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'Winston's War: Churchill, 1940-1945' by Max Hastings

Winston’s War: Churchill, 1940-1945

39% into the book and it is a fascinating read so far.

This book put a strong focus on the personality of Churchill and people around him (mainly his colleagues and his American counterparts) and interpersonal dynamics in and outside of the War Cabinet. It is a very refreshing angle.

Since I have read a few books on WWII before, the unfolding of events on the military front is not what I am after. In this regard this book is like a concise, light-weight refresher for me. Max has kept the military details to the minimum. To the contrary he spent a lot of time to talk about the reactions of Churchill, people in various important roles and general sentiment of the British populace to those events. The reactions and sentiment in turn shaped the future direction of war efforts and strategies.

What surprised me most is the passages about Franklin Roosevelt (FDR). He is described as smart, politically acute yet cautious and distant. No one around him can gauge his emotion or what is going on in his head. In some sense he is a very manipulative person. He cannot establish deep relationship with fellow humans.