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Robert KaganWinston Churchill's life spanned the last decades of the British Empire, and to read Carlo D'Este's enjoyable new biography is to recall the sequence of disasters that befell Britain between the final days of the Victorian era and its brush with extinction in World War II. American pundits these days speculate rather glibly about national decline and imagine that, if it comes, it is something that can be safely and intelligently managed. But genuine geopolitical decline is a serious and often deadly business. Churchill spent the better part of his life fending off increasingly dire threats to Britain's place in the world, and then to its very existence as an independent nation. A biography of Churchill is in some ways a biography of the British people, with all their remarkable successes, devastating failures, occasional silliness, arrogance and insouciance, and finally their incredible bravery.
—The New York Times