Memoir

Danielle Clode reviews 'Adventures of a Young Naturalist: The Zoo Quest expeditions' by David Attenborough

Danielle Clode
19 December 2017

David Attenborough turned ninety last year. In a short animation celebrating his birthday, two Aardman penguins muse on their first meeting with the famous naturalist. ‘There’s somethi More

Susan Wyndham reviews 'The Vanity Fair Diaries: 1983–1992' by Tina Brown

Susan Wyndham
19 December 2017

Tina Brown hit the ground partying in New York when she arrived in 1983 to revive the struggling Condé Nast magazine Vanity Fair. But an early diary entry shows the former .. More

Mimi Biggadike reviews 'Coming to my Senses: The making of a counterculture cook' by Alice Waters

Mimi Biggadike
19 December 2017

It is a colourful and turbulent life Alice Waters leads. Thankfully, it is turbulent in the fruitful sense, a process of regeneration and creation so nimbly edited into her autobiography . More

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

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