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Blair Unbound Hardcover – 5 Nov 2007


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd; First Edition edition (5 Nov. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847370780
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847370785
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 0.2 x 15.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 552,334 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"An outstanding work that strives successfully to explain the man and his administration." " --Booklist"

About the Author

Anthony Seldon is the author of several books including the official biography of John Major and the authorised 'biography' of Number 10 Downing Street. He is also the editor of an ongoing series of essays by the foremost political commentators of the time, the latest of which, THE BLAIR EFFECT, was published in 2001.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By T. K. BENNETT on 12 Oct. 2009
Format: Paperback
This is a first rate account of the Blair premiership from the dramatic events of 9/11 through to his final handover to Gordon Brown.

The style of writing is highly impressive - Seldon has written a book that captures all the complexity of being Prime Minister (e.g. policy, strategy, tactics, media, global and home-grown issues and of course the huge number of personal and political relationships) As a result there is enough to satisfy everyone and in a slight disagreement with an earlier reviewer, I believe he has very much captured the human element of the story. For example, the passages of the book concerning complex negotiations and the various ploys of all parties are fast paced and made interesting (even coming to agreement on the EU budget!)

It is a concise, balanced judgement all the more remarkable for such a controversial and contemporary politician. I particularly admire the fact that Seldon does not `rush to judge' Blair on any single issue but neither is this any kind of `whitewash'. He clearly is a skilled political analyst who is able to tell the story through the eyes of people involved and the pages of sources is testament to the access he had to key players.

This is a contemporary political biography of the very highest standard. Until future historians gain access to significantly more information - this book will be hard to beat.
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33 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Hester Bertish on 23 Dec. 2007
Format: Hardcover
Judging by the footnotes, this book has been meticulously researched. The author evidently had access to Blair's advisors and close team. More of his witnesess are civil servants than politicians. As a result, it is actually a very balanced analysis. The reviews below miss this point, and are both clearly anti-Blair. This book isn't written to verbally bash the man. There is no reason for the author to be biased. He sets outs the facts, as reported by those close to the key events, and lets the reader interpret and judge the man, rather than the author doing it himself. This surely is the purpose of all contemporary biography. Let us leave it to future historians to decide this man's place in British and world politics.
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15 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Ch0pski on 8 Jan. 2008
Format: Hardcover
This is a very readable book - I enjoyed it and chomped my way through it in no time at all. (Bite sizes structure made it splendid reading on the loo in fact!).

Seldon has clearly had great access to Blair's advisors, though it's a bit light on new material from Blair's politician peers. There's a lot lifted from autobiographies from people like Campbell and Blunkett.

Analysis of issues is strong: very balanced and concise.

But - other than the marvelous blow by blow section on how Blair and his team handled the 7/7 bombings - the book a bit short on the human interest details that could have made this a really great book.

As it stands it's well worth a read for people interested in general modern UK politics, or those wishing to gain an insight in to the machinations of life inside Number 10 during the second half of the Blair years.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Peter Gordon VINE VOICE on 17 Nov. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Having seen the picture of Mr Blair on the book cover, I felt that it was safe to assume that this book would not be a whitewash or an attempt to alter history.

The reason I go for biographies is because I prefer 'warts and all' rather than just the good or the bad. Though this is not a biography it is nevertless a book which has been fair. It left me feeling sorry for Mr Blair though rather worried at just how much power a PM possesses. I was naive enough to believe that government was by Cabinet, though never stupid enough to believe that backbenchers counted for much. I recall that some joker once tried to compare T Blair to W Churchill!!
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