Review of Henry Handel Richardson: Fiction in the Making by Axel Clark, The Importance of Being Eve Langley by Joy L. Thwaite, and The Last Exquisite: A Portrait of Frederic Manning by Verna Coleman
Literary biography has emerged in the last ten years as one of the exciting and enduring strengths of Australian scholarship, with support from both major commercial publishers and university presses. This is despite the fact that scholarly biographies, in hardcover editions, sell at best modestly, with print runs of only 1500 to 2000 copies. In this past decade the lives, the texts, the contexts, and the deaths of a fascinating gallery of Australian writers have been explored, analysed and reinvented. Biographers have used techniques ranging from traditional narratives (most elegantly epitomised by Brenda Niall's Martin Boyd) to post-modernist interrogations in which readers are transported from the biographer's chair to the subject's life and then back again, as in Brian Matthews' challenging account of Louisa Lawson.
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Cite as: Clunies Ross, Margaret. ‘Review of Henry Handel Richardson: Fiction in the Making by Axel Clark, The Importance of Being Eve Langley by Joy L. Thwaite, and The Last Exquisite: A Portrait of Frederic Manning by Verna Coleman.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 15, no. 1, 1991, doi: 10.20314/als.59ff6f4c83.