Top positive review
18 people found this helpful
If you like history, or current affairs - an absolute must!
on 25 September 2001
In general, this is a well constructed, and arresting analysis of the office of the PM, and its holders. The reason why it "hits fifth gear" is based on the level of personal contact with the incumbents, and the depth of reasoning; this raises the book from genuinely interesting to absolutely compelling.
When read thoroughly, the central fact is absolutely shocking: Britain never really came to terms with its post-war status. Whilst measures where taken, the economy/city/markets repeatedly forced action on a reluctant government, which comprised a set of people living in a state of perpetual denial. Collectively, the judgement on the office holders is therefore harsh - they were led by events, they did not lead - this is the central fact, even it is not spelled out explicitly. There are a couple of great stories, of which I mention the funniest: "Mrs Thatcher was both self-aware and quite unrepentant about these traits. One one occassion she opened a ministerial meeting by banging the celebrated bag on the table declaring 'Well, I haven't much time today, only enough to explode and have my way'."
Buy it - you will not regret it!