Home All 2017 Popular Book Lists

Wouk Herman (2017 Most Popular Book Lists)

1. War and Remembrance
2. The Glory: A Novel
3. Don't Stop the Carnival: A Novel
4. The Winds of War
5. The Will to Live On : This is
6. The Language God Talks: On Science
7. Aurora Dawn
8. The Hope: A Novel
9. City Boy
10. Inside, Outside: A Novel
11. This Is My God
12. The Caine Mutiny: A Novel
13. Don't Stop the Carnival
14. Youngblood Hawke
15. War and Remembrance 1978 Volume
16. A Hole in Texas: A Novel
17. Marjorie Morningstar
18. Herman Wouk
19. The Winds of War
20. This Is My God: A Guidebook to

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1. War and Remembrance
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 1056 Pages (2002-02-05)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$9.82
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316954993
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

These two classic works capture the tide of world events even as they unfold the compelling tale of a single North American family drawn into the very center of the wars maelstrom. These two multimillion-copy bestsellers capture all the drama, romance, heroism, and tragedy of the Second World War. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (77)

1-0 out of 5 stars Incompetent proofreading in the Kindle Edition
It's understandable that free e-books from the 19th century would have a few typos, but this is ridiculous. When you're charging money for an e-book, you have a responsibility to make an effort at accuracy. Some of the chapter headings in W&R were originally printed in Fraktur (heavy Germanic script). The worst one I saw was "Zrandator'O aoreworb", which was supposed to be "Translator's Foreword"

5-0 out of 5 stars Comments
I appreciated the historical information and the presentation of characters in the novel to bring the story which needed to be told. I was in high school during that period and really enjoyed the TV series and have just completed looking at it again plus reading the books for both Winds of War and War and Remembrance. The DVD series was excellent and was enhanced by the two books.

3-0 out of 5 stars Pretty good
The Winds Of War/War and Remembrance dualogy was an ambitious book, to ambitious some times to the point where it seems a vehicle for a semi-documentary at times. It is however well-researched and conveys the feeling of the times. Of all the characters I think my favorite was Victor, who possessed virtues that are to little appreciated, because they do not call attention to themselves. He was dutiful, stoic, and loyal to his family and country, and had a sense of decency and humanity, as well as the humility to let others have the credit. This is something of an irony given his name; he was willing to let others be called the "victor" so long as the victory was in fact achieved. And maybe that was the author's point. He was not an exciting character, but just as a sword has to be forged before it is wielded, the navy needed thousands of nameless Victors to make it ready and keep it ready in those dark times.

Slote was also an attractive character. He is quiet, timid, and shy. But in some ways he was the bravest of them all, despite his unshakable belief in his own cowardice.

The Holocaust scenes were as gruesome as one might expect. But what really set them off was the shocking and convincing attempts to show what the Nazis were thinking. Wouk's Nazis think and act like real Nazis, not like comic book ones. The von Roon passages add to that. These are a memoirs, supposedly translated by Victor in which a German general tries to prove that it was all everyone else's fault. Von roon makes a skillful enough argument for his hopelessly evil cause, to be disturbing and at least sounds like how a German general would argue. He is also filled with a curious power-romance, and a contempt for his enemies except for Roosevelt whom he rather oddly pictures as an evil genius. In other words von roon is completely insufferable. But he makes a very convincing Nazi. As convincing as Wouk's other Nazis.

The soap opera air, I simply never took to. However what I most appreciated was the atmosphere of World War II. The cover(of both volumes). Interestingly enough was one of the parts I liked most with the family photos on the cover, which gives the right mixture of domesticity and formidability for a warrior family, as well as the curious nostalgic feeling that hangs over World War II. One point that bugged me was wondering who it was that was in the enlisted sailor's uniform as all the naval heroes of the story were officers. An amusing error.

3-0 out of 5 stars Great book, substandard Kindle edition
Herman Wouk's great War and Remembrance deserves better copy editing than this slapdash scan job has received. It is distressing when reading a masterpiece to find an error or two per page, all obviously resulting from the lack of a careful human review of the scanned book. Amazon--you owe us a revised copy!

5-0 out of 5 stars War and Rememberance
Typical Wouk novel but read Winds of War first.The history is excellent but the character development will remain with you forever.You are emerged in WW II. ... Read more

2. The Glory: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 688 Pages (2002-06-03)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$9.40
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316953199
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Like no other novelist at work today, Herman Wouk has managed to capture the sweep of history in novels rich in character and alive with drama. In The Hope, which opens in 1948 and culminates in the miraculous triumph of 1967s Six-Day War, Wouk plunges the reader into the story of a nation struggling for its birth and then its survival. As the tale resumes in The Glory, Wouk portrays the young nation once again pushed to the brink of annihilationand sets the stage for todays ongoing struggle for peace. Taking us from the Sinai to the Jerusalem, from dust-choking battles to the Entebbe raid, from Camp David to the inner lives of such historical figures as Golda Meir, Moshe Dayan, and Anwar Sadat, these extraordinary novels have the authenticity and authority of Wouks finest fictionand together strike a resounding chord of hope for all humanity. The first trade paperback editions of The Winds of War and War and Remembrance, Wouks epic novels of World War II, were recently released by Back Bay Books. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (18)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Hope & The Glory
I love both The Hope and The Glory for giving a wonderfully readable history of Israel, but I think that Wouk may hold to the polygamist viewpoint.He never mentions a happy fulfilling relationship between 2 who are actually married.All of the married men and some of the married women had long-standing, continuing affairs.It got very tedious to slog through.Call it what you want, but I do not see the difference between having a wife and a mistress for 25 years or just having 2 wives.

5-0 out of 5 stars Kindle format little errors
The book is excellent. I'm new to the Kindle, which I absolutely love. I got "The Glory: A Novel" in Kindle DX Wireless Reading Device (9.7" Display, U.S. Wireless)Kindle Wireless Reading Device (6" Display, U.S. Wireless)Kindle Wireless Reading Device (6" Display, Global Wireless, Latest Generation) format and it has very few, but annoying little typos, which I suspect are OCR scanning errors that went undetected. I think this is to be expected in any new media. I'm hoping that publishers will find the errors (maybe with readers' feedback), correct them and make the corrected versions available for free to previous purchasers.

5-0 out of 5 stars The human dimension brings any good story to life
In his historical notes at this book's end, Herman Wouk tells his readers that The Hope and The Glory started as one book and wound up being written as two. He knew how he wanted to end this story - another Wouk epic! - from the beginning, with an event in Israel's history for which he was present. As a writer, I find that interesting. As a reader, I thoroughly enjoyed both books and found that they do, indeed, tell one story. The Glory picks up that story in 1967, and concludes it in 1988 - 40 years after the War for Independence in 1948, where The Hope began.

Wouk understands what makes his characters tick, and their growing and changing processes unfold naturally. That's what makes both books a pleasure to read. He brings the events of modern Israel's history to life by experiencing them with his characters, and his depictions of real people (people like Golda Meir, Moshe Dayan, and Menachem Begin) ring true for a reader who remembers watching those events and those real people move across the world's stage during the years that The Glory covers. It's hard to believe his fictional creations are not just as real. He even gets the women right, exactly right for the context of their times. Too much like a "movie of the week," as some reviewers state? Maybe. But it's the human dimension that brings any good story to life, and at doing that Wouk excels.

--Reviewed by Nina M. Osier, author of 2005 EPPIE winner REGS

5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome, Wouk continues the Saga

4-0 out of 5 stars Very Good Historical Presentation
I generally like historical novels because the author generally fills in information about what it is was like for ordinary folks duringthe subject time period, and so, so often the author presents historical facts which I may have forgotten or never had known.Michener's "Poland" is a wonderful example of a historical novel succeeding in all these aspects.

Wouk succeeds wonderfully in presenting a history of Israel from October, 1967 (a few months after the Six-Day War) through April 22, 1988 (the 40th anniversary of modern Israel's independence).While from America I read newspapers and otherwise followed the news all through this period, and have read non-fiction works about portions of this period (I recommend Walter J. Boyne's "The Two O'Clock War: The 1973 Yom Kippur Conflict and the Airlift That Saved Israel" for his very informative description of American reactions to the Soviet participation supplying Egypt before and during the Yom Kippur War), until I read "The Glory," I had no recollection of Egypt's sinking of the Israel Navy Ship Eilat in October, 1967 and I don't think I ever knew that Israeli pilot's had blown hostile MiGs piloted by Soviet's out of the air.Wouk includes many other interesting points that would be new to many of us (well, at least, to me).Wouk provides for us an easy to read synopsis of the real-life relations of the Israeli leaders during the period leading up to andduring the Yom Kippur (1973) War, with which his book is primarily concerned.

