Book Launched — Going for Broke: The Rise of Rishi Sunak
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Book Launched — Going for Broke: The Rise of Rishi Sunak

Book Launched —Going for Broke: The Rise of Rishi Sunak

On November 12, 2020, Lord Ashcroft's new book, "Going for Broke: The Rise of Rishi Sunak", was launched. The book, which is published by Biteback, was officially launched this evening – but it was a live online event due to the current lockdown and other restrictions.

"Going for Broke" could hardly be better timed – as the Chancellor of the Exchequer fights to save the country's economy in the wake of the severe challenges presented by COVID-19.

The book goes on sale today following a two-part serialization in The Mail on Sunday newspaper. It is full of new revelations about Sunak's family life and his first nine months as Chancellor. To read the first part of the serialization, click here, and to read the second part, click here.

In the middle of 2019, Sunak was an unknown junior minister in the local government department. Seven months later, at the age of thirty-nine, he was Chancellor, grappling with the gravest economic crisis in modern history.

The new book charts Sunak's ascent from this parents' Southampton pharmacy to the University of Oxford, the City of London, Silicon Valley – and the top of British politics.

It is the tale of a super-bright and hard-grafting son of immigrant parents who marries an Indian heiress and makes a fortune of his own; a polished urban southerner who wins over the voters of rural North Yorkshire – and a cautious, fiscally-conservative financier who becomes the biggest-spending Chancellor in history.

Sunak was unexpectedly promoted to the Treasury's top job in February 2020, with a brief to spread investment and opportunity as part of Boris Johnson's leveling-up agenda. Within weeks, the coronavirus had sent Britain into lockdown, with thousands of firms in peril and millions of jobs on the line.

As health workers battled to save lives, it was down to Sunak to save livelihoods. This is the story of how he tore up the rulebook and went for broke.

Revelations in the book include:

  • As Chancellor, Sunak failed to declare his wife Akshata Murthy's businesses in the Register of Ministers' Interests and at least one of her companies went on to furlough its staff.

  • Sunak looked "thin and faint" at height of the coronavirus crisis and had to be urged to eat by civil servants who were worried about his wellbeing.

  • The extraordinary story of his family background is told for the first time, including his grandmother's brave solitary passage from Tanzania to England in search of a better life.

  • The story of his romance with Indian heiress Akshata Murthy, whose father Narayana is known as the "Bill Gates of India" – and Narayana's fleeting jealousy when the couple got engaged.

Lord [Michael] Ashcroft, a former Treasurer and Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party said today: "I am delighted that this book has gone on sale at such a relevant time, with the Chancellor currently undertaking what is arguably the most difficult job in the country."

"Rishi Sunak has proved to be a fascinating subject for my latest book and I am delighted to be able to tell the story of the incredibly eventful first four decades of his life."

About the Author:

LORD ASHCROFT KCMG PC is an international businessman, philanthropist, author, and pollster. He is a former treasurer and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party. He is also an honorary chairman and a former treasurer of the International Democratic Union. He is founder and chairman of the board of trustees of Crimestoppers, vice-patron of the Intelligence Corps Museum, chairman of the trustees of Ashcroft Technology Academy, chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University, a senior fellow of the International Strategic Studies Association, and a former trustee of Imperial War Museums.'

His books include Victoria Cross Heroes: Volumes I and IICall Me Dave: The Unauthorised Biography of David Cameron; White Flag? An Examination of the UK's Defence CapabilityJacob's Ladder: The Unauthorised Biography of Jacob Rees-Mogg; and Unfair Game: An Exposé of South Africa's Captive-Bred Lion Industry.

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