From the high politics of Court and Cabinet room to the everyday discussions in kitchen or queue, Peter Hennessy's Never Again: Britain 1945-51 recreates the mood and feel of life in early post-war Britain.
At the end of the Second World War Britain was in flux. It was an age of rationing and rebuilding; when hope for a better future contrasted with the horror of war.
Fresh ideals emerged during the common experience of the conflict and the new, widespread belief that everyone should be treated equally led to the creation of the 'welfare state' and the NHS, despite tough economic circumstances. Internationally, Britain was finding a place in a world increasingly overshadowed by Cold War with the Soviet Union.
'A joy to read'
'Hennessy is never for a moment dull'
Philip Ziegler, Daily Telegraph
'Jumping like a tree frog from blue book to nostalgic reminiscence to brilliant one-liner, Hennessy conjures up the Attlee years more vividly than any previous historical writer'
'Hennessy is the antithesis of the dry-as-dust academic historian. He laughs a great deal, and punctuates his writing with cheery and illuminating anecdotes'
Ian Aitken, Guardian
'A sympathetic, highly readable, meticulously researched account of the Cabinet room politics and popular habits of life and recreation during the high noon of Labourism'
Roy Jenkins, Observer
Peter Hennessy is Attlee Professor of History at Queen Mary College, London, and the Director of the Mile End Institute of Contemporary British Government, Intelligence and Society. He is the author of Never Again: Britain 1945-51 (winner of the NCR and Duff Cooper Prizes), Having it So Good: Britain in the Fifties (winner of the Orwell Prize); the bestselling The Prime Minister and The Secret State.