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How I Clawed My Way to the Middle by John Wood

October 2020, no. 425

How I Clawed My Way to the Middle by John Wood

Viking, $34.99 pb, 308 pp

How I Clawed My Way to the Middle by John Wood

October 2020, no. 425

To his obvious surprise, John Wood became a household name playing ordinary, reliable Aussie blokes – most memorably Sergeant Tom Croydon on Blue Heelers and magistrate Michael Rafferty on Rafferty’s Rules – two of television’s best-loved everyday heroes. (I confess to writing about the latter in The Bulletin and describing him as ‘the thinking woman’s crumpet’.)

Less well known is that Wood was also a busy playwright and screenwriter for much of his more public life. It’s this talent that shines here in vivid observation and shrewd evocations. Telling of the family’s move to the semi-rural outskirts of Melbourne, he conjures the unself-conscious innocence of a child: ‘I don’t think my sister Glenys was yet born. I do have a memory of going to the hospital with Dad to bring Mum and the new baby home, but it could have been Kaye’s birth two years later.’

Diana Simmonds reviews 'How I Clawed My Way to the Middle' by John Wood

How I Clawed My Way to the Middle

by John Wood

Viking, $34.99 pb, 308 pp

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Comment (1)

  • I read Bluebird by Malcolm Knox. A complete portrayal of Torquay on surf coast of Vic: people, council, pubs family, surf club. All in one cluster. Great read.
    Posted by Gary
    19 October 2020

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