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War and Peace, Volume 2 Audiobook

War and Peace, Volume 2

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Publisher's Summary

War and Peace is one of the greatest monuments in world literature. Set against the dramatic backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, it examines the relationship between the individual and the relentless march of history. Here are the universal themes of love and hate, ambition and despair, youth and age, expressed with a swirling vitality which makes the book as accessible today as it was when it was first published in 1869.

In addition it is, famously, one of the longest books in Western literature and therefore a remarkable challenge for any reader. Neville Jason read the abridged version of War and Peace and proved his marathon powers with his outstanding performance of Proust's Remembrance of Things Past. These make him the ideal narrator to essay Tolstoy's epic.

War and Peace was translated by Louise and Aylmer Maude.

© and (P) Naxos Rights International

What the Critics Say

"War and Peace presents us with a complete picture of human life; a complete picture of the Russia of those days; a complete historic picture of the struggle of nations; and a complete picture of the things in which men set their happiness and greatness, their sorrow and their shame." (A.V. Knowles, Tolstoy: The Critical Heritage)
"There remains the greatest of all novelists - for what else can we call the author of War and Peace?" (Virginia Woolf)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (1082 )
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Performance
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  •  
    hannah 03-14-14
    hannah 03-14-14
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    "FANTASTIC! BEAUTIFULLY NARRATED BY NEVILLE JASON."
    Any additional comments?

    This is a world classic.Although it might seem long and tedious,this should not frighten you.<br/>Every sentence is narrated beautifully by Neville Jason who did an incredible job.<br/><br/>He narrates with great sensitivity and gives each character his/her unique ,discernable voice.<br/><br/>He seems to have a deep understanding of the text as well as of the characters ,adding a dimension of empathy to their stories.<br/><br/>I enjoyed every minute of listening,looking forward to the next sentence.<br/><br/>War and Peace is jusifiably a top world classic of all times................Enjoy!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Evans Dallas, TX, USA 09-26-13
    Robert Evans Dallas, TX, USA 09-26-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Great book, superior performance"
    Would you listen to War and Peace, Volume 2 again? Why?

    This applied to both volumes. The book is famously long, so I might want to listen again, but a few years down the road. The vast panorama of Napoleon's 1812 invasion of Russia is covered in all phases with historical accuracy and a large cast of diverse characters. Tolstoy's psychological insights are right-on and applicable today. His descriptions of the battles are mesmerizing - you can almost smell the gunpowder. Truly a literary masterpiece, but requiring a bit more work on the part of the listener/reader than Anna K.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of War and Peace, Volume 2?

    The retreat of Napoleon from Moscow (to be duplicated by Hitler over a century later - didn't he read War and Peace?) induced by the spirit and tactics of the out-manned Russian military (with an assist from the Russian winter).


    Which character – as performed by Neville Jason – was your favorite?

    This is a close call between several, but I have to go with Prince Andre.


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

    No, for an obvious reason.


    Any additional comments?

    The performance by N. Jason was brilliant. I wish I could give him more than 5 stars. Simply the best performance in any audio book I have listened to. Makes you feel that you are sitting in a movie theater. <br/>Two suggestions: obtain before reading:<br/>1. A list of characters and their relationships.<br/>2. Maps of the Napoleonic invasion, esp. the battle of Borodino.<br/>I found both on the Internet.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael 02-09-12
    Michael 02-09-12

    Classics, history, historical fiction, marketing, Napoleonic stuff and of course 'Boys own Adventure'. This is my bent. Occasional self help as well.

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    "A great book, a great performance."
    Where does War and Peace, Volume 2 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Numéro un


    What was one of the most memorable moments of War and Peace, Volume 2?

    It's all good.


    What about Neville Jason’s performance did you like?

    He is fantastic. Consistent and easy to listen to.


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

    Just love this book.


    Any additional comments?

    Do yourself a favour and listen to this book. Then buy a copy of the book, read it yourself. What ever you do, don't watch the 1950s Hollywood production of War & Peace. The novel is so much better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Weingarten 06-22-08 Member Since 2015
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    "War and Peace"

    Fabulous. A wonderful reader.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Luzia 6370 StansSwitzerland 02-09-08
    Luzia 6370 StansSwitzerland 02-09-08
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    "A great treat"

    It' really worth the effort. Great to get 61 hours of supurb word litrature for jutst two credits.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Radish Bliss Holdenville, OK 02-09-09
    Radish Bliss Holdenville, OK 02-09-09 Member Since 2008
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    "What I learned"

    Prince Andrea destroyed himself on stubbornness and his refusal to forgive until it was too late.
    The worst decisions made in life are usually overreactions to things that you have no control of anyway. To love life is to love god. And in order to love life you must love the inevitability of your own suffering and happiness.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    07-24-17
    07-24-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Narrator! AWESOME"

    Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! AWESOME Narrator! was quite stupendously super very AWESOME.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 07-17-17 Member Since 2016
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    "wow"

    one of the most incredible books of all time. A must read at any age.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TiffanyD 05-31-17
    TiffanyD 05-31-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Peace is way more interesting"
    What did you love best about War and Peace, Volume 2?

    The Peace parts. I know I am not the first to say this but the War parts get really tedious, especially when it's not so much story as it is Tolstoy telling you what he thinks is wrong with the way history is written. God help anyone who ever had to talk to him at a party.


    Would you be willing to try another book from Leo Tolstoy? Why or why not?

    This is my second (Anna Karenina my first) and I think I am done. His women characters aren't great and his polemicizing is B-O-R-I-N-G. A friend told me she got through nearly all of Anna Karenina and then never finished because the last chapter was so dull. "How is that possible?" I thought. Then I read Anna Karenina and although I finished it, I understood about that final chapter. War and Peace is all that and more. That final epilogue is a soul-crushing slog.


