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Letters Home: 1926-1945 - Brian Johnston

Weidenfeld & Nicholson, 1998, Hardback in Dust Wrapper.
Condition: Very Good+ — in Very Good+ Dust Wrapper.

Illustrated by way of: Black & White Photographs; Illustrated endpapers and blanks;

From the cover: “From the year Brian Johnston went to boarding school in 1920 until he was demobbed in 1945, he wrote a letter to his mother almost every week. She kept a great many of them and, to his family’s surprise, a bundle of over 400 of Brian’s letters were found hidden in a box in his study after his death in 1994.

They cover Brian’s years at Eton and Oxford, his job in the family coffee business in the City, Hamburg and Brazil, and his service with die Grenadier Guards during the war.

The letters are warm and affectionate, witty and full of life, and Brian’s cheerful personality shines through on every page. They reveal his schoolboy love of bad jokes, cricket and chocolate cake. They disclose how he plays practical jokes at Oxford with his friend William Douglas Home and how, in trying to learn about the coffee business, he dreams of becoming an actor.

He recounts meeting leading figures such as Winston Churchill and Lady Astor. In Germany he hears Goebbels speak at a rally. He tells how Alec Douglas-Home borrows his shirt to go to Munich with Neville Chamberlain for his momentous meeting with Adolf Hitler. His war correspondence includes vivid descriptions of jubilation as the Guards Armoured Division liberated towns across France and Belgium at the end of the war.

Brian Johnston published several volumes of autobiography, but he wrote little of his early life. These, often intimate, letters provide a remarkable insight into one of our most loved radio and television personalities.”

Size: 9½" x 6¼". Green boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. [XXXI] 383 pages.

This one has already found a new owner.