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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

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (2262 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Anja Schmidt Denmark 08-22-17
    Anja Schmidt Denmark 08-22-17 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    126
    100
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I just had to give up on this one"
    What disappointed you about The Second World War: Milestones to Disaster?

    This was the first book that I did not finish. It just got too boring. I found descriptions too detailed with too many personas. I could not really get a halt on who was who and that put me off.
    I guess, a native Brit might have an easier time getting a grasp. I suppose, he might have more knowledge of some personas from his own historybooks. I was rather blank on most personas beforehand except for Churchill himself.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Winston Churchill again?

    I might.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    For someone who really likes the great details about what happened might like this book a lot. I think, it would add to almost anybodys knowledge.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anonymous 07-27-17
    07-27-17
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
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    Story
    "Unnecessary complex language"

    The story is good, the reader is great, but the language is too complex, sentences are too long and difficult to comprehend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Bagby Grand Prairie, TX USA 06-25-17
    D. Bagby Grand Prairie, TX USA 06-25-17 Member Since 2016
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    5
    2
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    "A superb overview"

    This is a wonderful introduction to both the political and military circumstances and events leading to the most destructive war in history.
    The reader should continue their reading through, at least, to include the rest of Churchill's Volumes covering the war.
    Don't stop there. It would serve any serious reader well to read other accounts of these events. Of particular interest should be the very humble attitude Mr. Churchill assumed during the meeting described in the last chapter. The meeting so briefly recounted when he was selected over Lord Halifax to ask the King's permission to form a new government.
    He reports he hardly spoke.
    Why?
    The fate of the free world hung in the balance.
    You need to understand what Lord Halifax's real motives were in putting Winston's name forward.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Yount 04-25-17
    R. Yount 04-25-17 Member Since 2007
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    22
    2
    Overall
    "good book."

    provides history thru eyes of Churchill. having been thru it his views are vivid and real.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tony 03-22-17
    Tony 03-22-17 Member Since 2016
    RATINGS
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    1
    1
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    "super"

    perfect. Winston was a very good leader. And his literature was excellent. And the reading is very good.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John M. Peters Surprise, AZ United States 03-20-17
    John M. Peters Surprise, AZ United States 03-20-17
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    4
    1
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    "A must read - to learn from the past is key to move forward"

    Churchill being cast out after ww1 and brought back to ww2 in a full leader role reminds all of us that the time needs to fit the person. Between battles are style may not be the best to lead a company or a country - Churchill documents this leading up to war and comments in the leaders around him. Great coaches and leaders in industry should all listen to this audio to build supporting partners to leverage based on the cycles in our global community.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Timo Weckman 01-13-17 Member Since 2015
    RATINGS
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    39
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    "Excellent performance by the narrator"

    Loved the book, the narrator gives an excellent performance capturing the author perfectly. I h

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Balint D. Szoke Around 01-04-17
    Balint D. Szoke Around 01-04-17 Member Since 2016
    RATINGS
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    5
    4
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    "Absolutely fantastic book and narration"

    Fantastic book. Churchill is an incredibly eloquent writer, and the narrator was amazing, it sounded like you were listening to Churchill himself.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Derek J. Caelin Washington, D.C. 12-21-16
    Derek J. Caelin Washington, D.C. 12-21-16
    RATINGS
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    11
    1
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    "Excellent"

    This book is two thirds about the circumstances and events leading to the Second World War, one third about the mistakes of Churchill's political opponents. The former is expertly and powerfully crafted. The latter drags, and is less relevant to a modern audience than readers upon its publication. The voice actor evokes Churchill extremely well without becoming a parody.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mr Wright 11-24-16
    Mr Wright 11-24-16 Member Since 2015
    RATINGS
    REVIEWS
    11
    2
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    "Brought history to life!"

