Reviews of Australian Books #22

Nicholas Shakespeare reviews Tom Keneally's book, The Commonwealth of Thieves, in "The Daily Telegraph" over the weekend. "Australia is lucky to have Keneally. Few writers have a public voice that one wants to follow into the bedroom. He combines Tom Wolfe's expansiveness with the uncorkable energy of Anthony Burgess. At 70, the historian and the novelist are in perfect balance. His work has the integrity of a good floor...It is one of Keneally's virtues in The Commonwealth of Thieves that he gets down and dirty with his characters from their perspective at the time."

Also in the "Telegraph", Diane Cilento's autobography, My Nine Lives is reviewed by Roger Lewis. "Like [Shirley] MacLaine, Cilento was versatile, full of beans, and could be very beautiful when she put her mind to it...Zero Mostel saw her and was hit by a bus."

It must be Australia week in the "Telegraph" as Kate Grenville is interviewed by Helen Brown. "History for a greedy novelist like me is just one more place to pillage. What we're after, of course, is stories, and we know that history is bulging with beauties. Having found them, we then proceed to fiddle with them to make them the way we want them to be, rather than the way they really were. We get it wrong, wilfully and knowingly. But perhaps you could say that the very flagrency of our 'getting it wrong' points to the fact that all stories - even the history 'story' - are made. They have an agenda, even if it's an unconscious one. Perhaps there are many ways to get it right."

In "The Times", the 21st anniversary edition of Germaine Greer's The Female Eunuch is reviewed by Margaret Reynolds. "The need for The Female Eunuch has never gone away. The emphasis, however, is different. In 1970, Greer encouraged women to value their sexuality - today she promotes their right to safe sex or chastity. In 1970, she was writing for middle-class women - today she is more worried about the poor and the dispossessed."

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on June 13, 2006 10:56 AM.

Australian Bookcovers #16 - The Boy in the Bush by D. H. Lawrence and M. L. Skinner was the previous entry in this blog.

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