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The Korean War Audiobook
The Korean War
Written by: 
Max Hastings
Narrated by: 
Cameron Stewart
 >   > 
The Korean War Audiobook

The Korean War

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Publisher's Summary

On 25 June, 1950, the invasion of South Korea by the Communist North launched one of the bloodiest conflicts of the last century. The seemingly limitless power of the Chinese-backed North was thrown against the ferocious firepower of the UN-backed South in a war that can be seen today as the stark prelude to Vietnam.

Max Hastings drew on first-hand accounts of those who fought on both sides to produce this vivid and incisive reassessment of the Korean War, bringing the military and human dimensions into sharp focus. Critically acclaimed on publication, The Korean War remains the best narrative history of this conflict.

©1987 Max Hastings (P)2014 Audible Studios

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (102 )
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4.6 (97 )
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Performance
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  •  
    rstone23 MA 03-30-16
    rstone23 MA 03-30-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Brings a true history to a war that is often over looked"

    Brings a true history to an otherwise forgotten war. The story keeps you engaged as it brings you through the years and battles that politics dictated instead of a goal to win the war.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen 03-21-16
    Stephen 03-21-16 Member Since 2014
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    "The Korean War - Hasting's Take"

    Story: Overall, the book is very good and covers elements not covered in most books on Korea such as the UK contributions to the UNC. I recommend this book.

    Narrator: it is always a pleasure to listen to Cameron Stewart. There is usual bias of an American listening to a British voice.

    Production: Excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David United States 07-07-16
    David United States 07-07-16 Member Since 2012

    Hellicopter Man

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    "A Max Hastings classic."

    This is not a happy read. However, for those like myself who have had little instruction on the matter it is about as good as you could ask for.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kirsten Giles 06-15-16 Member Since 2011
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    "Korean war as told by the british"

    Overall good history of the korean war but over emphasizes bristish contributions and throughly glosses over the korean aspect of it. I learned a lot but was dissappointed because the book offered a different view than what i was looking for.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jordan Schneider 03-28-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Strong mil-focused history of Korean War"

    Deft handling of military and political aspects, but a little weak on politics and lacks post-ussr fall docs. Aside from that doesn't feel all that dated and he takes advantage of when he wrote it to conduct interviews with lots of different voices. could have gone a bit deeper militarily. Pow chapter of Koreans held in the aouth fascinating. Good job weaving in different non-elite voices and from multiple sides. Would've loved to learn more about Turkish fighters. Worthy war in the end, particularly given how ROK has been able to thrive, important to see relative morality when defending flawed regime that's better than alternative. But enough with the Uk analysis can do no wrong.
    Not a brilliant work, but good research and interviews went into it. Mac portrait good and concise, not much on us high politics. Good on characterizing how societies were responding to the war, perspective from everyday Americans and uk. Odd to think that uk in 1950 saw itself a first rate power, empire would last for awhile was operating assumption. Have to always be contextualizj get, imagining what is the recent history of the subjects, get a sense of their historical and political frame of references.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 02-26-15
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    "well-rounded & thoughtful"

    this is a well-rounded and thoughtful survey of the American and English experience in the Korean War. the narrator sought to enliven quotations with his imitations of the various accents of the speakers, which I could have lived without; but I can't suggest a better way to signal the beginnings and endings of quoted material, so even that I got used to. Hastings I have grown accustomed to enjoying and respecting.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Zephyr 09-15-14
    Zephyr 09-15-14 Member Since 2016
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    "Excellent history of a war too many people forget."
    Would you listen to The Korean War again? Why?

    Certainly. This was my second book by Max Hastings, personally I think he's a discount John Toland, but he can still write a good history book. This book was informative in its context and well reasoned in its speculations and conclusions.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I spent several minutes laughing over the accounts of the antics of UN POWs in the Chinese prison camps. It was a wonderful splash of humor to contrast with the miserable condition of the prisoners.


