Keneally, Thomas 1935- (Thomas Michael Keneally)
Keneally, Thomas 1935- (Thomas Michael Keneally)
Born October 7, 1935, in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia; son of Edmund Thomas and Elsie Margaret (Coyle) Keneally; married Judith Martin, August 15, 1965; children: Margaret Ann, Jane Rebecca. Education: Attended St. Patrick's College, New South Wales.
Agent—Curtis Brown, P.O. Box 19, Paddington, New South Wales 2021, Australia.
Trained for priesthood (never ordained); high school teacher in Sydney, Australia, 1960-64; University of New England, New South Wales, Australia, lecturer in drama, 1968-70; University of California, Irvine, School of Writing, visiting professor, 1985, distinguished professor 1991-95; New York University, New York, NY, inaugural Berg Professor, 1988. Member of Australia-China Council, 1978-88; Australian Constitutional Committee advisor, 1985-88; Literary Arts Board of Australia member, 1985-88; Australian Republican Movement, chair, 1991-93, director, 1994—. Actor in films, including The Devil's Playground, 1976, and The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, 1978. Military service: Served in Australian Citizens Military Forces.
Commonwealth Literary Fund fellowship, 1966, 1968, 1972; Miles Franklin Award, 1968, 1969; Captain Cook Bicentenary Prize, 1970; Heinemann Award, Royal Society of Literature, 1973, for The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith; notable book citation, American Library Association, 1980, for Confederates; Booker McConnell Prize for fiction and Los Angeles Times fiction prize, both 1982, both for Schindler's List; named Officer, Order of Australia, 1983; Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award, Tulsa Library Trust, 2007.
The Place at Whitton, Cassell (London, England), 1964, Walker (New York, NY), 1965.
The Fear, Cassell (London, England), 1965.
Bring Larks and Heroes, Cassell (Melbourne, Australia), 1967, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1968.
Three Cheers for the Paraclete, Angus & Robertson (London, England), 1968, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1969.
The Survivor, Angus & Robertson (London, England), 1969, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1970.
A Dutiful Daughter, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1971.
The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1972.
Blood Red, Sister Rose: A Novel of the Maid of Orleans, Viking Press (New York, NY), 1974, published as Blood Red, Sister Rose, Collins (London, England), 1974.
Gossip from the Forest, Collins (London, England), 1975, Harcourt Brace (New York, NY), 1976.
Moses the Lawgiver, Harper (New York, NY), 1975.
Season in Purgatory, Collins (London, England), 1976, Harcourt Brace (New York, NY), 1977.
A Victim of the Aurora, Collins (London, England), 1977, Harcourt Brace (New York, NY), 1978.
Ned Kelly and the City of the Bees (juvenile), J. Cape (London, England), 1978, Penguin (New York, NY), 1980.
Passenger, Harcourt Brace (New York, NY), 1979.
Confederates, Collins (London, England), 1979, Harper (New York, NY), 1980.
The Cut-Rate Kingdom, Wildcat Press (Sydney, Australia), 1980.
Bullie's House, Currency Press (Sydney, Australia), 1981.
Schindler's List, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1982, published as Schindler's Ark, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England), 1982.
A Family Madness, Hodder & Stoughton, 1985, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1986.
The Playmaker, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1987.
To Asmara: A Novel of Africa, Warner Books (New York, NY), 1989, published as Towards Asmara, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England), 1989.
By the Line, University of Queensland Press (St. Lucia, Queensland, Australia), 1989.
Flying Hero Class, Warner Books (New York, NY), 1991.
Woman of the Inner Sea, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England), 1992, Doubleday (Garden City, NY), 1993.
Jacko the Great Intruder, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England), 1994.
A River Town, Nan A. Talese (New York, NY), 1995.
Bettany's Book, Bantam (New York, NY), 1999.
An Angel in Australia, Doubleday (Sydney, Australia), 2002.
Office of Innocence, Sceptre (London, England), 2002, Nan A. Talese (New York, NY), 2003.
The Tyrant's Novel, Nan A. Talese/Doubleday (New York, NY), 2004.
