The Second World War: A Complete History

  • by Martin Gilbert
  • Narrated by Bernard Mayes
  • 43 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Martin Gilbert, the official biographer of Winston Churchill, offers a complete history of World War II.
It began with the German invasion of Poland on September 1, 1939. By the time it came to an end on V-Day - August 14, 1945 - it had involved every major power, and had become global in its reach. In the final accounting, it would turn out to be - in both human terms and material resources - the costliest war in history, taking the lives of forty-six million people.
With unparalleled scholarship and breadth of vision, Gilbert weaves together all of the war’s aspects - the political, the military, the diplomatic, and, not least, the civilian - charting an almost day-by-day account of the terrible progress of the war’s juggernaut of death and destruction. Through it all, his aim is to show what happened, not from the point of view of any one of the warring nations but from a global perspective. The result is the first total history of this global war, a work that is both a treasure trove of information and a gripping dramatic narrative.


What the Critics Say

“Brings the losses and the horrors of the war home to us more urgently than a more accented account might do.” (New York Times Book Review)
“Mr. Gilbert brings the strongest possible credentials to his history of World War II, and the result is a magisterial work that shows how the greatest war ever fought reached into every corner of the globe.” (New York Times)
“In his transmission of the horror of the war, Martin Gilbert has achieved something no historian but he could. There is indeed a relentless force about chronology when it is used as a tool by a historian of the status of Martin Gilbert.” (Sunday Telegraph)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Should be required reading for all students.

The most complete review of the history of WWII I have read. Students of world history need to familiarize themselves with this book. Even though I have traveled to Germany several times and in fact served in the Army for 3 years in peacetime Germany, I was unaware of the extent of suffering and cruelty perpetrated by the Nazi regime. I sincerely hope the German people are not allowed to forget the devastation caused by the Nazi's. Nor allowed to excuse themselves as unaware participants of those barbarians.

Bill Hemby

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- Cynthia E Dell

was expecting something different

Would you try another book from Martin Gilbert and/or Bernard Mayes?

probably not

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Second World War?

too many to recall

What does Bernard Mayes bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?


What character would you cut from The Second World War?

all were necessary

Any additional comments?

very disappointed....90% of the book was concentrated on europe and the nazi...if memory serves me correctly...there was a lot of "war" in the pacific....but the author writes about the pacific in almost an afterthought.....i'm sorry about the horrible happenings in europe...especially toward the jews and the final solution......but just as much horror was in the pacific......too bad the writer chose to ignore that

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Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-17-2012
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.