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The Splendid and the Vile af Eric Larson
Indlæser...

The Splendid and the Vile (2020)

af Eric Larson

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,437789,547 (4.25)121
"The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers a fresh and compelling portrait of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz On Winston Churchill's first day as prime minister, Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold the country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally-and willing to fight to the end. In The Splendid and the Vile, Erik Larson shows, in cinematic detail, how Churchill taught the British people "the art of being fearless." It is a story of political brinkmanship, but it's also an intimate domestic drama set against the backdrop of Churchill's prime-ministerial country home, Chequers; his wartime retreat, Ditchley, where he and his entourage go when the moon is brightest and the bombing threat is highest; and of course 10 Downing Street in London. Drawing on diaries, original archival documents, and once-secret intelligence reports-some released only recently-Larson provides a new lens on London's darkest year through the day-to-day experience of Churchill and his family: his wife, Clementine; their youngest daughter, Mary, who chafes against her parents' wartime protectiveness; their son, Randolph, and his beautiful, unhappy wife, Pamela; Pamela's illicit lover, a dashing American emissary; and the cadre of close advisers who comprised Churchill's "Secret Circle," including his lovestruck private secretary, John Colville; newspaper baron Lord Beaverbrook; and the Rasputin-like Frederick Lindemann. The Splendid and the Vile takes readers out of today's political dysfunction and back to a time of true leadership, when-in the face of unrelenting horror-Churchill's eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together."--… (mere)
Medlem:JackSweeney
Titel:The Splendid and the Vile
Forfattere:Eric Larson
Info:
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:*****
Nøgleord:Battle of Brotain

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The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz af Erik Larson (Author) (2020)

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Examining the first year of Winston Churchill's term as prime minister, which coincided closely with the Blitz (the height of Germany's bombing campaign of London and many other cities in Britain), Larson does his usual great job of documenting complex history in a compulsively readable way. While this ground has been well covered, what I particularly liked was the author's focus on the personal lives of the Churchills and those around them. Mary Churchill, the PM's 18-year-old daughter has an especially poignant arc, which really reaches a surprising and inspiring climax in the epilogue. Colville, Churchill's private secretary, is another figure who starts off "wet," as one of the Churchill children refers to him, and ends up quite heroic. Larson's decision to use the more personal portions of his diary (which was published in 1985 but didn't include any of his personal life) is a good one, one that likewise gives Colville a rewarding story arc. The story of Pamela Churchill (the PM's daughter-in-law) was also fascinating. Some of the most interesting and dramatic stories, however, are accounts taken from other people far from power living and dying through this civilian bombing campaign.

More than other books I've read about the Blitz, this nearly day-by-day accounting really brought home not only the terror and tragedy of the Nazi bombing of Britain from August 1940 to May 1941 (almost 30,000 people in London killed, 45,000 throughout the country) but the mental toll it must have taken on the people living through it. Reading about such a profound example of courage in the face of such mortal, unending terror really brings home how important courage and faith in your fellow citizens is for a country to survive a catastrophe. ( )
  alexlubertozzi | May 24, 2021 |
Life in England during WWII--a great read. ( )
  gbelik | Apr 29, 2021 |
A close-up history of England during Churchill's first year as Prime Minister. Information on his family and advisors and every-day Britons preparing for war make this a fabulous read. ( )
  mojomomma | Apr 13, 2021 |
The Splendid and the Vile is well-researched and extremely informative. I listened to the audiobook, and it was fascinating to learn about Churchill, the man. His personal relationships were so intertwined with his political connections. His family members were included as he made decisions that would affect his country and the world forever. I was particularly intrigued by the descriptions of Churchill's correspondence and relationship with Roosevelt and Americans. My three-star rating is due to my belief that there was a little too much detail at times, and I ended up reading and listening to other books before I finally finished this one. Erik Larsen is a master storyteller, though, and I am overall impressed with his ability to give this historical account in story form.
( )
  LindaLoretz | Mar 15, 2021 |
Erik Larson hits another one out of the park. He brings to life the many players who had a hand in the tale of the Blitz on Great Britain during WWII. Didn't want to walk away from it. Highly recommended! ( )
  Schneider | Mar 10, 2021 |
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It is not given to human beings - happily for them, for otherwise life would be intolerable - to foresee or to predict to any large extent the unfolding course of events.
--Winston Churchill,
Eulogy for Neville Chamberlain,
November 12, 1940
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"The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Devil in the White City and Dead Wake delivers a fresh and compelling portrait of Winston Churchill and London during the Blitz On Winston Churchill's first day as prime minister, Hitler invaded Holland and Belgium. Poland and Czechoslovakia had already fallen, and the Dunkirk evacuation was just two weeks away. For the next twelve months, Hitler would wage a relentless bombing campaign, killing 45,000 Britons. It was up to Churchill to hold the country together and persuade President Franklin Roosevelt that Britain was a worthy ally-and willing to fight to the end. In The Splendid and the Vile, Erik Larson shows, in cinematic detail, how Churchill taught the British people "the art of being fearless." It is a story of political brinkmanship, but it's also an intimate domestic drama set against the backdrop of Churchill's prime-ministerial country home, Chequers; his wartime retreat, Ditchley, where he and his entourage go when the moon is brightest and the bombing threat is highest; and of course 10 Downing Street in London. Drawing on diaries, original archival documents, and once-secret intelligence reports-some released only recently-Larson provides a new lens on London's darkest year through the day-to-day experience of Churchill and his family: his wife, Clementine; their youngest daughter, Mary, who chafes against her parents' wartime protectiveness; their son, Randolph, and his beautiful, unhappy wife, Pamela; Pamela's illicit lover, a dashing American emissary; and the cadre of close advisers who comprised Churchill's "Secret Circle," including his lovestruck private secretary, John Colville; newspaper baron Lord Beaverbrook; and the Rasputin-like Frederick Lindemann. The Splendid and the Vile takes readers out of today's political dysfunction and back to a time of true leadership, when-in the face of unrelenting horror-Churchill's eloquence, courage, and perseverance bound a country, and a family, together."--

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