The Winds of War, the first of two sweeping sagas about World War II, has been acclaimed by critics and readers for generations as one of the best books about World War II ever written. The story begins in 1939 Europe as the Nazis are gathering forces against their neighbors and ends in the South Pacific with Pearl Harbor.
U.S. Naval Commander Victor "Pug" Henry is assigned to Germany and is joined by his wife, Rhoda. Their three grown children, Warren, Byron and Madeline are variously employed in fields that will draw them as inexorably into the whirlwinds of world events as their parents. Byron, the youngest, will fall in love with Natalie, the daughter of a renowned Hebrew scholar, Aaron Jastrow, with far reaching implications that span this novel and carry on in its sequel, WAR AND REMEMBRANCE.
Wouk's storytelling and masterful grasp of the huge stakes in what has been called America's greatest war, bring us an engrossing novel of the world in upheaval. Heroism and passion flow from Roosevelt's Oval office to Hitler's Eagles Nest, from Berlin to Washington to Pearl Harbor. Within the book lies a translation of the fictional memoirs of a Nazi officer, General Armin Von Roon, called World Empire Lost. This insert reveals the German point of view and self-justification in Von Roon's ruminations on how and why the Third Reich failed.
The Winds of War has been hailed by critics as "grandiose," "hypnotically readable," "panoramic," "kinetic" and "absorbing." The Political Science Quarterly said "Fiction is better than history at showing 'how it really was' where matters of human character are concerned."
Wouk is better than most at bringing history alive through his fiction. At over a thousand pages, WINDS OF WAR is a grand, juicy, get-your-teeth-into-it novel that, along with its companion, WAR AND REMEMBRANCE will fill long summer days with captivating reading.