The Art of War

The Art of War by Sun Tzu Book Summary

An Apple Books Classic edition.

It’s believed that Sun Tzu wrote this Chinese military primer during the 5th century BC-hundreds of years before the Bible. The book’s 13 chapters explore principles that statesmen around the globe have employed for centuries to defeat their enemies at war.

Sun Tzu starts by mapping out the five fundamental factors that lead to war. He then covers a wide range of topics, from avoiding conflict altogether to strategically positioning soldiers, pulling off tactical maneuvers, and putting spies to use.

Despite the technological advances made since The Art of War was published, Sun Tzu is still considered one of history’s foremost military strategists, and his methods still ring true. While he wrote the book as a manual for those who would literally wield swords, it has reached a much broader audience in this day and age. Warriors of all kinds-like corporate leaders or athletes-seek out Sun Tzu’s wisdom in their quest for success.

The Art of War by Sun Tzu Book Reviews

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The thing I

Call the number that they

I don’t like war

The only way I could see the

The pace of life

The only way

Love this book ..



Amazing a realistic look into warfare a must read for generals

There are a lot of concepts that can still be used today. Like in business. Love the story’s and commentary.

I just downloaded this book. It simply said “get.” There was no price, and yet I was charged $10.59 for the book. I’m contacting my credit card to issue a dispute and chargeback. I suggest everyone else do the same if you were scammed too.

Insightful commentary and definitions of the phrases, though limitedly linear and literal at times. Many sections benefit skipping the interpreter’s notes until after the thought is finished, or the point made, but most of the notes are relevant and interesting enough to sift through and learn details from. Similar enough to the Tomas Cleary translation to be read as a parallel with subtle shifts, which deepens interpretation of a few passages’ meaning. If you’ve never read any translation of The Art Of War, it’s absolutely worth the download. Always worth the read.

It’s hard to decipher what’s actual text from Sun Tzu and whichever translator or commentator is being quoted at the time. I understand translation and understanding is key but I believe this one interfered with the original meaning if the text


The translation notes are nice for context but can be a bit much at times. I recommend getting a translation with shorter notes or none at all.

I’ll be honest, I read a physical copy of the book but I wanted to see what ebooks has to offer because I never knew it was free on Apple Books, so I check but shortly after reading I realized there was other peoples opinions that is very unnecessary. I understand if it was too short, so you added others people’s statements and stuff but it’s just annoying when you just want to read the original and you see that.

I enjoyed alot


The new

Learned a lot of new words from this book and opened my mind to a lot of the strategies still used in war today.

I’m probably a bad reader or the book was going in and out of the brief lines which held together the communication. All and all, it’s a great book if you want to know more about war. I got some good nuggets out of this book. Great tips for people who are in combat (debates, sports, business, etc.) primarily dedicated on the premise of war.

This book is extremely full of mental tactics. It’s a dry read but the information is a continued life lesions. This should be a mandatory read for schools.

Different perspective of War tactics between losing and winning or even making subtle progress in what you are battling with to achieve in goals. We’ll recommended if you are completely ambitious in life🔋

Eye opener

Very useful data.

This book is applicable for all era and for every situation. I only find the English translation little poor.

I really only read it because of technoblade

I read the whole thing while I was doing Convoys in Iraq. However, its bad for the sake of Humanity, when considered against employments within the corporate world. In my opinion, its one of the biggest reasons that the world economic equilibrium is failing. Counterintuitive to the infinity of our existence.

I’ve finally finished this after 7 years. Book has a lot of interest points… Brought the war out of me. *rawr* Though, I find it some parts more informative then not. Would recommend to someone.

“If fighting is sure to result in victory then you must fight!” Sun Tzu said that, and I’d say he knows a little more about fighting than you do pal because he invented it! And then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor! Then he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth. And then he herded them onto a boat, and beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward anytime there are more than one animal in one place it’s called a zoo! Unless it’s a farm!

