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Publisher's Summary

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 20 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.

©2012 William Manchester (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc

Critic Reviews

"Before his death in 2004, an ill Manchester asked former Cox newspapers journalist Reid to take his research notes and finish writing the final volume of his trilogy. The long-delayed majestic account of Winston Churchill’s last 25 years is worth the wait…. Manchester matches the outstanding quality of biographers such as Robert Caro and Edmund Morris, joining this elite bank of writers who devote their lives to one subject." ( Publishers Weekly)
"General readers, as always, will be taken by [Manchester's] boundless abilities as a storyteller…. Essential for Manchester collectors, WWII buffs, and Churchill completists." ( Kirkus Reviews)
"A big book but reads easily…. The finished book is a worthy conclusion to what must be considered one of the most thorough treatments of Churchill so far produced. An essential conclusion to Manchester's magnum opus." ( Library Journal)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.6 out of 5.0
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Uplifting and inspiring

The research and detail are incredible. His vision and courage are vividly portrayed along with his human foibles. You will get an intimate view of history's last real statesman

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The Last Lion

Excellent and comprehensive look at Churchill and the events surrounding him. It a great read for history buffs.

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You’ll be tearing up at the end

One of the greatest men to ever walk the earth, with his life told in an exemplary manner.

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Wonderful

The story is phenomenal. Reading is only slightly below vol 1 and 2, but still top-notch. M

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Gave me a new appreciation for the British Spirit

This wonderful history of the war through the eyes of one of the world's greatest statesmen imbued me with a new appreciation for the British Spirit during the dark times of the second world War. I came to learn that although America may have been the victor of that war, it was Britain who won it. That victory was due in no small part to a man who kept the tide of evil in check during Europe's darkest hour. I already want to read it again.

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Remarkable Man

There are so many things I didn’t know about Churchill, WWII and this definitely gave a world of insight. Great work.

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a great finish to a great series!!

Paul Reid did an excellent job finishing off this series. A great book and a great man so glad for the excellent work put into it.

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  • RIOLA
  • Parsippany, NJ, US
  • 12-08-17

A finale worthy of the man

I was riveted to this audio book from start to finish. The three book series has kept me entertained and informed for the last two months. I was sorry to get to the end. Churchill’s bust belongs in the White House for all time and all Americans can learn from his example.

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A Disappointing Ending to the Trilogy

I listened to the first two of the last lion series and enjoyed immensely. Manchester did a masterful job of telling a story of Churchill's life and giving you insights into the man and the time he lived. This book was not completed by him and it unfortunately is very obvious. It moved from a compelling story where you felt you truly were getting a sense of Churchill's thoughts and feelings during historical events to a dry historical dictation of the WW2 with brief summaries of Churchill's actions. The flow of the book feels awkward after the smooth transitions Manchester did in the first two books, it feels like a chore to finish this one and I feel like I have not learned nearly as much about Mr. Churchill as I discovered from the first two books.

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conclusion to the most in-depth bio on the subject

this is by far the most in-depth biography you could ever find on the subject. the third and final book does not fail to bring great Authority on the subject of Winston Churchill's life as well as understanding of everything from World War II to Modern Times. Trulia masterpiece of biography.