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Churchill by Sebastian Haffner (translated from the German by Oliver Pretzel; 48,000 words)

Written in the tradition of
Stefan Zweig’s biographical studies, Haffner’s Churchill is a concise, effective, warts-and-all analysis of one of the giants of the twentieth century. Beginning with a brief history of the Churchill family, Haffner examines the future Prime Minister’s childhood; his early failures in school and in politics; his indomitable energy and drive; how he managed to become an inspirational figure to anti-Nazis all over the world; and how he managed to seize success from the jaws of defeat over and over again. Compact, elegant and incisive, this is the one book about Churchill that is a must-read.

“One of the most brilliant things of any length written about Churchill.” —
The Times Literary Supplement

“Fast-moving and perceptive.” —
The (London) Times

“A wonderful portrait of Churchill.” —
Die Zeit

“A ravishing biography.” —
Der Spiegel

“[A] fascinating psychological study of Britain’s greatest war leader... a pleasure to put on your bookshelf” —

Meaning of Hitler published in 1978 remains a masterpiece of historiography. His Churchill biography gives the first indication of his great talent for brief, wonderfully graphic insights.” — Süddeutsche Zeitung

“Of all [Haffner’s] books, this is the one that stays in my memory.” —
Marcel Reich-Ranicki

“[Haffner] was an ‘admirer of great men’ and among all the biographies of Winston Churchill his brief sketch of the man who ‘risked Britain in order to defeat Hitler’ is a model of historically empathetic veneration.” —
Joachim Fest

“Astute, short, analytical, like all Haffner’s work. Cuts away anything that is not bare essential, what remains stays with you for a lifetime.” — J. AB Sennef,

“What distinguishes this brilliant biography is its partisanship. It does not list facts in order and evaluate them. Every sentence is witness to the fact that the biographer loves this man with all his failings.” — Wolfgang Franssen,
Belletristik Couch

“A jewel. Haffner lived through the decisive years in Britain and gives a convincing description the fragile atmosphere in which Churchill fought his battles.” —
Tarzan von Aquin

“[Haffner was] one of the great historians and journalists of the last century.” —
Andrew Roberts