ABBEY'S CHOICE NOVEMBER 2015 -----
Paul Keating is widely credited as the chief architect of the most significant period of political and economic reform in Australia's history. Twenty years on, there is still no story from the horse's mouth of how it all came about. No autobiography. No memoir. Yet he is the supreme story-teller of politics...
This book of revelations fills the gap. Kerry O'Brien, the consummate interviewer who knew all the players and lived the history, has spent many long hours with Keating, teasing out the stories, testing the memories and the assertions. What emerges is a treasure trove of anecdotes, insights, reflections and occasional admissions from one of the most loved and hated political leaders we have known - a man who either led or was the driving force through thirteen years of Labor government that changed the face of Australia.
This is a man who as prime minister personally negotiated the sale of a quarter of the government-owned Qantas in his own office for $665 million, then delighted in watching the buyer's hand shake so much that champagne spilt down his shirtsleeve. He tells of his grave moment of doubt after making one of the riskiest calls of his political life, and how he used an acupuncturist and a television interviewer to seize the day.
There are many stories of this kind. The revealing inside stories and even glimpses of insecurities that go with the wielding of power, from a man who had no fear collecting his share of enemies and ended up with more than enough, but whose parliamentary performances from 25 years ago are watched avidly on YouTube today by a generation that was either not yet born or in knee pants when he was at his peak.We'll never get an autobiography or a memoir from Keating. This is as close as you'll get - funny, sweeping, angry, imaginative, mischievous, with arrogance, a glimmer of humility and more than a touch of creative madness. Keating unplugged...
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Turnbull's privileged existence, helped by marrying into one of Sydney's most storied families, obscures a tough childhood and precocious talent.
Left or right? Many Liberals believe Turnbull admirer of Jack Lang, mentored by Neville Wran, feted by Paul Keating;joined the wrong party.
Popular or unpopular? Years at the top of preferred leader polls do not dispel a sense Turnbull is not one of us. The future PM? On-again, off-again, for more than a decade Turnbull has seemed destined for the country's top job. Now, perhaps, it is closer than ever.
[UPDATE: Paddy Manning's prescience was proven - Malcolm Turnbull was sworn in as Australia's 29th Prime Minister on September 15, 2015.]
What will Prime Minister Turnbull do? Turnbull has been subject of many profiles, but the full story of his life has never been told.
In an unauthorised biography, Sydney journalist Paddy Manning reveals the true character of one of Australia's most celebrated overachievers: journalist, lawyer, businessman, politician.
Peter Reith was a senior federal Cabinet minister from 1996 to 2001. He was the face of the Coalition government's tough waterfront reforms, a major contributor to the Fightback! policy, a potential leader of the Liberal Party, the architect of sweeping industrial laws and defence minister during the time that it was wrongly claimed that asylum seekers had thrown their children overboard. He was a key player in the introduction of the GST and influential as a republican in the 1999 referendum. serious diary keeper, Peter Reith maintained extensive records of those tumultuous years through the 120 notebooks he filled with conversations of colleagues, Cabinet discussions and his uncensored thoughts and predictions.
It was a blood oath between best friends.
As Sergeant Brett Wood prepared for a third tour of Afghanistan, he made fellow Commando Jamie Zimmermann promise to take care of his wife and financial affairs should the worst unfold. When Brett was killed two months later, it tore two worlds apart.
The Promiseis the extraordinary story of two mates, Jamie and Brett, each with two families - the family at home, and the brotherhood that bonds military servicemen in times of war. It charts Jamie's evolution from a bullied boy in the suburbs to an elite soldier and team leader with the 2nd Commando Regiment of Australia's special forces, waging war in Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan.
As Jamie and Brett face ever more dangerous missions, the pressures intensify on the home front. Marriages crack, families fracture and the aftershocks of combat fatigue threaten both men's lives. After Brett's death, Jamie watches all certainty slip away. He commits mind and body to the one thing he can control: he will honour his friend, he will keep his promise.
The son of two Federal Liberal Ministers, Campbell Newman has been an army major, a high-flying management consultant, Lord Mayor of Australia's largest council and Premier of Queensland. For the first time in this authorised biography, his incredible and often controversial story is revealed in remarkable detail and scope. The biography also merges Campbell's story with a broader discussion on the future of reform in Australia, as told to the author by some of the nation's most prominent former and current politicians, business people and Campbell himself.
This book reflects on the simple things, the moments that are meaningful, and the big questions that have concerned Bob Brown. It is a powerful book as well as a meditation on the great and the small.
