By Rama Gaind
PS News Books
Stop at Nothing: The Life and Adventures of Malcolm Turnbull
By Annabel Crabb (Black Inc/Quarterly Essay, $16.95, softcover, 127 pages)
This essay is full of revelations, compiled after extensive interviews with Malcolm Turnbull and his work colleagues.
Annabel Crabb engagingly tells the story of man who would be prime minister; everyone knows about his spectacular departure from party leadership. In September 2008, Turnbull was chosen Liberal Party leader and Leader of the Opposition, but served for a little over a year after he was voted out.
There’s an amazing story to tell about this Rhodes scholar, who made the BRW Rich 200 list for the second year running in 2010.
Before entering politics he practised as a journalist, barrister, company legal counsel, merchant banker and was leader of the Australian Republican Movement.
Crabb says Turnbull was driven into politics partly by aptitude and ambition and partly by a sense of public service. Gravitational pull of fate, one suspects, would have been another factor.
She points out that Turnbull – colourful, aggressive, humorous and ruthless – has some interesting habits like how he “tends to switch off”, his fascination for “gadgetry is boundless” and how he switches with “deceptive ease between real communication and electronic communication”. There was also “darkness” in his life.
Along with delving into young Malcolm’s university exploits, which included co-authoring a musical with Bob Ellis, Crabb discusses Turnbull’s remarkable relationship with Kerry Packer and his vexed association with Kevin Rudd and the looming presence of Peter Costello.
This is an insightful, balanced portrait of Malcolm Turnbull who has represented the Division of Wentworth in Sydney’s eastern suburbs since his election to the Australian House of Representatives in October 2004.
This edition also contains correspondence relating to the previous issue QE33 Quarry Vision by Guy Pearse.
To find out more about Rama Gaind click here.