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The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill:…

The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965 (edition 2013)

by William Manchester (Author)

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1,0782018,826 (4.33)3
Spanning the years of 1940-1965, this third volume in Manchester's monumental biography the Last Lion picks up shortly after Winston Churchill became Prime Minister-when his tiny island nation stood alone against the overwhelming might of Nazi Germany.
Title:The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965
Authors:William Manchester (Author)
Info:Bantam (2013), Edition: Reprint, 1200 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume III: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965 by William Manchester


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Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
Very good ending to the biography of a flawed but amazing man. ( )
  everettroberts | Oct 20, 2023 |
I thought Paul Reid did a good job finishing up this last volume. This book contains tons of detail on WWII relationships between Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin, strategy on various fronts, and tidbits of personal details. The military strategy probably was the least engaging part for me, but I did have a lot of aha moments as gaps in my knowledge were filled about how WWII was related to the Cold War, the Korean War, and Vietnam. My favorite part was when Churchill was bathing naked in Florida, circled by a shark, and said that his bulk scared it into deeper water. ( )
  bangerlm | Jan 18, 2023 |
An extraordinary book in an extraordinary series. Manchester is a master story teller with one of history's bravest and most heroic figures. Just as he did with his first volume, the first chapter of the Last Lion presents a slice Churchill's life. Read it and you won't want to quit. Churchill stood alone against the Nazis when the rest of the world had either surrendored, collaberated or ignored the Nazis. Imagine the world if he hadn't kept to his committment to "never, never, never surrendor."

( )
  kropferama | Jan 1, 2023 |
Dad gave me the whole series for my promotion to Major in October 2021. Began reading this book as soon as I got home from NF-22 and read the entire second half of it while on the PDSS/IPC for MASA 23.1 in the Philippines. It is important to note that this book was written by a new author who took the research of the previous author and finished his work. I think that is why it is the longest of the three because he wanted to do it justice and went into great detail using the extensive research that existed for the WWII period. If I could only read one of these three books, I would chose this one because of the time period it covers. The details on the struggle of WWII for the PM and his tireless efforts to win the war and defeat Hitler were incredible to read and study. The author clearly has a bias for Winston Churchill and Great Britain, and therefore seemed often critical of top American Leaders (from FDR to Truman to Eisenhower). This especially comes out during the conferences nearing the end of WWII when the policy of the Allies became increasingly focused on victory and how to handle the end of the Nazis and WWII. The author presents a case that, had Churchill had his way, the Cold War could have been prevented and Russia's power and influence could have been limited. This book also shows clearly how Great Britain's influence throughout the world ended in WWII and that America emerged as the world power which severely limited Churchill's voice throughout numerous engagements during the war.
  SDWets | Jan 14, 2022 |
I originally wanted to read a bio of Churchill because I wanted to know if the story comparing Churchill as a man with many mistresses and Hitler as a man with none, was true. While Churchill isn't blameless* it appears that my initial sense was correct--- the claim is junior high rubbish.

4 stars for the research and for teaching me more about WWII than any other book I have read so far. I found Il Duce's fate particularly interesting. Reid does a good job illustrating the intermingling triumph, uncertainty, fear, and tragedy that the war was.

Here are my thoughts from these last few days:

--If you want to lead a country to do great things(descriptor chosen purposefully) you must be able to do what Churchill did. Faults he had. But he knew how to make language work for him. He knew how to build confidence. He knew how to research. He knew how to focus. Was a politician? Yes. Ever so much so. But his politics were tempered with a healthy morality/belief system.

-- Where does one draw the line at a historical biography between the history and it's influence on the biography? This was as much a history of WWII as it was a compendium of Churchill's travels, thoughts, machinations, and Jock Coville's observations of Churchill. But not every troop movement or General's reasoning behind action or inaction is essential to his life story. I feel that too much is included. Probably a personal preference.

--If you're looking for a biography of Churchill you may want one that devotes equal time to his post-WWII activities. This does not. At 900 pages, he is ousted from the government and 100 pages and 20 years later he is dead. To be sure, he was a driving force in the victory. But a lot of life is lived in 20 years.

*glossed over in the prior book, I believe ( )
  OutOfTheBestBooks | Sep 24, 2021 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
William Manchesterprimary authorall editionscalculated
Manchester, WilliamAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Reid, Paulmain authorall editionsconfirmed

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In freta dum fluvii current, dum montibus umbrae
Lustrabunt convexa, polus dum sidera pascet;
semper honos nomenque tuum laudesque manebunt.

As long as rivers shall run down to the sea,
or shadows touch the mountains slopes,
or stars graze in the vault of heaven,
so long shall your honor, your name,
your praises, endure.

Virgil, Aeneid, I: 607—9
To the memory of
John Colville, C.B., C.V.O 1915-1987
Estonian, Civil Servant, Fighter, Pilot, Scholar
(William Manchester, August 1994)
For Barbara
(Paul Reed, August 2012)
First words
On June 21, 1940, the first day of summer, Winston Churchill was the most visible man in England.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Spanning the years of 1940-1965, this third volume in Manchester's monumental biography the Last Lion picks up shortly after Winston Churchill became Prime Minister-when his tiny island nation stood alone against the overwhelming might of Nazi Germany.

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