Abbotsford House books Sir Max to talk about global conflict

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ONE of the UK’s foremost authors and historians will visit the Borders next week to give a talk on his latest book about the Second World War.

Abbotsford House visitor centre will be the venue for Sir Max Hastings, who will speak about his new work, All Hell Let Loose.

Sir Max’s visit – on Thursday – comes hot on the heels of an appearance in St Boswells earlier in the summer by another of Britain’s pre-eminent historians and war writers, Antony Beevor, who was also launching his latest work on the Second World War.

All Hell Let Loose reflects Sir Max’s 35 years of research on the global conflict, with the book describing the war’s course of events, featuring vivid descriptions of the tragedies and triumphs of a host of ordinary people, in uniform and out of it. The author emphasises the Russian front, where more than 90 per cent of all soldiers who perished met their fate, and also suggests that the Royal Navy and US Navy were their countries’ outstanding fighting services, while the industrial contribution of the United States was much more important to the Allies’ ultimate victory than that of the US Army.

Other areas examined include the 1943 Bengal famine, in which at least a million people died under British rule, the RAF’s legendary raid on the Ruhr dams, and the horrors of Arctic convoys, desert tank combat and jungle clashes.

Abbotsford Trust chief executive Jason Dyer told us: “Sir Max Hastings is one of the country’s most highly-respected historians, broadcasters and war correspondents, and we’re delighted that he will be hosting one of the first events in our new visitor centre.

“All Hell Let Loose has had exceptional reviews and we believe that Sir Max’s personal insights and judgements will ensure a fascinating evening for anyone attending.”

z Sir Max will discuss All Hell Let Loose and sign copies of his book at Abbotsford visitor centre at 6.30pm on Thursday, September 13. Booking is essential and tickets cost £15.