The remarkable natural voice of Julian Assange — off-key, pompous and sometimes childlike.Despite being rushed, unfinished and disowned by its subject — making it perhaps the first ever unauthorised autobiography — this book is surprisingly revealing about one of the most infuriating and self-defeating awkward customers ever to have been born. And it reminds us of the huge amount Julian Assange and WikiLeaks have contributed to this epochal time and how important the principle of free publication is.A note from his publisher at the beginning explains that Assange found the book too personal and withdrew cooperation, performing the usual disservice to himself and also to the novelist Andrew O'Hagan, whose writing he unjustly criticised. If Assange would only control his need to storm from every room, leaving the most appalling static behind him, we might eventually get the account that WikiLeaks deserves.But this isn't bad at all, as far as it goes — and the most fascinating part is what Assange objects to: the personal stuff. Assange was the product of a relationship between his country-girl mother, Christine, and a man with a gentle voice who spoke to her at an anti-Vietnam War rally in Sydney. "It [the voice] belonged to a 27-year-old, cultured guy with a moustache. He asked if she was with anyone, and when she said ‘no', he took her hand."Not long afterwards, Julian was born into a hippy set-up in Queensland. They moved house often and quite soon he learnt "how to master the environment and conquer danger". He spent a lot of time exploring a disused mine, sometimes burning ants with a magnifying glass. "At an early stage," he says, "I realised there was a social element to all this. I put a gang together, the better to get things done and have fun while doing it." A solemn-faced, slightly scary Tom Sawyer or William Brown emerges.