War is broken down to its components. A science is killing and violent behavior between people

I saw this in a tecnoblade vid and read it through is absolutely worth the effort

Liked the examples in the footnotes though. Kept it just interesting enough to keep going.

Got bored 3/4th way throughout the book. It becomes severely repetitive at some points, even if Sun Tzu or the commentators are attempting to emphasise a point, it is, often, not necessary. It mentions a lot of good points and the commentary is all in all very helpful and somewhat entertaining when they tell stories of generals using the points/methods mentioned by sun tzu. It gives a live example of the method or the mentioned point in the working and shows it’s effect and what principles lie within it. Although sometimes, the comments are rather excessive or extremely long. All in all, 3/5 or 6/10.

I found The Art of War an enlightening read due to its conceptions of war, place in history, and relevance to modern Chinese thinking. Sun Tzu, though his schemas of war are rudimentary (attributable to the lack of contemporary compendiums of military literature we take for granted today), perfectly addresses the realities of how to wage war efficiently and effectively. This work has undoubtably struck a cord that reverberates through history and influences the modern harmony. It can be seen today in how the Chinese Communist Party propagates it’s influence throughout the world by adapting Western ideologies and knowledge, by concealing their ultimate goal of restoring China has the global hegemony, and through the secrecy by which they carry out this goal. They are truly adaptable like “water over various surfaces” and their methods are opaque and destructive without even raising an gun. I came to this book to better understand China, and I’ve found the experience greatly rewarding.

I love this book I’ve read it many times a true classic

The book was short, I read it in less than 2 hours. If your attention span isn’t long than it can be a little boring. The book all in all could have just been summed into bullet points and made into a book of quotes. Reading this was more interesting in my current life because I am watching Game of Thrones and you can see a lot of strategies Sun Zhu talks about in the show. All the more interesting.

Great book, but I swear to god you guys need to stop talking about Technoblade.

The notes in the middle of the chapters are too disruptive and make it easy to miss things if you try to skip over them.

I think that this book is very useful in both everyday situations and for combat and I just love it in general

The Art of War is 13 chapters about strategy, applicable to not only war but many other facets of life and endeavors. This edition somehow balloons that simple and short treatise to two hundred and ninety-two pages with meandering anecdotes, useless and redundant rephrases of the previous statements, and lord knows what else. I really hoped the annotations would just be things like historical context or clarification on anything vague that came up, and while some of them are, most are not. I’m just going to read it on a website. I didn’t want to because I wanted a nice ebook format, but I guess that’s not really how this is going to go.

Well-known book. The formatting of the forms made it a little clunky for me, but probably not easy to do in the electronic format. I would rather see footnotes as links so I can choose when I read them more easily rather than being forced to scroll back and forth.

This book is very good in explaining the “art of war” and using commentaries and deductions to answer possible questions that con with the reading.

The art of war is quite relatable to other aspects of human quest, it brings a good sense of indulgence while exposing one to military activities. A good read!

Dang he must be in the top 5 when it comes to potato farming, that is below Technoblade.

Reads easy but a few illustrations would’ve helped better. Definitely a read again.

I have read this book every couple of years for the past 20 years and I am always able to get something new from it. Ancient wisdom that reveals itself as I get older and wiser.

Potato war would be fun

Juan Alfaro Estrada

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Layout is done poorly. It would be nice to read a direct translation without the extra interpretation and notes from whom ever translated.

It was good but very very boring for nothing


No I do not like it


Lovely intro into the arena of battle

When Going To Do Battle,... See Battle Win & Win Battle When First Approaching Battle Field In One’s Mind & Win... Decimating Everyone Of Your Enemies & Everything In Your Path... Complete Your Battle Win. This Principle Battle Stance Is Successful In All Projects Attempted. Self Achievement Through Willfully Strong Mental Concentration & Determination All The Way To The ‘Battle’s End Game Completion’... War The Art Of: ...A Very Good Book.... I first read this old Chinese Book when I was only 17. I recommend it for all students from & in any course. Get this. Cheers... Danner

It was good but, confusing. You can actually apply this to a lot like sports for instance. I also found some grammar problems where the wrong word was used. Also there are so many Chinese names and there very close to each other which made it hard to understand.

This is a time tested truth of man's bloody conquests.

Good story ruined by poor commentary. Recommend a version other than this. Very annoying

If tupac says this is a good book then it should be a good book

I tried to read this book but I could not tell what was the narration, and what was Sun Zhu. Overall, pretty darn BAD!

Aglabuga del mundo

I would much rather have the annotations separate from the text. There are annotations every line or two, and it's impossible to get the flow of the text or process what the author is actually saying with all the interruptions.

This book is amazing. Couldnt keep my eyes off of it :)

I see why it's free. The "commentary" is extremely annoying. I am capable of understanding and forming my own opinion, thanks.

A good book wether you dream of commanding an army of ninjas or just need inspiration to organize your life style and best of all it's free

Love it

I dont understand \/(-_-)\/

Somewhat frustrating to read at times, with references/examples jumping from chapter to chapter. Commentary was also a little disarray but there is enough to make for some interesting learning. I would recommend other books of strategy, before recommending this book.

Not bad for a beginner reader

Very interesting insight to the various strategies and defences of war.

Pog champ watch technoblade

It was rambling about Chinese stuff and generally NOT making sense. You will regret getting this. :(

I didn't even read it . I only kept it open so my teacher thought I was reading

The best thing about books are not the same as a result of a new contractors something's wrong don't mean you can't have fun and I don't know how to make books

Please help

Good to have it on here for reference.

Sun Tzu's Art of War represents one of the many aspects of Chinese People's superiority over the rest of the world, especially the west barbs. The west tries to learn sun tzu but in perill due to their own arrogance and self-worshipping. So the west could forget sun tzu and stick back to their own barbarian way.

Pretty good for free I would say maybe Read it if so bored

I couldn't find a definition for it. Sorry, I don't hang around hipster coffee shops.

"divide overflow". get your head checked because this was one of the best books ever written. p.s general, sun tzu won many battles and was a presteiged general in ancient history. get a life...

The hype surrounding the ramblings of a Chinese pseudo-philosopher peasant makes this a complete disappointment. It's actually LESS painful reading Ayn Rand than this drivel. Seriously, save your time. We know we're all reading it for coffee shop intellectual epeen boosting. Just pretend you read it, just like everyone else does.

I’m only here for technoblade

I thought this book was hard yet fun to read, what I enjoyed most was the battle tactics of Sun Zu; I didn’t like the many brackets as the were quite distracting but other than that the book was very good!

The Art of War itself is quite fascinating and enjoyable however this free edition is badly edited with many spelling mistakes and many grammer issues.

This edition has a wealth of additional notes to contextualise this ancient text to the modern reader with considerations given to the translation. Good read of an often referred to text.

Book stupid

Great read!

It is cool. I will now commit many war crimes with this information

Well worth a read.

Anyone else come from techno :)

Fascinating insight on literature over 2000 years old. The contemporaneous examples in the history of Chinese wars were engaging to understand the context - sometimes difficult to follow as am not familiar with the players in the landscape.

A timeless strategical and philosophical masterpiece, with many various opinions and interpretations, making it suitable and easy to read for anyone. You don't need to be training as an army officer to appreciate the endless amount of knowledge, much of which can be transferred to general, everyday life.

I know now how to crush my enemies to a pulp, bring them to their knees and make them beg for mercy. My troops will bring them to the ground and their pride!

Great read with some valuable background and surrounding information. I would happily have paid for this- grab it while its free its a steal :)

Although a lot of effort has gone into translating the text, the book was pretty unreadable as the sentences are continually fractured by references or commenting on what other people have said. I would have just preferred to read what sun tzu wrote, if they want to add a foreword in fine.

This is a slightly odd version of this book. It reads like an academics first draft. The extra notes and interpretations vary from incomprehensible to fascinating. I would recommend it to a casual reader but don't be afraid to skip the odd page.

