HOW CHURCHILL BECAME THE HERO OF THE BRITISH EMPIRE
WHEN THE BBC CONDUCTED A NATION WIDE POLL in Britain to find the “Greatest Briton of Them All”, Winston Spencer Churchill received the highest number of votes – 28.1 percent of the millions who participated. His countrymen had not forgotten that familiar figure with his comfortable paunch, his cigar and his defiant V-for-Victory hand sign who inspired them with his oratory in the darkest days of World War 2.
But Churchill was not always a grandfatherly figure. At the turn of the last century, at the close of the Victorian era, he was a trim young army officer, brave, brash and convinced he was destined to have a splendid political career. Along came the South African War when British troops fought bloody battles against Boer commandos. It gave young Winston an opportunity to gain prominence – a short at being a Hero of the Empire.
THIS RIVETING BOOK LOOKS AT THAT TIME IN HIS LIFE. When he arrived in Cape Town, he had already experienced colonial wars in North Africa as a soldier and conflict in Cuba as a correspondent. He won the fame he craved when, as a newspaperman, he escaped from the Boers after his armored train was ambushed. He rejoined the army, took part in more battles – and his name was known around the vast British Empire. Author Candice Millard tells this engrossing tale with the verve she displayed in earlier works.