"Labeled at various times "ratbag" and "mug genius" as well as "master writer" Xavier Herbert led a life characterised by controversy and contradiction.
His signature books, Capricornia (1938) and Poor Fellow My Country (1975), were to change the face of Australian novel writing. For more than sixty years he entertained, hectored and, as often as not, offended his wide readership with provocatively polemical narratives and public appearances.
Born out of wedlock, lied to about the circumstances of his birth and ancestry, and reared in working class surroundings, Herbert grew up amidst secrecy and duplicity, uncertain of who he really was.
This first biography of Xavier Herbert (1901-1984) explores the contradictions at the core of his turbulent life and career. It charts his lifelong quest to discover the reality of his existence and to forge a larger-than-life identity. (Book jacket).
Includes bibliographical references (p. -335) and indexes.