Dare Me!: The Life and Work of Gerald Glaskin
John Burbidge

Paperback | Feb 2014 | Monash University Publishing | 9781921867743 | 368pp | 234x153mm | GEN | AUD$34.95, NZD$39.99

Gerald Glaskin (1923-2000) pushed the boundaries of acceptability in what he wrote and how he wrote it. His twenty major publications novels, short stories, travelogues, memoirs, plays and more tackled such taboo subjects as homosexuality, incest and parapsychology. In the aftermath of the Second World War Glaskin challenged white Australians to re-examine their attitudes to Asians and Aboriginal people, and his 1965 novel, No End to the Way, initially banned in his home country, was ground-breaking in its frank and honest portrayal of a homosexual relationship. Outside Australia, Glaskins books were translated into multiple languages and garnered praise from critics and readers alike. He was hailed as the ace of Australian story tellers. Yet in his home country he was and remains a virtual nonentity. Why did Australia turn its back on him? Was it his delight in provoking people? Was it his audacious, belligerent and at times overbearing manner? Was he a victim of his country's tall poppy syndrome, or of a provincial publishing industry? This insightful biography probes the life and work of one of Australia's most neglected writers and in so doing, gives Glaskin his proper due.