Hugh Sebag-Montefiore is the author of a history book about the 1st World War, and two best selling history books about the 2nd World War. He also wrote Kings On The Catwalk: The Louis Vuitton Moët-Hennessy Affair.
His most recent book Somme: Into The Breach was published in June 2016 to coincide with the Battle of the Somme centenary. It describes one of the bloodiest battles on the Western Front during World War 1.
This book’s first words are: ‘At 7.19 a.m. on 1 July 1916, the tension in the British trenches opposite the German stronghold of Beaumont Hamel, reached fever pitch. Expectations of victory had never been higher. The ‘Big Push’ was about to begin.
For seven days, as part of the softening up process before the great advance, British, and French, artillery had been pounding the German front line to the north and south of where it was bisected by the River Somme. However, the point where the German line scaled the heights that dominate Beaumont Hamel, a sleepy French village 11 miles north of the river, was receiving some of the closest attention. It was one of several German strongpoints where British miners, supported by the infantry, were hoping to administer the coup de grâce. Click here to read more
His previous book was Dunkirk: Fight To The Last Man. It has been described as ‘masterly’ (The Times), ‘a narrative triumph’ (Sunday Telegraph), ‘a marvellous tribute’ (Sunday Times), ‘poignant’ (Daily Telegraph), ‘a tour de force’ (Daily Mail), ‘definitive’ (Evening Standard and New York Sun) . A special 75th Anniversary edition published in May 2015, contains unabridged personal accounts by some of the witnesses quoted in the original version.
This book’s first words are: ‘At 3 a.m. on 14 May 1940, events at Château des Bondons, headquarters of the French Commander-in-Chief of the North-East Front, were unfolding, which, if observed by a British general, would have made his blood run cold. Just four days after the German attack on France, Belgium and Holland had commenced, the French commander, General Alphonse Georges, who was supposed to be leading French, Belgian and British troops into battle, had broken down and was crying…’ Click here to read more
His first history book, Enigma: The Battle For The Code, was Number 1 in The Sunday Times list of history book bestsellers during the year in which the paperback was published. A special 70th Anniversary edition, published in 2011, contains fascinating new material, not in the original version.
This book’s first words are: ‘I was standing in the middle of a clearing in a pine forest just outside Berlin when I realized I must have found what I had been seeking. For months I had been hunting for some concrete evidence about the Enigma spy, Hans Thilo Schmidt…Now I was almost sure that I had literally stumbled upon his last resting place…’ Click here to read more