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A century ago, Britain was accused of masterminding a failed plot to kill Lenin and overthrow his fledgling Bolshevik regime. It was dismissed as Soviet propaganda. But history now suggests otherwise.
For decades what became known as the ‘Lockhart plot’ has been etched in the annals of the Soviet archives.
In early 1918, with the war on the Western Front still at its blood-thirsty height, Russia’s new Bolshevik government was negotiating a peace deal with Germany and withdrawing its exhausted troops from the front in the East.
This did not please London. The move would enable the Germans – who had been fighting a war on two fronts – to concentrate all their forces in the West.
Determined to get the Russians back into the war on the Allied side, the British despatched a young man in his 30s to be London’s representative in Moscow. His name was Robert Bruce Lockhart and he was at the centre of a plot to assassinate Lenin which involved such diverse figures as ‘Ace of Spies’ Sidney Reilly, W. Somerset Maugham and Arthur Ransome.
Lenin was not a worker. A hereditary nobleman on both sides, he was born to a squire’s family. He had money enough to study to become a lawyer and later became a familiar figure in fashionable London. But in all his time in the city, holding forth at Communist congresses and publishing an incendiary newspaper that was smuggled back to Russia, no one seemed to notice that Lenin was a dangerous revolutionary. It was only when he returned to Russia and had the Tsar and his entire family killed that the British realised what a danger he was.
British agents were sent to Russia who plotted to get rid of him – and ultimately did so, with disastrous consequences. So began the battle of political wits that eventually gave us the fictional James Bond and the factual double agent Kim Philby.
Nigel Cawthorne has made a painstaking exploration of the rise of the Russian Revolution in his latest historical chronicle, The Assassination of Lenin. You may find his results astonishing. Cawthorne’s fascination with history bears powerful testimony to the idea that fact is indeed stranger than fiction.
About the Author...
A writer and editor for over 25 years, Nigel Cawthorne has written, contributed to and edited more than sixty books, including Fighting Them On The Beaches: D-Day, 6 June 1944; The Battle of Britain; Vietnam: A War Lost and Won; Stalin; and The Story of the SS. His work has also appeared in over a hundred and fifty newspapers, magazines and part works on both sides of the Atlantic – from the Sun to the Financial Times.
’Excruciating.’ Sunday TimesThe arrests of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell sparked a Prince Andrew world-media frenzy. But few know the palace intrigue behind their long-standing triangular relationship. Going behind the headlines, documentaries and mini-series, PRINCE ANDREW exposes for the first time the unknown details of the Epstein scandal behind secretive palace gates and how it impacted on the power struggle between Andrew and his older brother Prince Charles.
Rife with machinations and plots, it paints a rare and riveting, insider picture of vice and rarified daily life at the royal court. It is an unbelievable story how a boy from Coney Island befriended the world's foremost royal family. PRINCE ANDREW casts a truly eye-watering light on one of the dirtiest stories of our time, giving the reader much-needed forensic insight into all the facts, allegations and counter-allegations.
Kings & Queens of England is an entertaining account of the larger-than-life characters that have ruled England through the ages. Divided into easy-reference chapters based on the ruling dynasties of England, it follows the fascinating history of monarchs from the first Saxon kings to the Windsors of the present day.
Author Nigel Cawthorne paints vivid portraits of a mixed bunch of rulers ranging from the drunken and debauched merry monarch Charles II to the idealized domesticity and colonial ambition of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.
The inside story of the world's most notorious cults.
The strange and sinister world of cults is a source of endless fascination. Their secrets, rituals and shadowy hierarchies make for some of the most disturbing and shocking revelations in history. Most chilling of all is the fact that many of their followers forfeit all independence in order to carry out the often sadistic bidding of a mysterious master manipulator - and continue to defend their leader to this day.
From Charles Manson, who instructed his followers to murder seven people, including a heavily pregnant Sharon Tate, to Aum Shinrikyo, the Japanese doomsday cult that carried out deadly terror attacks, and the People's Temple, these cults and their leaders transfix us with their extreme ability to commit savage acts of cruelty and depravity in the name of a self-appointed higher power.
Many shocking and international cults are brought to life, including:
- The Manson Family
- People's Temple
- Colonia Dignidad
- Aum Shinrikyo
- Heaven's Gate
The enthralling story of the only woman to become Emperor of China...
In this sensational true story, bestselling author Nigel Cawthorne reveals the dark and dramatic story of the only female Emperor in Chinese history, Wu Chao: concubine, manipulator, politician, murderer, and living god.
At the age of 13, Wu Chao was made concubine to the Emperor, bringing great honour to her family.
Born the daughter of a merchant in seventh-century China, she skilfully used her beauty, wit, and powers of manipulation to seduce her way to the throne of the most powerful empire in the medieval world.
Beautiful, charming, and fiendishly clever, Wu plotted to eliminate all those she could not bewitch, executing her enemies without mercy, murdering her own children for political gain, and eventually proclaiming herself a living god.
