The Glamour Boys by Chris Bryant
GTW BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR
A story of unsung bravery at a defining moment in Britain's history...
This book is amazing!
We like to think we know the story of how Britain went to war with Germany in 1939, but there is one chapter that has never been told. In the early 1930s, a group of young, queer British MPs visited Berlin on a series of trips that would change the course of the Second World War.
Having witnessed the Nazis' brutality first-hand, these men were some of the first to warn Britain about Hitler, repeatedly speaking out against their government's policy of appeasing him. Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain hated them. Branding them 'the glamour boys' to insinuate something untoward about them, he had their phones tapped and threatened them with deselection and exposure.
At a time when even the suggestion of homosexuality could land you in prison, the bravery these men were forced to show in their personal lives gave them extraordinary courage in public.
“An inspiring story of defiant courage - alternately hilarious, triumphant and harrowing. A story about which I knew nothing but which has filled me with admiration for its brave and brilliant participants and for Chris Bryant's superb, suspenseful telling” – Stephen Fry,
“A fascinating and thrillingly told story. Chris Bryant weaves together political and cultural history with great skill. And in doing so he shines new light on an unspoken but hugely important group of men, whose bravery shaped the course of the Second World War. This is an important, wonderfully written and often very moving book” – Dan Jones,
“Gay MPs of the 1930s could play a major part in national politics, but only if they led a dangerous double life. In this tale of high society, high camp and high courage, Chris Bryant charts what that meant in the everyday life of a group of Parliamentarians. In affluent, liberal circles their homosexuality was widely tolerated, but they were never free from the dangers of blackmail, violence or prosecution. Chris Bryant paints a compelling picture of a glamorous, gossipy, unstable world of concealment and enjoyment – and of the bravery of a group of gay MPs . . . A fascinating book is a story that needs to be told, and that fills an important historical gap” – Neil MacGregor, author of 'A History of the World in 100 Objects'
Publication Date: 5 August 2021