The most celebrated Prime Minister of the twentieth century and arguably the most renowned British Prime Minister ever, Winston Churchill is an icon of modern history. But, though he was at the forefront of the political scene for almost sixty years, were it not for the Second World War he might be remembered as nothing more than a minor player in the dramas of British government.
In this brilliant account Roy Jenkins analyses Churchill's exceptional character in all its strengths and attendant weaknesses. Drawing on his own experience, as well as his formidable knowledge of the political history of Britain, Jenkins illuminates Churchill's parliamentary career through its campaigns, elections, and changes of allegiance, its troughs and its peaks. The close attention paid in this book to Churchill's political life shows just how wide his parliamentary experience was. For almost sixty years, from the creation of South Africa to the drawing of the Iron Curtain, his life was
Westminster. Jenkins dazzlingly evokes the spirit of these years with a profound political understanding while also evaluating the other main strand of Churchill's career, his prolific writing.
The progress and events of the Second World War are followed in detail, reminding us how precariously Britain stood on a knife-edge between 1939 and 1941. The ballast of Churchill, as this book testifies, was integral to victory and survival.
Exceptional in its breadth of knowledge and distinguished in its style, Churchill is enlivened with humour and highlighted with a penetrating intelligence. It is already the benchmark work on this great man.