All serious politicians should possess a hinterland, but not all do. Chris Mullin was one who did. By the time he entered parliament he had reported from the wars in Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. He was the author of three novels (including A Very British Coup, the TV version of which starred Ray McAnally as a left-wing Labour PM deposed by the Tory establishment) and had led the successful campaign to free the innocent people convicted of the Birmingham and Guildford bombings. In parliament he quickly established himself as fearless inquisitor, going on to become a minister in three departments. He is the author of three widely acclaimed volumes of diaries. Hinterland is his autobiography.
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