Inspirational, compassionate, outraged, Bob Brown’s stories are rich with metaphor, entertaining and full of warmth. A great promoter of activism he is keen for all to experience life as richly as he has. Although he has seen much of the world through the prism of politics he still believes that there is reason to believe that the changes he has pursued can be made and will be for the better.
His stories reveal a complex man with a quick wit and a joy for life.
Age range 12 to 17 Autobiographical study by a celebrated Aboriginal poet and playwright, who writes of his boyhood in the south-west of Western Australia during the depression years of the 1920s and 30s. Written with humour and compassion, this book provides insights into a significant literary figure and an interesting period of Australian history.
Local teacher Sue Gunningham waits impatiently in her car for news of her long-time partner Barry Johnston, who has been declared missing in the savage bushfires that would come to be known as the 'Black Saturday' fires. She worked that morning, Saturday 7 February 2009, and so was not at home at their cottage 'Waldene' near Kinglake when the bushfire swept through. Little does she realise that the loss of her partner is just the beginning of her battle to keep a place for her in his life... and to save the memory of their love.
The book is divided into four sections: 'Lost' (the frantic search for Barry in the days after the fire); 'Stolen' (dealing with the Coroner's identification process, solicitors and the funeral parlor in a struggle to have Barry's remains identified and returned to Sue); 'Examined' (the continual round of formal interviews with police, case managers, psychologists and the Victoria Bushfire Royal Commission); and 'Rebuild' (dealing with the burnt-out site and trying to rebuild both the cottage and a life).
Raw and compelling, All the Days After will resonate with anyone who has suffered through devastating grief. It is Sue's personal story of love lost, grief and rebuilding, but it is also the story of the lesser known aftermath of a major tragedy; one involving family disputes, inquests, a Royal Commission and more, and how events play out when you're involved on the inside as opposed to being a remote spectator.
By turns hilarious and moving, Amanda Keller takes us on a nostalgia filled journey through her life. From her childhood in sunny Brisbane to her daggy teen years in suburban Sydney. Then onto heady college days in Bathurst, where wine was called 'claret' and came in a box, and finally to establishing a stellar career in TV and radio.
Along the way she falls in love with 'a nice Kiwi boy' who becomes her husband and she tells the story of the arrival of their two hard-won sons. But without too many icky bits... Amanda also takes us behind the scenes of her TV career - from the challenge of turning on a typewriter at Simon Townsend's Wonder World! to the fun of travelling the globe for Beyond 2000, despite having no scientific background and absolutely no sense of direction. More recently she was able to officially represent an entire generation on Talkin' 'Bout Your Generation and share a couch with three blokes and the odd snake on The Living Room.
Amanda loves 'the wireless' and looks back on twenty years of radio. From sharing a mic with Andrew Denton on Triple M to topping the breakfast show ratings with Jonesy on WSFM...Vivid, funny and hugely entertaining, Natural Born Keller will have you laughing out loud, nodding in recognition and occasionally bawling uncontrollably - in a cathartic sort of way.
A tour de force about the impact of war on one family over the twentieth century. As deputy director of the Australian War Memorial for many years, Michael McKernan had heard and written about many stories of war. For him, war was never about the big picture; it always came down to the individual. Yet little did he know when he met his future wife in 1989 that her father would soon be telling him, over many leisurely afternoons, his own story, of being made a slave to the Nazis in the Second World War, and its unforeseeable consequences. One of these consequences was that Mychajlo Stawyskyj's son Joe would grow up in Australia in time to be sent to fight in Vietnam, where he would become one of that war's worst casualties. Drawing on his authoritative grasp of twentieth-century history, and in particular military and social history, Michael McKernan pieces together the disrupted lives of his father-in-law and brother-in-law, creating a compelling narrative of general interest, as well as an unforgettable story about the cost of war to one Australian family.
More than thirty-five years in the making, this is the story of Ian 'Molly' Meldrum and the television show that stopped the nation...
In 1974 Molly was working as a record producer and music journalist when he was offered the chance to be the talent co-ordinator of a new music show called Countdown. It would run for the next thirteen years and become one of the most-loved and most-watched programs on Australian television. It also turned Molly into a national institution (or 'mental institution' as one of his friends put it). During that period he not only became the most influential voice in Australian music, he endeared himself to millions of viewers with a uniquely unpolished interviewing style and a tangible on-screen passion.
For better or for worse, whether interviewing Prince Charles or Sid Vicious, Molly was always Molly. Along the way he talked, partied, argued, exchanged blows and became firm friends with a roll-call of the world's greatest musical names. Sir Elton John famously described him as 'the best thing that ever happened to Australian music.'
