Love him or loathe him, Ned Kelly has been at the heart of Australian culture and identity since he and his gang were tracked down in bushland by the Victorian police and came out fighting, dressed in bulletproof iron armour made from farmers? ploughs. History comes to life with Peter Fitzsimons.Historians still disagree over virtually every aspect of the eldest Kelly boy?s brushes with the law. Did he or did he not shoot Constable Fitzpatrick at their family home? Was he a lawless thug or a noble Robin Hood, a remorseless killer or a crusader against oppression and discrimination? Was he even a political revolutionary, an Australian republican channelling the spirit of Eureka?Peter FitzSimons, bestselling chronicler of many of the great defining moments and people of this nation?s history, is the perfect person to tell this most iconic of all Australian stories. From Kelly?s early days in Beveridge, Victoria, in the mid-1800s, to the Felons? Apprehension Act, which made it possible for anyone to shoot the Kelly gang, to Ned?s appearance in his now-famous armour, prompting the shocked and bewildered police to exclaim 'He is the devil!? and 'He is the bunyip!?, FitzSimons brings the history of Ned Kelly and his gang exuberantly to life, weighing in on all of the myths, legends and controversies generated by this compelling and divisive Irish-Australian rebel.
Peter FitzSimons is a journalist with the Sydney Morning Herald and Sun-Herald, and a busy events and motivational speaker.He is the author of over twenty-seven books, including Tobruk, Kokoda, Batavia, Eureka, Ned Kelly, Gallipoli and biographies of Douglas Mawson, Nancy Wake, Kim Beazley, Nick Farr-Jones, Les Darcy, Steve Waugh and John Eales, and is one of Australia?s biggest selling non-fiction authors of the last fifteen years. Peter was named a Member of the Order of Australia for service to literature as a biographer, sports journalist and commentator, and to the community through contributions to conservation, disability care, social welfare and sporting organisations. He lives with his wife, Lisa Wilkinson, and their three children in Sydney. His forthcoming book is Fromelles and Pozieres- In the Trenches of Hell.