Wouk's book concentrates on the 1973 Yom Kippur War.In my opinion he does so because it is the most important event of modern Arab-Israeli history.Wouk depicts for us the many circumstances, including excellent Egyptian and Syrian planning, deception and execution (superior even to Japan's analogous efforts with respect to Pearl Harbor), heavy diplomatic pressures, and basic errors of judging intelligence by Israel, which led to the early successes of Egypt and Syria.Wouk excellently describes the dramatic turnaround as Israel resolutely fought back.Wouk also immerses us in the fantastic development and movement through two Egyptian armies of a 400 ton roller assault bridge which proved essential to Israel's counter-attack across the Suez Canal into African Egypt.

Why was this war such an important event?Wouk's characters explain that based just on Egypt's success during the few days of the war, Sadat was able to summon the courage to do what no other Arab leader had done:negotiate to recognize Israel.(Unfortunately, such brave men willing to talk peace such as Sadat and Rabin were assassinated.)

In 675 pages (hardcover edition), Wouk gives us a very fast-paced history, which includes the rescue from Entebbe, Uganda of hijacked airline passengers and the bombing of Saddam's nuclear plant), while providing excellent context and background.

Yes, it is presented from the Israeli point of view.But it is more balanced than accounts by pro-Arab commentators who say, for example, that Israel would not have had the successes it scored in the Yom Kippur War without the help of America, while conveniently omitting the facts that Egypt and Syria had been armed by the Soviet Union and resupplied by Soviet air and sea lifts.(By the way, many articles on the 1973 Yom Kippur War, written from many points of view, can be found at .)

I echo doc peterson's comments. The depiction of the personal lives of the fictional characters just does not work.After the first 3 chapters I realized that I would have to diagram the relationships to keep up, what with all the love triangles, quadrangles, etc., so I decided to just no worry about them.Quite a contrast to Wouk's wonderful writing of the fictional characters in "Winds of War" and "War and Remembrance."

However, as I've indicated above, Wouk's historical depictions do work!

So, I highly recommend "The Glory."I give it only four stars because I quickly lost interest in the fictional characters. ... Read more

3. Don't Stop the Carnival: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 416 Pages (1992-05-15)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$4.80
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316955124
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

It's every parrothead's dream: to leave behind the rat race of the workaday world and start life all over again amidst the cool breezes, sun-drenched colors, and rum-laced drinks of a tropical paradise.

It's the story of Norman Paperman, a New York City press agent who, facing the onset of middle age, runs away to a Caribbean island to reinvent himself as a hotel keeper. (Hilarity and disaster -- of a sort peculiar to the tropics -- ensue.)

It's the novel in which the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of such acclaimed and bestselling novels as The Caine Mutiny and War and Remembrance draws on his own experience (Wouk and his family lived for seven years on an island in the sun) to tell a story at once brilliantly comic and deeply moving. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (79)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book if you never read it
Really fun book... I highly recommend it if you are contemplating a move to the islands... comical, really.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Hugely Entertaining Novel
Even at 400 pages, I was still sorry when this one ended. It moves along swiftly from one incident to the next with a wonderful flow. It's stuffed with memorable scenes and characters. Yes, Norman has a rough time of it, but there's enough success and triumph over the odds that it stays fun. The finale brings several plot threads together, then adds a couple of surprises. (It was surprising to me, anyway.) The only jarring notes were pretty casual strains of homophobia and racism, but that's probably more a by-product of its time and setting than anything else.

Certainly worthwhile.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Adventures of Norman Paperman
I read DON'T STOP THE CARNIVAL a long time ago, right after Vesta and I sailed into the Caribbean, where we lived for several years, sailing between St. Martin in the North and Venezuela in the South. This book seemed to be a must read for cruising sailors (people who live on sailboats). At least once every other month Vesta and I were somehow roped into a discussion or an argument about Mr. Paperman in a sailor's bar somewhere about just what island Mr. Wouk was writing about when he created the fictional place called Amerigo. Trinidad was my pick, Vesta liked Grenada, St. Lucia was a favorite among many cruisers as was Dominica. I never, in all the time I lived on a boat in the Caribbean, met anyone who did not love this book, who did not think that Herman Wouk was dead on accurate in his portrayal of the island life or the island people.

Norman Paperman quits his PR job in New York and buys a hotel on the island of Amerigo in the West Indies. This was supposed to be an easier, more laid lifestyle. However, as poor Norman soon learns, things are done differently in the islands and they are done in Island Time. They have a saying in the Trinidad that goes something like this, "In America they live to work, in Trinidad we work to live." A job is what you do to pay the rent, put food on the table, buy rum, maybe ganja if you're into that, pay for a night out, the movies, a car. And that pretty much sums up how many Islanders think. You are not, as you are in America, defined by what you do for money and what you do for money isn't taken very seriously, so, as Norman finds out, if someone says they are going to show up at your hotel and fix something at 9:00, don't be too upset if you don't see him till noon, or maybe not till the next day.

Mr. Wouk has delivered a funny story here and if you are thinking about a Caribbean vacation, a must read book. You can hear the pan music, feel the hot breeze as you look over the cool blue Caribbean Sea while you page through this magnificent book. I can't say enough good about DON'T STOP THE CARNIVAL.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very fun and surprisiingly easy read
Some of the other reviews give a synopsis, so I won't repeat that effort.I read this book during and around some south Florida vacationing and enjoyed it (the book AND the vacations) immensely.The story is good, the writing is tight and engrossing.

In a nutshell. I have Island fever and a friend recommended that I read this book before I did anything crazy.It helped with the fever, I guess.The book made very clear that the ... professionalism and ... "sense of urgency", yes, those are the right words, of workmen in the islands ain't all that.So, any plans to buy some dirt and have a home built should be approached with great caution.

A real telling point was when Atlas called the banker (I think those are the right folks) a "croupier" because people come to the island, build for a while, go broke, and go away.The bank ends up owning the partially built homesteads and then spins 'em out to the next influx of investors.I must be careful.

As I reflect back on the story, I think that I, like Norman Paperman, am wound a little to tightly for more than island vacations.

5-0 out of 5 stars A great Read
I loved this book.I have read a few of Herman Wouk's books and enjoyed his style in each of them.I originally purchased Jimmy Buffett's Don't Stop the Carnival, which is how I learned about this book.I had not seen it or heard of it before.I couldn't find the book here in my area so I ordered it from Amazon.It was great, very funny and had many twists with a touch of mystery to keep you hooked.You can see yourself getting into some the same fixes Norman Paperman stumbles into.This book is a very fun read and I highly recommend it to anyone that needs a good laugh. ... Read more

4. The Winds of War
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 896 Pages (2002-02-05)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$9.82
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316952664
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

These two classic works capture the tide of world events even as they unfold the compelling tale of a single North American family drawn into the very center of the wars maelstrom. These two multimillion-copy bestsellers capture all the drama, romance, heroism, and tragedy of the Second World War. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (113)

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't Miss This One
Short but sweet: A great epic book full of all the things that make great epic books. It's all here, even if you could care less about war or history. It is also, by far, the very best way for non-historical-researcher-types to not only learn about, but fully understand WWII, and have great fun in the process. This is a war which not only changed the world 70 years ago, but whose re-drawing of borders and alliances still affects the world today, though few realize it. Learn all about it, and have great fun in the process. And don't forget the sequel.

