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Graham Stewart

RRP: £12.99

2 January 2014

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781848871465

RRP: £25.00

1 January 2013

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781848871458

RRP: £9.99

1 January 2013

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781782391371

Britain in the 1980s was a polarized nation. Determined to take the country in a radically different direction was the most dominant, commanding and controversial leader of her age, Margaret Thatcher. With the two main political parties as far apart as at any time since the 1930s, the period was riven by violent confrontation, beginning with the explosion of rioting that rocked England’s cities in 1981 and again in 1985; a year-long fight with the National Union of Mineworkers, and then with print workers in Wapping. There was the war to retake the Falkland Islands and the re-escalation of the troubles in Northern Ireland, which began with hunger strikes and peaked with the attempt to assassinate the entire Cabinet in the Brighton bombing.

It was also a decade of political innovation – in the life and death of the Social Democratic Party, the mass privatization of state-owned industries, the sale of council houses and the deregulation of financial markets – and cultural ferment, with the rise and fall of indie pop, the emergence of house music, Channel 4 and the growth of alternative comedy; and Prince Charles’s interventions on architecture.

Graham Stewart’s magnificent and comprehensive history of the eighties covers all these events, and many more, with exhilarating verve and detail, and also examines the legacy of a decade that sowed the seeds of modern Britain.

REVIEWS

Graham Stewart has done a terrific job. His book brings the decade vividly to life and convincingly places it in perspective... Stewart is a gifted writer. He possesses a novelist's ability to engage the reader's interest... ExcellentToby Young
Mail on Sunday

Superb... Throughout this carefully researched history, Stewart conjures the urban decay and collapsed industries of early-80s Britain. Rarely has history seemed so close to us, yet so farIan Thomson
Observer

A thorough, well-marshalled overview of the politics of the 1980sDominic Sandbrook
Sunday Times

An entertaining and insightful summary of interesting times
The Times

Sensationally good... Stewart is clever, stylish, learned and occasionally funny... Absorbing history
Scotsman

Lively, incisive and valiantly thorough. Stewart is particularly good on Thatcher's strengths and weaknesses
Spectator

Stewart has written an accomplished, politically minded history of a decade in which Britain was painfully reborn
Daily Telegraph