9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Better than James Naughtie's The Rivals,
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This review is from: Servants of the People: The Inside Story of New Labour (Paperback)
What a fantastic read! Even though I read this in 2006, and Rawnsley's book only goes up to the 2001 election, it was riveting. Insights into the Dome, the Euro, the Kosovo war, which I had never known before, even though I am a close follower of political affairs. Rawnsley clearly has a number of good sources within the heart of the Cabinet, and his book doesn't have the same exclusively Mandelson-infused perspective that Naughtie's book, The Rivals, has. (And, save for the first couple of chapters, Naughtie's book covers more or less the same episodes of the 1997-2001 government.) Rawnsley is also a master at painting characters, and constructing dialogue, so you really get a flavour of what people are like, and the drama comes off the page. By comparison, Naughtie's book seems listless, based more on gossip in newspapers than genuine behind the scenes insights.