REVIEW: “Churchill” by Paul Johnson

7032076“Churchill” by Paul Johnson

192 pages

Published Nov. 3, 2009, by Viking

ISBN: 0670021059


My review

I’ve owned this biography of Churchill, who is undoubtedly Great Britain’s most lauded prime minister, for a couple of years. After seeing him portrayed by John Lithgow in “The Crown,” my interest in this book was finally piqued.

I found Johnson’s narrative of Churchill’s career rather hard to follow at times, and it often seemed like more of an analysis than a biography, but overall I learned a lot of interesting information. As other reviewers have noted, it’s a good pick for people like myself who want to read a more condensed account of Churchill’s life. If you want the blow-by-blow version, check out his memoirs. He was as verbose on paper as he was behind a podium!

I think the best part of the book is found in the epilogue, where Johnson — who was a boy in Britain at the time of Churchill’s leadership through World War II — shares lessons we can learn from Churchill and the way he lived. They’re good guidelines for anyone to follow.


4 stars


About the author

Paul Johnson works as a historian, journalist and author. He was educated at Stonyhurst3494705 School in Clitheroe, Lancashire and Magdalen College, Oxford, and first came to prominence in the 1950s as a journalist writing for, and later editing, the New Statesman magazine. He has also written for leading newspapers and magazines in Britain, the US and Europe.

Paul Johnson has published over 40 books including A History of Christianity (1979), A History of the English People (1987), Intellectuals (1988), The Birth of the Modern: World Society, 1815—1830 (1991), Modern Times: A History of the World from the 1920s to the Year 2000 (1999), A History of the American People (2000), A History of the Jews (2001) and Art: A New History (2003) as well as biographies of Elizabeth I (1974), Napoleon (2002), George Washington (2005) and Pope John Paul II (1982).

Photo and bio courtesy of author’s Goodreads profile

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