In the decades since the end of the Second World War, it has been widely assumed that the Western model of liberal democracy and free trade is the way the world should be governed. However, events in the early years of the twenty-first century have threatened the general acceptance that this is the only way forwards.
Who could have imagined that China would champion globalization and lead the battle on climate change? Or that post-Soviet Russia might present a greater threat to the world's stability than ISIS? And as America turns inwards and Europe is beset by austerity politics and populist nationalism, the post-war consensus looks less and less secure.
But is this really the worst of times? In a bracingly forensic examination of the world we now live in, acclaimed historian Michael Burleigh suggests that while we may be on the cusp of still more dramatic change, perhaps the risks will - in time - bring not only change but a wholly positive transformation.
'A robust and unsentimental guide to global power politics' The Times
'Swashbuckling . . . a breakneck geopolitical gallop across the globe in the hands of a historian and commentator at the peak of his powers' Evening Standard
'Incisive and compelling. His style is always trenchant and sometimes blistering' Literary Review