Ruthlessly reigning for fifty years, she provoked scandal upon scandal by setting up her own imperial harem and giving her lovers positions of power.
From her instruction in the art of love by palace officials to her bloody downfall, this book throws open a window into the colourful world of T’ang Dynasty China, and to the woman whose infamous behaviour ushered in a golden age in history.
Praise for Nigel Cawthorne:
“A racy and absorbing read … [that] will certainly entertain and enthrall … [the story of] a life which must rank as one of the most colourful ever.” - Irish Independent
“Does full justice to the mixture of horror and farce that characterized Francisco’s tryranny.” - Financial Times
“An unforgiving and furious account of a fascinating true story.” - Belfast Telegraph
Nigel Cawthorne is the author of over 160 books including the bestselling 'Alan Johnson: Left Standing', 'Jeremy Clarkson: Motormouth', 'Harry: A Prince Among Men' and 'A Little Bit of Stephen Fry'. He has written numerous newspapers, as well as many TV and radio stations around the world. He lives in Bloomsbury, London's literary area.
'The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us. But, we don't ask for their love - only for their fear.'
The Schutzstaffel, or SS - the brutal elite of the Nazi Party - was founded by Hitler in 1925 to be his personal bodyguard. From 1929 it was headed by Heinrich Himmler, who built its numbers up from under 300 to well over a million by 1945. The SS became the very backbone of Nazi Germany, taking over almost every function of the state.
SS members were chosen not only to be the living embodiment of Hitler's notion of 'Aryan supremacy', but also to cement undying loyalty to the Führer at every level of German society. Merciless fanatics in jackboots, the SS systematically slaughtered, tortured, and enslaved millions. This is the story of the rise and fall of one of the most evil organizations the world has ever seen.
When nineteen-year-old Gavrilo Princip assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austrian throne, in 1914, he triggered the First World War. Few assassinations have had such devastating consequences, but political assassinations have always changed the world – often in ways that the assassins and their cohorts could not have predicted.
The murder of John F. Kennedy left Lyndon B. Johnson free to escalate the war in Vietnam. However, the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. while not derailing the demands for African American civil rights in the US, did lead many to abandoning his commitment to nonviolence and adopting more radical means.
In a world globalized by social media, more lone-wolf assassins seek their fifteen minutes of fame by taking out a famous figure, while leaders of world powers have everything to gain by decapitating terrorist organizations, employing the latest surveillance technology to obliterate their leaders.
There are forty-eight assassinations that changed the world in this book. Rest assured that in the coming years we will see many more.
Top Gear is one of the most successful television shows of all time.
Each episode pulls in some 350 million viewers in 170 countries.
According to the Guinness Book of Records it is the most widely watched factual TV show in the world and the franchise is thought to be worth $1.5 billion.
Although there are two other presenters on the show, it is Clarkson who takes the plaudits and fends off the brickbats.
He is the star who has built it up from being a minor motoring programme on a minority TV channel to a global phenomenon.
On television, Clarkson is larger than life.
His secret is simple. Both on air and in his newspaper columns, he says what he thinks – about cars and any other subject under the sun – usually in the most robust fashion imaginable.
But who is the real Jeremy Clarkson?
Behind the scenes, what makes him tick?
'Motormouth' is a concise, in-depth biography that, like Clarkson himself, pulls no punches. It is not for the faint-hearted. Anyone who reads the Guardian, eats muesli or wears sandals should look away now…
"A great biography of a great writer." - Tome Kasey, best-selling author of Trade Off.
Nigel Cawthorne is the author of some eighty books - and a major contributor to at least twenty more, including ‘Che Guevara: The Last Conquistador’ and ‘The Empress of South America’. He lives in Bloomsbury, London's literary area.
Endeavour Press is the UK's leading independent publisher of digital books.
Beginning with Leonides of Sparta, who died at Thermopylae in 480 b.c.e., and ending with General Giap, a Vietnamese leader; Moshe Dayan, commander of the Israeli Defense Force during the 1967 Six-Day War; and Colin Powell, "Military Commanders" provides an informative overview of the careers and battles of one hundred military commanders and their places in history. Divided by eras, the material covers the ancient world, the Anglo-Saxons and the Vikings, the Middle Ages, the Napoleonic period, the American War of Independence and the Civil War, the two World Wars, and the postwar conflicts.
Each entry provides a chronology of major events as well as a summary of achievements. The entries, both fascinating and easy to read, succeed in providing a clear yet nuanced picture of the role of the individual in historical events.
An engaging and thought-provoking book, full of facts, pertinent quotations, and anecdotes, "Military Commanders" is sure to prove of interest to a wide range of readers.
Nigel Cawthorne has a degree from University College, London. He has written, contributed to, and edited more than sixty books including, " Fighting Them on the Beaches: D-Day, 6 June 1944"; T"urning the Tide: Decisive Battles of the Second World War"; and "The Encyclopedia of World Terrorism." His work has appeared in over one hundred and fifty newspapers and magazines on both sides of the Atlantic.