Outback, photographs by Gary Hansen and Mark Lang, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England, and Sydney, Australia), 1983, Rand McNally (Chicago, IL), 1984.
(With Patsy Adam-Smith and Robyn Davidson) Australia: Beyond the Dreamtime, BBC Publications (London, England), 1987, Facts on File (New York, NY), 1989.
With Yellow Shoes, Prentice Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1992.
Now and in Time to Be: Ireland and the Irish, Norton (New York, NY), 1992.
The Place Where Souls Are Born: A Journey into the Southwest, Simon & Schuster (New York, NY), 1992, published as The Place Where Souls Are Born: A Journey into the American Southwest, Hodder & Stoughton (London, England), 1992.
Memoirs from a Young Republic, Heinemann (London, England), 1993.
Homebush Boy: A Memoir, Heinemann (London, England), 1995.
The Great Shame: A Story of the Irish in the Old World and the New, Random House (Milsons Point, New South Wales, Australia), 1998, published as The Great Shame: And the Triumph of the Irish in the English-Speaking World, Nan A. Talese (New York, NY), 1999.
American Scoundrel: The Life of the Notorious Civil War General Dan Sickles, Nan A. Talese (New York, NY), 2002, published as American Scoundrel: Love, War and Politics in Civil War America, Chatto & Windus (London, England), 2002.
Abraham Lincoln ("Penguin Lives" series), Lipper/Viking (New York, NY), 2003.
(Editor, with Rosie Scott) Another Country, Sydney Pen/Halstead Press (Broadway, New South Wales, Australia), 2005.
A Commonwealth of Thieves: The Improbable Birth of Australia, Nan A. Talese/Doubleday (New York, NY), 2006.
Halloran's Little Boat (produced in Sydney, Australia, 1966), published in Penguin Australian Drama 2, Penguin (Melbourne, Australia), 1975.
Childermass, produced in Sydney, Australia, 1968.
An Awful Rose, produced in Sydney, Australia, 1972.
Bullie's House (produced in Sydney, Australia, 1980; produced in New Haven, CT, 1985), Currency Press (Sydney, Australia), 1981.
Writer of scripts for television, including Essington (play), 1974; The World's Wrong End (play), 1981; and Australia (series), 1987. Contributor to screenplays, including The Priest, 1973, and Silver City, 1985. Contributor to periodicals, including the New York Times Book Review.
Keneally's manuscripts are collected at the Mitchell Library, Sydney, Australia, and at the Australian National Library, Canberra.
Schindler's List was adapted for film by Steven Zaillian for Amblin Entertainment, 1993.
Well known for his novel Schindler's List, which served as the basis for an award-winning motion picture in 1993, Thomas Keneally has become one of Australia's most distinguished authors. In works characterized by their sensitivity to style, their objectivity, their suspense, and diversity, the author has explored subjects as diverse as the history of his native Australia, life under a military dictatorship, and the life of a Catholic priest.
Discussions of Keneally often emphasize his years spent as a seminary student and his last-minute decision not to take the vows of priesthood, yet only two of his novels focus directly on the subject. In Three Cheers for the Paraclete, published in 1968, his protagonist is Father James Maitland, a man who has some doubts and questions about his faith, and encounters some problems in a Sydney seminary. As in many of his novels, Keneally presents his characters objectively and compassionately; priests and bishops are seen in the fullness of their humanity. Richard Sullivan wrote in the Washington Post Book World: "Though this admirably sustained novel makes it clear that some structures are too rigid, that the Church is not unflawed in its members, both clerical and lay, and that more windows need opening, at the same time it reveals with fine objectivity that it is human beings who are at fault, each in his own way, Maitland as much as any." More than thirty years later, Keneally again featured a priest in his novel Office of Innocence.
