This engaging biography about some of her family by Laura Trevelyan, currently BBC Correspondent in North America, is a fascinating read. It discusses the lives of five of her most famous relatives, starting with Sir Charles Trevelyan who some hold responsible for the Irish famine of 1848, who created the English civil service in its modern form, and played an important role in the government of India. Another chapter discusses his grandson, also Sir Charles Trevelyan, who led the opposition to the First World War, was a Liberal and then Labour MP in the early years of the twentieth century, and then gave the family home and estate, Wallington in Northumberland, to the National Trust. A third deals with the author's famous great-grandfather, G M Trevelyan, notable historian and near the end of his life Master of Trinity at the heart of the British establishment. The Trevelyans discussed were part of what Noel Annan once called "the intellectual aristocracy", providing fascinating light on British histroy through the prism of one family.