Chapter: Books About Churchill

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By Celia Sandys

From Winston
with love and kisses

Wanted Dead or Alive


by Celia Sandys

Celia Sandys, Churchillís granddaughter, published two books covering Churchillís early life. The first, From Winston With love and kisses, is largely a compendium of letters written by Churchill and his parents beginning in 1874, when Churchill was born, through 1895, when Churchill was commissioned a second lieutenant in the 4th Hussars. This is a wonderful and delightful book filled to the brim with equally wonderful and delightful pictures, many in color. The second book, Churchill Wanted Dead Or Alive, is a fascinating account of Churchillís exploits as a journalist-soldier and his capture and escape from Boer captivity during his nine months involvement (1899-1900) in the Second Anglo-Boer War. Ms. Sandys has reconstructed her grandfatherís exploits by personally retracing his steps and the events in South Africa. The result is a fascinating story that arguably redefined the life of the then young Winston Churchill.

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By Martin Gilbert

Official Churchill Biography

by Randolph Churchill
Martin Gilbert
1st USA Edition

The ďofficialĒ biography of Winston Churchill was begun by son Randolph and subsequently taken over upon his death in 1968 by Martin Gilbert, formerly an assistant writer on the project. The complete biography consists of eight major volumes and a series of companion volumes presenting specific documents referenced in each of the eight major volumes. The USA edition mirrors the UK edition for dust jackets in the first five volumes; however, volumes VI, VII and VIII of the US edition are presented in pictorial dust jackets, whereas the UK publications are not. The US set pictured here is autographed personally by Randolph Churchill and Martin Gilbert.

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R.G. Grant and Nigel Blundell

Winston Churchill: An Illustrated Biography
by R.G. Grant

A Pictorial History of Winston Churchill
by Nigel Blundell

The two most recent picture books documenting the life of Winston Churchill are those authored by R.G. Grant, Winston Churchill, An Illustrated Biography (1989) and by Nigel Blundell, A Pictorial History of Winston Churchill (1996). Both publications are excellent and highly recommended for their content and presentation. In this context, two additional large format but older pictorial Churchill biographies most highly recommended are The Churchill Years (author W. Heinemann, 1965) and Churchill: The Walk with Destiny (authors Miller and Sainthill, 1966).

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Kay Halle

Irrepressible Churchill
A Treasury of Winston Churchill's Wit

by Kay Halle

Of all the books relating Churchillís wit and humor, perhaps the best of the bunch is Kay Halleís Irrepressible Churchill, A Treasury of Winston Churchillís Wit. Ms. Halle was ďclosely associatedĒ with Randolph Churchill during the 1930s and spent considerable time in the company of the Churchill family at Chartwell. She continued on as a writer, journalist, and political campaigner in the US, covering four different US Presidential administrations. Ms. Halleís book lists events in Churchillís life, his quips and partial speeches in chronological order beginning with Churchillís birth in 1874 and ending with his death in 1965. Interspersed among the passages are cartoons of Churchill from PUNCH and other periodicals reflecting Churchillís personality and style. This book is wonderful and a definite must have!!

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Trumbull Higgins and Geoffrey Penn

Winston Churchill and the Dardenelles: A Dialogue in Ends and Means
by Trumbull Higgins

Fisher, Churchill and the Dardenelles
by Geoffrey Penn

Churchillís involvement in the disastrous Dardanelles/Gallipoli Campaign of 1915, when Churchill was Lord of the Admiralty, and the aftermath of the tragedy reflected in a government committee of inquiry are addressed thoroughly by Trumbull Higgins (a military historian) in his Winston Churchill and the Dardanelles and by Geoffrey Penn in his Fisher, Churchill and the Dardanelles. As a former naval person, Penn is decidedly pro Fisher between the two personalities involved in the Dardanelles disaster. Both books are highly recommended.