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Leadership in War


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A comparison of nine leaders who led their nations through the some of greatest wars the world has ever seen and whose unique strengths - and weaknesses - shaped the course of human history.

About the Author

Andrew Roberts is a biographer and historian of international renown whose books include Salisbury- Victorian Titan (winner of the Wolfson Prize for History), Masters and Commanders (winner of the Emery Reves Award) and The Storm of War (winner of the British Army Book Prize). His most recent book was Napoleon the Great (2014), which won the Grand Prix of the Fondation Napoleon and the Los Angeles Times Biography Prize. His Churchill- Walking with Destiny (2018) was acclaimed as 'undoubtedly the best single-volume life of Churchill ever written' (Sunday Times) and was a major bestseller in UK and USA. Roberts is a Fellow of the Royal Societies of Literature and the Royal Historical Society, and a Trustee of the International Churchill Society.


Roberts is superbly well-qualified to write about these extraordinary leaders. Roberts teaches not just through analysis, as indeed he does, but by example. Each of his chapters is a finely crafted gem of communication. Roberts's description offers vivid detail, spare prose, immortal rhetoric, and a touch of humor. His chapters offer masterly, magnificent portraits of what it takes to steer an army or a nation through a crisis. Any leader would envy the chance to have Roberts as his or her speechwriter or Director of Communications. Every reader can be grateful for such a thrilling and succinct account of leadership. -- Barry Strauss * The New Criterion *
A condensation of a wonderful series of lectures Mr Roberts delivered to the New-York Historical Society ... Among military historians, Mr Roberts is Britain's crown gem, and his pithy insights compiled in 'Leadership in War' reflect decades of diligent, patient study. -- Jonathan W. Jordan * Wall Street Journal *
Meticulously researched and full of revelations, this is a fascinating read. * Sun *
Leadership in War is an understated treasure of 2019...a tour de force of historical portraiture. -- Barnaby Crowcroft * National Review *
Leadership in War has the enjoyable feel of a lively dinner table conversation. -- Thomas E. Ricks * New York Times *
illuminating experiences are presented in easily digestible form in Andrew Roberts's new book, Leadership in War, a collection of nine portraits of wartime leaders, from Napoleon Bonaparte to Margaret Thatcher. These portrayals were originally delivered as lectures by Roberts, a prolific historian of World War II and biographer of Napoleon and Churchill. The profiles of Napoleon and Dwight D. Eisenhower are the most salient for business readers, but it is not difficult to find insight in nearly all of them -- Daniel Akst * Strategy & Business *
Few authors compare to Andrew Roberts. He dips his pen in the most eloquent ink to bring to life figures who have heaps of lessons to teach us -- Marc Nadeau * Bookmarc *
Roberts has a gift for finding the anecdote or quotation which reveals an essential truth about his subject. -- Nigel Jones * History Today *
Few authors compare to Andrew Roberts. He dips his pen in the most eloquent ink to bring to life figures who have heaps of lessons to teach us -- Marc Nadeau * Bookmarc *
His analyses of the criteria needed for success are succinct and... convincing. ... The mysteries of leadership in times of conflict probably evade ultimate explanation, but Roberts, the biographer of Napoleon and Churchill, does much to throw new light on them, -- Nick Rennison * Sunday Times *

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