    If you want to know the history that led up to WW II from the British perspective, this is an excellent source. Well written, and well read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • William
    Castlewellan, United Kingdom
    8/18/09
    Overall
    "Extremely good listening"

    Excellent, just excellent, I listened to this as one might to a novel,it was so gripping. I have only downloaded this title a day or two and have finished it already. All through the reading I could hear the great man's voice. The reading was very good indeed

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Kirstine
    Bonnyrigg, United Kingdom
    9/16/11
    Overall
    "Riveting history by a master story-teller"

    I couldn't stop listening to this first of four parts of this monumental work covering the prelude and execution of the Second World War written by the man who saw Britain through its darkest hours. He writes wonderfully well in a fluent and captivating style that gives a tremendous sense of immediacy to this historical record. Being of the generation born just after the War much of the bones of the story are well-known but not the details of just how near to disaster our country came on several occasions. Churchill's fine writing and the precarious nature of the events described make for a wonderful listen greatly enhanced by Christian Rodska's masterly narration. I've immediately started listening to the next part of this quartet of books.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Mark
    Upper Belvedere, United Kingdom
    6/8/10
    Overall
    "Brilliance"

    Having finished listening to the whole four volumes of Churchill's WWII work, I can say that it was time extremely well spent. The narration was superb, with just enough Churchillism in the voice to bring images of the great man to mind. Churchill's writings are wonderful. If you are concerned that this work will be dull and tedious, don't worry, it is certainly not (I especially enjoyed the remark made by the Naval chap to the Russian official, after being offered a cigarette - find it in the fourth book!). Chances are, you'll be listening for a second or third time - I will. My only regret is that I listened to this work first - whereas, it may have been better to listen, initially, to the work on the first world war, then this work - but thats just me, there is no real reason why you cannot listen and enjoy this one first. Download this and enjoy. It will give you a better understanding of how the world managed to tumble into another war and of the great man himself. I don't really care much for celebrities, actors/actresses, singers and such, but of the very few people I admire, Churchill is one. And he would definitely be invited to my dining table- if only I could get the time machine to work!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Kurt
    Tunbridge Wells, United Kingdom
    3/5/10
    Overall
    "One of the best narrators I've heard"

    Christian Rodska really makes this book come alive. You can imagine sitting next to Churchill himself reading the book. His accent and interpretation are spot on. And he is equally adept at other character accents in the book. I really enjoyed listening to it and became absorbed in both the story and in Churchill's splendid use of the language.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • KevinMc
    Cambridge, United Kingdom
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "Worth the read"

    Winston Churchill is a great writer besides being a great Prime Minister. Really good to hear it form his point of view rather than from others writing about him or the war. You definitely realise this was a man ahead of his time, and one of the few to really get Hitler.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    2/20/13
    Overall
    "Fantastic"

    This is a truly fantastic audiobook that has been very well narrated. I have listened to this time and again and keep finding new content of interest. If you have an interest in the second world war then, quite simply, you have to buy this.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs M M J Evans
    6/1/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating"

    Loved it, fascinating to hear the real story. Narrated brilliantly with all the drama to get you hooked!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mark
    12/1/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "great listen"
    Where does The Second World War rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    among the best


    What did you like best about this story?

    Winston Churchill's first hand account of the war as it happened


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

    N/A


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

    Brilliant, first hand account of the story of world war 2


    Any additional comments?

    great listen

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mindaugas
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    1/13/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good listen even for a non native english speaker"
    What made the experience of listening to The Second World War the most enjoyable?

    I was caution at first, knowing nearly zero about UK politics, as I was afraid the book would be filled with names I knew nothing about, knowledge of which would be a prerequisite to understand the story.

    It was not the case.

    It is a very interesting book. So interesting, that I purchased second one immediately after I finish it.


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

    Christian Rodska does a superb job.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Michele
    Cranleigh, United Kingdom
    7/21/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic history lesson from the 'horses mouth'"
    If you could sum up The Second World War in three words, what would they be?

    I want to complete my education which is rather lacking in history so I am either reading novels based around important milestones or occasionally delving into the real deal. The Narrator Christian Rodska does a fair impression of Churchill when reading parts of his speeches and it really adds texture to the book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The clear sentiments of Churchill about these historic times and his instincts that may have prevented war. Clearly written in hindsight but with sufficient evidence to suggest he did what he could at the time to avert disaster. I'm so pleased he chose to write the book.


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

    He is excellent in bringing Churchill to life


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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