Sunday, October 14, 2007

Five best books: the Anglo-American relationship

Michael Barone, a senior writer at U.S. News & World Report, named a five best list of books about "the shared heritage of America and Britain" for Opinion Journal.

The more recently-published title on the list:

A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 by Andrew Roberts (HarperCollins, 2007).

Andrew Roberts has written excellent biographies of the Marquis of Salisbury (1830-1903) and the Earl of Halifax (1881-1959), but after 9/11 he decided to take up the task of completing the multivolume history of the English-speaking peoples where Winston Churchill left off, at the beginning of the 20th century. The result is an idiosyncratic history reflecting Roberts's interests -- and his opinions. He excoriates Lord Mountbatten, the viceroy of India, whose partition of India led to the deaths of millions and produced a new country, Pakistan, that has proved troublesome to this day. But Roberts remains optimistic. The English-speaking peoples, after dithering, met the challenges of Kaiserism, Nazism and communism -- and he predicts that they will, even if now dithering, meet the challenge of Islamist terrorism too.

Read about all five titles on Barone's list.

--Marshal Zeringue