Author Peter Carey skilfully makes art from the life story of his country’s greatest outlaw, giving his true measure of that ‘best bloody man’.

True History of the Kelly Gang is the song of Australia, and it sings its protest in Ned Kelly’s voice. Carey gives us Ned Kelly as orphan, Oedipus, horse thief, farmer, bushranger, reformer, bank-robber, police-killer and finally, his country’s beloved Robin Hood. By the time of his hanging in 1880 a whole country would seem to agree that he was ‘the best bloody man that has ever been in Benalla’.

The Booker Prize 2001
Published by
Faber & Faber
Publication date

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Peter Carey

Peter Carey

About the Author

Peter Carey is an Australian author who has won the Booker Prize twice, for Oscar and Lucinda and True History of the Kelly Gang.
More about Peter Carey

Other nominated books by Peter Carey

Parrot and Olivier in America
Theft: A Love Story
Oscar and Lucinda
Prize winner