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Publisher's Summary

The colossal scale of World War II required a mobilization effort greater than anything attempted in all of the world's history. The United States had to fight a war across two oceans and three continents - and to do so it had to build and equip a military that was all but nonexistent before the war began. Never in the nation's history did it have to create, outfit, transport, and supply huge armies, navies, and air forces on so many distant and disparate fronts.The Axis powers might have fielded better trained soldiers, better weapons, better tanks and aircraft. But they could not match American productivity. America buried its enemies in aircraft, ships, tanks, and guns; in this sense, American industry, and American workers, won World War II. The scale of effort was titanic, and the result historic. Not only did it determine the outcome of the war, but it transformed the American economy and society. Maury Klein's A Call to Arms is the first narrative history of this epic struggle, told by a master historian, and renders the transformation of America with a depth and detail never available before.

©2013 Maury Klein (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

At times interesting, but quite a long haul.

Would you try another book from Maury Klein and/or Ben Bartolone?

If it were shorter

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

would have been interested in hearing more about the aftermath - demobilization.

What aspect of Ben Bartolone’s performance would you have changed?

his cadence was half a beat to fast. It was as if he was rushing at times. The performance still clocks in over 34 hours. Narrator had at times some eye brow raising pronunciations and left me with the impression he had little familiarity with the subject matter or at least the time frame in which it was set. (I imagine that is not why he was hired) His voice is pleasant enough and I got use to the performance.

Do you think A Call to Arms needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

a focus on demobilization would interest me.

Any additional comments?

The material is at times very dry. You have to be pretty wonky to want to listen to it. I did learn much from it and overall enjoyed it. However, at times it felt like work.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Very scholarly work.

If you're interested in the details of what went on in America during the war years, this is the book for you. the narrator doesn't know how to pronounce several names and places and that can be distracting. He also seems very disinterested in the topic at times, as if he is just reading a technical manual. Otherwise very good.

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  • Story

The Detail is Numbing

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Cut half the material and get a different narrator.When I reached the part where the author talks about a town that "claimed to serve the Home of the Sweetest Strawberries..." or when he talks about "41,449 pounds of aluminum" or "25,605 pounds of aluminum scrap", it was just too much detail. It is like a football game being reported every 30 seconds and each every attendee being quoted on what they think is happening in the game.

Has A Call to Arms turned you off from other books in this genre?

Probably not.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Ben Bartolone?

Can't think of anyone in particular, but he puts too much emotion in the reading so that a discussion of who is fighting who in the bureaucracy comes across as something leading to a climax when there isn't one or won't be one for a long time to come.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from A Call to Arms?

Much of the interplay between bureaucratic groups and quote after quote of people with only slight involvement in the story. For example, "The company's president responded by saying, "I believe the Government is all wet."" So... what does that add to the story?

Any additional comments?

Please refund credit for book.

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A lengthy book about logistics

What did you like best about A Call to Arms? What did you like least?

This book covers the other side of World War II: being able to supply the materials to prepare for and participate in that war. The US was ill-prepared for that war, and had to mobilize quickly and with little time to spare. The problem I have with the book is that it is extremely detailed about those war efforts, and sometimes gets bogged down in those details. As a tech person, I enjoyed those details, but others may get bored.

Could you see A Call to Arms being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

I can possibly see this as a documentary series, but I don't think it will ever be done.

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  • Rohan
  • 08-28-16

fantastic

Amazing how much I learned about the topic and the work of the people involved