Macmillan is a history professor at the University of Toronto and is also Provost of Trinity College. For her work on this book, she had access to many private collections including those of her great-grandfather, Prime Minister Lloyd George.
Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World recounts in precise detail the six months of negotiations that took place in Paris, France following World War I. The book focuses on the "Big Three" - Woodrow Wilson (United States), Lloyd George (Great Britain), and Georges Clemenceau (France) along with the role of others such as Faisal I of Iraq, Lawrence of Arabia, who joined the Arab delegation Gertrude Bell, the "Uncrowned Queen of Iraq", and Ho Chi Minh, then a kitchen helper at the Ritz Hotel who submitted a petition for an independent Vietnam.
The acclaimed book details the punishing conditions imposed on Germany and how three men rewrote the map of the world. It also attempts to debunk a much-quoted theory of John Maynard Keynes, who propagated the idea that the conditions imposed on Germany in the Treaty of Versailles led to the rise of Adolf Hitler.
Referred to as a landmark work of narrative history, the book was first published in Britain. It has won the Duff Cooper Prize for an outstanding literary work in the field of history, biography or politics, the Hessell-Tiltman Prize for History, the most prestigious Samuel Johnson Prize for the best work of non-fiction published in the United Kingdom and the 2003 Governor General's Literary Award in Canada.
The work has been an international best seller, especially in Great Britain and Canada.
Without question, Margaret MacMillan's Paris 1919 is the most honest and engaging history ever written about those fateful months after World War I when the maps of Europe were redrawn. -- Douglas Brinkley, director of the Eisenhower Center