5-0 out of 5 stars Knowing Yesterday
Herman Wouk has written an historical novel for the ages providing us a mind boggling chronicle of our nation's yesterday.The fictional experiences of a Navy family craft the perfect vehicle for understanding events prelude to WWII. Characters are richly drawn and major world events explained in detail. This is not just a compelling story of a military family in the 1930s. The Winds of War argues a convincing explanation for a reluctant United States entry into World War II.Wouk was there; then, after maturing as a successful novelist, researched global perspectives of World War II history which convincingly reach the reader through narrative of his characters. This book is only HALF of the story. The other half is War and Remembrance, and a welcome second half it is.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Read!
Great book!I wish I had read it before reading "War and Remembrance".This title fills in a great deal of background character information.Wouk does a fantastic job weaving his characters into real historical events.Being a younger person, I have little knowledge of what daily life might have been like c. 1939.Winds of War, though fiction, paints a picture unlike any history books I have ever read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Nice to find the classics on Amazon!
This book has great historical significance and helps the reader understand the War.Great story!

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
This is one of the best books I've ever read and an authoritative overview of the opening phases of World War II.Instead of creating superhero protagonists, Wouk's characters are complex and believable.His descriptions of Pug Henry's encounters with FDR, Hitler, and Stalin are priceless and the military analysis is spot-on.The Winds of War represents the number-one achievement in World War II historical fiction. ... Read more

5. The Will to Live On : This is Our Heritage
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 320 Pages (2001-03-01)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$7.16
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B000GG4JJG
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review


Herman Wouk has ranged in his novels from the mighty narrative of The Caine Mutiny and the warm, intimate humor of Marjorie Morningstar to the global panorama of The Winds of War and War and Remembrance. All these powers merge in this major new work of nonfiction, The Will to Live On, an illuminating account of the worldwide revolution that has been sweeping over Jewry, set against a swiftly reviewed background of history, tradition, and sacred literature.

Forty years ago, in his modern classic This Is My God, Herman Wouk stated the case for his religious beliefs and conduct. His aim in that work and in The Will to Live On has been to break through the crust of prejudice, to reawaken clearheaded thought about the magnificent Jewish patrimony, and to convey a message of hope for Jewish survival.

Although the Torah and the Talmud are timeless, the twentieth century has brought earthquake shocks to the Jews: the apocalyptic experience of the Holocaust, the reborn Jewish state, the precarious American diaspora, and deepening religious schisms. After a lifetime of study, Herman Wouk examines the changes affecting the Jewish world, especially the troubled wonder of Israel, and the remarkable, though dwindling, American Jewry. The book is peppered with wonderful stories of the author's encounters with such luminaries as Ben Gurion, Isidor Rabi, Yitzhak Rabin, Saul Bellow, and Richard Feynan.

Learned in general culture, warmly tolerant of other beliefs, this noted author expresses his own other beliefs, this noted author expresses his own faith with a passion that gives the book its fire and does so in the clear, engaging style that--as in all Wouk's fiction--makes the reader want to know what the next page will bring.

Herman Wouk writes, in The Will to Live On:

"And so the Melting Pot is beginning to work on Jewry. Its effect was deferred in the passing century by the shock of the Holocaust and the rise of Israel, but today the Holocaust is an academic subject, and Israel is no longer a beleaguered underdog. Amkha in America is not dying, it is slowly melting, and those are very different fates. Dying is a terror, an agony, a strangling finish, to be fought off by sheer instinct, by the will to live on, to the last breath. Melting is a mere diffusion into an ambient welcoming warmth in which one is dissolved and disappears, as a teaspoon of sugar vanishes into hot tea....

Yet here in the United States, for all the scary attrition I have pictured, we are still a community of over five million strong. . . . At a far stretch of my hopes, our descendants could one day be a diaspora comparable to Babylonia. At the moment, of course, that is beyond rational expectation. We have to concentrate on lasting at all. . . ."Amazon.com Review
Forty years ago, novelist Herman Wouk wrote a book about his devotion to the Torah and the Talmud called This Is My God, which remains among the freshest and most quietly impassioned religious autobiographies in print today. The Will to Live On is Wouk's follow-up to that work, although its subject--the particular state of the Jewish people in the 20th century--is very different. Wouk promises to tackle all of the biggest subjects here: "the Holocaust, the reborn Jewish State, the prodigious yet precarious American diaspora, and the deepening religious schisms." And his broad-minded reflections on all of these topics--especially his explanation of modern Zionism's rise from the roots of ancient literature and history--are cleanly, forcefully, and respectfully written. Among Wouk's most penetrating insights are his reflections on Israel's struggle, throughout history, with the temptation of idolatry, and his conviction that the Holocaust at last purged Abraham's people of this "near-fatal cancer." The Will to Live On is a risky, wise book that deserves to be called prophetic. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars would recommend
very interesting book.wouk manages to cover a huge amount of history and culture and keep it fresh.it teaches about jewish culture and religion and busts some stereotypes and myths along the way.if you're interested in judaism, history, zionism, and the israeli state i'd highly recommend this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars How many Jews?
An excellent and inspiring book.One nit:Wouk says over and over again throughout the book:Even though the Jews are only three-thousandths of one percent of humanity, they still...

Jews are three-TENTHS of one percent of humanity.

5-0 out of 5 stars a little chatty but deeply moving
Anyone interested in Judaism, what it means to be a Jew, Jewish history, Jewish meaning will love this book. It's usually very well written eloquent prose although sometimes it's a bit too diary-conversational.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another fine Wouk book
In a career of fifty years or so, Herman Wouk has published less than a dozen novels.Fortunately, the time he puts into his work shows and nearly all of his works are five-star quality.This book, a non-fiction follow-up to This Is My God (which is the only book of his I haven't read), continues the high-quality trend.

Although designed for a Jewish audience, this book has plenty to offer anyone who wishes to learn more about Judaism and the direction it is going.This is a good blend of history, theology and memoir, well-organized and filled with detail without losing readability.I found of particular interest the second part, "The Heritage, or the Power of a Dream" which describes the sources of Jewish thought and tradition.

Although not very religious myself, I am often fascinated with religion, and this book is a good addition to my collection on the subject.As he states in the Afterword, "If this book in any way helps readers to rethink the [future of Judaism] for themselves, I will have done, to the best of my ability, what I set out to do."He has accomplished this task very well.

4-0 out of 5 stars What is Yiddishkeit?
One of many topics reviewed in this excellent book, possibly, but hopefully not the last of Herman Wouk's great literary career. From the author of numerous fictional works, including the epics Winds of War and War and Remembrance, this is the second of his major nonfiction books, published some 40 years after his first, "This is My God."

This 300-page book spans a greater time span, and is certainly more up to date than Heinrich Graetz's encyclopedic, multi-volume "History of the Jews."Aside from providing a succinct history of a people spanning over three millennia, Wouk addresses an even more important question of what will become of the Jews, having survived centuries of invasion, overthrow, exile, persecution and the Holocaust, only to be threatened with extinction through intermarriage and assimilation in the United States, and secular Judaism in Israel.

At times a difficult read because of its complex vocabulary, cultivated from Yiddish, Hebrew, Biblical and Talmudic colloquialisms, this is more than compensated for by its succinctness, its eyewitness perspective, and its inclusion in respective appendices, a glossary of terms, and biographical names.

Wouk certainly knows of what he speaks.Having been born into and Orthodox American Jewish family, Herman Wouk, is the grandson of a Russian Orthodox rabbi who moved to the United States in the 1920's, who later made aliyah in the 1950's, a member of what Tom Brokaw calls "The Greatest Generation," a World War II naval officer, a lifelong student of history, Old Testament, Talmud, Judaism, and Israel, Wouk has personally met such prominent figures as Prime Ministers Ben-Gurion and Ehud Barak of Israel, the Nobel winning physicist Richard Feynman. A must read for anyone interested in Jewish history, prognosis, Israel (ancient or modern) ... Read more

6. The Language God Talks: On Science and Religion
by Herman Wouk
Hardcover: 192 Pages (2010-04-05)
list price: US$23.99 -- used & new: US$10.00
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 031607845X
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

"More years ago than I care to reckon up, I met Richard Feynman." So begins THE LANGUAGE GOD TALKS, Herman Wouk's gem on navigating the divide between science and religion. In one rich, compact volume, Wouk draws on stories from his life as well as on key events from the 20th century to address the eternal questions of why we are here, what purpose faith serves, and how scientific fact fits into the picture. He relates wonderful conversations he's had with scientists such as Feynman, Murray Gell-Mann, Freeman Dyson, and Steven Weinberg, and brings to life such pivotal moments as the 1969 moon landing and the Challenger disaster. Brilliantly written, THE LANGUAGE GOD TALKS is a scintillating and lively investigation and a worthy addition to the literature. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (13)

2-0 out of 5 stars Lacks Depth In Story-line and Science/Religion..not woth your time.
I thought I would gain some enlightening information about the Language God Talks and instead I got a story about how the author spoke to some Physicists and semi-reconciled his relationship between science and religion.There was definitely not enough depth on either of these stories.Marjorie Morningstar by Wouk is one of my favorite novels and it seems like Herman Wouk should stick to fiction story-telling.This book barely got ankle deep in the story or the science-religion discussion.

