Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Triumph and Tragedy by Winston S. Churchill

Triumph and Tragedy

by Winston S. Churchill

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Churchill's The Second World War (Volume 6)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
95899,051 (4.22)7
  1. 00
    Churchill; the struggle for survival, 1940-1965 by Lord Moran (Scotland)
    Scotland: This book is a good narrative of what happened to Churchill, the man, after the war years. As well, the creation and process of Triumph and Tragedy is mentioned multiple times throughout this book.

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 7 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
  neil-thornton | Aug 15, 2014 |
A massive Memoir, somewhat disguised as a history of WWII! But a necessary part of the Canon. WSC is a good writer, with a fine style that does veer into the oratorical. There's no one better positioned to tell of the British interests in the War. It goes quickly for a big book. It is written without acknowledgement of the Enigma intelligence. It seems I read it thrice! ( )
  DinadansFriend | Nov 4, 2013 |
The end of WWII, inexorable and at the same time of a piece with what came before; Churchill is deep in the details of figuring out what should happen to Poland as he invents the phrase “the Iron Curtain,” which appears several times here. Churchill is as always bloody-minded; of one particular ploy, he says, “The carriers were short of both planes and pilots, but no matter. They were only bait, and bait is made to be eaten.” ( )
  rivkat | Jun 12, 2013 |
All six books give a clear account of all of the political wheeling and dealing that goes on between governments without regard to other events. While the work is going to be biased (what author is not going to paint himselg in the best light?), it is also an excellent source of documents -- telegrams, letters, etc. No WWII collection should be without these six volumes. ( )
  Hedgepeth | Dec 8, 2009 |
This is the last of Churchill's volumes on WWII. This one had a different tone than the other ones. Perhaps because the issues in this volume had not been resolved at the time of writing, or perhaps because Churchill himself was disappointed at how things ultimately turned out (apart from winning the war that is). The theme of this volume is telling:

How the great democracies triumphed, and so were able to resume the follies which had so nearly cost them their life.

Not bitter about being kicked out of office as soon as the war was over, is he?
Because this book opened with D-Day, Hitler was soon reduced to a paper villain, unimportant because his fall was inevitable. The real evil of the time was Stalin. Even if you add all the fatalities of WWII at Hitler's feet, Stalin still killed more people. He was shrewd, cunning and a virtuoso at public appearances. He could lie to your face and smile. He openly called for the underground of Warsaw to rebel against the Germans, then left his armies 10 miles away until they had all been slaughtered to enter the city. Though it trivializes the war a bit, the image that keeps coming to mind is Hitler's Count Dooku to Stalin's Darth Sidious.
The present ineffectual design of the United Nations is the result of maneuvering to get Russia to join it. Field Marshall Smuts, who was tasked with finding a compromise that Russia would accept in forming the UN, optimistically wrote to Churchill,

The principle of unanimity will at the worse only have the effect of a veto, or stopping action where it may be wise, or even necessary. Its effect will be negative; it will retard action. But it will also render it impossible for Russia to embark on courses not approved of by the USA and the United Kingdom.

Russia soon proved that it would do as it liked and operated through its proxy states, even as early as before the Germans capitulated. Marshall Tito nearly got into open combat with Allied soldiers over the Italian port of Trieste, even though they were supposedly on the same side. When Churchill asked Stalin to reign in his underling, Stalin denied he had any influence over Tito at all.
It didn't help that France was actively empire-building and resisting all calls to free Syria and other held possessions and Greece was close to anarchy, with only British troops able to keep the peace. I think Churchill felt the war had only been paused and forsaw a rapid decline into anarchy with Russia a vulture, eager to devour the spoils.
Though the death of Roosevelt and Churchill's loss of political power enabled Stalin to set up puppet states all through eastern Europe, the Iron Curtain (Churchill coined the phrase) did not result in another world war. I think Churchill would have been surprised that the ideological conflict between democracy and communism never erupted into more than regional conflicts.
Through all of his distrust of Stalin, he was still as swayed by the dictator's personal magnetism as any. At the meeting where Truman told Stalin of the atomic bomb, Churchill reports, "I was certain that at that date Stalin had no special knowledge of the vast process of research upon which the united States and Britain had been engaged for so long." We know now that Stalin knew all about it. He had a spy at Los Alamos for years.
It is intriguing to think what would have happened if during the post-war negotiations, the Conservative party had stayed in office. The animosity between the US and USSR that developed would have been shared more equally by Great Britain it is almost certain. ( )
  readermom | Feb 2, 2009 |
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Churchill, Winston S.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Keegan, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
In War: Resolution
In Defeat: Defiance
In Victory: Magnanimity
In Peace: Good Will

How the Great Democracies
and so
Were able to Resume
the Follies
Which Had so Nearly
Cost them their
First words
Our long months of preparations and planning for the greatest amphibious operation in history ended on D-Day, June 6,1944.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0395410606, Paperback)

From the Allied landings in Normandy in June 1944 the Second World War had only fourteen months to run. This final volume of the account covers events right up to the unconditional surrender of Japan.

Churchill's six-volume history of World War II - the definitive work, remarkable both for its sweep and for its sense of personal involvement, universally acknowledged as a magnificent historical reconstruction and an enduring work of literature.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:38 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

This volume of Churchill's history of World War II recounts the dramatic months as the War drew to a close - the Normandy landings, the liberation of Western Europe, the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the surrender of Germany and Japan.

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (4.22)
1 1
3 8
3.5 3
4 30
4.5 5
5 26


2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


You are using the new servers! | About | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 113,285,311 books! | Top bar: Always visible