Roy Jenkins was the author of twenty-one books, including the New York Times bestsellers Churchill and Gladstone, the latter of which won the Whitbread Prize for Biography. Active in British politics for half a century, he entered the House of Commons as a Labour member in 1948 and subsequently served as minister of aviation, home secretary, and chancellor of the Exchequer. In 1977--81 he was president of the European Commission. In 1987 he became chancellor of Oxford University and took his seat in the House of Lords as Lord Jenkins of Hill head. He also served as president of the Royal Society of Literature.
"Elegantly describing FDR's course through a score of personal and political ordeals, Jenkins astutely shows us the man in all his many incarnations: the confident son of privilege who morphed into a wry, young politico on the rise; the startled victim, for whom all things had previously come so easily, hitting the brick wall of polio and fighting back, strenuously leading his broken country out of its two great 20th-century crises: the Great Depression and World War II. " - Publishers Weekly