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating...but do not make this your introduction to Wouk
I'll echo the 4-star review of 3/31/10 by "litaddiction", with these additional comments.

I consider Wouk's The Winds of War / War and Remembrance and Inside, Outside among the greatest of books. Wouk, following the lead of Tolstoy's War and Peace, effectively conveys the history of the era as a side effect of telling the tales of his major characters. He is guided by the peculiar notion that good writing should be readable and accessible, even to readers lacking a PhD. (The funny thing about "War and Peace" is that, gosh, you can actually read and enjoy it, even though it's a big book and a classic. (Some translations are more readable than others; I linked the Rosemary Edmonds translation, which I liked.)) I think every American should pick up Wouk's WWII books at some point, and these books might be good candidates for high school reading.

When I saw the 94-year-old Wouk had written a book contemplating the relationship between Man and God, I was anxious to read what perspective and wisdom he had gathered during his long sojourn on this planet. This turns out to be a small book touching on big questions of science and philosophy and theology and history, interspersed with personal memoirs and connections to Wouk's literary canon. A central theme is a running conversation/debate (partly historical and partly imaginary) between Wouk and the (now deceased) physicist Richard Feynman, with Wouk seeking philosophical convergence between the model of a universe governed by natural law versus the human quest for spiritual transcendence. On the surface, Wouk's religiosity and Feynman's apparent materialistic atheism would seem incompatible, but Wouk pursues the notion that neither man is wrong and both can share and be enriched by a common philosophical structure, if only the proper framework can be found.

I think the way to appreciate "The Language God Talks" is to take it as a contemplative follow-up to Wouk's earlier works. That is, if you have his other books (or some of them) under your belt and found value in them, this will revisit and clarify and strengthen the themes therein. However, if you're not familiar with the earlier major works or weren't taken by them, I doubt this book will take root in your mind. It's a small book and it covers a vast turf; its ambition is far too great for it to stand alone.

As a postscript, the text mentions other unpublished works that Wouk has either completed or intends to complete, God willing. I'll certainly be watching for anything new he puts out. Additionally, fans of Wouk might be interested in Arnold Auerbach's 1965 (out-of-print) book, Funny Men Don't Laugh. The mention in TLGT motivated me to seek out an old copy, which I found quite rewarding. The apprenticeship to Harry Goldhandler described in "Inside, Outside" is somewhat autobiographical, and Auerbach was the friend who brought young Wouk in to work for David Freedman, the real-life Goldhandler. The true tale is told in Auerbach's memoir, although here Freedman/Goldhandler for some reason becomes "Lou Jacobs".

1-0 out of 5 stars Nobody should read this book. Nobody!
On page 22: "Apollo 11 riveted the world because, for one thing, nobody could then predict what the surface of the moon would be like. Nobody! Sober scientists were worried..." Apparently these sober scientists had never heard of the Surveyor missions, which landed space craft on the surface of the moon and analyzed the soil.[...]. Once you start saying stuff that is just wrong I lose interest fast. I made it to about page 25.This book is going back to the library.

1-0 out of 5 stars An exercise in futility
The only interesting thing about this book is the author's name.I was truly disappointed. It is an anecdotal and purposeless reminiscing by the author.If you are still interested in reading this book, go get it from your local library.

4-0 out of 5 stars Wouk takes a somewhat autobiographical journey though his many writings, people he has met in life and world events.
Heard THE LANGUAGE GOD TALKS by Herman Wouk.

Curious about the title because the author wrote two of my favorite
out that I got a clearer idea by reading the book's subtitle: ON SCIENCE

Wouk proceeds--at the age of 94--to take a somewhat autobiographical
journey though his many writings, people he has met in life and world
events . . . in addition, he cites the Talmud and other books he has
read that have helped develop his religious beliefs.

I was most interested in the tidbits that dealt with his fascinating
life, including his friendship with physicist Richard Feynman, as well
as conversations he's had with such other scientists as Murray Gell-Mann,
Freeman Dyson and Steven Weinberg . . . also, I liked reading about
the other influences that influenced his writing.

Less interesting to me were Wouk's philosophical musings on the
meaning of life.
... Read more

7. Aurora Dawn
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 288 Pages (1992-04-15)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$3.83
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316955094
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

The publication of 'Aurora Dawn' in 1947 immediately established Herman Wouk as a novelist of exceptional literary and historical significance. Today, Aurora Dawn's themes have grown still more relevant and, in the manner of all great fiction, its characters and ironies have only been sharpened by the passage of time. Wouk's raucous satire of Manhattan's high-power elite recounts the adventures of one Andrew Reale as he struggles toward fame and fortune in the early days of radio. On the quest for wealth and prestige, ambitious young Andrew finds himself face-to-face with his own devil's bargain: forced to choose between soul and salary, true love and a strategic romance, Wouk's riotous, endearing hero learns a timeless lesson about the high cost of success in America's most extravagant metropolis. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hilarious - and Prescient - Look at Modern Life and the Advertising Business (Circa 1937)
Herman Wouk's first novel, Aurora Dawn, is a great satire of the modern advertising business (circa 1937) and the world it served.It lampoons the power of advertising (radio in this case), consumerism, the callowness and ambition of youth, the gullibility and boorishness of the American public, imperious corporate executives who base business decisions on ego, the duplicity and false modesty of "young ladies," public relations, the press/paparazzi, egomaniacal artists, arrivistes, religion, and popular culture.

The plot and its telling remind me very much of Tom Wolfe's novels.

Wouk does tell this morality tale in the slightly pompous, flowery style of an old-time radio announcer or a turn-of-the-century penny novelist.However, this is part of the charm -- and it gives him an opportunity to work in some incisive, memorable social observations in a dry, humorous way.

The interesting thing is that this same story could be told today -- just substitute TV or Internet advertising.Wouk was eerily prescient about future events and trends.Proving that basic human nature doesn't change, I guess.

3-0 out of 5 stars fluffy satire on advertising, evangelicals, and romance..
'Aurora Dawn' is a light, almost whimsical story about some shenanigans between a radio broadcasting network, an advertiser (Aurora Dawn, makers of soap products), and an evangelical preacher with a successful (live) radio program.We have a young network employee who tries to balance the interests and misbehavior of all these entities, plus somehow sort out his confused love life.The book was written over fifty years ago and feels rather dated, with the surprising exception of the barnstorming preacher character.

While in many ways a perfectly adequate read, and is certainly a very good first book by the wonderful Herman Wouk, its satire lacks bite and its humor is rather weak.I suppose what really annoyed me was the structure of 'Aurora Dawn'.Its story is actually narrated by a pompous radio announcer-type of narrator.Cute for the first fifty pages, grating thereafter.

Bottom line: certainly a book that would not have been reprinted if it weren't for the author's latter works and subsequent reputation.Very missable.

5-0 out of 5 stars Superb Satire
I don't know if it is accurate to say that this novel is not as good as Wouk's masterpieces (Caine Mutiny, Winds of War, etc.), because it is an entirely different genre.As an example of satire, Aurora Dawn excels inmuch the same way that the Caine Mutiny excels as a war novel. Wouk verycleverly mocks the modern world, from psychiatry, to advertising, toirreligiousness.An easy, enjoyable read.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable book -- not Herman Wouk's usual style
"Aurora Dawn" was Herman Wouk's first book, and while it is an enjoyable read, it is not comparable to his masterpieces like "The Caine Mutiny" or "Marjorie Morningstar." This tale of a young man in advertising who is determined to rise to the top at all costs is told in a flippant, almost sarcastic style. The author keeps intruding himself into the tale with comments on how the story is going, which can be annoying even though it yields some of the book's most humorous lines. The characters are deftly drawn but not especially sympathetic. This book is a quick and enjoyable read, and has some interesting takes on the advertising business. Just don't expect one of Wouk's masterpieces. ... Read more

8. The Hope: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 704 Pages (2002-06-03)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$6.72
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B001G60FYS
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Like no other novelist at work today, Herman Wouk has managed to capture the sweep of history in novels rich in character and alive with drama. In The Hope, which opens in 1948 and culminates in the miraculous triumph of 1967s Six-Day War, Wouk plunges the reader into the story of a nation struggling for its birth and then its survival. As the tale resumes in The Glory, Wouk portrays the young nation once again pushed to the brink of annihilationand sets the stage for todays ongoing struggle for peace. Taking us from the Sinai to the Jerusalem, from dust-choking battles to the Entebbe raid, from Camp David to the inner lives of such historical figures as Golda Meir, Moshe Dayan, and Anwar Sadat, these extraordinary novels have the authenticity and authority of Wouks finest fictionand together strike a resounding chord of hope for all humanity. The first trade paperback editions of The Winds of War and War and Remembrance, Wouks epic novels of World War II, were recently released by Back Bay Books. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (22)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hope rises to the occasion
Typical Wouk - excellent story - lots of detail - you learn much history in the middle of a well written story.First book of two - the second is Glory.It is also well worth the read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down!
The Hope is the epic story of the birth of Israel told as an historical novel. Herman Wouk is an outstanding writer and the book is a carefully woven novel of historical fact and high fiction. The characters are very real and the book is both riveting and enjoyable to read. The sequel, The Glory is equally five stars but I would suggest you read The Hope first.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Hope & The Glory
I love both The Hope and The Glory for giving a wonderfully readable history of Israel, but I think that Wouk may hold to the polygamist viewpoint.He never mentions a happy fulfilling relationship between 2 who are actually married.All of the married men and some of the married women had long-standing, continuing affairs.It got very tedious to slog through.Call it what you want, but I do not see the difference between having a wife and a mistress for 25 years or just having 2 wives.

5-0 out of 5 stars It worked for me on all the necessary levels.
Some authors start to lose their touch as they age, but others just keep getting better. Herman Wouk had been both published and famous for many years when this book first came out in 1993, and I found it a wonderful surprise when I finally caught up with it this summer. It combines history - history written as adventure and intrigue - with well-conceived characters who grow and change as the plot unfolds through three Israeli wars. Each is a war for survival against daunting odds, and many of the characters not only remember the Holocaust, but survived it.

Author Wouk brings to this epic his own solid personal understanding of what it means to be a Jew, and that is the heart of this story. He successfully conveys that meaning from the viewpoint not only of observant Orthodox Jews (which he is), but from the viewpoints of less conservative Jews, Jews who practice their faith only when something prompts them, and even agnostics who nevertheless wholeheartedly identify themselves with their ancestors and their reclaimed homeland. For me this brings his characters alive. He also gets the women right - something male novelists of his generation (my father's) seldom manage. The history is meticulous. I'm glad I bought THE GLORY, too, and now I'm going to go start reading it!

--Reviewed by Nina M. Osier, author LOVE, JIMMY: A MAINE VETERAN'S LONGEST BATTLE

5-0 out of 5 stars Great, A pleasant surprise
I don't know why I was so surprised by just how good this book is or how great Herman Wouk is. Everything I have read by him is awesome. The events in the hope are unbelieveable. I thought i knew about some of the histroy, but the hope put it in a very enjoyable format and now can't wait to finish the glory. ... Read more

9. City Boy
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 336 Pages (1992-05-15)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$4.99
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316955116
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

'City Boy' spins a hilarious and often touching tale of an urban kid's adventures and misadventures on the street, in school, in the countryside, always in pursuit of Lucille, a heartless redhead personifying all the girls who torment and fascinate pubescent lads of eleven. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (27)

4-0 out of 5 stars A great pleasure to read
Herman Wouk is an incredible author. This book is a little outside of his usual style, but it was fantastic to read. A lot of fun and I found myself laughing outloud.

5-0 out of 5 stars Pass This One to Your Children
I read this book as a pre-teen,probablyHerbie's age.As I was a suburban child,I was fascinated by the games and customs of the city kids,not to mention that the book was set40 years before my time. It also is poignant and moving as well,for a reader of any age and background.

I still remember scenes from the book 40 years later,and I think on ofmy teenage sons will find it as interesting and moving as I did.Thus, I am going to buy anew (used) copy.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the top five books I've ever read
I first read this as a teen and have since re-read it several times.Now my kids love it.

The story is interesting and keeps the reader's rapt attention but the life lessons that the main character learns are the real treat here.

I've never read any of Herman Wouk's other books, but this is a true classic.

5-0 out of 5 stars I just love this book!
I recently ordered this book for my son, who is off to sleepaway camp for the first time.As we talked about his summer and the sorts of things he would likel experience, I found myself telling him the whole story of Herbie, the amiable and smart "fat kid,"; Lennie, whom all the parents love but who is secretly a bully;and Mr. Gauss, Herbie and Lennie's elementary school principal who is also the director of the camp the boys attend.

What surprised me was how well the themes and the conflicts portrayed in this book withstand the test of time.What could a story written in the 1930's about a Jewish boy's camp in the Poconos possibly have to say that would be interesting to kids today?You'd be surprised.

It was an absolute delight to share one of my favorite stories from childhood from the next generation, especially when my son had the same magical reaction to this book that I did.The characters are wonderfully drawn, and the prose is so evocative (who could forget the story of 'outfielder, outfielder') and the scenes Wouk depicts, from the tension with Herbie and his first girlfriend to the risks he takes to produce a wonderful camp show, to the corruption and hypocrisy he suspects in the adults around him, will literally stay with you forever.Don't wait to purchase this book and make sure to share it with your family.

5-0 out of 5 stars "I rumble you bell from the mex can whoa."
I found this book about 50 years ago at my grandmother's house, and read it with great pleasure. I've read it several more times over the years, with the same pleasure as the first time. It's funny, unpretentious, and almost perfectly captures the feelings of what it's like to be a child -- especially when you steal money from your father (for a good reason, of course) and are worried about being caught. We see the world largely through Herbie's eyes, not Wouk's.

Though I suspect Herbie is, to some degree, Wouk. Herbie is a smart kid who does well in school, but has almost non-existant athletic abilities. The scene in which Herbie plays Grant to the Lee of the school's best athlete -- chosen for his looks and build, not because he could act -- is perhaps Wouk's attack on a world in which looks matter more than intelligence.

The original's jacket had a pastel (?) rendition of Herbie and Lucille (I think). There were also about a dozen full-page pen-and-ink drawings that captured the story's feeling quite well. These (I assume) are not included in this edition.

The original cover art should have been kept. Herbie is a few pounds overweight, not the gluttonous porker portrayed. The art director should be fired.

Strongly recommended. ... Read more

10. Inside, Outside: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 656 Pages (1995-11-01)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$6.80
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B003IWYKNA
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

From the world of faith to the world of show business, the theater of war to the theater of presidential politics, a novel traces one Jewish family's dramatic, often hilarious adventures on the way to the American dream. Reprint. NYT. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars Growing up Jewish in America
I've read numerous works by Herman Wouk and generally been well pleased.On occasion, I've encountered what I consider to be masterpieces (Caine Mutiny for example) and this book belongs in that category.Told from the viewpoint of a very religious and educated Jewish advisor to Richard Nixon during the Watergate crisis, this novel examines the advisor's current life and his background through the use of flashbacks.Both story lines are extremely compelling and the examinations of his early years through anecdotes involving his immigrant Jewish family members (from Minsk and Lithuania) are spellbinding.

I've read numerous other novels (some by Wouk) focusing on Jewish characters that were much more difficult to read, due to the extensive reference to Jewish culture and Yiddish terminology.That is not the case with this novel.Where cultural disconnects are possible, Wouk goes to great pains to explain them.As a gentile, I found this book remarkably easy to read and understand, even in the deepest recesses of Old World Jewish enclaves.

The title of the book refers to the authors dual life, both "inside" the confines of his religious cocoon and "outside", in the secular world where his advanced intelligence and education have allowed him to rise to the top of his profession (tax attorney) and into a role in the Nixon administration (despite his Democratic politics).The internal tensions involved in both of these dichotomies are fascinating as they play out through the novel.

Of additional interest are the historical events which provide the backdrops for the novel.The aforementioned Watergate crisis is a constant factor in the author's "current" life, as is the 1973 Yom Kippur War between Israel and the surrounding Arab states.The Great Depression is a looming force in the flashbacks to his past.All in all, an outstanding novel and one that I highly recommend.

3-0 out of 5 stars Herman Wouk novel
Memories of the necessity of living one way in the outside world and another way in the Jewish community.It includes some nostalgic and some humorous vingnettes. It was a bit too long in my opinion.

5-0 out of 5 stars Inside, Outside
Herman Wouk is an exceptional writer and this book lives up to all the others.I feel like I know the characters and I've gained a much better understanding of Jewish life in America.

5-0 out of 5 stars Written in the 70s-yet so timely
Took this book with me on a cruise and couldn't put it down.Wouk's writing so fabulous I am now reading all of his book, some a second time.

He is a masterful writer and creates characters that come alive and stay with you.Inside, Outside: A Novel

5-0 out of 5 stars from the back cover of the book
Fascinating, funny, romantic, wise... This is a stunning exploration of the American Jewish experience - the heartfelt tale of every immigrant torn between the culture of his forefathers and the glorious temptations of a new land's dream. - A grand piece of storytelling-Boston Globe. Rich and compelling-The New York Times. Laugh until your side aches...Wipe away a tear...-Pittsburgh Press ... Read more

11. This Is My God
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 368 Pages (1992-04-15)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$6.78
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B000JBY0SI
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

This Is My God is Herman Wouk's famous introduction to Judaism completely updated and revised with a new chapter, "Israel at Forty." A miracle of brevity, it guides readers through the world's oldest practicing religion with all the power, clarity and wit of Wouk's celebrated novels. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Introduction to Judaism
This is my G-d is the best introduction that I have read to Judaism.Herman Wouk writes the most interesting, readable version of a topic that can be boring and drowned in detail.I would strongly recommend the book for anyone that is new to the subject.Jews that have lived an observant lifestyle for more than a few years will probably not learn much new information but will still find it presented in a fun way.

5-0 out of 5 stars What is it a Jew believes
I've studied the Christian religion with some intensity as a layman.Having attended a Synagog with my Jewish friends I still couldn't get a handle on what it was the Jewish religion taught their members about God or what it meant to be a Jew who was part of a Jewish nation.Mr. Wouk explained it to me in his wonderful prose and powerful intellect.His representation of the schisms within Judaism is very helpful and not polemic.When I finished, I couldn't help but chuckle and wonder if the American State Department has read this book.With the Hassidim becoming a strong political force in secular Israel, after the American government has given billions of dollars to Israel, we could end up supporting a nation that discriminates against women.What's wrong with that picture.This book is now part of my top 25 that I recommend my children and grandchildren read.

5-0 out of 5 stars This is my God
The book was in great condition and arrived on time. Thank you.

2-0 out of 5 stars Good on the what, weak on the why
Given this is not apologetics, an overload of what is done, with continual references to the lifelong study required, I felt I did not know much more about the reasons behind the liturgical rites and the precepts of this religion than I did before starting this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best book about judaism
I'm atheist, however I enjoy religion like a human activity.Herman Wouk has fascinated me since Wind of Wars.I strongly recommend to understand not only jews, but also christianism. ... Read more

12. The Caine Mutiny: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 560 Pages (1992-04-15)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$8.99
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316955108
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Upon its original publication in 1951, this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel was immediately embraced as one of the first serious works of fiction to help readers grapple with the human consequences of World War II. In the intervening half-century, Herman Wouk's boldly dramatic, brilliantly entertaining story of life-and mutiny-on a Navy warship in the Pacific theater has achieved the status of a modern classic. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (90)

5-0 out of 5 stars Terrific Read
Every word that Herman Wouk has written unfolds the story in an enticing, but honestly realistic fashion. This book is a true-to-life portrayal of WWII, scandal and romance from the perspective of a soldier that we can all relate to.

4-0 out of 5 stars Caine Mutiny Revisited
I read The Caine Mutiny when it was a best seller in the early 1950s. Sixty years later, after reading Wouk's recent The Language God Talks, I was reminded of what a magnificent writer he is.The author is ever the master story teller, holds the reader, and never disappoints. The Caine Mutiny is as good today as it was when he won the Pulitzer Prize in 1951.

5-0 out of 5 stars A modern classic indeed
One of the great war WW II novels, war at sea novels, and maritime (in any category) novels.And a great "people study"

In short, the story follows the thread of young Midshipman Willie Keith growing through initial training, deployment to sea, battle, and eventually command.Along the way he encounters a romance with a woman, romance with the navy and the sea, dances with death, and hardship under the command of a horrifically unfit captain . . . Captain Queeg, which name has become synonymous with tyranical and world class eccentric leadership.Willie Keith is tested, tried and in the end. . . (I'll let the reader find out).

Wonderful tale, told by one of my favorite novelists, Herman Wouk.In this particular work, besides the gripping tale, I was especially impressed with Wouk's accomplishment in creating the assortment of characters in play.The personalities remain faithful to their created character throughout.An incredible array it is --novelists, lawyers, crude mariners, singers, doting mothers, et al.

A long time ago I was in the Navy (submarine navy) with over four years at sea.It is quite apparent to me that Wouk wrote from personal naval experience, and wartime experience to boot.

Do read this one.It's a novel that educates, gives pause to self-evaluate, and is an absolute "page-turner".

5-0 out of 5 stars Equally Rebuke and Tribute
Herman Wouk's novel of a young ensign entering the Navy an irresponsible youth and exiting as a man he first abhors begins as a coming of age story and ends as a personal rebuke.For most of the story, this rebuke is hidden behind the supposed madness of the ship's unfortunate captain and the increasing angst of the ship's officers.Once removed from the stresses of sea duty and filtered through the hindsight of a Navy lawyer, though, the rebuke becomes clear, as does Wouk's lasting tribute to those who guard our shores and borders in war and in peace.

For most, Wouk's story of mutiny at sea has become a classic tale for its empathic characters, twisting plot, and hair raising mutiny.The subsequent trial is absorbing, its cross examinations especially withering.All of these aspects of the story are well appreciated.But for me, the highlight of the book was discovering the rebuke and tribute above--first in Wouk's heroic lawyer, next in his eventually competent protagonist, and finally throughout the midst of his fascinating tale.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best American War Novel of All-Time
Herman Wouk's "The Caine Mutiny" is one of the best novels I have ever read.It is a combination of a military drama aboard a World War II minesweeper and a great psychological drama among the strong personalities in the officer cadre aboard the ship.

Wouk tells the story of the officers of the minesweeper Caine suffering under a difficult and overbearing commanding officer.He raises many issues as the officers struggle to continue to operate -good leadership and followership; the relationship between the Regular Navy officers who served in the pre-war Navy and the Reserve officers who joined the Navy during the war (many because they saw the Navy as an easier assignment than the Army); plus the psychological stresses of officers struggling under the demands of command.

Wouk served in World War II on a minesweeper.He really brings the reader aboard and shows what it was like to serve in the World War II Navy.

Wouk has weaved together a great story in a great setting with excellent characters to create one of the best war novels ever written, and as good as the movie is the book is much deeper and better.My only criticism with the book is that it, like many other Wouk novels, is saddled with a love story that does not do anything to really advance the plot.Anyone with any interest in World War II or historical fiction will enjoy this book.
... Read more

13. Don't Stop the Carnival
by Herman Wouk
Hardcover: 395 Pages (1965)

Asin: B000PGLJ5O
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wouk CAN Do Humor
I've read some reviews on Wouk's "A Hole in Texas" of people who were surprised that he can write "light."

I read "Don't Stop the Carnival" many years ago and I remember laughing out loud as I was reading it.Let me tell you, Mr. Wouk DOES have a sense of humor!Don't be afraid to try something different from this master storyteller. ... Read more

14. Youngblood Hawke
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 800 Pages (1992-05-15)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$6.78
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B001O9CHTS
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (21)

5-0 out of 5 stars Love a GOOD Tome to hold in my hands
God, I am so enjoying Youngblood Hawke - I feel like doing nothing else but reading ... the characters are delicious, the story is fascinating, the telling is perfection!Thank god for WONDERFUL authors!

5-0 out of 5 stars A great novel that you will not put down
Herman Wouk wrote a book that is unique for the time it was written at the close of the 50's and has created an enduring set of characters that truly captivate, mesmerizes you into the plot...and then those last 100 pages which for the remaining time will not put it down by the reader. Youngblood the character is an amalgamation of all we want to see in an authentic artist....he is brave, witty, independent, filled with gusto.....and above all honest. Wouk writes in a very clear and crisp fashion, but its his characters that come off the page that makes this tale worth reading....especially Youngblood. I give it a huge thumbs up!

4-0 out of 5 stars A book to read and add to your library for all time
I am a big Herman Wouk fan; I compulsively read all his novels -- at least, the ones I could get my hands on - in my early 20's, and I recently re-visited "Youngblood Hawke" when I finally ditched my dog-eared, coffee-stained, torn version for a spanking-new copy to have in my personal library.

Of all his wonderful novels, "Youngblood Hawke" is my personal favorite.I think perhaps because I have always wanted to be a writer -- and because Wouk does not fall prey to the requisite "happy ending" so many novels of this era had.Wouk foreshadows his main character's life in the beginning of the novel with the quoting of the poem "A Runnable Stag" at the fateful Christmas party where many of the characters who have importance inHawke's life are introduced.A writer as skillful as Wouk certainly knows his craft, and this device is put to excellent use here.

If you've read enough of Wouk's books, the female characters all start to blur together, which is why I can't give this book 5 stars.They all have the same way of talking, and although they don't all share the same moral values, they aren't as well drawn as the male characters.That's okay; Wouk is a man, and male writers aren't always as accurate intheir writingof female characters. "Ye gods" is a stock Wouk female-character phrase; they all speak as if a little scripted -- but that's something I can shrug off when novels are as good as his.

Hawke is a fascinating character, and an unforgettable one. This book, like all Herman Wouk novels, is a page-turner, with characters, plot twists, dialogue and descriptions so well-drawn, comic and tragic at once, that the reader has to put aside everything else to finish it.Like the best novels, it mirrors real life, and makes you want to read more of the author's works.And read them you should; your life will be enriched, and you'll have some new friends to add to your library shelf.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Story
I'd heard about this book while at a book signing.I'd described my novel, MANSON, about a newly published reclusive alcoholic, and was then asked how I'd compare it to Youngblood Hawke.My reply was 'well, I've never heard of Youngblood Hawke, but I have heard of mine, so mine must be much better.'

Upon reading the story and seeing that there was a woman named Winter (as I have a woman named Winter) I thought surely I must looked like a serious fraud having scrapped out a tiny novella when there was such a beast of a novel (700+ pages) out there telling a much more interesting story.

The novel reads like it's less than half the length.I read it in 3 weeks whereas it took my one week to read Heart of Darkness (72 pages).

I don't think anyone would regret reading this book.There is great symbolism such as how Hawke essentially spends his whole life in a hovel despite his purchasing of a beautiful home and a building for his own office.It has great lessons on the history of taxes such as how he's in a 66% income tax bracket that can go up to 90%.

Read this book!

4-0 out of 5 stars A Lifetime Read
I have started this book a thousand times, over some forty years. I don't know why I felt this need to read it, but after just now finishing "Youngblood Hawke" I wish I had done so much earlier in my life. It is a book written by an artist about an artist for artists. Wouk of course is Hawke in the sense that Joe Gideon is Bob Fosse in "All That Jazz." I wouldn't be surprised if "Youngblood Hawke" was not on Fosse's top ten list, because it is in fact an expose on the life of an artist in the wicked world of the 20th century, a world getting even more wicked in this new millenium. I am a theatre artist and I wish I had read this novel before I ventured to New York and Broadway. Perhaps I would have seen the pitfalls I fell into before they happened.

This is the first book I've read by Wouk, but, knowing some of his biographical material, I see that he was giving much of himself to the modern artist. He was writing a cautionary tale in which nothing was black and white, except the artistic process. But modern life never lets the artist just create. We must deal and cajole and hold back our true feelings for the almighty dollar until art gives way to artifice.

"Youngblood Hawke" was in the end a melancholy read not unlike the hero's own melancholy, like the malaise that permeates our world like one long reality TV show that isn't supposed to be scripted but is. Despite our knowledge of that fact, we watch on and live on buying into the lie that art is only good if it sells.

Tell that to Van Gough and Shelley and Keats and Orson Welles. ... Read more

15. War and Remembrance 1978 Volume One by Herman Wouk (hardcover)
by Herman Wouk
Hardcover: Pages (1978)
-- used & new: US$50.00
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B0032GJVXQ
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16. A Hole in Texas: A Novel
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 288 Pages (2005-06-06)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$2.56
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0316010855
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

With this rollicking novel--hailed equally for its satiric bite, its lightly borne scientific savvy, and its tender compassion for foible-prone humanity--one of America’s preeminent storytellers returns to fiction for the first time in a decade.

Guy Carpenter is a regular guy, a family man, an obscure NASA scientist, when he is jolted out of his quiet life and summoned to the corridors of power in Washington, DC. Through a turn of events as unlikely as it is inevitable, Guy finds himself compromised by scandal and romance, hounded by Hollywood, and agonizingly alone at the white-hot center of a firestorm ignited as three potent forces of American culture--politics, big science, and the media--spectacularly collide. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (31)

3-0 out of 5 stars Delightful
I'm a bit baffled by the negative reviews this has received.No, it doesn't have the epic scale of The Caine Mutiny, but it's a fascinating, fun story nevertheless.The subject matter is genuinely unique; who else has written a realistic novel about the intersection of science, politics, and entertainment?

My only criticism is that even though this is definitely a contemporary novel, much of the dialogue has an old-fashioned quality.The characters frequently use idioms and expressions that aren't heard much anymore, like "hat in hand" and "cat got your tongue," and the bantering between the scientist and the congresswoman sounds like something out of a 1940s movie.

If you're tired of political thrillers with implausible plot twists, you may find this refreshing.It's a quick, fun read.

2-0 out of 5 stars A Hole in Wouk's Reputation

This was just awful. Hard to believe that is was written by the genius of The Winds of War.

Bought it fresh from the publisher when it was first released. I was so excited that after about 10 years, Mr. Wouk had graced us with another book. That excitement was premature and undeserved.

The blurb calls it a "rollicking Washington tale". I call it a waste of time. The "mystery" just isn't. The "romance" came across as being written by a hormone-driven teenage male (redundant). The "science" was boring.

In fact, the most accurate part of the blurb is the reference to Wouk's very early Marjorie Morningstar. It does have the same feel. I granted Morningstar some credit as it was produced very early in Mr. Wouk's career and, in fact, did explore very well the reality vs dreams that young women and self-absorbed young men can inflict on each other.

I can't grant A Hole in Texas: A Novel any credit at all. Mr. Wouk is far more experienced now and should have known better than to publish such drivel.

Where on earth were the editors who usually give feedback to an author? They must have been mute with astonishment that such a respected writer would actually perpetrate this fraud of a "book" on the buying public.

I suspect this is Wouk's last book. He is 95 years old. Real shame to end his life and career with this offering.

5-0 out of 5 stars You don't have to be a scientist to enjoy this novel
Technology has been part of our daily life for a while now, and yet there is still too much work to be done. A novel like "A hole in Texas" helps average people to engage in interesting subjects even whitout knowing it. On top of that, it is a fun book to read. Highly recommended.... of course, this is just me talking, ok?

5-0 out of 5 stars A Fun Light Read
When I started this book, I wasn't sure that I would be interested enough to complete it.But it turned out to be a well-written, entertaining fast-paced page turner that maintained my interest.

The story involves a physicist who used to work with the Superconducting Supercollider (SSC) in Texas, a mammoth project until governmental funding was abruptly canceled.Now the Chinese claim to have discovered the Higgs Boson particle, which the SSC would have found if it had been continued.This starts a political and media firestorm that carries the physicist in its wake, jetting back and forth across the country dealing with politicians, Hollywood celebrities, and fellow scientists (including one who is an old flame).

