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Five Days that shocked the World



My latest book examines the five days from 28 April 1945, when Mussolini was dragged out of his mistress’s bed and shot, to 2 May, when news of Hitler’s death reached the outside world. It covers all the core events, but tells you also what Jack Kennedy, Henry Kissinger, Audrey Hepburn, Sophia Loren, Joseph Heller, Roman Polanski, Leni Riefenstahl, Paula Hitler, two future Popes and lots of others were up to at the same time.

As well as all the usual languages, the book has been translated into Czech, Turkish and Chinese, all new territories for me. The Times of London gave it a thousand-word news story on 22 March 2012 (‘Personal battles amid the momentous backdrop of war’ by Ben Hoyle). The Daily Mail followed with a double page spread on 7 April (‘How a teenage Audrey Hepburn escaped from a Nazi brothel’ by Annabel Venning).

You had to read the tiny credit at the end of the Mail’s story to see that it came from my book, but the paper did have the grace to say that the book was ‘riveting’. The online version went around the world and became a news item in the Himalayan Times, another first for me!

Five Days that shocked the World has also been an Amazon No 1 best seller in several categories. It is currently in development hell in Hollywood.

Read an extract…

‘Riveting’ – Daily Mail

‘Fascinating’ – The Times

‘Outstanding’ – Midwest Book Review

‘Utterly absorbing’ – Macleans