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modern British history


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So this has absolutely nothing to do with grad school, but...

I feel as though I need to read a book on modern British history. My knowledge of European history generally is pretty sad, but I think I want to start with Britain. Anyone have any recommendations?

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The best book to come out in British history in the last decade is, in my view, Priya Satia's Spies in Arabia, about intelligence gathering during World War I. The sections on air power in Iraq are extremely relevant for today's situation. That having been said, it's a long (400 pages) and complicated book, so if you want popular history there's tons of choices on your average Barnes & Noble bookshelf.

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If you feel you are looking for overviews, see Colin Matthew's edited volume in the oxford short history on the nineteenth century and Peter Clarke's Hope and Glory on the twentieth. Both are excellent starting points.

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