A similar example of Keneally's desire for objectivity is evident in his version of the story of Joan of Arc, Blood Red, Sister Rose: A Novel of the Maid of Orleans. Bruce Cook of the Washington Post Book World claimed Keneally's "intent, in fact, seems to be to reduce her and her legend to recognizably human dimensions." Placing Keneally's Joan of Arc in a historical perspective, Time's Melvin Maddocks saw her standing between the "Joan-too-spiritual" of the original legend and the "Joan-too-earthy" of George Bernard Shaw. She is "less spectacular than the first two but decidedly more convincing and perhaps, at last, more moving."
Perhaps Keneally's most ambitious historical novel is Confederates, set during the American Civil War and told from a Southern perspective. The book has no central character, but rather focuses on a group of characters who are involved in the preparations for the Second Battle of Antietam, fought in 1862. Keneally "keeps his canvas as vast as possible," wrote John Higgins in the Times Literary Supplement, "and his concern is as much with the conscripts as with the captains; the volunteers get just as large a show as the likes of Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson."
Several critics found Keneally's portrayal of the American South in Confederates surprisingly realistic. Jeffrey Burke of the New York Times Book Review, for example, wrote that it "is almost necessary to remind oneself that the author is Australian, so naturally, intrinsically Southern is the narrative voice." Robert Ostermann of the Detroit News stated that Keneally's account of the Second Battle of Antietam "deserves comparison … to Tolstoy's rendering of the Russian defeat and retreat at Borodino and to Hemingway's of the retreat from Caporetto in A Farewell to Arms," and added that "the fact that this massive, absorbing narrative is the work of an Australian—not a Southerner, not even a native American—testifies even further to the stature of his achievement."
With the release of Schindler's List, published in England as Schindler's Ark, Keneally found himself embroiled in a controversy over whether his book was fiction or nonfiction, an important point since the book was nominated for England's prestigious Booker McConnell Prize for fiction. Although the story of Oskar Schindler, a German industrialist during World War II who saved the Jews assigned to work in his factory from Nazi gas chambers, is historical truth, Keneally wrote the book as a novel. After deliberation, the judges deemed the work acceptable to the competition and awarded it the Booker Prize in 1982.
The controversy over Schindler's List is understandable, for the real-life story of Oskar Schindler is strange indeed. The owner of a German armaments factory staffed with forced Jewish laborers from nearby concentration camps, Schindler made a fortune during the war by supplying the German army with war materials. But when the Nazi regime decided to solve the "Jewish question" through mass extermination of Jewish prisoners, Schindler acted to save as many of his workers as possible. He convinced the local S.S. chief to allow him to house his Jewish workers in a compound built on his factory grounds rather than at a concentration camp "so that their labor [could] be more fully exploited," as Schindler explained it. Through the use of bribes and favors, Schindler worked to reunite his workers with their families, provided them with adequate food and medical care, and even managed to get a particularly murderous S.S. officer transferred to the Russian front. When the Russian army threatened to capture the area of southern Poland where Schindler's factory was located—and the German army made plans to execute the Jewish workers before retreating—Schindler moved his company and his workers to safety in German-held Czechoslovakia. By the end of the war, Schindler had some thirteen hundred Jewish workers under his protection—far more than he needed to operate his factory—and had spent his entire fortune on bribes and favors.
Critical reaction to Schindler's List was generally favorable. Keneally, according to Christopher Lehmann-Haupt in the New York Times, "does not attempt to analyze in detail whatever made Oskar Schindler tick," which the reviewer found "a little disconcerting, considering the novelistic technique he employs to tell his story. But this restraint increases the book's narrative integrity. Because the story doesn't try to do what it can't honestly do, we trust all the more what it does do." In a review for the Washington Post Book World, Jonathan Yardley felt that the book's major flaw is "the author's insistence on employing devices of the ‘new’ journalism…. But Schindler's List has about it a strong, persuasive air of authenticity, and as an act of homage it is a most emphatic and powerful document."
