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The Second World War: Milestones to Disaster Audiobook

The Second World War: Milestones to Disaster

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Audible Editor Reviews

History, as Winston Churchill famously predicted, has been good to him. His exalted place in the 20th century annals has been cemented through his Noble Prize-winning memoir, A History of the Second World War. In this audiobook version of the four-volume, 45-hour memoir, British actor Christian Rodska conveys the triumphs and tragedies of WW II with a voice as august and buoyant as we know Churchill's to have been. Consistently riveting and rich in historical insight, Churchill's memoir puts the listener in intimate audience with the powerful oration and defiant eloquence with which Churchill led a continent through its darkest hour.

Publisher's Summary

Churchill's history of the Second World War is, and will remain, the definitive work. Lucid, dramatic, remarkable for its breadth and sweep and for its sense of personal involvement, it is universally acknowledged as a magnificent reconstruction. Please note: This book was originally published in six volumes:

1.The Gathering Storm
2. Their Finest Hour
3. The Grand Alliance
4. The Hinge of Fate
5. Closing the Ring
6. Triumph and Tragedy

Churchill then condensed these into four volumes, which have since been released as one, rather hefty, publication. Audible has published the unabridged recordings of Churchill's condensed volume, divided into four parts, as follows:

1.Milestone to Disaster
2.Alone
3.The Grand Alliance
4.Triumph and Tragedy

©1959 Cassell and Co. Ltd; ©1990 the Esate of Winston Churchill; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

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  •  
    Sam Evans, WA, United States 02-14-15
    Sam Evans, WA, United States 02-14-15 Member Since 2010

    Self-employed autodidact. Recipient of an unconventional education. Be a "Generalist" and never have a dull moment!

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    "Extraordinary first-hand account "

    The most devastating war in human history. And as is evident, history not learned from is repeated... But in this case, we can ditch the banal generalizations and stupefying denatured time-lines, Hitler's most intractable and efficacious opponent also happens to be one of clearest and most engaging authors in the English language. Churchill has done us all another great service, by telling the story of what happened, and HOW it happened. A page turner. Read it.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    Z. Dawson Bowling Green, KY USA 02-09-15
    Z. Dawson Bowling Green, KY USA 02-09-15 Member Since 2013
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    "A First Hand Perspective"

    This is a great account if the second workd war from the perspective of ine of the great allied leaders, Winston Churchill. There are an endless number of books written on the subject, this is a great one for the history buffs out there looking for some details of which they were previously unaware. Narration is top notch.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    Steven Schwartz 01-04-15 Member Since 2005
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    "Excellent!"

    A unique perspective from a giant of 20th century leadership. Looking forward to the rest of the series. Very well read, entertaining.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Geoffrey Hatfield 12-31-14 Listener Since 2008
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    "His point of view is detailed and exciting."

    I wanted to learn of the events leading up to and during WWII from the British perspective and have not been disappointed. If there's one persons point of view to learn from it would be from the big man himself.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Spencer North Attleboro, MA, United States 10-05-14
    Spencer North Attleboro, MA, United States 10-05-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Amazing, eloquent and surprising history"
    What made the experience of listening to The Second World War the most enjoyable?

    The historical events, presented with sardonic humor and in great detail, along with Sir Winston's views of them, are just amazing to hear. And there are surprises here. Sir Winston explains how, in actual practice, the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles were NOT burdensome to Germany, and a few other gems that are uncommon among the common history of WWII. Also, quite incredible and enthralling are the events leading up to WWII, the desire for Pacifism, a noble goal, the growing machine of Blitzkrieg, and how ill timed and ill judged kindness and sentiment among nations who refused to see what was happening, led to disaster.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Sir Winston himself.


    What does Christian Rodska bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Rodska does a wonderful job as Sir Winston, and the various characters. His depiction is subtle, direct, powerful and sublime. He brings the entire world before you,Eminently easy to listen to, he communicates so much of the torment among civilized peoples struggling to realize that an unimaginable tyranny is developing in their midst. You feel the fear, and Sir Winston's frustration, as well as the insanity of Hitler and company.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Yes, when the Prime Minister of England, Neville Chamberlain, realizes that his recent years of effort towards peace were completely misguided. And as a great gentleman, his efforts to admit it publicly immediately, turn about and make change, but all too late. Yet, bound by his poor judgement, the errors continue to mount. It is a heart breaking moment when a well intentioned man, promoted beyond his capacity, fails his country and the world. Churchill and Rodska depict these moments with complete respect, but honors above all the truth and the desperation mounting at the time. Rodska, in his own brilliance, depicts Mr. Chamberlain's heartfelt sentiment, befudlement and shock at events, his resignation to honesty and duty, yet poor judgement. You hear a man of simplistic nobility surrounded by events he doesn't understand, yet, sticking to principle, tries to weather through. Rodska delivers a wonderful and moving performance.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rob Stephens 08-26-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Classic Churchil As If He Were Taliking To You"
    Would you listen to The Second World War again? Why?

    I will quite likely listen again. There is so much information in this story that it is hard to absorb it all the first time.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Winston Churchill is THE character.


    Any additional comments?

    No one ever accused Winston Churchill of lacking an opinion or being overly modest. This is the story of how the World became ensnarled in the Second World War from his personal perspective. Although he tends to blow his own horn at times, Churchill's experience and understanding of world history in the first half of the 20th Century makes this both entertaining and educational. Christian Rodska manages to imitate his style of speech so well that you can really believe it is Churchill speaking.
    I was born two months before D-Day in one of the English ports that was to become one of the embarkation points for D-Day. Growing up I was taught to have considerable respect for Churchill, so I might be a little biased.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert California 06-26-14
    Robert California 06-26-14 Member Since 2013

    Iranians keep their nukes, Americans lose their insurance.

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    "Must read for any WWII enthusiast"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes but not as the first and only. That would be: Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.,


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

    These are his words.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fred Princeton, NJ, United States 06-05-14
    Fred Princeton, NJ, United States 06-05-14 Member Since 2005
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    "He sounds like Churchil!"
    What about Christian Rodska’s performance did you like?

    Great voice all the way.


    Any additional comments?

    I didn't think there was anything I didn't know about World War II, but this book was so personal and real. It is well worth the time.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    RFRMAC Cottonwood Heights, Utah United States 04-17-14
    RFRMAC Cottonwood Heights, Utah United States 04-17-14 Member Since 2012

    I love good history books about WW II, the Civil War, and the Revolutionary War. I like other good books about life and cooking.

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    "What to know what Winston really thought?"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I would recommend this book to people who wanted to know about WWII and England's having to fight it alone.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Second World War?

    For me, the memorable moments where the parts when Churchill had to figure out what to do next to save the country.


    What about Christian Rodska’s performance did you like?

    I really like his voice. It reminded me of Winston Churchill.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    As for wanting to listen to it in one sitting, it would be a long sit for that. I can tell you that I found addition times to hear it. For me, it was very interesting.


    Any additional comments?

    As for additional comments, this was a great book. I hated to see it end. I did not know that it was part of a series. Boy I am glad it is. I am off to the next book and the book after that. I found the book very interesting and informative. It has my recommendation.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Abington, PA, United States 07-23-13
    Elizabeth Abington, PA, United States 07-23-13 Member Since 2008
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    "Outstanding!"
    Where does The Second World War rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The entire series provides a fascinating view of the person of Winston Churchill, and the war from the British standpoint. Also the narrator is picture perfect! I don't usually read history (I'm a fiction fan most of the time) but I must say, this was one of the most informative series (I listened to all 4 in a row) I have ever read. Well worth your time!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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