Bouverie explains the policy as a product of the British response to the First World War. Given that an enormous percentage of Britain's fighting-age men had died in a war the purpose of which no one could perceive, Bouverie describes British pacifism as the explanation of Chamberlain's appeasement policy, since "The desire to avoid a Second World War was perhaps the most understandable and universal wish in history." Bouverie describes the antisemitism of the British ruling class as the secondary cause of Britain's reluctance to stand up to Hitler.
The book is a strong response to a number of recent works of historical revisionism that have painted Chamberlain as a "super-pragmatist", much maligned in view of the fact that his options were limited by widespread popular pacifism and also painting him as a man who cleverly used appeasement to gain time that would enable Britain to rearm.
- Szalai, Jennifer (4 June 2019). "In 'Appeasement,' How Peace With the Nazis Was Always an Illusion (book review)". New York Times. Retrieved 5 June 2019.
- David Aaronovitch (12 April 2019). "Appeasing Hitler by Tim Bouverie review — Britain's guilty men; The case is well made that appeasing Hitler was not hard-nosed pragmatism but self-delusion (book review)". The Times. Retrieved 5 June 2019.