Colourful ex-premier makes book appearance

Aiden BoyhamSound Telegraph

Former premier Brian Burke was in Rockingham last Friday, with the controversial figure making a special appearance at Rockingham Books.

Mr Burke, who served as Labor Premier of Western Australia from 1983 to 1988, signed copies of his new 600-page autobiography A Tumultuous Life outside the store.

Speaking to the Telegraph, the 70-year-old said he put pen to paper at the behest of his wife, who urged him to set out his life story in his own words so his grandchildren could read about the things he had lived through.

“I never intended to write a book,” he said. “Had I intended to I would have written it 20 years ago.”

Despite the litany of highs and lows throughout his life, Mr Burke said the book only took him three or four months to physically write and that readers could expect a “charming” walk down memory lane.

“It doesn’t seek to set the record straight or rewrite history — it just tells you my story,” he said.

Widely regarded as one of the most polarising figures in the history of State politics, Mr Burke spent seven months in prison in 1994 for rorting travel expenses while premier.

He also spent five months of a three-year sentence in jail in 1997 for multiple counts of stealing, but the conviction was later overturned on appeal.

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