'The definitive biography of Phillip Schuler, one of Australia's greatest war correspondents, from Gallipoli to his death in Flanders.
'A bitter-sweet drama of love and war . . . one of the great untold Australian stories brought to life. Les Carlyon
'Phillip Schuler was one of Australia's best and brightest. As a handsome 24-year-old on special assignment for the Melbourne Age he covered the Gallipoli campaign alongside Charles Bean, Ellis Ashmead Bartlett and Keith Murdoch. His dispatches were evocative and compassionate, and captured the heroism and horror for Australian newspaper readers in way the meticulous yet dry prose of Bean never could. He returned from Gallipoli at the end of 1915 and quickly wrote a classic account of the campaign, Australia in Arms (1916). As the son of Frederick Schuler, editor of the Age and a bastion of the Melbourne establishment, Phillip could have remained an observer of the war, sheltered in the relative safety war correspondent's job. Instead, he chose to be a participant. He joined the AIF as a humble soldier and was sent to France. In June 1917, Schuler was killed near Messines in the Ypres salient. He was 27 years old.
'Schuler's experiences as a correspondent and then as a soldier mirror Australia's involvement in the Great War. From Gallipoli to Flanders, his dispatches, letters and diary entries offer a level of description and intelligence that are both revealing and deeply moving. He was one of the shining lights of the generation that was decimated by the war, and Baker's biography uses his all-too-brief life and death to give us a new and compelling perspective on Australia, the power of journalism and The First World War.' (Publication summary)
'A love story and a detective story, a study of history and of memory, this spellbinding new work explores a son's confrontation with the terror of his parents' childhood. Moving from Poland and Germany to Jerusalem and Melbourne, Mark Raphael Baker travels across the silence of fifty years, through the gates of Auschwitz, and into a dark bunker where a little girl hides in fear. As he returns to scenes of his parents' captivity, he struggles to unveil the mystery of their survival. The Fiftieth Gate is a journey from despair and death towards hope and life; the story of a son who enters his parents' memories and, inside the darkness, finds light.' (Harper Collins)