Big Caesars and Little Caesars: How They Rise and How They Fall - From Julius Caesar to Boris Johnson
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About the Author
Ferdinand Mount was Political Editor of The Spectator and Editor of The Times Literary Supplement. For two years he was head of Margaret Thatcher's think-tank - The Number 10 Policy Unit. He is an authority on politics today, and writes regularly for The Times Literary Supplement and the London Review of Books.Apart from political columns and essays, he has written a six-volume series of novels, A Chronicle of Modern Twilight, which began with The Man Who Rode Ampersand, based on his father's racing life, and included Of Love And Asthma, which won the Hawthornden Prize for 1992. His most recent books are Kiss Myself Goodbye: The Many Lives of Aunt Munca, and the novel Making Nice, both published by Bloomsbury Continuum.
"Highly informative and hugely entertaining...a reminder that dictators have long been, and continue to be, a threat to democracy." --Forbes "The power of this needle-sharp book lies in the acuity of its observations and in its ability to zoom out and see modern politicians in broader context, bringing something both fresh and timeless to an otherwise well-worn subject.
" --The Guardian "Wry, informative but deadly - a great book." --Will Hutton "Mount's prose is enjoyable and some of the vignettes are a delight. [The Caesars] make for compelling reading." --The Sunday Times "Mount's prose is vivid, erudite and highly opinionated... [he] dissects all these villains in entertaining style... his range of historical reference points is impressive." --Irish Independent "Pass deep historical knowledge through the silkiest of minds and deliver the product onto the page with the most fluent of pens, and you find the combination of gifts which make Ferdie Mount pre-eminent among the political commentariat of our day. He has created a book that will endure in 50 years' time when students of British Politics will still struggle to understand how the supposedly most mature political system in the world could have placed Boris Johnson in Downing Street for three years. This is the volume they will have to read first." --Peter Hennessy "Always absorbing and often bitterly funny, Ferdinand Mount's survey traces with characteristic panache an unedifying line of populist opportunists from classical times down to the shoddy and sinister figures of Johnson and Trump. His eloquent concluding call for the restoration and safeguarding of parliamentary authority has never been more urgently needed." --Roy Foster, Emeritus Professor of Irish History at the University of Oxford "A wonderfully wry field guide to autocrats. With tremendous wit and wisdom, the former head of Margaret Thatcher's policy unit identifies the qualities particular to dictators - and warns against consigning such people to history... Mount, learned to the pink tips of his ears, knows so much, and what he didn't before, he has found out. Mount's considerable journalistic skills deployed here in the cause of concision, the pricking of pomposity and, sometimes, his own outrage...He is especially good on Johnson...Mount is beautifully wry in this book, on top of everything else." --Observer "...a fast-paced and impassioned essay." --Sunday Telegraph "Mount is an entertaining guide to dictatorship." --Book of the week, The Times "A wonderfully wry field guide to autocrats." --guardian.com "[Mount] is one of the best contemporary essayists in English. He writes elegantly with an occasional brutal turn of phrase.
" --The Tablet "Ferdinand Mount strolls with effortless erudition round the careers of Caesar, Bonaparte, Hitler and even Indira Gandhi." --The Oldie "A thoughtful and cogent account of the Johnson premiership." --Literary Review "A welcome addition to what constitutes the most vital of contemporary discussions." --Irish Times "Delicious work, beautifully and acerbically written by a cultured man of a kind achingly rare in our world of intellectual short cuts and tawdry soundbites." --Wall Street Journal