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Another Welcome Book on Churchill
on August 2, 2012
Martin Gilbert is the foremost expert on Churchill in the world, beginning his work for Randolph Churchill on the biography in the early 1960s and taking over at Volume III upon Randolph's death in 1968. If there is anyone qualified to do this work,it would certainly be Sir Martin.
It is a good work in one volume and the author presents his choices of WSC's speeches and writings through his years. Of course you can buy multi volume works of his speeches but this book relieves you of the brunt of the weight and provides you the best. While I am familiar with many of his most famous, there are many very interesting parts in here, for example "The Supreme Hour", when Winston had to tell the House of Commons that on July 4, 1940, the French fleet was sunk by His Majesties Ships and 1,297 French sailors were killed. How do you bear and bring this horrible news? England had watched France cave in to the Nazis and now he has to tell the House that the Royal Navy had to sink a large part of the French fleet. This was when England stood alone and things were bleak indeed. The power of his argument and presentation is brilliant and this one I had not come across before. There are others of interest that I won't spoil, but what a master of words he was.
In some ways the book is like a box of fine chocolates. You really don't want to sit down and digest it in one sitting but it makes for a very interesting repast when you have a little time and want to go exploring with WSC again.
I like it very much.