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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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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.

1 person found this helpful

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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.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 15-06-2020

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!

10 people found this helpful

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  • Maria Kowalska Elleberg
  • 25-10-2020

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

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  • littledoo
  • 06-08-2020

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.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Nikku
  • 12-05-2021

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.

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  • Rosemary
  • 07-05-2021

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.

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  • J Lara
  • 03-05-2021

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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  • MonaB
  • 07-03-2021

Great book, shame on some narrators.

Great book. I'm glad I've finally manged to 'read' it. Some fantastic narrators and some really poor ones that make it hard to follow the story. I will definitely skip any more books read by her.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 07-03-2021

The change between narrators was very jarring.

The novel itself is a worthwhile listening experience. The long historical sections are interesting at first but then become quite repetitive.

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  • Krista
  • 10-02-2021

Great book but some problems with the audio file

Really great and engaging book. Thought provoking.
the audio did have issues however, where it kept stopping despite being downloaded onto my device.

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  • W Constable
  • 29-01-2021

brilliant story but ropey editing

Though many people have said they don't like the narrators changing I found it a helpful change on a long book. They only problem was the lack of editing in the third book where sentences and parts were reread and therefore repeated just after it was first said.

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