    What about Neville Jason’s performance did you like?

    Very engaging, keeps things moving as well as he can given some of the digressions into non-story material. But it's good to have a print edition nearby (this is the public domain Maude translation) so you can skim some of the super dull stuff. Even listening on 1.5 time was too slow for me.


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

    There is no justification for the second epilogue.


    Any additional comments?

    Why so cagey about the translation? I hate it when translated audiobooks won't tell you straight up what translation they are using. This one uses the Maude translation, an early one but still considered solid.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    PC in TN 05-19-17
    PC in TN 05-19-17

    Pamela k. Caviness

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    "Seems to me to be a repeat of volume one"

    I listened for several chapters until I finally realized I was listening to the last half of vol one.??????

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Stephen Atkins
    7/13/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "worth a read, but a bit preachy"

    0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • ANDREW
    GODALMING, United Kingdom
    5/12/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great epic, marred by annoying historiography"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Only if I knew they had the patience to stick with it. It is very, very long, but great if you enjoy a novel that really takes its time.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of War and Peace, Volume 2?

    Pierre staying in Moscow during the French occupation and his subsequent imprisonment.


    What about Neville Jason’s performance did you like?

    I liked his voice overall, although I found some of his female character voices sounded a bit Hinge and Bracket.


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

    Definitely not!! I don't think anyone could cope with that!


    Any additional comments?

    This is a great story, but I did find Tolstoy's relentless historiographical lectures annoying.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Adam
    london, United Kingdom
    5/6/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Hard But Worthwhile Slog"

    Listening to Tolstoy's epic novel is probably easier than reading it as it was hard-going at times. The interminable descriptions of battle were particularly tedious but the interwoven fates of the various families balanced it out.

    The epilogue was the most interesting part. Philosophical musings on the nature of mankind, the history of warfare, and an analysis of both the powerful and the powerless.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr. Jw Perks
    Lincolnshire United Kingdom
    12/27/15
    Overall
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    Story
    "Classic despite the unexpected philosophising"

    Loved this book. Totally engaging from start to finish expertly characterised by Neville Jason. Tick on this years audio bucket list. 70 odd hours of listening pleasure.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Cathubodua
    8/8/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A beautiful and very moving story"
    Where does War and Peace, Volume 2 rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Right next to War and Peace, Volume 1, to be honest - in a class of their own.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Surprisingly, the length of it. You start to feel as if you know the characters as well as the people in your own life, as if you're there with them at the opera and on the battlefield.


    Which character – as performed by Neville Jason – was your favourite?

    My mother's favourite character is always Andrei, which I respect but don't understand. I felt a great affection towards Nikolai, but also Sonia, who asks for nothing and gets very little. Natasha is entertaining, but terrifyingly unpredictable and apparently set on self-destruction, and as for Pierre, he seemed to go off the rails after his marriage to Helene.


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

    Both, in different places. The strongest emotional reaction I had to it was during the chapters on the Battle of Borodino. I came out of those chapters as if shell-shocked, utterly sickened by the carnage and destruction. I actually felt sorry for Anatole Kuragin, when only a few chapters before, he seemed the most unspeakably terrible character.


    Any additional comments?

    As usual - shame about the epilogue. Tolstoy wasn't thinking straight when he wrote that!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Meldorf
    England
    4/16/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A masterpiece read magnificently"

    I highly recommend this recording. Neville Jason is no only a great actor, he clearly has read ahead and comprehended every word. He gets the tone just right, from the characterisation to the energy and vehemence in Tolstoy's voice as he rants about the state of history. An epic piece in which both the philosophical ideas and central story are made compelling by a great reader.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Lynne B.
    4/15/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Had to be done"

    Everyone should read War & Peace, it's said. Well, it was worth the listen, but probably only just. This tour de force is enormously long and could have been improved by a judicious editor. The biggest surprise was how little I liked the main characters. It did make it a little hard to care as their stories developed. And the least worst of them was the only one to die an untimely death. It was interesting to hear (and compare) a Russian, and now itself historic, perspective on the Napoleonic Wars, but no-one would accuse Tolstoy of subtlety, and ultimately the didacticism became an irritant. Had to be done, but I won't be doing it again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    3/10/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Thank god you can alter the narration speed!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of War and Peace, Volume 2 to be better than the print version?

    They're both good to use, I went between both.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The author occasionally stopped to analyse what was going on and talk about its place in history.


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

    The narrator reads very very slowly so i had to alter the speed, 1.5x made it normal reading speed but i put it to 2x sometimes too as it was still understandable but a little quicker.


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

    There were some moments that really made me think, about people, war and history.


    Any additional comments?

    Just to say again that you might need to speed the book up when you listen to it because the narration is very slow.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • victoria williams
    4/11/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "absorbing listen."
    What made the experience of listening to War and Peace, Volume 2 the most enjoyable?

    both volumes absolutely enchanting. Would listen again. <br/>The narrating immediately engages, which is essential given the complexity of thedtory and its length.<br/>I will listen to this again.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Joanna
    Aberdeen, United Kingdom
    3/29/12
    Overall
    "It was to be 5 stars"

    I approached this book with trepidation (I did start and stop reading it many moons ago) but, although long, it was not at all a chore to listen to. During the first book I struggled with remembering which character was which and how they were related, so I wrote down a list from Wikipedia, then I was off. What struck me was how well Tolstoy perceived and described the innermost feelings of his characters. I had a preconceived notion that an old book written by a man wouldn't really do feelings. Its length gives you plenty of space to know, understand and believe in the characters and I could have continued to follow their lives when the book stopped! The parts where he philosophises about the nature of war were for the most part interesting. The narrator was excellent (what a marathon) although I wasn't completely convinced by his female voices!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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