For me, reading this book would have proven difficult at times since it truly minutely picks apart some events. So listening is the only way for me. It should also be noted this recording is very dated.
You realize early on the enormous research performed to tackle this subject. The credits at the end are spectacular, supporting this enormous project. So it is truly a joy to understand the process and assistance the author received to weave together all the pertinent material from all related political figures' archives etc.You simple wish all Americans had an understanding of this part of our world history but unfortunately this book would be too much for the average public. My educated wife put on headphones to block out the readers voice of Churchill as it severely grated on her and the subject certainly didn't interest her. That is a shame as this work/book is superb although very detailed.
This is your typical hard to read Faulkner. If you haven't read a Faulkner novel, you need to try. He uses half page long sentences. His novels are not like his short stories. Some novels like Light in August are not difficult to follow but quite a few are rough but that makes Faulkner who he is. The narrator was amazing. I cannot imagine his ability to keep up his flowing cadence, long sentence after long sentence. No narrator will ever compare on a Faulkner read.
After listening to Pillars and World a couple of years ago and absolutely enjoying them, I finally tried another Follett book. It really isn't much better than a cheap novel. You could stay with the listen and it was entertaining but not memorable. The book starts very awkwardly. The audio is 1985 and the different characters playing the first person roles as if you were watching a play didn't work for me. The brogue's were entertaining.
My comments apply to The Winds of War and War and Remembrance. They are the same novel with the second spending very little time bringing the reader up to the present. I find the works a masterpiece. In the overall scope of the work, it has to approach fine literature. It definitely is one of the finest stories you will ever listen to. I had not previously read the books and bet they could be captivating but also could be daunting do to the length and the forays into the occasional history lessons. I would venture that the listener would do best listening to the epilogue at the end of War and Remembrance before starting The Winds of War. The epilogue only clarifies the factual people, locations, event and ships from the fictional. The epilogue will allow you to appreciate the effort in research necessary to achieve this wonderful book.
A word to the wise. There are two wandering chapters, FILLERS, to make the book apparantly long enough for the NEW publisher or accomplish some other need. This is not the same publisher, at least as expressed in the audio, as Under Enemy Colors. Nick Boulton is not as good as Mr. Simon, the original narrator. The two terribly out of place chapters have to do with a incredibly long, please stop, story about a golf match in Gilbrator (in the late 1700's as is described by the author as the time period in the prologue of Under Enemy Colors) during the middle of a voyage and England's war with France. The other is a night on the town in London at theater and a altered version of Romeo & Juliet. Both of these wanderings, other than as filler, seem to be present to show the authors knowledge on the subjects. I have read the 3 reviews on book 3, ah book 4, as described in Audible (it apprears book 3 under a different name was released outside the US but is identical to 4) and one review alleges the same wanderings in book "4". I would call foul that the publisher has convinced the author to generate filler material at potential outrage to the reader. Most publishers I feel would not have allowed this filler. BUT you will most likely still want to hear the story and buy book 4 as I have, since A Battle Won was still an enjoyable listen.
The Under Enemy Colors prologue substantially is begging your pardon that it is a novel and not a recount of history HENCE the addition of "A Novel" to the title of A Battle Won. It would appear Mr. Russell took a beating from the historical crowd and feels the need to apologize. I wouldn't. If he has incredible thin skin then that might explain the totally out of context chapters meaning there is no way this book could be confused as historical.
Literature and narration at its finest. If you don't get it, you don't belong here.
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