WINSTON CHURCHILL by Martin Gilbert

WINSTON CHURCHILL

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Just for whom this brief biography is intended is hard to determine. The early chapters are written with a stilted simplicity (e.g. six sentences beginning with ""he"" in one paragraph) that contrasts oddly with the many quotations from Churchill's chronicles; the later chapters combine somewhat sophisticated political concepts and language (""promiscuous pandering to the poor"") with short, choppy sentences and even longer quotes. Throughout, the author tends to justify the actions and attitudes of his subject, a trait particularly pronounced at the beginning: ""he felt (apropos of the Spanish suppression of Cuban rebellion), and understood, how the responsibility of ruling others could be an ennobling experience, breeding philanthropy and understanding."" The book's chief virtue is its chronological balance--with considerable attention to Churchill's accomplishments as a Liberal minister from 1906 to 1911--and its absence of personal trivia, but it remains too demanding in parts for younger readers, too awkwardly written for older ones, and not sufficiently detached for anyone.

Pub Date: Oct. 18th, 1967
Publisher: Dial