Brad's Reviews > Winston Churchill: A Life

Winston Churchill by John Keegan
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Aug 06, 11

Read from June 13 to August 05, 2011

A small book about a big man.

Without getting bogged down with minutiae, the book covers all the significant events in Churchill's life. The first several chapters include much of his political posturing before the war. (Although certainly enlightening, I confess it was easy to get lost in parts because of my unfamiliarity with Britain's political system.)

The significant sections of his storied speeches are recorded here, and because the backstory of each is provided the speeches are all the more impressive. This is, in fact, one of the great conclusions of the author. Churchill's greatness lay in his rhetorical ability not only to provide a moral framework for the war, but also to provide an identity for the people that inspired them to do more than they, or the watching world, thought possible. It's also interesting to hear some of Churchill's speeches in the current context of terrorism. They sound "Reaganesque" and are eerily contemporary and clairvoyant.

Without engaging in hagiography, the author honors one of the greatest figures of the modern era. You'd do yourself a favor to make friends with him. Now. His warts and wisdom encourage all to "never, never, never give up."
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06/13/2011 page 34
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