London, early May 1940: Britain is on the brink of war and Neville Chamberlain’s government is about to fall. It is hard for us to imagine the Second World War without Winston Churchill taking over at the helm, but in Six Minutes in May, Nicholas Shakespeare shows how easily events could have gone in a different direction.
The first land battle of the war was fought in the far north, in Norway. It went disastrously for the Allies and many blamed Churchill. Yet weeks later he would rise to the most powerful post in the country, overtaking Chamberlain and the favourite to succeed him, Lord Halifax. It took just six minutes for MPs to cast the votes that brought down Chamberlain. Shakespeare shows us both the dramatic action on the battlefield in Norway and the machinations and personal relationships in Westminster that led up to this crucial point.
Uncovering fascinating new research and delving deep into the backgrounds of the key players, he gives a new perspective on this critical moment in our history.
“It will stand as the best account of those extraordinary few days for very many years” Andrew Roberts.