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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading
Whether you are student of politics, a fan or not fan of Gordon Brown, or whether you just want to understand a period of British political history, with ramifications which have unfolded and some yet to unfold especially in the light of the new government, or any other reasons that spark your curiosity about this book, I would boldly say that this is compelling and...
Published on 2 Jan 2011 by maximus

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14 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ponderous
Having reached Chapter Five p 147 I'm beginning to flag a little. It's starting to feel rather like the sort of book you had to complete at school or university. I can't quite put my finger on it - I suspect the problem is simply that an editorial pen should have tightened up the prose style. It lacks bite and is frequently repetitious. Which comes as a surprise because I...
Published on 2 Nov 2010 by enthusiast


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4.0 out of 5 stars The Second Man of New Labour!, 26 Nov 2010
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This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
Gordon Brown is a man who divides opinion. This is an account of his passion and desire to reach the very top of British politics.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Slightly Overdue Balancing, 31 Oct 2010
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Samuel BC McAusland (Lochearnhead, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
Steve Richards book is, as well as being a absorbing account of the Gordon Brown premiership, a slightly overdue balance to the slew of memoirs, accounts and self serving Blair biography covering the whole New Labour project. The Gordon Brown portrayed here is almost the classic tragic figure who has talent, intelligence and who does 'whatever he can', or 'whatever it takes' (he used both phrases) for the betterment of Britain but who is brought down not only by by the conspirators who are ostensibly on his side but by own feet of clay.
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14 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ponderous, 2 Nov 2010
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This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
Having reached Chapter Five p 147 I'm beginning to flag a little. It's starting to feel rather like the sort of book you had to complete at school or university. I can't quite put my finger on it - I suspect the problem is simply that an editorial pen should have tightened up the prose style. It lacks bite and is frequently repetitious. Which comes as a surprise because I enjoy his newspaper articles and his radio contributions.I hope that things will sharpen up in the remaining 300 pages but I'm not convinced. Still, travel hopefully.

I have finished it and my general criticism remains the same. Some insights but too often buried in a prose style which lacks intensity and seems stretched to warrant the length of the book.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hell, tha's a Gordon fer me, whatever, 24 Dec 2010
This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
There's one side of a coin, and there's the other.
Richards plumbs down into the depths of the tectonic plates movements circa 2010,
with an insight and subtlety of grasp no little tribal labourite like me could possibly have expected.
Nor my conservative cousins either!
A must read for both and all serious voters,
Ladybeth
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Two Little Hitlers, 10 July 2012
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Gorrdon Brown: you either love him or hate him. I hated him, until I read this book. Then I began to understand this him.

I read this book at the same time as Back from the Brink: 1,000 Days at Number 11, which gives the picture of "New" Labour in the last three years of its time in government.

Steve Richard's book take us from the early days in 1992 after Labour lost yet (another) election, to the "triumph" of 1997, when it regained power, and then onwards. We then have Gordon Brown, the man who thought he should be leader, trying to get Tony Blair out. Somewhere between all this we have a "government", though it's often "government" of 10-year-olds in the playground.

Makes you wonder why people bother to vote. I don't!
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enlightenment, 6 Nov 2010
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Mrs. Susan Black (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book though it confirmed my poor opinion of politicians. It is well written in straitforward prose. There were several repitions and it might have benefitted from tighter editing. Nevertheless an enjoyable read.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Boring beyond belief, 17 Mar 2014
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Bannon (Carmarthenshire) - See all my reviews
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What a waste of money!
You need to be as desparate as I was to read about this guy but talk about a dry read. OK for academics to read and referance sorry to say Gordon, but that's about it.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Whatever it takes, 18 Feb 2011
This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
a well researched history of the man, as you would expect,in a sober style which makes you realise that very few of these polititians have any real sense of the fact that they are there to do a job for us. If they worked together just a

little ,it might make a huge difference.However I enjoyed the book very much and and am left with the impression that it is impossible to be entertaining about a bullying egotist such as the ,thankfully now defunct, Gordon.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Knowledge of Scottish geography needed-or more accurate research., 19 Nov 2010
This review is from: Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour (Paperback)
I mostly enjoyed this book- which made me feel rather more sympathetic to Gordon Brown than I had before.It is a valuable corrective to the hate-filled narrative of the English tabloid press.The book shows Brown to be ,like all of us a mixture of good and bad qualities.He was certainly the wrong PM for a celebrity- obseesed ,24-hour news media. I agree with other reviewers that the book would have benefited by being about 100 pages shorter.My main compaint is that Steve Richards falls down on a small point of research- or is completely ignorant of the geography of Scotland-(not good in somebody writing a book about a major Scottish politician.)Several times the text refers to "Browns home in Edinburgh"- in fact Gordon Brown has not lived in Edinburgh for many years.He lives in North Queensferry in his native Fife- a good 10 miles from Edinburgh.One wonders what other "facts" in the book are wrong!
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Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour
Whatever it Takes: The Real Story of Gordon Brown and New Labour by Steve Richards (Paperback - 16 Sep 2010)
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