The Winds of War Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 51 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Winds of War.
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The Winds of War Summary & Study Guide Description

The Winds of War Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Related Titles and a Free Quiz on The Winds of War by Herman Wouk.

Victor "Pug" Henry arrives home from the Navy Building worried about his career. Victor only wants to command a ship of his own and fears that the assignment will not further his career. As he puts it, when the Navy considers commanders for a ship, the amount of time on the water is a huge factor.

Victor finally decides that he really has no choice in the matter and accepts the assignment as naval attach√© in Berlin. Rhoda, Victor's wife, acts typically by lashing out at Victor as she prepares for the move and then finding her sense of adventure at the foreign assignment. Rhoda and Victor, having been married twenty-five years, are comfortable with each other though both feel they have not gotten all from their marriage they wanted. They have three grown children—Byron, Warren and Madeline.

Warren is solid, like Victor, and is training to be a Navy pilot. He meets Janice, daughter of a U.S. Congressman, and they soon marry. Madeline does not want to go to school but Victor refuses to hear of her living in New York. She ignores the demand, gets a job at CBS and launches her career, though she is also building a relationship with a married man, her boss, Hugh Cleveland. Byron is seeking his masters degree but drops out of school to work for a famous author, Aaron Jastrow. Aaron's niece, Natalie, captures Byron's heart but Aaron—and later Natalie—encounter problems trying to escape from war-torn Europe because both are Jews.

Natalie later manages to meet Byron—who joins the Navy as a submariner—in Lisbon and Byron, armed with the correct official documents, marries her. Natalie soon writes to Byron that she is pregnant and later that the has given birth to a son that she will name Louis.

Meanwhile, Victor has met a British girl, Pamela, who is the daughter of a journalist named "Talky" Tudsbury. Victor eventually admits to Pamela that he loves her but they take no action. Rhoda has met Palmer Kirby and they eventually begin an affair. Rhoda cannot quite decide where her heart lies and writes Victor a letter saying she wants a divorce but then sends a cable saying she should not have written the letter.

The entire story of the Henrys and those who interact with them is set against the backdrop of World War II. There are evaluations of the war as seen from those involved and from a German officer's writing. The story comes to a close as Pearl Harbor is bombed by the Japanese. The second book will take up at this point and go through the war.

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This section contains 452 words
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