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Publisher's Summary

In Churchill, Johnson applies a wide lens and an unconventional approach to illuminate the various phases of Churchill's career. From his adventures as a young cavalry officer in the service of the Empire to his role as an elder statesman prophesying the advent of the Cold War, Johnson shows how Churchill's immense adaptability combined with his natural pugnacity to make him a formidable leader for the better part of a century.

Johnson's narration of Churchill's many triumphs and setbacks, rich with anecdote and quotation, illustrates the man's humor, resilience, courage, and eccentricity as no other biography before.

Winston Churchill's hold on contemporary audiences has never slackened, and Paul Johnson's lively, concise biography will appeal to historians and general nonfiction listeners alike.

©2009 Paul Johnson (P)2009 Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Performance

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Story

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Darrell
  • Moundridge, KS, United States
  • 12-08-09

Superlative Account of Churchill

This book is excellent in all respects. It is well-written by the great Paul Johnson, who does a magnificent job of distilling the life of Churchill into such a brief volume. Simon Prebble brings it to audio life with skill, professionalism, and nary an off note. The combined effect is a very entertaining audio book. Highest recommendations.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

well written

This is a short review of a great life. I think the author shows the highlights and the depth of Churchill's life. Entertaining and well put together.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

An excellent summary biography.

It seems the great majority of negative comments or reviews on this title seem to hinge on the fact that this book does not offer a sufficiently detailed account of this, that, or the other incident of Churchill's life or career or facet of the man himself.

Please consider then, that this book is a summary biography of a man who was a prominent statesman on the geopolitical stage through two of the most pivotal conflicts in world history (the two world wars), and overlapping into a third (the cold war), who found the time, energy, and genius to be a prolific Nobel-Prize winning author, a first-rate adventurer, accomplished painter, master orator, wit, and general renaissance man.

DOZENS of books would have to be written to tell the life story of such a man in any kind of detail. HUNDREDS have. Churchill himself published some 43 book-length works in 72 volumes, many of them documenting his own experiences.

If you want to delve into deep details of all, or some or other episode or adventure out of the incredibly broad sweep of this man's titanic life experience, then by all means, jump into the deep reservoir of works on (or by) Churchill. I should think you could easily keep on reading about Churchill in greater depth for the next decade or so; at least. IF you are not quite ready to devote years, and just want to start out with a reasonable-length summary biography of a truly amazing character, this is a very well written text, very well read by the always competent Simon Prebble.


3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating Portrait of Fascinating Man

Like many others, I loved this bio due to its ability to paint a well-rounded portrait of one of the 20th Century's most fascinating characters without getting bogged down in too much scholarly detail. Easy to digest without dumbing down the material. If you're at all interested in history, Churchill or psychology, download this one!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    out of 5 stars

Excellent

Great and encouraging book for leaders.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Jean
  • Santa Cruz, CA, United States
  • 03-01-10

Churchill

This is a great overview of Churchill. It is about 5 hr and the pace is brisk, no time for the mind to wander. A number of items covered that I had not noticed in other biography on Winston. Good short review of Churchill.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Superficiality

Extremely shallow and superficial review of Churchill's life. Not as detailed as a "Reader's Digest" version. It seemed to be a poorly abridged version of a much longer book. Many terms, events, and relationships just beg to be addressed and expanded. Overall, there are much better Churchill biographies.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent account of an incredible man!

Churchill was an amazing character at a pivotal point in world history and Paul Johnson does a fantastic job of pointing out the key factors in Churchill's background, his character, as well as the factors, that both helped and harmed Britain in both WW1 and WW2. One very interesting detail was Johnson's explanation of the Gallipoli disaster in WW1 that Churchill was blamed for. I think Johnson has it correct and that Churchill was the scapegoat rather than the villain. It can be more difficult to follow historical narratives in an audio version, but Johnson's excellent writing makes this critical time in history understandable.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Quick Easy History Lesson

Where does Churchill rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I really enjoyed this book. Now I want to learn more about the man.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Winston of course!

What about Simon Prebble’s performance did you like?

He sounded like the way I thought the book should sound.

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

Yes, I was on a flight from Philadelphia to London.

Any additional comments?

I only wish I would have had time to visit Chartwell.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Short; yet informative.

This is a very good "gist" of Churchill's life. If you are not familiar with his story, this will give you a good feel for it. If you are, it may fill in some holes or gaps. The orator has a pleasant way of telling this story.