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Churchill: A Biography
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on July 31, 2015
Although I found the text a bit plodding at times, I felt compelled to read the entire book, because Churchill was such a commanding figure of the 20th Century. What I found touching was how a great man meets the humbling experience of getting old and retiring from public life. Churchill may have felt somewhat dejected, but biographies like this bring to life his many accomplishments for new generations.
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on March 27, 2017
Very small type.
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on April 4, 2002
This is a very different biography from several other lives of Churchill I've read. Roy Jenkins is a parliamentarian and a former British government Minister. His biography calls upon the reader for an almost encyclopedic knowledge of British history from the 1860's onward. It would be good to know of the various crises in Gladstone's premiership for example, and about who was on various sides of British parliamentary politics when Joseph Chamberlain was central to British governmental policies. I think this is a rather tough knowledge base for all but the most Anglophile of American readers; it makes it somewhat tough going for even fairly scholarly laypeople.
That said, the book is very well written and gives the flavor of Churchill as a British politician struggling through ups and downs, times he was popular, times in the wilderness. It is a very balanced view--this is definitely not the 'Churchill as hero who saved civilization' view. This is the Churchill as an admittedly great man who used every advantage of his Duke grandfather and Chancellor of the Exchequer father and femme fatale mother to get where he wanted to go--the top, quickly.
I've enjoyed the book and appreciated the balance but sometimes had to persist through tough going for an American.
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on March 26, 2016
Easy to read, very informative. Not entirely without bias, but also seems mired in fact.
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on March 6, 2015
long and detailed, full of deep insights on the character of the greatest leader of the 20th century
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on February 11, 2015
BRILLIANT AND OUTSTANDING...!!! Having read dozens of Churchill¨s novels and biographies; I trully beleive that Jenkings Biography is perhaps one of the best and most reliable books about Sir Winston I ever read.
I trully remonended...
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on July 7, 2010
I've read Manchester's Bio of Churchill (at least the two books he finished before his death) and was a History major in college so I have read and enjoyed many long winded authors that still managed to make the subject interesting. This book is not only long winded and pendantic, it's boring. I managed to slog thru up to 1908 and even the upcoming world wars is not enough to get me excited. At the beginning of the book, the author explains some Parlimentry terms to make it easier for his American readers but then he goes into minutiae that is impossible to understand without more definitions which he does not supply. It should be hard to make Churchill's earlier exploits in the Boer war boring but this author does it! I bought this book used but consider it a waste of my $4. I am reading it at night (now) and have found it very soporiific, better than late night TV! the first two installments of Manchester's Churchill (The Last Lion ?) are a much better use of your time even if you never get to WWII!
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on December 16, 2012
I realized it was an abridgement of the book, but I had no idea it was such a drastic one. Much of the text was truncated to the point of being clumsy in transition. In fact there were times when the cuts were so dramatic that one was left with some ambiguous antecedents. It was well read, but there just wasn't enough text remaining.
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on May 9, 2015
Outstanding
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on January 3, 2011
To say that this book is poorly written would be a gross understatement. It is not only boring, it fails to bring important context to the forefront. Finally, when I got to the description of Chamberlain as "the great man" I came to the inevitable conclusion that I had purchased the wrong book by the wrong author.
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