Philip Ziegler London at War, 1939-1945

ISBN 13: 9780712698719

London at War, 1939-1945

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9780712698719: London at War, 1939-1945

In 1939, London was not merely the greatest city in the world; it was the most tempting and vulnerable target for aerial attack. For six years it was in the front line of the free world's battle. It endured the horrors of the blitz of 1940 and 1941, and the terrifying new bombs - the V2s, the V2s. Other cities suffered more intensely; no other city was so consistently under attack for so long a time.

This is the story of Londoners at war - for Philip Ziegler, best known as a biographer, is above all fascinated by the people who found their lives so suddenly and violently transformed: the querulous yet strangely gallant housewife from West Hampstead; the turbulent, left-wing, retired schoolmaster from Walthamstow, always standing up to the authorities; the odiously snobbish woman from Kensington, sneering at the 'scum' who took shelter in the Underground; the typist from Fulham; the plumber from Woolwich. It was their war every bit as much as it was Churchill's or the King's, and this is their story.

Through a wealth of interviews and unpublished letters and diaries, as well as books and newspapers, the author has built up a dazzling portrait of an entire population under siege. There were cowards, there were criminals, there were incompetents, but what emerges from these pages is above all a record - in story after story - of astonishing patience, dignity, courage and humour. "I hope," Ziegler writes, "we will never have to endure again what they went through between 1939 and 1945. I hope, if we did, that we would conduct ourselves as well."

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About the Author:

Philip Ziegler was born in 1929 and educated at Eton and New College, Oxford, where he gained first-class honours in Jurisprudence. He then joined the Diplomatic Service and served in Tientiane, Paris, Pretoria and Bogatá before resigning to join the publishers William Collins, where he was editorial director for more than fifteen years. His books have included biographies of William IV, Melbourne, Lady Diana Cooper, Mountbatten and Edward VIII. He lives in London.

From Booklist:

A departure from his reigning biographies of British royalty (e.g., King Edward VIII, 1991), this Ziegler portrait touches up the huge canvas that was London under five years of Luftwaffe bombardment. A new picture of fluctuating morale, instead of the steadfast London-can-take-it image, emerges from Ziegler's thousands of interviews and reviews of the government's then-secret public opinion reports. He begins with popular dread about a new war, but despondency gave way, through experience of the Blitz of 1940^-41, to mordant insouciance about danger (bombed-out stores joked: "Now more open than ever!" ). Tracking the metropolis' emotional cycle is this story's elusive organizing theme, which ebb and flow of civic morale in Ziegler's skillful hands assumes tangibility: he accents hard facts of an air raid or V2 attack with circulating rumors and comments of diarists; records the efforts to maintain normalcy in commerce and entertainment; and follows the underlay of politics that eventuated in Labour's election victory at war's end. A professionally drawn, full-color picture of the city's tribulations. Gilbert Taylor

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Philip Ziegler
Published by Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom (2002)
ISBN 10: 071269871X ISBN 13: 9780712698719
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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1939 London was not merely the greatest city in the world, it was the most tempting and vulnerable target for aerial attack. For six years it was the frontline of the free world s battle against Fascism. It endured the horrors of the Blitz of 1940 and 1941, the V1s, the V2s. Other cities suffered more intensely; no other city was so constantly under attack for so long a time. This is the story of London at war - or, perhaps, of Londoners at war, for Philip Ziegler, known best as a biographer, is above all fascinated by the people who found their lives so suddenly and violently transformed: the querulous, tiresome yet strangely gallant housewife from West Hampstead; the turbulent, left-wing retired schoolmaster from Walthamstow, always having a go at the authorities; the odiously snobbish middleclass lady from Kensington, sneering at the scum who took shelter in the Underground; the typist from Fulham, the plumber from Woolwich. It was their war, quite as much as it was Churchill s or the King s, and this is their history. Through a wealth of interviews and unpublished letters and diaries, as well as innumerable books and newspapers, the author has built up a vivid picture of a population under siege. There were cowards, there were criminals, there were incompetents, but what emerges from these pages is above all a record of astonishing patience, dignity and courage. I hope, Ziegler writes, we will never have to endure again what they went through between 1939 and 1945. I hope, if we did, that we would conduct ourselves as well. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780712698719

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Philip Ziegler
Published by Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom (2002)
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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In 1939 London was not merely the greatest city in the world, it was the most tempting and vulnerable target for aerial attack. For six years it was the frontline of the free world s battle against Fascism. It endured the horrors of the Blitz of 1940 and 1941, the V1s, the V2s. Other cities suffered more intensely; no other city was so constantly under attack for so long a time. This is the story of London at war - or, perhaps, of Londoners at war, for Philip Ziegler, known best as a biographer, is above all fascinated by the people who found their lives so suddenly and violently transformed: the querulous, tiresome yet strangely gallant housewife from West Hampstead; the turbulent, left-wing retired schoolmaster from Walthamstow, always having a go at the authorities; the odiously snobbish middleclass lady from Kensington, sneering at the scum who took shelter in the Underground; the typist from Fulham, the plumber from Woolwich. It was their war, quite as much as it was Churchill s or the King s, and this is their history. Through a wealth of interviews and unpublished letters and diaries, as well as innumerable books and newspapers, the author has built up a vivid picture of a population under siege. There were cowards, there were criminals, there were incompetents, but what emerges from these pages is above all a record of astonishing patience, dignity and courage. I hope, Ziegler writes, we will never have to endure again what they went through between 1939 and 1945. I hope, if we did, that we would conduct ourselves as well. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780712698719

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Book Description Vintage. Book Condition: New. 2002. New Ed. Paperback. A social history of London in World War II, throughout which a spirit of defiance united all sections of society. Based on published sources as well as interviews, letters and diaries, the book presents a record of a population under siege. Num Pages: 384 pages, illustrations. BIC Classification: 1DBKESL; HBJD1; HBTB; HBWQ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 232 x 153 x 34. Weight in Grams: 604. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780712698719

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Book Description Vintage, 2002. Book Condition: New. 2002. New Ed. Paperback. A social history of London in World War II, throughout which a spirit of defiance united all sections of society. Based on published sources as well as interviews, letters and diaries, the book presents a record of a population under siege. Num Pages: 384 pages, illustrations. BIC Classification: 1DBKESL; HBJD1; HBTB; HBWQ. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 232 x 153 x 34. Weight in Grams: 604. . . . . . . Bookseller Inventory # V9780712698719

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