Most helpful positive review
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Essential and gripping history
on 27 January 2010
Sometimes history can be as gripping as the best novels. This account brings to life the deliberations in the British War Cabinet in five crucial days when France was on the brink of defeat by Hitler, when it seemed that the British Army fighting in France was about to be killed and captured, and all assumed that invasion of Britain would shortly follow. In these days the course was set to fight on alone and be a beacon of freedom in a darkening world, rather than to seek the mediation of Italy for a deal with Hitler that might have preserved nominal British independence but would have acknowledged German pre-eminence over continental Europe and fatally weakened the British resolve to fight for the liberation of Europe. In these days, and through this debate, Hitler came closer than he ever did at any other time to achieving his war aims. The life of this story is in the detailed recreation of the discussions and the atmosphere of the time and this Lukacs succeeds in doing with passion and precise argument. You may know the outcome but the book is nevertheless unputdownable.