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Edwards, John: John Curtin’s War (Volumes I and II)

John Edwards

John Curtin’s War: Volume I, Penguin Random House, Sydney, 2017; Volume II, Penguin Random House, Sydney, 2018; also available electronically

Using much new material John Edwards’ vivid, landmark biography places Curtin as a man of his times, puzzling through the immense changes in Australia and its region released by the mighty shock of the Pacific War. It shows Curtin not as a hero and certainly not as a villain but as the pivotal figure making his uncertain way between what Australia was, and what it would become. It locates the turning point in Australian history not at Gallipoli or the Western Front or even Federation but in the Pacific War and in Curtin’s Prime Ministership. This two volume work is a major contribution to Australian biography, and to how we understand our history. (blurb)

Both volumes are reviewed for Honest History by David Stephens. Other reviews, Volume I: Richard Allsopp (IPA Review), Andrew Clark (Australian Financial Review), Ross Fitzgerald (Fairfax), Michael Small (Military History and Heritage Victoria), James Walter (Australian Book Review); Volume II: Ross Fitzgerald (Fairfax). ABC Late Night Live with Phillip Adams. Volume I won the Australian History award in the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards for 2018. Volume I launched by Paul Keating.