The Powerful and the Damned

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What to expect

Brought to you by Penguin.

‘As FT editor, I was a privileged interlocutor to people in power around the world, each offering unique insights into high-level decision-making and political calculation, often in moments of crisis. These diaries offer snapshots of leadership in an age of upheaval…’

Lionel Barber was Editor of the Financial Times for the tech boom, the global financial crisis, the rise of China, Brexit, and mainstream media’s fight for survival in the age of fake news.

In this unparalleled, no-holds-barred diary of life behind the headlines, he reveals the private meetings and exchanges with political leaders on the eve of referendums, the conversations with billionaire bankers facing economic meltdown, exchanges with Silicon Valley tech gurus and pleas from foreign emissaries desperate for inside knowledge, all against the backdrop of a wildly shifting media landscape.

The result is a fascinating – and at times scathing – portrait of power in our modern age; who has it, what it takes and what drives the men and women with the world at their feet. Featuring close encounters with Trump, Cameron, Blair, Putin, Merkel and Mohammed Bin Salman and many more, this is a rare portrait of the people who continue to shape our world and who quite literally, make the news.

‘An extraordinary personal and professional insight into fifteen years of tumultuous times.’ – Tony Blair

Riveting – a world of power, money, ego and disaster, as witnessed from the front row’ – Philippe Sands

Brutal, brilliant and scurrilously funny … don’t miss it’ – Misha Glenny

© Lionel Barber 2020 (P) Penguin Audio 2020

Critics Review

  • A remarkable book, alternately brutal, brilliant and scurrilously funnya gripping page-turner full of sharp pen portraits that reveal the anxieties and vulnerabilities of the rich and powerful. Don’t miss it

    Misha Glenny, bestselling author of MCMAFIA, now a major Netflix series
  • Riveting – a world of power, money, ego and disaster, as witnessed from the front row

    Philippe Sands, bestselling author of EAST WEST STREET and THE RATLINE
  • Gives the reader an extraordinary personal and professional insight into fifteen years of tumultuous times

    Tony Blair
  • Vastly entertaining and insightful… Barber saw it all from the front row. An exhilarating read

    Sir Harold Evans ex-editor of the SUNDAY TIMES
  • A delicious romp, dripping with bon mots about the people and issues Lionel Barber encountered while ensuring the FT thrived in digital times. It’s as fine an advertisement for the virtues of journalism as you will find

    Sir Michael Moritz, Silicon Valley Venture Capitalist and sponsor of the Booker Prize

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