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The Blitz : The British Under Attack by Juliet Gardiner
  

The Blitz : The British Under Attack

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September 2010 Book of the Month.

The aim of the German bombing raids on this country was to bomb us into submission, instead they strengthened hatred and resolve. And in Juliet Gardiner’s absorbing and meticulous history of the Blitz we see this resolve growing and in this account, like no other I’ve read, alongside records of the human devastation, the author gives prominence to the destruction of buildings and the irreplaceable cultural losses suffered. Indeed reading the book, one feels a growing anger, anger at what has been lost and anger at what has so often replaced it. An involving account, a masterly weaving together of stories, concentrating not just on London, Juliet Gardiner surveys the extent of the Blitz throughout the country. My final words of praise must go to the author’s balanced view, highlighting not just the heroes but also the failures, the cowards and the incompetents, making this one of the most fully rounded pictures of the Blitz I’ve yet read.

Synopsis

The Blitz : The British Under Attack by Juliet Gardiner

From the author of 'Wartime' and 'The Thirties'comes an outstanding history of the most prolonged and devastating attack ever endured by Britain's civilian population -- the Blitz. September 1940 marked the beginning of Nazi Germany's sustained attack on civilian Britain. Lasting eight months, the Blitz was a new and terrible form of warfare that had been predicted throughout the 1930s, widely feared since Neville Chamberlain's declaration that Britain was at war. Yet, compared with other great events of that war - Dunkirk, the Battle of Britain, D-Day - the Blitz remains curiously overlooked; while the London Blitz has been much documented, there exists very little in the way of a comprehensive account of the Blitz experience as a whole - or of its social, political and cultural implications. In her new book, critically acclaimed historian Juliet Gardiner finally gives the Blitz the historical attention it deserves. Exploring this national story, she charts the impact of the nightly bombings on the entire country. And while loss and devastation affected the whole of Britain, the attacks also served to galvanise the nation: in the face of the terrifying Nazi onslaught, a new determination steadily emerged. Revealing, original and beautifully written, The Blitz is a much-needed re-examination of one of the most important aspects of Second World War history.

Reviews

Reviews for 'The Thirties

'Hugely impressive!she gives us a vast panorama, taking in everybody from debutantes to the destitute, painting a thoroughly entertaining and convincing picture of a nation deeply divided by class and region!for the depth of its research, the quality of the writing and the sheer richness and vibrancy of the material, this is a quite outstanding work of social history. From architecture to the abdication, from zeppelins to zoos, it is comfortably the definitive account of a decade that has been much maligned'
Daily Telegraph

'Excellent!she has mastered a vast number of written sources, and the resulting synthesis is also a work of graceful, eloquent historical imagination!.all the peaks are covered with calm competence, but it is in the bypaths she takes that THE THIRTIES excels!.memorable!..the cinematic clarity of Gardiner's descriptions!make her book captivating'
Sunday Times

'Enthralling!THE THIRTIES weaves an eclectic and exciting story!.Gardiner has an almost cinematic sense of detail!.The greatest tribute to Gardiner's book is that it doesn't read as history, more a vibrant, nuanced narrative of the lives lived by our immediate predecessors'
The Times

'This is history as told through a carefully woven web of stories, relayed by a consummate storyteller!the resulting portrait is!energetic and colourful'
Observer

'Like all the best historians, Gardiner recognises the raw power of the eye-witness account!the statistics she comes up with shine an extraordinary light on an overlooked peculiarity of the era!fascinating!Gardiner proves a diligent, clear-sighted guide to the strange intellectual currents of the times!the photographs in this book are wonderfully well-chosen'
Mail on Sunday

About the Author

Juliet Gardiner

Juliet Gardiner was our Guest Editor in October 2010 - click here - to see the books that inspired her writing.

Juliet Gardiner is a historian and author. She was editor of History Today, a publisher and academic and since 2001 a full time writer, lecturer and broadcaster both on radio and television. Her most recent books include The 1940s House;The Edwardian Country House; The Penguin Dictionary of British History(ed.); Wartime: Britain 1939-1945; The Thirties:an intimate history; The Blitz: the British under attack. She was the historical consultant on the film version of Ian McEwan’s novel Atonement and for the forthcoming BBC series Upstairs Downstairs and The High Street.

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Book Info

Publication date

2nd September 2010

Author

Juliet Gardiner

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Publisher

HarperPress an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Format

Hardback
352 pages

Categories

History
Books of the Month
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Social & cultural history
Second World War

20th century history: c 1900 to c 2000

ISBN

9780007240777

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