Summary

A magisterial, single volume history of the greatest conflict the world has ever known, by our foremost military historian.
The Second World War began in August 1939 on the edge of Manchuria and ended there exactly six years later with the Soviet invasion of northern China. The war in Europe appeared completely divorced from the war in the Pacific and China, and yet events on opposite sides of the world had profound effects.
Using the most up to date scholarship and research, Beevor assembles the whole picture in a gripping narrative that extends from the North Atlantic to the South Pacific and from the snowbound steppe to the North African Desert.
Although filling the broadest canvas on a heroic scale, Beevor's The Second World War never loses sight of the fate of the ordinary soldiers and civilians whose lives were crushed by the titanic forces unleashed in this, the most terrible war in history.
Read by Sean Barrett.
©2012 Antony Beevor (P)2012 Orion Publishing Group
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By David on 16-08-12

Concise, Interesting and Entertaining

Beevor interweaves the stuff of war history - major campaigns, sea battles, the outcome of strategic decisions and the personalities involved, with the often gory detail of human suffering on a grand scale and post-event analysis which poses some interesting what-if scenarios. Humour occasionally lightens the mood - with the British General Staff and Il Duce's army bearing the brunt. Barrett's narration is excellent and he copes well with German, Russian and Japanese names and ranks. An often enlightening read which should be on the school curriculum, and read by all, lest we forget.

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18 of 18 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Graham on 30-08-12

The Book on the Second World War!

I have always wanted to read a book which gives a clear and accurate view of the second world for. This is that book. This never glamourises the War and it plays down the propaganda and the myths. In fact on reading this book i feel that no nation comes out with credit - just some were more guilty then others.

The book delves deep into the detail and it pulls no punches. this isn't a boys adventure tale. Its War and the worst of it.

Its so fascinating to see what strange and evil alliances the War bought together and I have never ever realised that some of the German allies were so close to the Uk. How the British had to fight the French after their surrender to Germany in some instances and how there was several nations who changed sides during the War - not just Italy.

The book delves into the reasons and the start of the War and Britain does not fare well. The brits were slow to start and let several nations down with their lack of support. France - then a super army never delivered and surprisingly fell to the Germany quickly and Italy panders to Germany without engaging in the War. America has to be cajoled into the War and it costs the Brits substantially to get them to join. Facts I never knew.

Its a big book an at times hard to follow - well at the start at least. But its well worth reading on. i just couldn't wait to get back into the book.

This book will be seen as THE BOOK ON THE SECOND WORLD WAR - I am sure of that.

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25 of 26 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Martin on 26-07-12

Superb and enthralling - highly recommended.

Where does The Second World War, Part One: The Phoney War to Stalingrad rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Excellent Audible history - up there with the rude boys.

Have you listened to any of Sean Barrett’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

The narrator is excellent. This is a long listen, so the narration is especially important and Sean Barrett's clarity, diction and expression are first class.

Any additional comments?

The mix of grand strategic overview mixed with the words of soldiers and civilians make this brilliantly written history extremely engrossing. I'm eagerly looking forward to Part 2.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By F-M on 11-11-12

Expected more from Antony Beevor

Great run over the second world war. But nothing new for those who have studied it already. Best on the Western campaigns and less in-depth on the complex Japanese/Chinese conflict. Hoped that Antony Beevor with his detailed knowledge would have tried to maintain an analytical overview of the war. However, instead he leads us through battle to battle and campaign to campaign in his usual entertaining style with lots of specific stories to bring the scenes alive. Maybe I was expecting too much.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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