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The EU in a Nutshell: Everything you wanted to know about the European Union but didn't know who to ask [Hardcover]

Lee Rotherham , David Starkey (Foreword)
3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
RRP: 12.99
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Book Description

25 Jun 2012
Discover the truth about the EU ... "There are 70 words in the Lord's Prayer. 271 in the Gettysburg Address. 313 in the Ten Commandments. And European Commission Regulation (EC) No 1284/2002, laying down the marketing size for hazelnuts (in shell), runs to … 2,509 words." The European Union is a tough nut to crack. Ever-present in political debates and pub conversations, how much do we really know about it? Regarded by some as a bureaucratic and undemocratic monster, others see it as a glorious economic and political union presiding over a Europe of unprecedented peace and stability. But what's the reality? This book gives readers the answers in a nutshell. Author Lee Rotherham has painstakingly compiled thousands of fascinating stats, curious quotes and outright oddities relating to the EU, ranging from the serious to the silly. They cover how the EU works, how it is perceived and how to assess its worth. Arranged in an attractive and highly readable format, this book will keep readers nibbling away for hour after hour. Crack open the nut to discover, among other things: - The ten guiding principles of the European Project - What the 32 Directorates-General are and what they do - The formula by which you can produce a mathematical analysis of each country's EU membership - How much is saved in wages each day EU staff go on strike Along the way you'll laugh out loud, become unbeatable at the politics round in quizzes, and understand why the Fathers of Europe wanted you to feel proud and emotional when you hear 'Ode to Joy', not think about the strict regulations for bent cucumbers. The EU In A Nutshell contains a rich bounty of facts - it's the perfect book for anyone wishing to find out more about the EU and its workings and be entertained along the way. So if you are simply trying to figure out how the whole EU thing fits together (and why) or if you're a political junky in need of a quick fix on some EU trivia, this book is for you. Grab the nutcracker and let's get started ...

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The EU in a Nutshell: Everything you wanted to know about the European Union but didn't know who to ask + The Great European Rip-off: How the Corrupt, Wasteful EU is Taking Control of Our Lives
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 510 pages
  • Publisher: Harriman House Publishing; 1st edition (25 Jun 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857192310
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857192318
  • Product Dimensions: 20.7 x 14.1 x 4.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 148,411 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description


"An important and original book." --David Starkey

"The referendum is on its way, my friends, perhaps sooner than you think. Buy this book, read it, digest its facts. The time is coming when you'll need to deploy them." --Daniel Hannan, The Daily Telegraph

"Timely and essential. Let's have more books like this, please" --Donna Rachel Edmunds, The Commentator

About the Author

Dr Lee Rotherham is one of the country's leading experts on the European Union. Having worked as the researcher to Sir Richard Body and Westminster Group of Eurorebels who lost the whip under John Major's government, in the wake of the 1997 election he was taken on as a Political Advisor to three successive Shadow Foreign Secretaries and their Europe spokesmen. Part-based in Brussels, he coordinated a heroically small and nebulous team that provided the basis for a surprising majority of Britain's media stories on EU proposals at the time - and a spur to spotlighted British MEPs to change the way they had been intending to vote... During the Convention on the Future of Europe, Dr Rotherham was the advisor and press officer to David Heathcoat-Amory - the Conservative MP delegated to the body drafting the EU Constitution. This placed him alongside the handful of delegates that fought a guerilla campaign against further integration. Since then, in addition to work in heritage, in Whitehall, and alongside a children's charity, he has been widely published, most notably as co-author of the best-selling Bumper Books of Government Waste (Harriman House) which set the current political agenda on ending public sector profligacy. He has twice stood as a parliamentary candidate, most colourfully in 2001 in his native St Helens against Shaun Woodward, unleashing a growing platoon of butlers to the nation's TV screens, in addition to the (marginally exaggerated) press reports of him driving across town on election day in an armoured vehicle. He further stood for selection for the primaries to select the Conservative candidate for London Mayor on a heretical platform of cutting pointless budgets and handing power down to councillors. During the 2011 referendum campaign on the Alternative Vote system, Dr Rotherham was head of opposition research in the successful No2AV team. A Territorial Army Reservist, he has served in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and recently at NATO HQ covering the Libya crisis. His long interest in European languages has left him with an unusual music collection from Sopa de Cabra to Ligabue via Estonian rave, which he is keen to inflict upon passengers while driving.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The EU in a nutshell 27 July 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book on the recommendation of Dan Hannan's blog. I was expecting a rant, to be honest.
I was wrong. It is a complete set of remarks, facts, lists and interesting observations on the European Union (EU). It is, of course, from the p.o.v. of a Eurosceptic, but only a nerd would recognise that.
To be honest, it is the sort of book you need for blogging and commenting. It is also the kind of book that teachers would like to have for their lessons (if any) on the EU.
Utterly recommended - but only for people who are really interested in this fascinating subject.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars E.U., In Nutshell 12 July 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you enjoy debating on the blogs, this is the book to strengthen your argument. There are nothing like facts to shoot down an awkward poster who is talking rubbish. Hardly bedtime reading though, it is serious stuff.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Infuriating... 31 July 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
...but so enlightening. Everyone who ever pays a penny/cent/euro into this organisation should be made to read this book. The people who run the EU make Caligula look like a choir boy.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good read 2 Jan 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Interesting subject matter and sheds some light on topics impacting on Britain through the EU. Also frustrating to find out about things in which we, as a nation have no say.
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