Lionel Messi is the greatest player of his generation – perhaps of all time. The talisman of a Barcelona team that has dominated Spanish and European football, and the winner of the FIFA Ballon d’Or an unprecedented four times in a row, he is fast, elusive and mesmerising.
Luca Caioli draws on numerous exclusive testimonies to tell Messi’s story, including his parents and extended family, his coaches, those who have played alongside him and even Messi himself.
Messi is a revealing portrait of football’s most exciting star, updated to include the electrifying 2012/13 season in which the humble young sportsman rewrote the record books to the delight of fans across the globe.
Never far from centre stage, Edwina Currie falls comfortably into that category of celebrity you simply cannot ignore. Her first published diaries explosively revealed an affair with former Prime Minister John Major. This second volume, which begins in 1992 with her refusal to serve in Major's government, is no less revelatory about her colleagues, encounters with others in the public eye and, of course, her extraordinary career. Honest, compulsive and of the moment, this collection covers her life in Parliament up to the election of Blair's Labour government, but more importantly sees Edwina's emergence as a mainstay in the public imagination, first as a bestselling author, then as a commentator, broadcaster, presenter and performer. Shot through with her trademark effervescence and sense of fun, this volume of diaries documents one of the biggest characters in British public life at her saucy, scathing best.
Inside Pepys' London reveals a vivid picture of London at a critical point in history - poised to become a major centre of international commerce and culture. It provides accounts of all aspects of contemporary life, from the arts and entertainment, to politics and religion. Though no king or great general, thanks to his diary Samuel Pepys is one of the most interesting characters in history. His life encompassed happenings of huge historical and human impact - the execution of Charles I and the Great Fire of London to name but two. This book takes Pepys' diary, which he kept almost daily from 1660-1669, as its central resource, but also includes a range of other contemporary sources to provide a fascinating and vivid picture of the times.
Acclaimed as one of the sharpest political intellects of his generation, David Laws saw his ministerial career nosedive before it had begun when, after only seventeen days as Chief Secretary to the Treasury, he was forced to resign when unintended breaches of parliamentary expenses rules came to light. You can’t keep a good man down, however, and he returned to government, where he was also responsible for implementation of the coalition agreement and planning the Lib Dems’ strategy in the run-up to the 2015 election.
David began writing a diary in March 2012 and continued writing it throughout his ministerial career and up to the 2015 election, which devastated the Liberal Democrats in Parliament.
Frank, acerbic, sometimes shocking and often funny, Coalition Diaries chronicles the historic Liberal Democrat–Conservative coalition government, offering extraordinary pen portraits of all the personalities involved, some of whom were cast aside at the election or put to the knife after Brexit, while others are active in today’s government.
Now the second-longest-reigning monarch after Elizabeth II, Queen Victoria ruled at the height of Britain's power on the world stage and was a symbol of stability at home and abroad. Against this background of pomp and power, she was a passionate woman who led an often turbulent private life. Victoria was just eight months old when her father died and his paternal role was taken by her uncle Leopold of Saxe-Coburg and Sir John Conroy, an ally of her mother. The two of them sought to control Victoria and isolate her from others. This is the story of the Queen of England who had to fight to forge her own way in the world, and who found true romance with Prince Albert only to have happiness snatched from her when he died of typhoid at the age of 42.
On her 82nd birthday, a grandmother was challenged to hike 100 kilometres (62miles) in Spain’s Galician mountains. Walking the ancient Camino de Santiago route with a heavy backpack, she faced adventures with other pilgrims, sticky mud, steep climbs and blistering midday heat. This was one way she faced the adventures and challenges of the third or late age.
This uplifting book addresses the question for those in their 50s and beyond: ‘What now, what next, what has it all been about?’ It shows that far from settling into comfy slippers, whatever problems life presents, if a new challenge is accepted, a purposeful new life adventure begins.
After Margaret Thatcher, Edwina Currie was the second most prominent woman in British politics during the 1980s. Indeed, she was often spoken of as a potential Prime Minister. Her outspokenness and her lively, media-friendly personality won her a much higher profile than her status as a junior minister would otherwise have commanded. When she was forced to resign from the government after warning of the danger signs of salmonella infection in eggs, she was already a national figure. Revealing her four-year affair with former Prime Minister John Major, Edwina's diaries caused a media sensation. A decade on, and now with previously unpublished material, the diaries still provide a remarkable insight into politics at the top by a writer with an observant eye and a sharp sense of humour. Edwina Currie's honesty, her frankness and her courage make these unexpurgated diaries an irresistible read.
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