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War and Remembrance (1978)

by Herman Wouk

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2,330344,921 (4.27)113
From the Middle East, to Moscow, to Hitler's death camps, the members of the Henry family face grave danger as they fight in the Second World War.
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Herman Wouk’s words from “the Author to the Reader” at the beginning of the book:

The evil in Human Hearts Knows no Boundary, except the deeper, stronger human will to freedom, order, and justice. In the long run that will so far has prevailed.

War and Remembrance is a continuance of The Winds of War which together became my pandemic reads. The two volumes tell the story of World War II. They had been on my “to-read” list for a long time, but I wasn’t sure if they would hold my interest long enough to get through 2300 pages. Completing the books was a big accomplishment for me not only because of the number of pages but because of what I learned about the war.

Wouk tells the story of World War ll in a compelling way using the third person omniscient point of view. He also often uses letters and other writings to move the story along. Although “the war” is main character, there are several storylines involving various members of the Henry family who interact with actual historic characters. The fictional characters are a device to tell the story of the war and to keep the reader interested.

The events in the book are told mostly in chronological order. Since there are so many stories and so much happening within the same timeframe, the volumes jump from one character to another often taking the reader away from an event for several chapters before returning. I found this disconcerting at first but soon got used to it. At times the author steps completely out of the story and discusses how events relate to the then current (1970s) world.

The books were not perfect. The writing about the war details was sometimes tedious and some of the family drama seemed like a soap opera. But I bought into the drama and learned so much about a pivotal time in our history. When I finally got to the end, I wanted it to keep going. I seldom give a book 5 stars, but War and Remembrance along with The Winds of War deserve my top rating. ( )
  slsmith101 | Jul 20, 2020 |
I am very glad that I read (listened to) this sequel to The Winds of War but it didn't quite pack the same punch. I suspect that part of the problem is it is soooo long; even though my attention only flagged once (when the list of people in the Midway battle was given), it was a bit wearing.

Kevin Pariseau was terrific and I am happy that I chose to experience these books in audiobook format. ( )
  leslie.98 | Feb 26, 2017 |
Follow up to the Winds of War ( )
  JackSweeney | Jan 10, 2017 |
Historical fiction ( )
  ramrak | Nov 5, 2016 |
War and Remembrance and Winds of War cover about 8 years from 1938 to 1945. They are almost equally split 4 years apiece with the second volume starting in early 1942. They are so long and full of incident one feels having lived through those 8 years. The second volume is when the war action picks up and the earlier character and world building pay off. The history is accurate, but at times distorted to fit needs of the novel. For example the Leyte Gulf scene plays heavily on Halsey's "decision" as strategically decisive, when in fact it really didn't matter due to American superiority of material strength - Japan was going to loose no matter how many tactical mistakes the US made, and this was a small mistake. His description of Midway was masterful though he missed an opportunity to show the code breaking which made it possible and was just as dramatic close-run thing. Of course the heart of the book is the Jewish perspective and that was well done, 1978 was only 30 some years from the event. 1978 was also the same year the TV mini-series The Holocaust came out which was the first time many Americans were exposed to a dramatization of the Holocaust, indeed really came to understand what happened in detail.

I read both these though the audio narration by Kevin Pariseau about 100 hours total - audio is a funny thing because the narrator can ruin a book, be a neutral influence, or enhance it. Pariseau's brilliant acting - an art form of its own for audiobooks - brings the characters alive in a way reading would not, he adds an extra dimension that improves on the original. ( )
  Stbalbach | Apr 1, 2016 |
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In Remembrance
Abraham Isaac Wouk
"Abe"
firstborn son of
Betty Sarah and Herman Wouk
September 2, 1946 - July 27, 1951

He will destroy death forever.
Isaiah 25
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A liberty boat full of sleep hung-over sailors came clanging alongside the U.S.S. Northhampton, and a stocky captain in dress whites jumped out to the accommodation ladder.
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This work represents the complete novel War and Remembrance, and only this novel.

War and Remembrance is published in both single-volume and--especially in foreign translation--multi-volume editions, as well in sets together with The Winds of War. Please do not combine this work with individual volumes of a multi-volume edition of the novel, nor with sets that include The Winds of War. Thanks!
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From the Middle East, to Moscow, to Hitler's death camps, the members of the Henry family face grave danger as they fight in the Second World War.

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Hachette Book Group

2 editions of this book were published by Hachette Book Group.

Editions: 0316954993, 0316955159

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