Biography

Bridget Griffen-Foley reviews 'The Murdoch Archipelago' by Bruce Page

Bridget Griffen-Foley
07 June 2019

Rupert Murdoch certainly attracts a good class of biographer. There was George Munster, who contributed so much to Australian politics and culture by helping to establish and edit Nati More

Michael Shmith reviews 'The Boyds: A family biography' by Brenda Niall

Michael Shmith
07 June 2019

Biography can be difficult to achieve. There is the balance between too much detail, where one can’t see the wood for the family trees, or not enough, which can be disappointing all roun More

Michael McGirr reviews King of the Air: The turbulent life of Charles Kingsford Smith by Ann Blainey

Michael McGirr
23 May 2019

People spent a lot of time looking for the pioneering aviator Charles Kingsford Smith. When he disappeared for the final time in 1935 just south of Myanmar, then known as Burma, he was jus More

Lewis Rosenberg reviews Walter Kaufmann: Philosopher, humanist, heretic by Stanley Corngold

Lewis Rosenberg
25 March 2019

My favourite image from Stanley Corngold’s Walter Kaufmann: Philosopher, humanist, heretic is set in Berlin as World War II concludes. Young Walter Kaufmann, a German Jew forced More

Jarrod Hore reviews Kindred: A Cradle Mountain love story by Kate Legge

Jarrod Hore
25 March 2019

Early on in Kindred: A Cradle Mountain love story, the journalist and walker Kate Legge dwells on an ‘extraordinary coincidence’ that took place over Christmas in 1903. While More

Neal Blewett reviews 'Recollections of a Bleeding Heart: A portrait of Paul Keating PM' by Don Watson

Neal Blewett
05 March 2019

What is it about Paul Keating that so fascinated his retainers? Six years ago, John Edwards wrote a mass More

Gemma Betros reviews The Years by Annie Ernaux, translated by Alison L. Strayer

Gemma Betros
22 February 2019

The word indicible appears frequently in the work of French author Annie Ernaux. In English, it means ‘inexpressible’ or ‘unspeakable’. Yet saying the unsayable – or rat More

Rémy Davison reviews A Certain Idea of France: The life of Charles de Gaulle by Julian Jackson

Rémy Davison
22 February 2019

There is a scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail outside a castle, brimming with French men-at-arms, who taunt King Arthur and his knights remorselessly, while the Britons are More

Paul Kildea reviews Fryderyk Chopin: A life and times by Alan Walker

Paul Kildea
22 February 2019

The author and critic Richard Ellmann died in May 1987, a handful of months before the publication of his biography of Oscar Wilde. Twenty years in the making, the book instantly establish More

Sheridan Palmer reviews The Boy from Brunswick: Leonard French, A biography by Reg MacDonald

Sheridan Palmer
22 February 2019

Old friendships and close collaborations between author and subject can be either a blessing or a curse in biography – a tightrope between discretionary tact and open fire. Both call for intimate but balanced subjec More

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