Victor Sebestyen was born in Budapest. He was a child when his family left Hungary as refugees. As a journalist, he has worked for numerous British newspapers, including the London Evening Standard, The Times and the Daily Mail. He has contributed to many American publications, including The New York Times. He reported widely from Eastern Europe when Communism collapsed and the Berlin Wall came down in 1989. He covered the wars in former Yugoslavia and the breakup of the Soviet Union. At the London Evening Standard he was foreign editor, media editor and chief leader writer.
Victor’s first book, TWELVE DAYS (Weidenfeld and Nicolson 2006; Pantheon 2006), was an acclaimed history of the 1956 Hungarian Uprising. It was translated into 12 languages. His second, REVOLUTION 1989 (W&N 2009; Pantheon 2009) was a highly praised account of the fall of the Soviet empire.
He has been a speaker at universities, literary festivals and conferences throughout Europe and the United States. He sits on The Advisory Council of The UK based Wilton Park, the think tank and discussion forum for international affairs.
His book titled 1946: THE MAKING OF THE MODERN WORLD, about the aftermath of the Second World War, was published in 2014 by Macmillan.
In 2017 he published the biography LENIN THE DICTATOR (Weidenfeld & Nicolson), which was shortlisted for the Elizabeth Longford Prize for Historical Biography.