The definitive full-life biography of Australia’s 23rd prime minister; the only one that Hawke cooperated with after exiting the prime ministership.
This unprecedented biography of Hawke includes an exclusive series of interviews with him – the last that he gave – as well as unfiltered access to his extensive trove of personal papers. It features new interviews with more than 100 people who knew and worked with Hawke, including his family and friends; political and union colleagues, and rivals; advisers and public servants; and journalists; along with international contemporaries of Hawke such as George H.W. Bush, John Major, Brian Mulroney, James Baker and George Shultz.
It also brings together an extraordinary array of never-before-seen archival documents: family diaries, notes, letters and scrapbooks; school and university reports; cabinet, departmental and vice-regal papers; party strategy documents, polling and caucus minutes; and secret correspondence and meeting records between Hawke and other Cold War leaders.
Troy Bramston, an award-winning and best-selling author, tells the remarkable story of Hawke’s upbringing and education, the people and events that shaped him, his rise through the union movement, his complex personality and personal life marked by womanising and the demon drink, his nine-year government from 1983 to 1991, plus his post-prime ministerial life and legacy.
This book is about the real Hawke, chronicling the stunning triumphs and shocking failures, a life riddled with huge flaws and great virtues marked by redemption and reinvention, which changed Australia and shaped the world. Revelatory and compelling, it will shock and surprise those who think they know the story of Australia’s most popular prime minister.