Neville Chamberlain was nothing if not a diligent correspondent. Every week he wrote to his sisters Ida and Hilda letters that were in effect a diary of everything he was doing politically. They have long been invaluable for historians in archive form, but now they have finally been published in extenso, along with a scholarly fifty-page introduction and helpful footnotes by their very diligent editor, Robert Self. There is also a glossary of nicknames so that readers will be able to identify ‘The All-Highest’ (Lord Curzon), ‘The Goat’ (Lloyd George), ‘Our Herb’ (Herbert Samuel), and so on. Self marks the triumphant conclusion of a five-year endeavour with this, the fourth and last volume, which covers Chamberlain from January 1934 until his death in November 1940.
Unfortunately the huge price of this book will mean that few will be able to buy a copy. However, anyone visiting a library will now be able to read the week-by-week testimony of the man who masterminded much of the Abdication Crisis, pursued the appeasement of Nazi Germany until the