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The Last Lion [Audio]
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Spanning the years 1940 to 1965, Defender of the Realm, the third volume of William Manchester's The Last Lion, picks up shortly after Winston Churchill became prime minister--when his tiny island nation stood alone against the overwhelming might of Nazi Germany. The Churchill portrayed by Manchester and Reid is a man of indomitable courage, lightning-fast intellect, and an irresistible will to action. This volume brilliantly recounts how Churchill organized his nation's military response and defense, compelled President Roosevelt to support America's beleaguered cousins, and personified the "never surrender" ethos that helped the Allies win the war, while at the same time adapting himself and his country to the inevitable shift of world power from the British Empire to the United States. More than twenty years in the making, The Last Lion presents a revelatory and unparalleled portrait of this brilliant, flawed, and dynamic leader. This is popular history at its most stirring.
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This third volume of Manchester's (American Caesar) massive biography of Churchill was incomplete when the author died in 2004; he passed the baton to Reid, who has done a marvelous job of patching and interpreting Manchester's notebooks into a coherent whole. The volume covers the years 1940-1965 in great detail and is nicely enhanced by Clive Chafer's narration. The authors relate that Adolf Hitler was nonplussed and unprepared when England refused to haggle or surrender like most of the European nations had done. As England stood alone, Churchill became the voice, the rallier, the bulwark for both England and the world at large. Verdict An essential purchase for public and academic libraries. ["This is a big book but reads easily, filled with anecdotes from the principals. Although not a practiced historian, Reid learned well from Manchester, and the finished book is a worthy conclusion to what must be considered one of the most thorough treatments of Churchill so far produced," read the review of the Little, Brown hc, LJ 10/1/12.-Ed.]-Don Wismer, Cary Memorial Lib., Wayne, ME (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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