Blair's memoirs to be published in September

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The Independent Culture

Tony Blair's memoirs of 10 years as British prime minister will be published in September, entitled "The Journey", the publishers said Thursday.

Blair stepped down in June 2007, handing the premiership to Gordon Brown after leading their Labour party to a record three consecutive election wins and waging military campaigns in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kosovo and Sierra Leone.

"I have tried to write a book which describes the human as much as the political dimensions of life as prime minister," Blair said of the long-awaited volume.

"Though necessarily retrospective, it is an attempt to inform and shape current and future thinking as much as an historical account of the past. Most of all I want readers to have as much pleasure reading it as I had writing it."

On the front cover picture issued by publishing house Hutchinson, Blair is shown staring straight at the camera, dressed smartly but informally in a black jacket and shirt with the top button undone.

The chief executive of the Random House Group, which owns Hutchinson, Gail Rebuck, said the book would "break new ground" for a political memoir.

"His book is frank, open, revealing and written in an intimate and accessible style," she said.

"As an account of the nature and uses of power, it will have a readership that extends well beyond politics, to all those who want to understand the challenge of leadership in today's world."

Blair will make an international tour to promote the book, which will be published simultaneously in the United States and Canada, in e-Book form, and as an audio book, read by Blair himself.

As well as being Britain's most successful Labour prime minister, Blair was also one of its most controversial leaders, in particular his decision to take Britain to war with Iraq in March 2003 alongside US president George W. Bush.

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