In A Family Madness, Keneally again returns to World War II, this time exploring its repercussions upon later generations. The book was inspired by a real-life tragedy in Sydney during the summer of 1984, in which a family of five willingly ended their lives. The author's rugby-playing protagonist, Terry Delaney, goes to work for a security firm owned by a Byelorussian named Rudi Kabbel. Haunted by traumatic memories of his childhood in Russia during the war and his father's wartime journals, which reveal countless horrors inflicted upon his family, Kabbel has become mentally unstable. When Delaney, who is married, falls in love with Kabbel's daughter and fathers her child, the Kabbel family closes ranks—not only against Delaney but against the world. As Blake Morrison explained in the London Observer: "They sell up the business, surround themselves with heavy weaponry, and wait for the new dawn."
Writing in the Times Literary Supplement, Michael Wood stated that A Family Madness conveys the idea that "even here, in this comfort-loaded and forward-looking Australia, history will get you one way or another." Wood praised the novel, calling it "an ambitious and successful book that makes connections we need to think about." John Sutherland, a contributor to the London Review of Books, lauded the novel as "better than its applauded predecessor [Schindler's List]" and noted that the nobility of the characters makes a genuine claim on the reader. However, in a piece for the New York Times Book Review, Robert Towers criticized Keneally's characterization, writing that "the lack of an adequately realized psychological dimension" in the character of Rudi Kabbel "is … crippling to the novel's aspirations."
With the publication of To Asmara: A Novel of Africa, as with Schindler's List, Keneally found himself once again accused of writing not a novel, but an impassioned journalistic tribute. A fictionalized portrayal of the brutal African guerilla warfare of the 1980s, To Asmara focuses on the struggle of the Eritrean People's Liberation Front to break free from an Ethiopia dominated by tyrants. Assisted by Russian military aid, the Ethiopian army was permitted to commit a form of genocide against the Eritreans, in the course of which Ethiopian troops destroyed the beautiful ancient city of Asmara.
In an article for the New York Times Book Review, Robert Stone had high praise for To Asmara: "Not since For Whom the Bell Tolls has a book of such sophistication, the work of a major international novelist, spoken out so unambiguously on behalf of an armed struggle." In contrast, Andrew Jaffe, reviewing the book for the Los Angeles Times Book Review, took issue with Keneally's advocacy of the Eritrean cause. Jaffe wrote: "The nobility of the rebels shouldn't be the concern of the novelist. His job is to sketch an intriguing story against an exotic backdrop. Keneally forgot to leave his commitment to the cause behind in Port Sudan."
Keneally uncharacteristically moved away from the sweeping panoramas of his earlier fiction and limited the action to the confines of one airplane in Flying Hero Class. Frank McCloud, tour manager for a troupe of Australian aboriginal dancers, finds himself involved in a hijacking on a flight from New York to Frankfurt following the troupe's performance. Describing Flying Hero Class as a "thoughtful and exciting novel," Richard Lipez pointed out in the Washington Post Book World that Keneally examines with ease two complex issues: the issue of Israeli security versus Palestinian justice and the issue of the territorial rights of the Australian aboriginal tribe versus U.S. and international mining interests. Although finding some fault with the novel, Edward Hower of the New York Times Book Review noted: "Keneally's people are fascinating, and so are the ideas his plot generates, making the hijacking a metaphor for the complex relationship between the West and the third world peoples deprived of land and dignity." Hower concluded that "Flying Hero Class gives original insights into the way one man learns to reclaim responsibility for his own fate."
With Woman of the Inner Sea, Keneally returns to his native Australian turf and bases his plot on a real-life incident. In the story, Kate Gaffney-Kozinski, wife of a wealthy construction-empire scion, loses her husband to another woman and her two precious children to the fire that levels the family's expensive beach home near Sydney. In an effort to forget, Kate boards a train for the interior. The place Kate chooses for her "self-annihilation" is Myambagh, a town built on the hard, flat rock of what was once an immense inland sea. Donna Rifkind, in the Los Angeles Times Book Review, wrote that the Australian outback, "with its miles of empty red earth, stringybark and eucalyptus, savage storms and eccentric wildlife, represents more than just external landscape…. The fluid unpredictability of the land also mirrors Kate's transformation." Rifkind further noted that through "the tragedy of her dead children and her subsequent pilgrimage, Kate represents a nation on a perpetual search for reinvention, a nation hardened by countless histories of hunger, tough luck and untimely death." Susan Fromberg Schaeffer commented in the New York Times Book Review: "Woman of the Inner Sea succeeds on many fronts. It is a picaresque and often hilarious adventure story, recounting one woman's unforgettable if improbable travels. It is a series of love stories … and it is a mystery story as well. But the novel is also very much an exploration of ethics."
