Richard Overy

Taking Sides

The Atlantic and Its Enemies: A Personal History of the Cold War


Allen Lane/The Penguin Press 597pp £30 order from our bookshop

Norman Stone has called this account of most of the second half of the twentieth century a personal history. I should also declare an interest: since I feature at least twice in his introduction as his very first research student, I might feel some justification in making this a personal review. The narrative begins properly, Stone tells us, in 1947, the year of my birth. This history is also my history; the things that Stone admires or rejects or teases are things that every intelligent observer of the past sixty years has views about. On a great many of them our views are at odds, but on some important issues he was probably more right in the long run than his precocious lefty pupil, hard though it might be to admit it.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • sorry I can’t spell fluttering. I was agitated.,
    • Probably try and get an announcement out later, for all these male writers who think of fluttering inner muscle sheaths...,
    • He felt the muscles far inside her flutteriung around him,
    • Next week sees return, and we've got discounted tickets on offer, right here: ,
    • We're rarely topical - tricky as a monthly magazine - but we've an article this month all about Laurence Binyon, po… ,
    • "We will remember them" - who wrote those words, and why have them become our terms of memorial? ,
    • RT : Wow. We're over the moon with this stunning piece on My Cat Yugoslavia, 'a truly extraordinary novel.'… ,