Cover snakes and ladders  002

In the high-stakes world of politics, there are superb highs and terrible lows – and never more so than in the period since 2010, during which so much has changed. Few are better placed to give an insider’s view of the turmoil than the Rt Hon. Dame Andrea Leadsom MP.

From working cross-party on reform of the European Union to taking to the stage at Wembley as a key figure in the Leave campaign, through two leadership bids, Cabinet intrigue, squaring off against an increasingly erratic Speaker, founding a campaign to give babies the best start for life and securing a landmark Spending Review settlement, Andrea’s story tracks the ups and downs of a political career and particularly some of the challenges for female MPs. In this very personal account, she gives a real insight into the daily goings-on with ministers, parliamentary colleagues, civil servants, special advisers, the media and constituents.

As a lifelong optimist, Andrea argues that political careers don’t always – as is so often claimed – end in failure, and explains how, like a game of snakes and ladders, politics is often about getting yourself into the right place at the right time.


“A warm and personal story of the highs and horrors of modern political life, with gasp-inducing details of friendship and betrayal. Read it and you’ll understand better the collective nervous breakdown of the political class during an extraordinary era.”

Laura Kuenssberg

“Andrea is clearly motivated by her passion for making a positive difference to the lives of others, and this comes through in spades in her fascinating book.”

Iain Duncan Smith

“Andrea has had a ringside seat at all the big political events of the past decade. This is a must-read for all politics lovers!”

Iain Dale

“Much coverage of the EU referendum and the battle for Brexit has focused on a few, often male, figures. Andrea has been central to British politics – from the Leave campaign to Cabinet to the dramas in the House of Commons – and I’m glad the whole story is discussed in this book, together with wisdom and encouragement for others, particularly women, wanting to serve in public life.”

Penny Mordaunt

“Leadsom sincerely comes across as the nicest person you’ve never met … Gives valuable insight into the stresses of politics, particularly on friendships.”

Tim Stanley, Daily Telegraph

“Jaw-dropping revelations … Andrea Leadsom’s honesty and willingness to own her mistakes make for a refreshing read.”

Ed Vaizey, The House
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  • Paperback, 336 pages
  • ISBN: 9781785907951
  • 14 March 2023
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