Drawing on his family background once more, Keneally's novel A River Town deals with his Irish grandpar- ents' immigration to Australia. In A River Town, Keneally relates the experiences of a turn-of-the-century Irishman, Tim Shea, who journeys to Australia when he tires of the confining mores of his own country. However, while happy to be rid of the restraints he experienced in Ireland, Tim discovers through a series of adverse events many of the same problems with the social conventions of the Australian frontier. In his new hometown of Kempsey, New South Wales, Tim becomes a community hero when he rescues two children from a cart accident. Shortly after, he finds himself being ostracized by the same community for his opposition to the Boer War—a position that ends in near economic disaster for Tim and his family when town members boycott his general store. As unfortunate events continue to plague Tim, he uncovers more of the very same social conventions he had hoped to leave behind in Ireland.
In general, critics were impressed with A River Town. "This is truly a compassionate novel, full of vividly portrayed outcasts," wrote reviewer David Willis McCullough in the New York Times Book Review. McCullough further noted that the characters are "outsiders in a nation of outsiders who are only beginning to define themselves in their new home, people who thought that ‘if they traveled 12,000 miles, they might outrun original sin.’" Also finding the novel full of compassion and featuring a well-depicted historical background, a Publishers Weekly contributor concluded: "The story is haunting because it is both commonplace and universal. Keneally looks clearly at moral rot, but he is cautiously optimistic about the survival of good people and the uplifting heritage they bequeath." "Keneally has marvelous descriptive powers," stated Detroit News contributor Barbara Holiday, who praised the author's ability to "[bring] the community alive." Holiday summarized: "Keneally has written an absorbing homespun account of ordinary people who are heroic in spite of themselves."
While reviews of his fiction have been generally favorable, several of Keneally's works of nonfiction have been received with less enthusiasm. In Now and in Time to Be: Ireland and the Irish, for example, the author attempts to describe the land of his grandparents. "Dazzled by his adventure" in Ireland, wrote Katharine Weber in the New York Times Book Review, "Keneally fails to discern what is significant and what is not." Many critics would agree that the novel is Keneally's forte. His impressive body of fiction, as Schaeffer wrote in the New York Times Book Review, "makes convincing the very serious belief that each of us has a necessary place—and that our most important task is to find it."
Keneally's later nonfiction works received considerable praise, however. The Great Shame: A Story of the Irish in the Old World and the New, published in the United States as The Great Shame: And the Triumph of the Irish in the English-Speaking World, received high marks from Mary Elizabeth Williams in a review for Salon. com. Williams considered the book compelling because of "the smoothness with which the author moves around the globe. Observing both the rooted and the scattered, he shows not just how the outside world affected the Irish, but also how the Irish changed the world." Williams called Keneally's "greatest gift … his flair for molding real events into memorable narratives, in the smart turns of phrase that draw the reader into the action."
One of the figures in The Great Shame was later featured in another book, American Scoundrel: The Life of the Notorious Civil War General Dan Sickles. Times Literary Supplement reviewer Benjamin Markovits called Sickles "a characteristic object of Keneally's curiosity, a man, like Oskar Schindler, who exhibited the often uneasy relation between public and private virtues. Sickles, again like Schindler, excelled at the particulars of political life, at details and connections—like Keneally himself, whose talents as a writer reflect the qualities that draw him to his subjects."
Biographies of Abraham Lincoln abound, but in Keneally's Abraham Lincoln, he touches on undocumented moments, and as New York Times Book Review contributor David Walton noted, "the droll and unusual image." Walton called this an "excellent brief biography." A Kirkus Reviews contributor deemed Keneally's look at Lincoln "so fresh that one wishes only that the ‘Penguin Lives’ format afforded Keneally room to say more about this iconic leader. Exemplary and illuminating, even for readers well-versed in Lincolniana."
