Max Hastings is the author of twenty-six books, most about conflict, and between 1986 and 2002 served as editor-in-chief of the Daily Telegraph, then editor of the Evening Standard. He has won many prizes both for journalism and his books, of which the most recent are All Hell Let Loose, Catastrophe and The Secret War, best-sellers translated around the world. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, an Honorary Fellow of King's College, London and was knighted in 2002. He has two grown-up children, Charlotte and Harry, and lives with his wife Penny in West Berkshire, where they garden enthusiastically.
"This is the book he was born to write: a work of staggering scope and erudition, narrated with supreme fluency and insight, it is unquestionably the best single-volume history of the war ever written..... he writes with a wonderfully clear, unsentimental eye......and has a terrific grasp of the grand sweep and military strategy......But what makes his book a compelling read are the human stories......at the end of this gruesome, chilling but quite magnificent book, you never doubt that the war was worth fighting". Sunday Times "No other general history of the war amalgamates so successfully the gut-wrenching personal details and the essential strategic arguments. Melding the worm's eye view and the big picture is a difficult trick to pull of - but Hastings has triumphed". The Times "majestic...it is impossible to emerge without a sense of the sheer scale of human tragedy.....To gather all these anecdotes together is a task in itself, but to assemble them in a way that makes sense is something entirely different....Hastings shapes all these stories, almost miraculously, into a single coherent narrative". Daily Telegraph "In this massive work, the crowning volume of the 10 impressive books he has written about the Second World War, Sir Max Hastings spares us nothing in portraying the sheer bloody savagery of the worst war that the world has yet seen....this magnificent book....is hypnotically readable from the first page to the last". Sunday Telegraph "A fast-moving, highly readable survey of the entire war...Hastings combines a mastery of the military events with invariably sound judgment and a sharp eye for unusual telling detail....this is military history at its most gripping. Of all Max Hastings's valuable books, this is possibly his best - a veritable tour de force". Evening Standard