You Shouldn't Have Joined ...
Sir Peter Cosgrove
Crows Nest, NSW: Allen & Unwin, 2020
Hardcover 440pp $49.99
Reviewer: RUSI-VIC, November 2020
This is a post Governor-General personal memoir that treads lightly through the life of a very well-known Australian. It is permeated by a well-developed deprecating sense of humour.
The scope of the book covers Cosgrove’s life and particularly his formative period as a cadet at the Royal Military Duntroon. His involvement in East Timor, time as Chief of the Defence Force and Qantas Board. As you would expect, no secrets are revealed and there are no political or diplomatic gaffes. And then to the highest office in the land, with attendant glimpses at Yarralumla, Admiralty House, the Palace (all visits with the Queen are enumerated) and contact with diplomats, heads of state and royalty. The Governor-General planned to have intense and constant contact with every segment of the Australian people (including those in prison) and he achieved this mission - perhaps even over-achieved it.
If you want to know what goes on at the highest levels of defence and the nation, this book will give you an authentic outline. It is a most engaging and informative read.
The RUSI – Vic Library thanks the publisher for making this work available for review.