By John Burbidge

Dare Me!

The Life and Work of Gerald Glaskin

Glaskin, the man, was as audacious as his writing. With film-star looks and charm to spare, his electrifying presence filled every room he entered. His sharp tongue could be as rollickingly funny as it could acerbically mocking, and no slight, real or perceived, failed to draw his riposte.

A Novelist of Importance

When Gerald Glaskin’s first novel A World of Our Own was published in 1955, the acclaimed British writer C. P. Snow commented, “I fancy he may become a novelist of importance and certainly the best spokesman of contemporary Australian society.”

Sadly, Glaskin is remembered as neither. In spite of having twenty books published — a mix of fiction and non-fiction in several genres — he is little known in Australia. With a British publisher and multiple European translations, his books fared far better abroad than at home. In many ways, he did also, his years in Singapore and Amsterdam being among his most productive.

Glaskin’s writing ranged widely in subject matter, style and quality. He dared to tackle subjects regarded by many in his day as off limits — homosexuality, youth suicide, incest, Australia’s treatment of its indigenous people, and its phobias about Asia.

Glaskin, the man, was as audacious as his writing. With film-star looks and charm to spare, his electrifying presence filled every room he entered. His sharp tongue could be as rollickingly funny as it could acerbically mocking, and no slight, real or perceived, failed to draw his riposte.

Gerald Glaskin

Praise for Dare Me!

Never heard of Gerry Glaskin? With John Burbidge’s biography, you no longer have any excuses.
   —  Jeremey Fisher, Australian Book Review

John Burbidge’s biography, Dare Me! The Life and Work of Gerald Glaskin, is one of the best yet written about an Australian writer. A compelling read, it looks to establish Glaskin not as a literary novelist but as a wonderful storyteller who benchmarked a number of themes current in Australian literature.
   — David Hough, The West Australian

An intriguing exploration of the life and works of an almost forgotten Australian writer, whose novel No End to the Way predated any open homosexual writings by Patrick White or Sumner Locke Elliott … Burbidge has done us a favor in bringing an important writer back to the spotlight, and recounting a life that reveals much about marginality in twentieth century Australia.   
   — Dennis Altman, author of Homosexual: Oppression and Liberation and The End of the Homosexual?

Join me for a few minutes as I read an excerpt from my book Dare Me!

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