhorn Prize for “brave, determined, independent” journalism’, and that Prince William married Kate Middleton. There are references to veteran actor Kirk Douglas’s appearance at the Oscars ceremony and to Lars von Trier’s Melancholia. Ellis speculates that this film might be ‘a parable … of our denial of Global Warming’.