Book Review: Live from Downing Street, By Nick Robinson


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The Independent Culture

Robinson splits his book into a history of politics and the media, from the “graphic and brutal caricatures” that Walpole had to fear, to the 14-day rule during the Second World War, and a personal account of his own part in how the news comes to us, as a political editor with the BBC.

His own feelings about Tony Blair (his “capacity to act for the camera”) are clear enough, but he “confesses to liking” Alastair Campbell, in spite of the “unhealthy infatuation between the media and Blair” which ended “in contempt”. Robinson isn’t a particularly inspiring writer but he has clarity and there’s intriguing insight into those high-octane political moments, such as the “dodgy dossier” mess which resulted in the death of Dr David Kelly.