Churchill fought the war twice over - as Prime Minister and again as its premier historian. In 1948-54 he published six volumes of memoirs which secured his reputation and shaped our understanding of the conflict to this day. Using the drafts and correspondence for The Second World War, David Reynolds opens our eyes to Churchill the author and to the research syndicate' on whom he depended. We see how the memoirs were censored by Whitehall to conceal secrets such as the codebreakers at Bletchley Park, and how Churchill himself censored them to avoid offending current world leaders. This book forces us to reconsider much received wisdom about the war and illuminates an unjustly neglected period of his life - the Second Wilderness Years of 1945-51, when Churchill, now over seventy, wrote himself into history, politicked himself back into Downing Street and delivered some of the most important speeches of his career.
David Reynolds is a Professor of International History at Cambridge University, and a Fellow of Christ's College. He was awarded the Wolfson Prize for History, 2004, and elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2005. He has written and presented several history films for the BBC - among them the 2008 series Summits. His books include several on modern America and its relations with Europe. His fascination with the country dates back to a year living there as a student, culminating in an epic ten-week, 10,000 mile bus journey in the summer of 1974 which ended outside the White House on the morning Richard Nixon resigned. David has been a regular visitor to the United States ever since and has held visiting university appointments at Harvard, Nebraska and Oklahoma. America, Empire of Liberty, his book linked to the BBC Radio 4 series, was published by Penguin in 2009.