Taking its readers on a breathtaking journey from open lifeboats in North Atlantic gales to the cockpits of burning fighter planes, "Finest Hour" recreates the tensions and uncertainties of the events of 1940 -- months when the fate of the world truly did hang in the balance. It is a powerful account, told through the voices, diaries, letters, and memoirs of the men and women who lived and loved, fought and died during that terrible yet ultimately triumphant year. The personal stories of these soldiers and airmen, diplomats and politicians, journalists and spies are combined with a fresh and often controversial account of the swirling political intrigues and betrayals of the period. Here are President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Ambassador Joseph Kennedy; journalists Edward R. Murrow and Whitelaw Reid; Canadian Prime Minister Mackenzie King and French Premier Paul Reynaud. Here are the Royal Navy's assault on the French fleet, the hushed-up catastrophe of the SS "Lancastria," America's secret plans to cope with the expected defeat of Britain,and Winston Churchill's indomitable determination to bring the New World to the rescue of the Old.
A testament to a year when a nation's darkest hour became its finest, a work that blends original historical research with the experiences of ordinary people living in desperate times, "Finest Hour" is a singular achievement, an indispensable contribution to the literature of World War II.