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Lloyd George: the Great Outsider - mixed reviews

October 2, 2010 5:00 PM

The cover of Roy Hattersley's new biography of Lloyd George - sour and flawed or the best and most balanced account available?

The new biography of David Lloyd George by Roy Hattersley has had mixed reviews since its recent publication by Little, Brown books. A taste of the reviewers' opinion is revealed below but the Society simply welcomes the wealth of new interest in our hero and encourages all visitors to the website to read the book and make up their own mind as to whether or not Hattersley has written the definitive single volume life of Lloyd George or whether that book has yet to appear.

Anthony Howard the political commentator who has been a speaker at the Society weekend schools in past few years, enjoyed the book and described the biography as "....the best and most balanced account of the rise and fall of the charismatic figure who, more than 60 years after his death, remains one of the most contentious characters of the British political system." You can read that review in full in the Daily Telegraph at: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/bookreviews/8020789/David-Lloyd-George-the-Great-Outsider-by-Roy-Hattersley-review.html

However, writing in The Guardian, Miranda Seymour says she feels the biography was a let-down, a sour attempt to do justice to the subject and flawed in several ways, not least Hattersley's apparent failure to go beyond the published sources. You can read her review at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/oct/02/outsider-lloyd-george-hattersley-review

Andrew Adonis, one time Lib Dem who joined New Labour and became a government minister, is kinder to his House of Lords colleague, in his review of the book in the New Statesman judging that "....Hattersley paints a splendid portrait of this genius of modern liberalism." See the review at: http://www.newstatesman.com/books/2010/09/lloyd-george-british-coalition