Michael Pembroke is a writer, historian, naturalist and Supreme Court judge.
His book on the history of the Korean peninsula will be released in Australia early in 2017. Its working title is American Eagle – Korea’s Tragedy.
In 2016 he travelled through North Korea from the Yalu River on the Manchurian border to the demilitarised zone in the south. His research has taken him to Moscow, Beijing, Pyongyang, Washington DC and Cambridge. Later this year, he will take up a position as a Director’s Visitor at the Institute of Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey.
Pembroke’s last book, the historical biography Arthur Phillip – Sailor, Mercenary, Governor, Spy (2013) was short-listed for the Prime Minister’s Literary Awards and runner-up in the National Maritime Museum history award. Simon Winchester described it as
“utterly absorbing, destined to become a classic of Imperial literature”
It was turned into a successful ABC documentary. His first book, Trees of History and Romance (2009), explored the relationship between twenty-one iconic tree species and the poetry, history, literature and folklore inspired by them. It is now also the subject of a television series proposal.
Pembroke is the son and the father of army officers and has lived and travelled extensively throughout the world, including in East Asia. At university, he studied History, French and Government intending to become a diplomat but instead turned to the law. His father was an infantry platoon commander in Korea who was awarded the Military Cross for his role in a battle described as ‘one of the finest infantry battalion attacks in British history’. Pembroke was appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of New South Wales in 2010.
Michael Pembroke photograph
for Michael Pembroke’s photograph.