Keneally once again called on his experience in the seminary when he wrote Office of Innocence, a novel published in 2002. In this story, he follows the daily life of Father Frank Durragh, a young Catholic priest who serves a parish near Sydney during World War II. Worldly enough to realize that not everyone respects his vocation, he is nevertheless faithful and devout. Frank is reprimanded by his superior for inviting scandal through his involvement with a deserter from the American military and with Kate Haggerty, a married woman whose husband is a prisoner of war. The small-mindedness and the suspicions cast upon him by his parishioners is disturbing, and Frank even contemplates running off and taking Kate with him. When a horrible murder is committed, Frank is considered a suspect in the crime; he has, in fact, heard the real murderer's confession, and must do what he can to convince the killer to turn himself in, without breaking the seal of the confessional. Reviewing the book for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Geoff Campbell called it "a moving novel that perfectly captures a man of faith struggling with his own humanity and a stifling and disinterested church leadership. Keneally clearly burnishes his reputation as a master storyteller." Campbell further stated that the novel's "tight plot," combines with the author's "delicate yet muscular prose" to create a fictional "powerhouse." Office of Innocence may lack the sweep of Schindler's List, but "it is a sterling effort on a smaller scale," remarked a Publishers Weekly writer.
The Tyrant's Novel has some similarity to Schindler's List in that it depicts people struggling to survive and retain their moral center in the midst of a totalitarian regime. The central character is a writer, Alan Sheriff. Although the names are all Anglicized, the country bears a strong resemblance to Iraq, and Alan is approached by the "Great Uncle," a dictator who seems closely akin to Sadaam Hussein. There is great poverty and political unrest in his country, but Alan is a member of the cultural elite and has always felt immune to the troubles of his lower-class countrymen. He is unable to maintain his detachment after the Great Uncle enlists him to ghostwrite a book for propaganda purposes. If the book is not produced in one month, and if it does not meet the approval of the Great Uncle, Alan will be executed. As he struggles to meet his deadline, Alan finds himself writing truths that will certainly be unacceptable to the Great Uncle. A Publishers Weekly writer noted that Keneally does a fine job of finding the humanity in all his characters, even the cruel ones. He also handles well the scenario of an artist struggling to stay true to himself, giving Alan's tale "real depth and pathos." The reviewer concluded: "This is an exquisitely wrought study of moral corruption." Reviewing the book for Time, Richard Lacayo surmised that using Anglicized names for the Middle Eastern characters was the author's "brilliantly simple" way of making the story more real to Western readers, forcing them to identify with his protagonists.
"This is a fast, complex, and intelligent novel," stated John R. Coyne, Jr., in an article on The Tyrant's Novel for National Review. "Keneally is not an easy man. He is politically and philosophically unclassifiable, a happily married failed priest who often thinks and feels in his novels like a confessor, an Irish Australian who combines at least in prose some of the attributes of those nationalities—combativeness, sentimentality, distrust of authority, distaste for pretence, humor, wit, irony—with the ability to write clear, compressed, sharp, and singing prose. All these elements and more inform this fine, extraordinarily imaginative novel."
Keneally's nonfiction work The Commonwealth of Thieves: The Birth of Australia, opens with the image of eleven ships, which, in 1788, crossed the seas from England, packed with convicts who would be set ashore in Australia to relieve the overcrowding of England's jails. The effect of this action on the aborigines of Australia, the events of the first five years of the convict colony, and the heritage they passed on to the country that developed from these settlers, are all explored in Keneally's history. The book is "thoroughly researched, artfully written, engaging and instructive," reported a Kirkus Reviews contributor. Gilbert Taylor, reviewing The Commonwealth of Thieves for Booklist, praised the author for his vivid depiction of the continent's history, and concluded that his book is "vibrant and fluent."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Contemporary Literary Criticism, Thomson Gale (Detroit, MI), Volume 27, 1984, pp. 231-234, Volume 43, 1987, pp. 229-237, Volume 117, 1999, pp. 207-252.
