At first I thought this book may have been a propaganda exercise for the “Let WA Succeed” movement but I’m afraid there is no getting around the fact it is an Australian story and an incredible one at that. Sometimes great stories can only be truly absorbed when enough time has passed to allow for reflection. With so much of Gina Reinhardt’s story only playing out in the last 30 years and continuing to feature in the daily news, there has been no time for reflection at all. I think it is almost impossible for Australians, let alone the rest of the world, to appreciate the legacy that Gina Reinhardt and her father will leave on this country and how much their actions have shaped this period in Australian history.
For now, most Australians are completely pre-occupied with how nasty this woman is and the book definitely delivers on that front. Through the publication of email exchanges between Gina and her adult children and her relentless pursuit of both individuals and companies through the courts, readers get a glimpse into just how blunt, mean and downright unsophisticated she seems to be.
I can’t exactly say it is a good read – it is complicated at times, repetitive and the individuals in the story are hard to love. For me, what I like most about it is its timing. I have read chapters at night only to wake up the next morning and read a story about the cases and projects still underway right now. It is a no frills dissection of the key events and achievements of Gina Reinhardt’s life to date and reading it is like watching history in the making. Almost like reading the script of Gone with the Wind before the studio has signed off on the film. Do it.
And that’s my 2 cents.