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Publisher's Summary

Winston Churchill's superlative account of the prelude to and events of the First World War is a defining work of 20th-century history. With dramatic narrative power Churchill reconstructs the action on the Western and Eastern Fronts, the wars at sea and in the air and the advent of tanks and U-boats. Rich with personal insights, the first part of Churchill's magisterial book covers the years 1911 - 1914 and includes Ireland and the European balance, the mobilization of the Navy, the invasion of France and Turkey and the Balkans.
©1959 Winston S. Churchill; (P)2014 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

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By chris on 12-13-09

Excellent presentation of a classic work

This is an excellent reading of this work.(Nobody does Churchill quite like Christian Rodska.)
The work is an interesting but somewhat self serving view of the First world war from Churchills perspective. He had access to many documents denied to other historians initially and made good use of them.It is a nice contrast to listen to this in conjunction with Massies "Castles of Steel" which gives a different perspective on Churchills role as First Sea Lord.
My only real quibble is that it isn't made clear that this is an unabridged reading of the abridged version!(Which is in fact far more readable than the full edition.)

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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By Graham on 02-03-10

Living History

I recently listened to Roy Jenkins' excellent biography of Churchill. This re-awakened my interest in the man (WSC) to the extent that I wanted to hear an account of his life and times in his own words. Like most people I have known him as the great statesman and warlord of popular legend and also that he had been a prolific writer. However, never having previously read any of his works I had not gathered what a brilliant writer he was into the bargain. This account of WW1 and its origins, given from WSC's personal perspective, is infomative, authoritative and utterly compelling. It practically fizzes with energy and life, thanks in no small part to a masterly reading of the text by Christian Rodska. I gained an entirely new perspective on that grim, Great War - hands up those who knew of the German Navy's bombardment Hartlepool, Whitby and Scarborough in December 1914 - and I was utterly intrigued by the inside account of the exercise of power in the great days of Cabinet Government and Parliamentary Democracy. By comparison with today's tawdry governance in the UK we have a vivid illustration of what we have lost in the past 100 years.

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17 of 18 people found this review helpful


By J Edwards on 02-09-15

Outstanding and essential history account

Played it at 1/2 speed on device. Much more Churchillian like and easier to grasp the multitude of facts.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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By Mr. A. M. O'donnell on 10-22-17

Full of great insights.

Fascinating and not at all staid. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this title. Churchill's narrative is engrossing and beautifully written. Being so close to the seat of power in the UK , he was able to recount events with great authority. I will be purchasing the rest of this series.

Also Christian Rodska does a tremendous job as narrator, he sounds splendidly Churchillian.

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By Kevin on 10-24-16

Highly recommend

The account of WW1 from the point of view of Winston Churchill is a fascinating read/listen. Churchill's writing is excellent, keeping the listener engaged and entertained throughout the whole story. The beginning was a bit difficult to get through as you are thrown in amongst the turmoil leading up to the war, with many names and countries that were unfamiliar. Also, the political going ons are a bit monotonous, but once Arch Duke Franz Ferdinand is assassinated, it becomes highly entertaining.

Christian Rodska"s narration is excellent and I have to remind myself that it isn't Churchill himself speaking.

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