Biography and Memoir reviews

Active Labour: Memoirs of a Working-Class Doctor by Percy Rogers

Reviewed by Susan Stevenson

Active Labour, the title of Percy Rogers’ autobiography, alludes to his work as an obstetrician pioneering the Lamaze method of childbirth, and also his life-long commitment to social activism. His f…

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Happy Never After by Jill Stark

Reviewed by Tom Davies

Five years after publishing High Sobriety, Jill Stark returns with Happy Never After, somewhere between a follow-up memoir and investigative journalism.

Where High Sobriety explored Stark’s and the …

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No Country Woman by Zoya Patel

Reviewed by Giselle Au-Nhien Nguyen

Zoya Patel was born in Fiji to Indian parents, and came to Australia at three years old. In her thoughtful debut essay collection, she grapples with the idea of identity, and the often confusing expe…

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Always Another Country by Sisonke Msimang

Reviewed by Elke Power

Perth-based South African writer Sisonke Msimang was raised in exile in the 1970s and 80s by her South African freedom-fighter parents. Her childhood and early adulthood were spent in Zambia, Canada,…

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The Power of Hope by Kon Karapanagiotidis

Reviewed by Kara Nicholson

A recent decision by the Australian government to cut income support for thousands of asylum seekers has meant the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC) has reached breaking point. The ASRC relies on …

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I Will Be Complete by Glen David Gold

Reviewed by Anna Rotar

I love this book. There, I’ve said it. I love it and this is why.

I Will Be Complete is the autobiography that took years for the author to write because he wasn’t quite sure if all the things that …

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Teacher by Gabbie Stroud

Reviewed by Chris Dite

Education and teachers are political footballs like no other. Politicians regularly stir up controversy about teachers’ daily working lives: their (excessive) wages; their (generous) holidays; their …

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Eggshell Skull by Bri Lee

Reviewed by Alison Huber

During her year as a judge’s associate in the District Court in Queensland, Bri Lee finds herself enduring case after case after case involving rape, sexual assault and child abuse. A fact that Lee k…

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Calypso by David Sedaris

Reviewed by Danielle Mirabella

‘LOL’ is an acronym I usually avoid, however, when reading David Sedaris it is apt. Calypso, the long-awaited new collection of twenty-one stories from one of the world’s most-loved humorists is an …

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There Are No Grown-Ups by Pamela Druckerman

Reviewed by Elke Power

I love Pamela Druckerman’s writing. Her last book, French Children Don’t Throw Food, was, and still is, an international bestseller. To be clear, she is not the author of the French Women Don’t Get F

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