Filled with outrageous anecdotes and a kaleidoscopic cast of musos, colourful characters and international superstars, this is Molly's hilarious, vivid, warm and always compelling memoir of his chaotic, incredible life and the show that made him famous.
The biography of one of Australia's most fascinating and enigmatic business leaders, John Borghetti From mail boy to CEO - the trajectory of John Borghetti's career seemed set for a corporate fairy-tale ending... until it nearly wasn't. After 36 years at Qantas, Borghetti was passed over for the top job and found himself having to start again. He hesitated before signing on with Virgin, the looming rival for Qantas's market-share - but it was here that he would get the chance to run an airline exactly the way he envisaged. What followed is one of the most extraordinary stories of corporate transformation and redemption. Game Changer is at once the record of how one man revolutionised the airline scene in Australia, and a universal business story of how, with vision, teamwork, passion and dedication, a company can reinvent itself to challenge the status quo, and even to take on a monopoly. This biography of one of Australia's most fascinating and enigmatic business leaders begins with Borghetti's arrival at Essendon Airport as a migrant boy of seven with his family and just two suitcases, and takes you into the very heart of Australia's boardrooms.
Orry Kelly, Miss Weston's Protege tells the incredible story of one of Hollywood's greatest designers. Using never before seen materials, photographs and letters, Robert Parkinson has compiled years of research into one of the most detailed accounts of Orry Kelly's history. Born in Kiama in December 1897 Orry Kelly moved to Sydney as a young man to seek a theatrical career and to study painting. Though unsuccessful on the stage he could not be dissuaded from his dream of stage fame. Eleanor Weston, a well-known Kiama businesswoman, encouraged Kelly to move to the US where he found his calling designing scenes and costume for film, television and the stage. Over the course of his career Orry Kelly worked for all of the major studios, including Warner Brothers, Paramount and Fox, dressing many of the well-known female stars in some 312 films. Though always widely renowned in Hollywood, Kelly did not gain his fame in Australia until after his death in 1964. As biographies of movie stars began to appear in the 1980s his fashion styling and costume design came to be highly regarded and worthy of study across several universities and colleges.
Following the News of the World phone-hacking scandal, Rupert Murdoch said his greatest regret was that he had let his father down. Popular history views Sir Keith Murdoch (1885 - 1952) as a fearless war correspondent - author of the famous letter that led to the evacuation of the Anzac force from Gallipoli - and a principled journalist and dedicated family man who, on his death, left a single provincial newspaper to Rupert. This benign reputation is unsurprising: the two previously published biographies of Keith were Murdoch family commissions. But is there another side to the story of Keith's success and the origins of News Corporation? Before Rupert is an unflinching prequel to the saga of the Murdoch family's rise to power. Historian Tom Roberts draws on an unparalleled range of interviews, correspondence and archival sources to trace the genesis of the family's involvement with the news and entertainment industry and their resulting influence. Before Rupert explores how Keith Murdoch ruthlessly exploited his networks to gain ultimate control over Australia's media and political landscapes. With controversial revelations, this book shows how, by Rupert's birth, a pattern for the cut-throat exercise of power through an expanding media chain had been set - a course still followed to this day.
Fast bowler, six-hitter, popular hero, one of the lads, King of the Jungle - Andrew Flintoff is all of those things, and a whole lot more.
Who can forget the hero of England's 2005 Ashes-winning team; the captain who endured humiliating defeat in Australia in 2006-07; the maverick whose encounter with a pedalo in the 2007 World Cup brought all the wrong headlines; the competitor who fought off injury to help regain the Ashes in 2009; the TV performer always looking for a new challenge?
But through all his highs and lows, triumphs and reversals, there has been a central tension in his life. There is 'Fred' - entertainer, extrovert, centre of attention. Then there is 'Andrew' - reflective, withdrawn and uncertain. Two people contained in one extraordinary life. And sometimes, inevitably, keeping the two in balance proves impossible.
Now, in Second Innings
, he reveals the unseen sides of his career and personality: the complex and troubled relationship with discipline, excess and authority; the search for an authentic voice as a player, free from the blandness and conformity of modern professionalism; the restless need to push himself that led him to take up professional boxing and, in an even more unexpected twist, to return to the cricket field.
At ease with his faults as well as his gifts, Andrew Flintoff displays characteristic humour and often startling honesty as he takes the reader backstage to witness the mischief and adventure that have defined his story, and, above all, to experience the enduring power of fun, friendship and loyalty - the pillars of his remarkable career.