Andrew Roberts

Churchill
  • Churchill

  • Andrew Roberts

    A magnificently fresh and unexpected biography of Churchill, by one of Britain's most acclaimed historians

    Winston Churchill towers over every other figure in twentieth-century British history. By the time of his death at the age of 90 in 1965, many thought him to be the greatest man in the world.

    There have been over a thousand previous biographies of Churchill. Andrew Roberts now draws on over forty new sources, including the private diaries of King George VI, used in no previous Churchill biography to depict him more intimately and persuasively than any of its predecessors. The book in no way conceals Churchill's faults and it allows the reader to appreciate his virtues and character in full: his titanic capacity for work (and drink), his ability see the big picture, his willingness to take risks and insistence on being where the action was, his good humour even in the most desperate circumstances, the breadth and strength of his friendships and his extraordinary propensity to burst into tears at unexpected moments. Above all, it shows us the wellsprings of his personality - his lifelong desire to please his father (even long after his father's death) but aristocratic disdain for the opinions of almost everyone else, his love of the British Empire, his sense of history and its connection to the present.

    During the Second World War, Churchill summoned a particular scientist to see him several times for technical advice. 'It was the same whenever we met', wrote the young man, 'I had a feeling of being recharged by a source of living power.' Harry Hopkins, President Roosevelt's emissary, wrote 'Wherever he was, there was a battlefront.' Field Marshal Sir Alan Brooke, Churchill's essential partner in strategy and most severe critic in private, wrote in his diary, 'I thank God I was given such an opportunity of working alongside such a man, and of having my eyes opened to the fact that occasionally such supermen exist on this earth.'

Andrew Roberts is a biographer and historian of international renown whose books include Salisbury: Victorian Titan (winner of the Wolfson Prize for History), Masters and Commanders (winner of the Emery Reves Award) and The Storm of War (winner of the British Army Book Prize). His most recent book was Napoleon the Great (2014), which won the Grand Prix of the Fondation Napoléon and the Los Angeles Times Biography Prize. Roberts is a Fellow of the Royal Societies of Literature and the Royal Historical Society, and a Trustee of the International Churchill Society. He is currently Visiting Professor at the Dept of War Studies at King's College, London, and the Roger and Martha Mertz Visiting Research Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. His website is www.andrew-roberts.net