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War and Peace: With bonus material from Give War and Peace A Chance by Andrew D. Kaufman by [Tolstoy, Leo]
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War and Peace: With bonus material from Give War and Peace A Chance by Andrew D. Kaufman Kindle Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

British scholar Briggs unveils his lucid new translation of Tolstoy's masterpiece-the first in almost 40 years-to a slightly anxious audience, from first-timers who, balking at the amount of time required by this massive yet startlingly intricate work, want to ensure they are reading the best translation available, to purists who worry that clunky modern prose will replace the cadences of earlier translations. But these concerns melt away after the first 100 pages of this volume. Briggs's descriptions are crisper and the dialogue is sharper, with fewer "shall's," "shan't's" and "I say!'s" than the Garnett, Maude, or Edmonds translations, leaving readers free to enjoy the rich and complex plot, vivid characters and profound insights into war and the nature of power. There are some awkward spots: Briggs claims his earthy rendering of soldierly banter is more realistic than earlier, genteel translators', but it reads distractingly stagy: "Give 'im a right thumpin', we did." It's also a shame to have lost Tolstoy's use of French, not only in the mouths of his characters, but also in the essays, as when he plays with Napoleon's famous "sublime to the ridiculous" quote. Briggs will face competition next year when Pevear and Volokhonsky release their new translation, but for now, this is the most readable translation on the market.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Library Journal

Thanks to British narrator Frederick Davidson's performance, it is safe to say that there will not be a better recording of Tolstoy's masterpiece for some time. The heart of this drama is the metamorphosis of five familiesAsome peasant, some aristocraticAamid the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars. Each individual is immersed in experiences and conversations elucidating Tolstoy's themes of self-sacrifice and self-indulgence, anguish and ecstasy, diplomacy and deception, and religion and perdition. The complexities of character and plot are sometimes enigmatic, and names are often exhausting to recollect, but the genius of this book is everlasting. The impressive dialog sparkles with humor and wit, and the vivid scenes of battle are riveting. An entire universe is created by one of the foremost thinkers of the 19th century, and Davidson's exquisite narration heightens the perfection of this novel, regarded as one of the greatest in literature. Highly recommended for all collections.ABarbara Mann, Adelphi Univ., Garden City, NY
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 12987 KB
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (April 8 2014)
  • Sold by: Simon & Schuster Canada, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00JCDK5ME
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 31 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,827 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a grand, sweeping and majestic piece of literature. A work of fiction, history and philosophy all in one. Both enrapturing and infuriating. Enraptured by the level of detail and the ability to paint a mental image in one's mind with such marvellous prose and style by drawing the reader into the lives and emotions of the main characters as well as the culture that existed in 19th century Russia, as well as describe the events, the sounds and the immediacy of battle and those who took part in it within the backdrop of the Napoleon`s eastward march, unlike anything I've read since Michael Shaara's Pulitzer Prize-winning `The Killer Angels'. Infuriating in trying to keep straight the intertwining characters of all three families with their confusing Russian names, and the constant switch of dialogue to French, forcing one to endlessly refer to the translation at the bottom of the page. And I most certainly could have done without Tolstoy's tediously mind-numbing philosophizing of war and the course of human events in the concluding epilogue. Such is the work of great literature, I suppose. Admittedly, there were a couple of times I was tempted to cast the book aside, but the pull exerted by the Balkonskys, Bezukhovs and Rostovs proved too strong not to learn how their fates would conclude.

Daunting !
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have wanted to read this book for 40 years..To be honest I was a little intimidated..All those Russian names...The style was unknown to me..question marks...I am so pleased I got this book...Historic novels were always my cup of tea..."The War" is exciting ..Tolstoy describes the Charge of the Light Brigade.. a few lines in an engrossing novel depicting "War is Hell"..In "The Peace" there is intrigue..a shadowy woman reaches under the head of a dying Prince's pillow to steal a will out from underneath the scheming sisters hands..how exciting ..a real page turner..So different that I imagined this epic would be to read..
Enjoy this monument to reading
Hugs
John
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I always wanted to read this when I was in school. Now that I have started reading War and Peace I wished I would have taken the time to read it. I find it so fascinating and interesting.
Excellent read by far!!!!
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Format: Paperback
Very rarely can an author create characters that are so multidimensional. They are neither bad nor good, simply human. No author that I have read can so perfectly describe the human experience so eloquently and unpretentiously. It is timeless. Eventhough it takes place in a time and era that has long since disapeared you can relate with the characters as if they were alive today. This book, so simply written is in my opinion, one of the greatest novels ever written. Reading it will make you a better person. A must read for humanists everywhere.
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Format: Paperback
This was one of the roads on my mission to read the Worlds Top Classics - and a long road it was. However, after getting into the novel and trying not to get too intimidated by the number of characters, I was totally absorbed by the whole experience of reading such a book.
The amount of work that Tolstoy put in to write this extremely detailed and great historical novel must have been incredible. The book works on many levels: as a romantic novel - following the lives of various charcters; it is also a historic account of the Napoleonic wars and of social history at that time; it has chapters filled with the "science" of war; Tolstoy also includes his views and the philosophies of life and history: therefore it can be read on many, and every level. I was totally spellbound reading about aspects such as the communication problems there were during this time and the different values of the people.
The book deals with many issues, including leadership which has inspired people such as Nelson Mandela (who read it while in prison). The book's chapters are also very short (sometimes 2 pages) - therefore you are also able to read the book in short doses: which I did (it took me nine months to complete the work).
However, like a small sponge in a large puddle of water, I was unable to absorb everything that this novel had to offer, and I can certainly see myself returning to re-read this book in few years.
Make yourself read this - it's worth it.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was lucky enough to read the book in its original language when i was going to high school in Russia, and now more than 20 years later i am still spellbound by the story, the beauty and richness of the author's language...the writing is so beautiful it made me cry at some passages. I have read and reread the book several times since my first "compulsory" read, but nevertheless the story is always fresh and captivating.
The characters are richly developed; it is as if you are right there yourself seeing and feeling what they do. It is also an amazing historical work, very accurate, very detailed, and never boring. It is the book that stays with you for the rest of your life. If you haven't read it yet, then what are you waiting for?
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By A Customer on April 30 2000
Format: Paperback
This review is mainly about the 2nd edition of Norton Critical Edition of War and Peace. This book is superb. The layout now is much better compared to the first edition -- almost as good as A. A. Knopf -- which makes reading an enjoying. But there are certain drawbacks. The detailed content list has been dropped from the previous edition. If you are familiar with the content, there is no problem. Otherwise, it's not very convenient. Also some maps were omitted. Now we have only three maps of 1812 campaign. The are no maps of '05 or '07 campaigns. Also a list of main figures and brief chronology are appreciated since it's such a big book. A suggestion of the remedy--xerox what you need from, e.g., other editions and bring with you.
A common drawback in almost all current English translations and editions of W&P is the lack of the translations of French words. In my opinion, it's appropriate to keep the French usage in the context as the author desired but have the corresponding English translation in footnote. It should not be that difficult, shouldn't it?
Finally, my suggestion is: read the book, live with it at least for a period in your life. You can actually read from some very different viewpoints and the book presents itself in very different aspects when you do so. If you don't like it, it's OK. You can always enjoy life itself. I repulsed the book when I was young. But I go back to it after all.
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