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War and Peace  By  cover art

War and Peace

By: Leo Tolstoy,Anthony Briggs,Orlando Figes
Narrated by: Chloe Pirrie,Sam Woolf,Michael Fox,Olivia Darnley,Terence Wilton
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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

This Penguin Classic is performed by Chloe Pirrie, Sam Woolf, Michael Fox, Olivia Darnley and Terence Wilton.

At a glittering society party in St Petersburg in 1805, conversations are dominated by the prospect of war. Terror swiftly engulfs the country as Napoleon's army marches on Russia and the lives of three young people are changed forever. The stories of quixotic Pierre, cynical Andrey and impetuous Natasha interweave with a huge cast, from aristocrats and peasants, to soldiers and Napoleon himself.

In War and Peace (1868-69), Tolstoy entwines grand themes - conflict and love, birth and death, free will and fate - with unforgettable scenes of 19th-century Russia, to create a magnificent epic of human life in all its imperfection and grandeur.

©2005 Anthony Briggs (translation) (P)2020 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about War and Peace

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-15-20

Great! but the editing...

In volume 3, the editing is very bad. the actor repeats lines many times, in different places.

Despite this, the story is amazing!

15 people found this helpful

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  • Maria Kowalska Elleberg
  • 10-25-20

great story, uneven performance

Different narrators somewhat ruin the experience, but most of them are good. In one part the editing is patchy and the narrator repeats the same sentences several times. Great story though <3

3 people found this helpful

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  • littledoo
  • 08-06-20

Long, but great

It's a soap opera really, a very good one. So many different stories aside from the main narrative. found the war bits sometimes a bit too much for my interest in military history, but happy to listen and pick up some insight along the way. Great philosophical ideas all through the book. Different narrators throughout made it sometimes tricky to get into again. One was not edited completely as lines were repeated when he felt it was wrong, but no one had edited out the first try. The last narrator, the epilogue was rather shouty, heart my ears, made the writting rather preachy and arrogant, maybe it was anyway, but the reader made it unlistenable.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Rosemary
  • 05-07-21

this book is bloody long

I think I've spent about two months of my life reading this book. audio book made it much more digestible. loved the variation of narrators.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Schlegel sister
  • 01-03-21

Disappointing narrator

War and Peace is one of my favourite books and I was looking forward to hearing Briggs’ translation, but the first narrator’s reading of dialogue is so stilted and irritating that I’m giving up before I’m even halfway through part one.

2 people found this helpful

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  • K. Bertie
  • 10-19-21

Couldn’t follow, so poorly Read

I thought war and peace might be a good novel to follow the Pallider series by Anthony Trollope read by Timothy West.

Perhaps it would have been, except for the incredibly poor narration, I know Timothy West is a hard act to follow but this was so amateurish… Sorry had to stop listening

1 person found this helpful

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  • Robert Knight
  • 08-25-21

loved it !

I absolutely loved it , in a lot of chapters of the book I felt as if I was at ball, drinking party or an in depth discussion between friends.
its true , you end up loving all of the characters for their faults and strengths.
would recomend this version.

con: half way through one of the men reading is coughing and often repeating himself.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Nikku
  • 05-12-21

Not 5 stars because of editing errors in Volume 3

I really enjoyed it, but the editing errors in volume 3 nearly stopped me finishing. Numerous occasions where line are repeated. very off putting.

1 person found this helpful

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  • J Lara
  • 05-03-21

Outstanding, war, politics overall, a love story!

I have wanted to read this for ages, audible has made it possible! The actual book is just to heavy for me to hold. Thank you!
I liked the different narrators, yes one sometimes repeated himself but that didn’t bother me, it made more real, I would repeat lines if I was reading it.
I love the characters, Pierre in particular, seeing how he grew and developed through his life experiences and becoming a better person. The war narrative was long at times but an essential part of the story.
I thought once I finished I wouldn’t listen again just due to the length but I will, it deserves more attention. An epic love story!
I was surprised how modern the language used felt at times.
Highly recommend.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-10-22

justly regarded as one of the greatest of novels

astonishing insight into human nature, social interaction, and historical causation, set against the grandest of canvases.

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  • Sarah Cook
  • 03-10-21

This audiobook is the only reason I finished

Anyone who manages to make this tome into an audiobook should be applauded, no matter what. Each of the 5 narrators is clear and consistent.

However, publishers should note that in volume 3 part 1 there are some editing mistakes - quite a few times in this section lines are repeated. It happens more than 10 times, sometimes a few within a single chapter.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Wildschwein
  • 08-23-22

Not enough superlatives to describe how good this is

The biggest, most epic tale ever assembled. I feel my life is better for having listened to this. I loved the multiple narrators and the pace and relevance of the translation. However, the story itself is so vast, so deep, so human — I laughed, I cried and felt more alive than at any point in my life. Can’t recommend this enough.

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  • Virginia w.
  • 07-16-22

terrific listening

I loved this story. Obviously the lives and loves of the families was more appealing than the battle scenes but even they were not too brutal until the retreat . this was a welcome change to radio listening while working.

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  • Richard
  • 05-28-20

Interesting, but not the greatest Novel written

I will probably be criticised as a Philistine but wouldn’t have through this without the audio version. The interminable love chapters, the anguishing and the twists and terms of emotions drove me crazy. The Epilogue explains much of what the novel- whatever you call it- is about is great. The production was ok, but why switch from male to female narrators escapes me. I did it, but I don’t think that I am a great fan of the 19th century Russian novelist. Give me A Suitable Boy any day if you want to read a magnum opus. Next I have Stalingrad by Vasily Grossman; am I up to it? Surely it can’t be as turgid as War and Peace?!!’ One positive outcome was the lowering of my estimation of Napoleon as a great leader or general. I never have understood why Churchill thought so highly of him.