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The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume II: Alone, 1932-1940 | [William Manchester]

The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume II: Alone, 1932-1940

This second volume in William Manchester's three-volume biography of Winston Churchill challenges the assumption that Churchill's finest hour was as a wartime leader. During the years 1932-1940, he was tested as few men are. Pursued by creditors (at one point he had to put up his home for sale), he remained solvent only by writing an extraordinary number of books and magazine articles.
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Publisher's Summary

This second volume in William Manchester's three-volume biography of Winston Churchill challenges the assumption that Churchill's finest hour was as a wartime leader. During the years 1932-1940, he was tested as few men are. Pursued by creditors (at one point he had to put up his home for sale), he remained solvent only by writing an extraordinary number of books and magazine articles. He was disowned by his own party, and dismissed by the BBC, Fleet Street, and the social and political establishments as a warmonger, and twice nearly lost his seat in Parliament. Churchill stood almost alone against Nazi aggression and the pusillanimous British and French policy of appeasement.

Manchester tracks with new insights this complex, fascinating history, without ever losing sight of Churchill the man - a man whose vision was global and whose courage was boundless.

©1988 William Manchester; (P)1990 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Manchester is not only a master of detail but also of 'the big picture'....I daresay most Americans reading The Last Lion will relish it immensely." (National Review)
"[Manchester] can claim the considerable achievement of having assembled enough powerful evidence to support Isaiah Berlin's judgment of Churchill as the largest human being of our time." (Alistair Cooke)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (469 )
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4.7 (270 )
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Story
4.2 (270 )
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Performance
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  •  
    jhwayne@bigfoot.com Jacksonville, NC 02-28-13
    jhwayne@bigfoot.com Jacksonville, NC 02-28-13 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting biography, irritating narration"
    What made the experience of listening to The Last Lion the most enjoyable?

    The information and its presentation.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Manchester's way of connecting Churchill's history to the culture of the times.


    What three words best describe Richard Brown’s voice?

    Irritating when quoting.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    You cannot make a film of this book.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah RAMSEY, MN, United States 08-20-12
    Sarah RAMSEY, MN, United States 08-20-12
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    "Interesting!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This book keeps your interest even as it dives into the deep end of British politics. It keeps W.C. real and gives a balanced view of the man: good and bad. Very enjoyable.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ethan Denver, CO, United States 01-12-12
    Ethan Denver, CO, United States 01-12-12 Member Since 2008

    Rabbi, Tour Guide, Lover of History, knowledge and wisdom.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Book, not such a great read"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    As is the first volume, this follow up is an incredibly broad and deep exploration of not just Churchill, but of British politics in the 1930s in the lead-up to WWII. It manages to include mountains of information, but keep them fascinating by attaching them to the person of Winston Churchill.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The history of Britain in the 1930s is a stark lesson to those who would appease evil in our own day. The parallels are clear to anyone who follows current events, without the author ever having to make the connection for you.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Richard Brown?

    Frederick Davidson did a masterful job on the first volume. I was deeply disappointed by Brown's reading of Churchill and many other characters.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The march of folly, and a glimmer of hope.


    Any additional comments?

    Despite a mind-numbing introduction (for one who just finished the first volume), once the meat of the book is reached the reader is carried deep into the life of one of the 20th centuries most fascinating and important personalities. This is one of the deepest and most detailed biographies I've ever read, and the anecdotes about Churchill and those around him manage to add zest to even the dryest figures.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    yamir Clearwater, FL, United States 07-11-11
    yamir Clearwater, FL, United States 07-11-11 Member Since 2007
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    "The very best"

    if there is one book you need to buy on Audible if you are interested in British colonial historty, this would be it. By far the most detailed and riveting narration of Winston's life. This is better then best.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew Waltham, MA, USA 05-12-10
    Andrew Waltham, MA, USA 05-12-10 Member Since 2005
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    "What a disappointing production"

    After listening to Frederick Davidson's wonderful reading of the first volume of Manchester's (never completed) biography of Churchill, I was roundly disappointed by Richard Brown's performance of "Alone: 1932-1940". In fact, I only made it through about an hour of it before I gave up. Life is too short to listen to readers who are terrible. In this case, I'm going to read it myself.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    04-26-09
    04-26-09
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    ""The Last Lion""

    This is an excellent study of Churchill and the period between the wars. It gives you a real feel for the period and some great insight into the politics of the period. Some of the observations are particularly interesting in view of current events. Could it be true that appeasement and peace at any price is not dead? It is a pity that William Manchester died prior to completing volume III. The world is poorer for that.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Fort Myers, FL, United States 10-26-10
    John Fort Myers, FL, United States 10-26-10 Member Since 2008

    Love detailed history written in as unbiased a manner as is possible. My passion has always been American History but I also enjoy world history.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Voices"

    The reader makes this an excellent book. His ability to sound like Churchill, change his voice for ladies, sing a song, etc. are entertaining. The story is interesting and well presented. Very even balanced on a very controversial person.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Handyjan 04-26-14
    Handyjan 04-26-14 Member Since 2007
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    "Excellent"
    What made the experience of listening to The Last Lion the most enjoyable?

    The gentleman reading the book sounded just like Winston.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Last Lion?

    I got to share it on a trip with my brother and we both were glued to the story.


    Have you listened to any of Richard Brown’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He was the best.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes but there was no sitting. I listened to the second book on a trip to Ga. and the third one entertained me while painting my laundry room. A great series that I am sure I will listen to again.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark 04-01-14
    Mark 04-01-14 Member Since 2011
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    4
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    "Great book Horrible narration."
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I will never listen to another book narrated by Richard Brown. After enjoying the 1st volume I was looking forward to a continuation of the next volume but I cannot stand listening to this narrator.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim Mangrum Black Oak, Arkansas USA 03-28-14
    Jim Mangrum Black Oak, Arkansas USA 03-28-14 Member Since 2007

    Jim Dandy

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    "Terrible recording, worse narrator"
    What disappointed you about The Last Lion?

    Bad quality audio and a truly awful narrator. The guy is effete, simpering and very annoying. Add low quality poorly digitized audio and it turns even a Churchill fan away.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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