In her latest book, award-winning political biographer and journalist Margaret Simons pens the portrait of one Australia's most compelling figures in public office. Elected to federal parliament aged just 28, Tanya Plibersek has lived almost half her life in the public eye and is the longest-serving woman in Australia’s House of Representatives. But how much do we know about what drives her, what she values, and what we can expect from her next? Join Margaret in conversation with Caroline Baum as she unpacks the personal and the political.

Margaret Simons (Australian)

Margaret Simons

Margaret Simons is an award-winning freelance journalist and the author of many books and numerous articles and essays. She is also a journalism academic and Honorary Principal Fellow at the Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne. She has won the Walkley Award for Social Equity Journalism, a Foreign Press Association Award and a number of Quill Awards, including for her reporting from the Philippines with photojournalist Dave Tacon. Her most recent work is a biography of the current Minister for the Environment, Tanya Plibersek, published this year. Other recent work includes a Quarterly Essay Cry Me A River: the Tragedy of the Murray-Darling Basin which was published in March 2020, and a biography of Penny Wong, released in October 2019. Simons co-wrote the biography of former Prime Minister of Australia, Malcolm Fraser. Malcolm Fraser: The Political Memoirs won both the Book of the Year and the Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-Fiction at the NSW Premier's Literary Awards in 2011.

Caroline Baum (Australian)

Caroline Baum

Caroline is the author of Only: A Singular Memoir about being an only child, published in 2017. Her life-writing has also appeared in several anthologies including My Mother, My Father: On Losing a Parent. Rebellious Daughters. Life Sentences, her podcast about the practice of contemporary biography, is available on all major platforms. Caroline is the winner of the 2015 Hazel Rowley Award, and her journalism has appeared in The Sydney Morning Herald, Griffith Review, and The Guardian. Caroline is the Ambassador for the Older Women’s Network in NSW.