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Jacqueline Kent is… a writer of non-fiction and biography, fiction, general articles and literary journalism. Her working background includes radio interviewing, print journalism, radio and TV scriptwriting, editing books, ghostwriting, teaching editing and creative writing, and arts administration.
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Review of Take Your Best Shot ...

This succinct, clear-sighted review of Julia Gillard’s three years as prime minister suggests history will judge her leadership more kindly than she was judged during her time in power.

An add-on to Kent’s 2009 biography The Making of Julia Gillard [in fact, it’s a completion of the 2010 update The Making of Julia Gillard Prime Minister], this gives us a portrait of a woman of composure and resilience gifted with an ability to get things done in the face of overwhelming odds. Despite hostility from the media and opposition, and hamstrung by a hung parliament, Gillard achieved the highest rate of passing legislation of any prime minister in our history.

Her refusal, Kent says, to bag the media — especially the unrelenting negativity of the Murdoch press — ‘verged on the heroic’. Kent doesn’t shy away from Gillard’s weaknesses — ‘misguided communication, less than adroit political timing and some decisions that needlessly antagonised sections of the electorate’ — but keeps them in perspective.

Fiona Capp, Sydney Morning Herald, September 14-15, 2013: Pick of the Week

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