Find Books

This only searches the 12,000+ titles on this website, not the 400,000+ books in our shops!

Half the Perfect World: Writers, Dreamers and Drifters on Hydra 1955-1964

Genoni, Paul; Dalziell, Tanya, 1973-


1 in stock

Half the Perfect World tells the story of the post-war international artist community that formed on the Greek island of Hydra. Most famously, it included renowned singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen and his partner Marianne Ihlen, as well as many other artists and writers including the Australian literary couple, Charmian Clift and George Johnston, who fostered this fabled colony. Drawing on many previously unseen letters, manuscripts and diaries, and richly illustrated by the eyewitness photographs of LIFE magazine photo-journalist James Burke, Half the Perfect World reveals the private lives and relationships of the Hydra expatriates. It charts the promise of a creative life that drew many of them to the island, and documents the fracturing of the community as it came under pressure from personal ambitions and wider social changes. For all the unrealised youthful ambitions, internal strife and personal tragedy that attends this story, the authors nonetheless find that the example of these writers, dreamers and drifters continues to resonate and inspire.
xviii, 425 pages, 6 pages of unnumbered plates : illustrations (some colour), portraits ; 25 cm Includes bibliographical references (pages 409-413) and index #0921/120222 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards, non-fiction, winner, 2019. Clift, Charmian, 1923-1969. | Johnston, George, 1912-1970. | Cohen, Leonard, 1934-2016. | Authors, Australian — 20th century — Biography. | Hydra Island (Greece) | Australian

Additional Information

Author Genoni, Paul; Dalziell, Tanya, 1973-
Number of pagesxviii, 425 pages, 6 pages of unnumbered plates : illustrations (some colour), portraits ; 25 cm
PublisherMonash University Publishing
Year Published2018
Binding Type


Book Condition

As new!

Elizabeth’s Bookshops have been one of Australia’s premier independent book dealers since 1973. Elizabeth’s family-owned business operates four branches in Perth CBD, Fremantle (WA), and Newtown (NSW). All orders are dispatched within 24 hours from our Fremantle Warehouse.

All items can be viewed at Elizabeth’s Bookshop Warehouse, 23 Queen Victoria Street, Fremantle WA.
Click & Collect (no postage cost!) is available at all branches.