The General: Charles De Gaulle and the France He Saved

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Skyhorse Publishing, Jun 20, 2012 - Biography & Autobiography - 736 pages
No leader of modern times was more uniquely patriotic than Charles de Gaulle. As founder and first president of the Fifth Republic, General de Gaulle saw himself as “carrying France on [his] shoulders.” 

In his twenties, he fought for France in the trenches and at the epic battle of Verdun. In the 1930s, he waged a lonely battle to enable France to better resist Hitler’s Germany. Thereafter, he twice rescued the nation from defeat and decline by extraordinary displays of leadership, political acumen, daring, and bluff, heading off civil war and leaving a heritage adopted by his successors of right and left.

 Le Général, as he became known from 1940 on, appeared as if he was carved from a single monumental block, but was in fact extremely complex, a man with deep personal feelings and recurrent mood swings, devoted to his family and often seeking reassurance from those around him. This is a magisterial, sweeping biography of one of the great leaders of the twentieth century and of the country with which he so identified himself. Written with terrific verve, narrative skill, and rigorous detail, the first major work on de Gaulle in fifteen years brings alive as never before the private man as well as the public leader through exhaustive research and analysis.

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User Review  - Whiskey3pa - LibraryThing

Readable look at de Gaulle. A lot of material is presented and there are some slow periods. A good, accurate look at an odd figure of the 20th century. Read full review

THE GENERAL: Charles de Gaulle and the France He Saved

User Review  - Kirkus

A keen biography conveying the French general's driving sense of destiny. Considered by the French to be the greatest French figure since Napoleon ("a monument carved out of some ancient rock, above ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Jonathan Fenby is a former editor of the Observer and the South China Morning Post, and is a former bureau chief in France for the Economist and Reuters. He is the author of ten books, including the acclaimed biography Chiang Kai-Shek: China’s Generalissimo and the Nation He Lost and The Sinking of the Lancastria, which tells the story of the greatest disaster in British naval history. He was made a commander of the British Empire and a knight of the French Order of Merit for services to journalism. He lives in London.
 

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