- 30 Oct 18
The first comprehensive biography of Ireland’s first openly gay Taoiseach, Ryan and O’Connor’s book charts the development of Leo Varadkar from awkward student to doctor to Fine Gael upstart, and – finally – to leader of Ireland.
There’s some telling revelations in this 340-page tone, and an interesting portrait is painted of Fine Gael’s internal workings, disputes and loyalties. It’s also well researched throughout, and the interviews with various politicians, friends, family members and colleagues paint a vivid, varied picture of the man. I had fears that this might be another PR exercise for Leo and therefore pull some punches, but ultimately it doesn’t.
However, this “varied picture” might be one of the drawbacks for those looking to understand who exactly Leo Varadkar is. Is he the PR-hungry politician? The right-wing Tory-by-another-name? The interviews hint at them all, but there’s a tendency to not follow through with the kind of insightful analysis you’d hope for. In what direction will he take Ireland? That’s still anyone’s guess.