The BBC Television programme Yes Minister had the unique distinction of winning the British Academy Award for three years in a row; but the book which followed it – The Complete Yes Minister – was if anything more successful, reaching no. 1 in the bestseller lists and staying in the top ten for nearly sixty weeks.
Now Jim Hacker has become Prime Minister, and his conflict with Sir Humphrey Appleby, the new Secretary of the Cabinet, has moved into 10 Downing Street. Hacker’s promotion doubled the size of the television audience, partly through the sheer enjoyment of television’s wittiest comedy, but partly also because of the author’s meticulous research and original insights. Most viewers realised that the programme, for all its hilarity, painted a truer picture of the internal tension and confusion at the heart of government than could be revealed by ‘factual’ programmes.
This combination of comedy and revelation has now been given a more permanent and portable form in Yes Prime Minister, Jim Hacker’s Downing Street diaries. These are supplemented by Sir Humphrey’s papers and a good helping of new material, to provide an irreverent and indispensable guide to collision an collusion in the inner sanctum of British government, and another volume to stand beside The Complete Yes Minister which Brian Walden has described as ‘the greatest political textbook in the English language’.
Hardcover, 256 pages. In excellent pre-loved condition.