Colonial Ambition tells the story of the politicians and would-be politicians of Sydney, who were driven by a determination to lift themselves and their new colony to a higher level. They wanted parliamentary liberty, though they were sharply divided over the form it might take and these divisions, centred in Sydney, were unremitting.
Peter Cochrane tells of the fight for responsible government and democracy through a memorable cast of characters- W.C. Wentworth, Sir George Gipps, Robert Lowe, Lord Howick (Earl Grey), Henry Parkes, Charles Cowper, Lord John Russell and more, all of whom speak for themselves, in the robust language of the day.
Written with great brio and verve, Peter Cochrane has brought to life the various players in a way that is very rare in the writing of Australian history. Colonial Ambition is testament that Australia does have a rich and exciting political history.