Simon Heffer

Staring at God
  • Staring at God

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    'A brilliant history: The first serious and really wide-ranging history of the Home Front during the Great War for decades. Scholarly, objective and extremely well-written. Filled with surprising revelations and empathy. Heffer’s eye for the telling detail is evident on almost every page. A remarkable intellectual and literary achievement.' – ANDREW ROBERTS, TELEGRAPH
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    A major new work of history on the profound changes in British society during the First World War

    The Great War saw millions of men volunteer for or be recruited into the Army, their lives either cut short or overturned. Women were bereaved, enlisted to work in agriculture, government and engineering, yet still expected to hold together homes and families. But while the conflict caused social, economic and political devastation, it also provoked revolutionary change on the home front.

    Simon Heffer uses vivid portraits to present a nuanced picture of a pivotal era. While the Great War caused loss on an appalling scale, it also advanced the emancipation of women, brought notions of better health care and education, and pointed the way to a less deferential, more democratic future.
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    'Staring at God is a vast compendium of atrocious political conduct. Refreshing. A trenchant history.' – GERARD DE GROOT, THE TIMES

    'A magisterial history' – MELANIE MCDONAGH, DAILY MAIL

    Gloriously rich and spirited […] it zips along, leavened by so many wonderful cultural and social details.’ – DOMINIC SOUTHBROOK, SUNDAY TIMES

    ‘Ambitious in its scope, content and approach. Masterly.’ – CHARLES VYVYAN, STANDPOINT

    ‘Fascinating stuff.’ – SPECTATOR

    Possibly the finest, most comprehensive analysis of the home front in the Great War ever produced.’ – LITERARY REVIEW

    ‘Every bit as good as its two predecessors. Illuminating.’ – EXPRESS

    ‘Absorbing’ – NEW STATESMAN

Simon Heffer was born in 1960. He read English at Cambridge and took a PhD in modern history at that university. His previous books include: Moral Desperado: A Life of Thomas Carlyle, Like the Roman: The Life of Enoch Powell, Power and Place: The Political Consequences of King Edward VII, Nor Shall My Sword: The Reinvention of England, Vaughan Williams, Strictly English, A Short History of Power, Simply English and High Minds: The Victorians and the Birth of Modern Britain. In a thirty-year career in Fleet Street, he has held senior editorial positions on The Daily Telegraph and The Spectator, and is now a columnist for The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph.