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Different leadership

Cover of The Splendid and the Vile:
A review of The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz by Erik Larson

A behind the scenes look at the private life and idiosyncrasies of Winston Churchill and his circle during his first year as Prime Minister balanced with a behind the scenes look at Hitler’s circle especially Hess, Goring, and Himmler. At one point Larson references a letter from a man lamenting how the press of his position and duties limit him from not doing what he would prefer to do—which is spend time in the country with his wife and children. The writer was Heinrich Himmler.

Not a short book by any measure, but interesting and different from many of the other books about Churchill which focus on his official life. As always with Larson it is effectively written and appealing to the general reader, in a sense hiding how professionally researched and documented his works are behind the ease of their reading. If you haven’t already added Larson’s name to your must-read author list, you should.

Jun 8, 2020