Senator Penny Wong is an extraordinary Australian politician. Resolute, self-possessed and a penetrating thinker on subjects from climate change to foreign affairs, she is admired by members of parliament and the public across the political divide.
In this new edition, acclaimed journalist Margaret Simons traces her story: from her early life in Malaysia, to her student activism in Adelaide, her time in the turbulent Rudd and Gillard governments, her key role as a voice of reason in the campaign to legalise same-sex marriage – and a new chapter on her elevation to the post of foreign minister in the Albanese government. What emerges is a picture of a leader for modern Australia, a cool-headed and cautious yet charismatic figure of piercing intelligence, with a family history linking back to Australia's colonial settlers and to the Asia-Pacific.
Drawing on exclusive interviews with Penny Wong and her Labor colleagues, parliamentary opponents, and close friends and family, this is a scintillating insight into an Australian politician without precedence.
'It can be difficult to write entertainingly about the day-to-day slog of politics, but Simons, author of two fine novels and a lauded biography of Malcolm Fraser, is a skilled storyteller who weaves a compelling narrative notable for its clarity and pace.' —The Monthly
'What Simons has excavated from the background of this extraordinary Australian should be cause for great pride and celebration.'—The Weekend Australian
Shortlisted for the National Biography Award
Longlisted for the Walkley Book Award
Longlisted for the ABIA Award for Biography of the Year