Contemporary Novelists, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 2001.
Encyclopedia of World Literature in the Twentieth Century, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1999.
Keneally, Thomas, Homebush Boy: A Memoir, Heinemann (London, England), 1995.
Pierce, Peter, Australian Melodramas: Thomas Keneally's Fiction, University of Queensland Press (Queensland, Australia), 1995.
Pierce, Peter, editor, Thomas Keneally: A Celebration, National Library of Australia (Parkes, ACT), 2006.
Quartermaine, Peter, Thomas Keneally, Edward Arnold (London, England), 1992.
Booklist, November 1, 2002, Brad Hooper, review of Office of Innocence, p. 452; May 15, 2004, Brad Hooper, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 1579; October 1, 2006, Gilbert Taylor, review of A Commonwealth of Thieves: The Improbable Birth of Australia, p. 22.
Canberra Times, October 21, 2006, "Keneally's Kingdom."
Detroit News, September 28, 1980, Robert Ostermann, review of Confederates; May 21, 1995, Barbara Holiday, review of A River Town, p. 8J.
Economist, July 15, 2006, review of The Commonwealth of Thieves, p. 83.
Entertainment Weekly, June 4, 2004, John Freeman, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 87.
First Things, August-September, 2003, review of Office of Innocence, p. 59.
Hindu, February 13, 2007, Parul Sharma, profile of Joseph Keneally.
Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 1971, review of A Dutiful Daughter, p. 465; July 1, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 35; February 1, 1976, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 150; November 1, 2002, review of Abraham Lincoln, p. 1591; December 15, 2002, review of Office of Innocence, p. 1791; April 15, 2004, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 350; July 1, 2006, review of A Commonwealth of Thieves, p. 664.
Library Journal, February 15, 1995, pp. 122-124; December, 2002, Ann H. Fisher, review of Office of Innocence, p. 179; August, 2004, Robert E. Brown, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 68; September 1, 2006, Robert Moore, review of A Commonwealth of Thieves, p. 160.
London Review of Books, November 7, 1985, John Sutherland, review of A Family Madness, pp. 24-26.
Los Angeles Times Book Review, October 15, 1989, Andrew Jaffe, review of To Asmara: A Novel of Africa, pp. 2, 13; May 16, 1993, Donna Rifkind, review of Woman of the Inner Sea, p. 7.
Nation, November 6, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 443.
National Review, November 29, 2004, John R. Coyne, Jr., review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 60.
New Statesman, September 1, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 295; October 26, 1973, review of Bring Larks and Heroes, p. 618; October 11, 1974, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 321; September 19, 1975, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 342; January 19, 1979, Blake Morrison, review of Passenger, p. 88; November 2, 1979, Michael Ratcliffe, review of Confederates, p. 682; March 1, 2004, Hugo Barnacle, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 54.
New Yorker, February 10, 1975, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 115; May 23, 1977, review of Season in Purgatory, p. 132; May 8, 1978, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 156; May 19, 1986, Susan Lardner, review of A Family Madness, pp. 118-119.
New York Times, April 4, 1970, review of The Survivor, p. 27; October 18, 1982, Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, review of Schindler's List, p. 19.
New York Times Book Review, September 27, 1970, review of The Survivor, p. 48; September 12, 1971, review of A Dutiful Daughter, p. 53; August 27, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 3; December 3, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 74; February 9, 1975, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 7; April 11, 1976, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 7; February 27, 1977, review of Season in Purgatory, p. 30; March 26, 1978, Anne Tyler, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. G3; July 8, 1979, Daphne Merkin, review of Passenger, p. 13; October 5, 1980, Jeffrey Burke, review of Confederates, p. 3; March 16, 1986, Robert Towers, review of A Family Madness, p. 9; September 20, 1987, James Atlas, review of The Playmaker, pp. 7, 9; October 1, 1989, Robert Stone, review of To Asmara, pp. 1, 42; April 7, 1991, Edward Hower, review of Flying Hero Class, p. 9; April 19, 1992, Katharine Weber, review of Now and in Time to Be: Ireland and the Irish, p. 12; April 26, 1992, Robert Houston, review of The Place Where Souls Are Born: A Journey into the Southwest, p. 22; April 18, 1993, Susan Fromberg Schaeffer, review of Woman of the Inner Sea, p. 9; May 14, 1995, Davis Willis McCullough, review of A River Town, p. 12; April 14, 2002, Kevin Baker, review of American Scoundrel: The Life of the Notorious Civil War General Dan Sickles, p. 11; January 19, 2003, David Walton, review of Abraham Lincoln, p. 21; July 18, 2004, Terrence Rafferty, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 11; October 1, 2006, Alison McCulloch, review of A Commonwealth of Thieves, p. 8.
