Two remarkable and important insider accounts of the negotiations that led to the birth of the coalition.
The Liberal Democrats’ and Conservatives’ decision to form a coalition government has changed the face of British politics. These two books set out the inside story of how this momentous event unfolded, and how – together – the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives have started to address the challenge of a massive government budget deficit.
22 Days in May is the first detailed Liberal Democrat insider account of the negotiations which led to the formation of the Lib Dem/Conservative coalition government in May 2010, along with an essential description of the early days of the government. David Laws MP was one of the key Lib Dems who negotiated the coalition deal, and the book includes his in-depth, behind the scenes, account of the talks with the Conservative and Labour teams after the general election, as well as the debates within his own party about how the Lib Dems should respond to the challenges and threats of a hung parliament.
5 Days To Power gives an account of the negotiations that led to the political earthquake of a Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government from the viewpoint of Conservative Party insiders. With unique access to participants in and around the drama, Rob Wilson MP looks at the key relationships, arguments and secret meetings, and reveals how and when the key decisions were made by the parties. This book provides compelling insight and substantial new information and material into a ruthless competition for power that developed over a five day period in May.
David Laws is the Lib Dem MP for Yeovil. He was briefly Chief Secretary to the Treasury in David Cameron’s coalition government. He is co-editor of the influential The Orange Book (2004) and Britain after Blair (2006). Rob Wilson is the Conservative MP for Reading East. He is a former Conservative Party whip and Shadow Minister for Higher Education and is currently PPS to Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Jeremy Hunt MP.
22 Days in May and 5 Days to Power are published on the 15th November but available to pre-order from the Biteback website now, both priced £9.99.
Guardian Books Podcast: Political books special with Polly Toynbee and Will Hutton.
In the midst of party conference season last Saturday's edition of the Guardian Books Podcast reviewed the current role of political literature. The discussion covers the success of Which Way's Up? by Nick Boles and What did the Baby Boomers ever do for us? by Francis Beckett - who is a guest pannelist in the studio - and identifies Biteback as a key new player in the field of political publishing!
"One of the most interesting books about the last election." - David Grossman
On Monday night, as part of their coverage from the Conservative Conference in Birmingham, Newsnight, discussed the reasons behind the Tories' failure to win an overall majority in the 2010 elections.
The programme's Political Correspondent David Grossman drew on observations made by Lord Ashcroft in his latest book Minority Verdict:The Conservative Party, the voters and the 2010 election.
"The key to the result lies in the gap between the change people wanted and the change they thought we were offering. Going into the election, voters had little clear idea of what the Conservatives stood for or what we intended to do in government... At the same time, Labour's scaremongering about our intentions still resonated among too many floating voters who were not convinced we had really changed." - Lord Ashcroft
Lord Ashcroft's Minority Verdict is available now priced £10.00
...we have reached for the bestselling Yes Minister Miscellany.
What with budget cuts, the revision of defence spending, the occasional leak of official documents and murmerings of the effects upon the Coalition of a replacement of Trident, Yes Minister proves that it really is as timeless as ever:
"Conventional Forces are terribly expensive. Much cheaper just to press a button."
Submit your favourite Yes Minister quote to be entered into our free prize draw. Biteback Publishing is running a competiton in tandem with the Yes, Prime Minister stage show and we're offering three lucky winners the chance to win two tickets to see the show!
To enter, simply email your favourite Yes Minister or Yes Prime Minister one-liner and your contact details to email@example.com. All entries will be entered into a random draw and the winners picked and announced on the Biteback website on 1st November 2010.
Mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone received his copy of Labour's Revival from author Paul Richards at the Labour Conference last week.
May it bring you much happiness Kenneth!
Get your copy of Labour's Revival: the moderniser's manifesto now for £12.99