    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 04-24-15

    Sailorman

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    "British interpretation of the war"
    Would you try another book from Max Hastings and/or Cameron Stewart?

    Nope


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Another history


    What three words best describe Cameron Stewart’s performance?

    Over the top politics from a British view point


    Did The Korean War inspire you to do anything?

    Get a better history with more about the people that fought and less British politics


    Any additional comments?

    Want to swap as I will never try to get through this boring book again/

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mikkel 11-11-15
    Mikkel 11-11-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Mostly a high level view "

    I had hoped, that the book would be more like Stephen Ambrose's books from World War 2. That is not the case. It's taking a higher level approach, with less focus on the combat and experience of the men.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philip 09-24-14
    Philip 09-24-14 Member Since 2014
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    "This is an OK book but there is something missing."

    This book misses the mark. After listening to the first few hours it felt like days. By the end it seemed that while any number of historic figures and all of the major players had been identified I didn't really know them or understand them any better than when I started. Perhaps that was because the war itself was such a mess but I rather think it was the author that really didn't know.

    1 of 7 people found this review helpful
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  • Mark P
    12/14/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A missing piece of history"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Korean War to be better than the print version?

    Print would have provided a reference book that I could see maps


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    The political tensions between the various countries and the potential use of nuclear weapons


    Have you listened to any of Cameron Stewart’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    not listened to any


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    no emotional reaction other than wishing the veterans should gain far more recognition for their action in this forgotten and neglected conflict


    Any additional comments?

    A really worthy book to gain an insight into a war that has been ignored and forgotten.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Blackpool Lancs
    12/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Korea war brought to life"
    If you could sum up The Korean War in three words, what would they be?

    Shows mans folly


    Any additional comments?

    This war happened when I was a toddler, and though I have watched M.A.S.H. and heard snippets I never understood what this war was all about.
    This book enthralled me, the author makes no bones about the mistakes made by both sides, and brings this terrible moment in history to light.

    The narrator does a superb job in keeping the reader interested, by the use of accents where needed and never sounds like he is just narrating.

    My one wish is that the author had followed this up with one on Vietnam, as it appears that this war, its conduct and outcome had a strong bearing on the route that the Vietnam War would take.

    Well worth listening to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Michael
    8/6/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "God Book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Korean War to be better than the print version?

    I don't now


    What did you like best about this story?

    action affect every aspect from the ordinary soldier to the political side of things.


    What does Cameron Stewart bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Good Voice


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Mayby


    Any additional comments?

    I have been very happy to hear the book - I would recommend that you have a map of Korea so you can see where the action pass away.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jim
    London
    5/29/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Consistently Gripping"

    A wholly gripping account of a war which Hastings argues had to be fought because of what was at the time a real threat from communist totalitarian states. As with his other books he offers eye witness accounts of combatants which keeps the action urgent and exciting while detailing the strategic and political efforts of generals, presidents and foreign policy wonks. It's a very satisfying combination and in this particular book it's applied to the story of a country split between murderous communists and despotic nationalists, each backed by a superpower. The allies had good equipment but a shortage of battle hardened troops, the communists had relatively poor kit but were willing to win victory by sacrificing massive numbers of poorly trained infantry. Hastings argues that the terrain and the border with China meant that the war was always, in effect, unwinnable but the story plays out as a riveting dog-fight between two enormous armies lead by gifted but deranged generals across an extraordinarily difficult landscape. Hastings' reflections on what happens when the electorates of democratic nations become bored of intractable conflict and repelled by the foreign regimes that their governments have backed also has strong resonances with what's currently happening in the middle east.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Walter Herleth
    1/13/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Too Anti American"

    While the facts presented are apparently correct, they are written with an anti American bias.

    Presenter was good and entertaining

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    1/15/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Decent."

    Interesting and not dry at all, but there is a distinct lack of korean perspective, lots of british and American view points, but koreans and chinese views are sparse.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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