Observer, April 25, 1971, review of A Dutiful Daughter, p. 32; November 24, 1974, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 34; September 21, 1975, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 23; December 14, 1975, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 19; September 4, 1977, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 24; January 21, 1979, review of Passenger, p. 35; October 21, 1979, review of Confederates, p. 39; September 29, 1985, Blake Morrison, review of A Family Madness, p. 23; September 6, 1987, review of The Playmaker, p. 25; March 10, 1991, review of Flying Hero Class, p. 60; July 19, 1992, reviews of Woman of the Inner Sea and The Place WhereSouls Are Born, p. 58; September 12, 1993, Peter Conrad, review of Memoirs from a Young Republic, p. 53.
Publishers Weekly, January 6, 1992, review of The Place Where Souls Are Born, p. 60; January 30, 1995, review of A River Town, p. 84; December 23, 2002, review of Office of Innocence, p. 43; May 24, 2004, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 42; August 7, 2006, review of A Commonwealth of Thieves, p. 43; August 28, 2006, Edward Nawotka, interview with Thomas Keneally, p. 40.
Spectator, November 25, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 844; September 7, 1974, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 310; November 15, 1975, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 19; September 3, 1977, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 24; December 14, 2002, Digby Durrant, review of Office of Innocence, p. 75.
Star-Telegram (Fort Worth, TX), May 6, 2003, Geoff Campbell, review of Office of Innocence.
Time, October 26, 1987, review of Playmaker, p. 123; May 15, 1995, Melvin Maddocks, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 80; June 14, 2004, Richard Lacayo, review of The Tyrant's Novel, p. 83.
Times Literary Supplement, May 7, 1970, review of The Survivor, p. 499; April 23, 1971, review of A Dutiful Daughter, p. 465; September 15, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 1041; October 26, 1973, review of Bring Larks and Heroes, p. 1299; October 11, 1974, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 513; September 19, 1975, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 1041; October 14, 1977, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 1185; November 23, 1979, John Higgins, reviews of Confederates and Passenger; October 18, 1985, Michael Wood, review of A Family Madness, p. 1169; May 24, 2002, Benjamin Markovits, review of American Scoundrel: Love, War, and Politics in Civil War America.
Washington Post Book World, April 27, 1969, Richard Sullivan, review of Three Cheers for the Paraclete, p. 18; April 19, 1970, review of The Survivor, p. 6; August 29, 1971, review of A Dutiful Daughter, p. 2; August 13, 1972, review of The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, p. 5; January 26, 1975, Bruce Cook, review of Blood Red, Sister Rose, p. 3; March 26, 1978, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. G3; August 31, 1980, review of Confederates, p. 5; October 20, 1982, Jonathan Yardley, review of Schindler's List, p. B1; March 24, 1991, Richard Lipez, review of Flying Hero Class, p. 8.
West Coast Review of Books, July, 1978, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 38.
World Literature Today, winter, 1977, review of Gossip from the Forest, p. 157; autumn, 1978, review of Victim of the Aurora, p. 690; spring, 1980, review of Passenger, p. 332; autumn, 1996, John Scheckter, review of A River Town, p. 1025.
Salon.com,http://www.salon.com/ (September 13, 1999), Mary Elizabeth Williams, review of The Great Shame: And the Triumph of the Irish in the English-Speaking World.