The firstcomprehensive history of the deeply entwined personal and public lives of theChurchills and the Kennedys and what their special relationship meant forGreat Britain and the United States
When Lions Roar begins in the mid-1930s at Chartwell,Winston Churchill’s country estate, with new revelations surrounding a secretbusiness deal orchestrated by Joseph P. Kennedy, the father of future Americanpresident John F. Kennedy. From London to America, these two powerful familiesshared an ever-widening circle of friends, lovers, and political associates—soonshattered by World War II, spying, sexual infidelity, and the tragic deaths ofJFK’s sister Kathleen and his older brother Joe Jr. By the 1960s and JFK’spresidency, the Churchills and the Kennedys had overcome their bitterdifferences and helped to define the greatness in each other.
Acclaimed biographer Thomas Maier tells this dynastic saga throughfathers and their sons—and the remarkable women in their lives—providing keeninsight into the Churchill and Kennedy families and the profound forces ofduty, loyalty, courage, and ambition that shaped them. He explores the seismicimpact of Winston Churchill on JFK and American policy, wrestling anew with thelegacy of two titans of the twentieth century. Maier also delves deeply intothe conflicted bond between Winston and his son Randolph and the contrastingexample of patriarch Joe Kennedy, a failed politician who successfullychanneled his personal ambitions to his children. By approaching these iconicfigures from a new perspective, Maier not only illuminates the intricacies ofthis all-important cross-Atlantic allegiance but also enriches ourunderstanding of the tumultuous time in which they lived and the world eventsthey so greatly influenced.
With deeply human portraits of these flawed but larger-than-lifefigures, When Lions Roar explores the special relationship between theChurchills and Kennedys, between Great Britain and the United States,highlighting all of its emotional complexity and historic significance.