The story is light-hearted and a bit tongue in cheek.It's not epic literature or profound drama, but I found it very enjoyable as entertainment, and as a fantasy of what it is like to move within the circles of the powerful and influential in America.(Plus you learn a little bit about the SSC and Higgs Boson.)

4-0 out of 5 stars high stake sub-atomic physics
I was intrigued by the idea that Herman Wouk was still writing books, and being a native Texan, was attracted to the title.The story involves an astrophysicist who was formerly involved in the now defunct Superconducting Supercollider.Now he gets involved in the national uproar over the Chinese discovery of the Higgs Boson (which the former SSC was supposed to find) and the potential superbomb it might enable.Our hero gets connected with a romantic congresswoman, his former Chinese love, a zealous reporter, many lawyers, and former academic colleagues.And to top it all off, he must save his marriage while keeping America safe.This light hearted romp is interesting. ... Read more

17. Marjorie Morningstar
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 584 Pages (1992-06-15)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$6.23
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B001G60FZW
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Marjorie Morningstar is a love story. It presents one of the greatest characters in modern fiction: Marjorie, the pretty seventeen-year-old who left the respectability of New York's Central Park West to join the theater, live in the teeming streets of Greenwich Village, and seek love in the arms of a brilliant, enigmatic writer. In this memorable novel, Herman Wouk, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, has created a story as universal, as sensitive, and as unmistakably authentic as any ever told. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (58)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Quasar and The Earth
"Marjorie Morningstar" was not, perhaps, Herman Wouk's greatest work, but I thought it very good in itself. I always secretly suspected Wouk may have been sorting out his own youthful identity crisis and found it easier to write of it by changing the gender. The underlying theme is far beyond that of a pretty-but-average star struck Jewish girl struggling to come to terms with the constraints of her religion against the mighty tide of worldly influences; it is a also tale of how life can turn things around on everyone in the final analysis - and of how those who dream and work, though the odds seem impossible, can triumph over those who are simply born to dream.

It opens immediately with the girl, standing in front of her mirror, quivering in anticipation of leaping out and onto the great "runaway train" - her life a blank slate before her, no experience yet from which to draw behind her.It is the perfect medium for the vast majority of our mistakes, and some of us will remember it well.The enthusiasm, the heady feeling of euphoria, the quest for the unknown of the new life as an adult, the total lack of sensible fear; spirits soaring as we fantasize.And because we can now do things our own way, Nothing can go Wrong.

Striking out, she sheds her own dull boyfriend, and in the course of becoming a broadway starlet, learns of a suitable job which just happens to be near a summer stock camp of wild and woolly repute, just the thing for an unsophisticated Jewish girl to attempt on her first flight out of nest.Here, of course, she meets a fascinating, blonde loser (although it takes awhile to recognize it) named Noel Airman - who is the director of the theatre and of it's entertainment.He is older but still in the prime of life; a golden God in a black turtleneck beneath the stage lights;a rebel whose real name - she learns much later - is actually Saul and the irony is lost on no one.

At the same time and place, she also meets a talented, but very young and very geeky aspiring writer named Wally, gangly and ungainly, who is immediately smitten with Marjorie and remains so for most of his life - she is "his" unattainable. But Marjorie, in pursuit of "her own" unattainable, Noel, does not even realize he is alive, and in fact, holds him slightly in contempt.These facts become the basis for the story, and for the ultimate twist of fate ending.

It takes us on an entertaining journey through the sleazy world of New York Theatrical circuits, through the angst and worry of Marjorie's despairing parents who try vainly to understand "the new ways" - who know that she will be hurt by it, but more importantly they fear that she will lose not only her morals, but her sense of who she is and where she comes from as well.The star burns brightly while immaturity and elusive dreams struggle against the gravity of the impending arrival of common sense as we truly arrive at our destination - or as close to it as we usually ever get.

5-0 out of 5 stars My God, you've gotta read this - - -
- - if for no other reason than Morris, Mildred and Neville at the Passover Seder.With a suitcase full of 47 toy planes? It's hysterical. And you thought spoiled-rotten kids were a fairly recent phenomenon? I'm only at page 313 (and they haven't left yet) and this is among the best, really. If the rest of the pages were blank or a bomb, it would still be well worth it.
Hey, the Winds of War it ain't (loved that and his others too), but this is totally different

5-0 out of 5 stars a classic
I have read this book many time over the last 20 years and I still love it. Enjoy to those of you who have not read it ye!

2-0 out of 5 stars A disappointment for this Wouk admirer
Having so admired Wouk's "The Winds of War" and "War and Remembrance", I sought out another combination page-turner and worthy literary endeavor.
This isn't it.I often read "old" novels, going back to the 19th century, so I'm familiar with the conventions of expected behavior from young women, societal constraints, and the consequences in fiction of women flouting conventional moresUnfortunately, I found this novel mostly dull, and for the last quarter of it I was skimming pages just to get to the end, which by that time was completely unsurprising.Nice girl looks down at her own parents and upbringing, and tries to rise in fame and in society.Falls in love with the wrong man, and stays in love with him beyond all reason (see also, Fanny Hurst's novel "Back Street.") The story ends with her being older, "wiser", (that is,without dreams or career ambitions)--pretty much back where she started, but with a higher income.Along the way we are told that she is sexually repressed AND sexually compromised, that she she has much acting talent but really is only a talented amateur, and that such a pretty young woman (her looks are emphasized over and over again) would have been much happier if she'd remained close to home, finished college and then married quickly, stayed away from show business and unconventional men, and not dreamed beyond her place in life.Gee, thanks.None of these male "insights" needed 565 pages.

5-0 out of 5 stars Timeless Classic
I first read this book as a 17-year-old and loved it. I re-read it in my mid-twenties and loved it. At 40, I still love it. As a Jewish woman I can relate so well to most of what Marjorie goes through. But beyond the similarities, this is just an immaculately written book. The characters are so well-drawn and completely three dimensional. The plot moves and holds interest while mirroring reality for the time and characters. For someone who lives a pretty average life, doing nothing extraordinaary, she is a fascinating character. And a man wrote this! Kudos to Herman Wouk. ... Read more

18. Herman Wouk
by Arnold Beichman
Paperback: 144 Pages (2004-08-19)
list price: US$24.95 -- used & new: US$20.59
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: 0765808366
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Editorial Review

Arnold Beichman's comprehensive study of the writings of Herman Wouk, one of America's leading writers, shows how Wouk's plays and novels exemplify an extraordinary and often highly perceptive preoccupation with American society in war and in peace. Situating Wouk in the same literary tradition as Cervantes, Richardson, Balzac, and Dickens, Beichman demonstrates that Wouk's novels have strong plots, moralist outcomes, and active-essentially positive-characters. The new introduction serves to bring Wouk's work over the past two decades into the reckoning. Making extensive use of Wouk's personal papers and manuscripts as well as personal interviews with him, Beichman's focus is on the social and literary qualities of Wouk's work. In particular, he examines eight of Wouk's twelve novels, one of his three plays; and two moral tracts on Judaism. ... Read more

19. The Winds of War
by Herman Wouk
Hardcover: Pages (1971)
-- used & new: US$79.75
(price subject to change: see )
Asin: B002YB928E
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Editorial Review

The story revolves around a mixture of real and fictional characters, all connected in some way to the extended family of Victor "Pug" Henry, a middle-aged Naval Officer and confidant of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.The story begins six months before Germany's invasion of Poland, which launched the European portion of the war, and ends shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, when the United States and, by extension, the Henry family, enters the war as well.Mixed into the text are "excerpts" from a book written by one of the book's fictional characters, German general Armin von Roon, written while he was in prison for war crimes. Coming across the German version, a retired Victor Henry "translates" the volume in 1965. The text provides the reader with a German outlook at the war, with Henry occasionally inserting notes as counterpoint to some of von Roon's statements ... Read more

20. This Is My God: A Guidebook to Judaism (Walker Large Print Books)
by Herman Wouk
Paperback: 395 Pages (1991-04)
list price: US$15.95
Isbn: 0802726437
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wish I had read THIS book first!
I'm a fan of Herman Wouk in the first place. This book is his gift to us all, insightful, and lovingly written from an observant Jew's view of Judaism. Practical, down to earth, and a gentle, easy read. ... Read more

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