And So It Went: New Thoughts In A Year Of Change: Bob Ellis

Bob Ellis describes himself as ‘a nervous union hack, a political bit-player, an edgy pontificating witness of earlier times’. He’s also the ALP’s truest believer, a man who affectionately calls his Party mates ‘comrade’.

He opens this book, the fifth in a series of sorts, hanging rather mournfully around Parliament House in the days after Rudd’s historic win, hoping for a job of sorts and remembering when Rudd called him ‘Uncle Bob’. Here, as always, Ellis is intermittently brilliant, passionate, self-deprecating and bombastic. He helps Bob Carr choose a title for his book, attends the 2020 Summit, dines at Parliament House with Natasha Stott-Despoja and Kim Beazley (who calls Rudd’s leadership ‘a victory for middle management), brings lollies to work, gossips in theatre foyers with Andrew Upton and Max Cullen, and text messages Geoffrey Rush and Wayne ‘Swanny’ Swan.

Throughout, he draws on his impressive wealth of political, literary and cultural knowledge, with the affable ease of a boozy dinner party companion, covering various hot topics – particularly, Rudd’s election and early days in government, and Obama’s journey to the White House.