Books survive for a reason. The wisdom in this book has been regurgitated thousands of times but never bettered. It is the first and only business book you'll ever need.

Way too long.... Why use 37 words when one will do?? ... Try another author

David Dickenson. True or False?

Only a third through it, but it is a really great read. The commentator does a great job of making the chinese proverbs understandable and makes it easy for any age. I am 16 and i found it compelling. I definately recomend this book despite its length.

I found this a very interesting and real-life applicable book and the anecdotes made by the commentator(s) are also interesting as well as factual information :D

Very long

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He never dies

Techno never dieeees

The naming of wars generals and royalty is confusing without context. A history lesson to proceed the book can enlighten a reader.


Not the easiest names to read and/ or pronounce. Interesting and informative slice of history.

Attention parents! Must read for any adolescent child who is getting to the stage where they think they know it all. Lots of life’s lessons here!

Ok thumbs up thanks

I also, in fact, got here from Techno


I freaked love how half of these comments are about techno’s potato war

This helped me retake the Soviet Union. Thank you Sun Tzu for helping me retake the motherland!


These tactics are great to win a potato war

This was a great book. I honestly got lost in the wisdom interweaved in certain chapters but I got the main points of the chapters as well. I would most likely recommend this book for young adults learning about life and academics. I strongly encourage others to read this book as it is dripping in wisdom and general life lessons.

The blood god pig told me to read a historical book so here I am finishing in a few days


I haven’t read it but i saw it in a technoblade video so I LOVE IT 10/10 would recommend

Excellent and well written.

Sun tzu said that

Ok, if I’m being 100% honest I only found out about this book through a Technoblade video awhile ago- but forgetting that the book is pretty good!

This is not a book with the typical plot structure, it’s like a set of guidelines and info with commentator input, interpretations, and examples. It is a marvelous piece of literature.

I saw the quotes in a technoblade video and decided to read it. From how much I have read so far, really good book. Love it. Definitely will keep reading.

Been reading some of them and I can not stay in place all the time.

I haven’t read anything this bad since John Grisham’s “Skipping Christmas.”

I started reading this book because my friends kept telling me about it, I’m not really the type to read books, but when I read this book I was shocked on how good it was. 10/10 would read again

You may be thinking that this book is only for a general, admiral, etc. But it can really be useful for anyone who has some sort of authority. This book tells you about stuff like rewarding your army that could easily be put into the context of stuff like sports teams and businesses. This book has some hard words and there is some commentary that can be at times long but is usually helpful. The book is free though so can’t really complain.

This book is very epic I saw it in a technoblade video.

Y to v to STyA zombie gÿt XXy

Great read, I like the commentary but it was a bit confusing until I got into it

Essays between 2-3 sentences of original text. I appreciate the effort and I actually like notes, just not more notes than text.


technoblade never dies


I enjoyed this book quite a bit. My only negative response was the significant amount of commentary. However, I did not find it to difficult to skip around it and some was helpful, so overall I’m still giving it a positive rating.

I think it’s safe to say that even if you haven’t read this book, you’ve definately heard of it before. This is a classic, and as far as I can tell, speaking as someone who can’t speak the least bit of Chinese, a fairly good translation as well. However there is one drawback. I had to read this book for school, but being unable to go to the library or the book store for obvious reasons, my parents and I began looking for a digital solution. Apple’s free classic books are great finds, and we were thrilled to find “The Art of War” on here. Part way through the first chapter I realized that this was more than just the book, a (honestly kind of distracting) commentary. The ratio of book to commentary ranged from a phrase, to a sentence, to a paragraph of the book, followed by a sentence, to a paragraph, to a couple of pages of commentary. Granted the commentary was useful at certain poitns (i.e clarifying names of people and dynasties, clarafying time lines, explaining how certain events played out, etc.), but at other points (the majority) it just made things rather hard to follow as someone who just wnated to read the book. However I did find a solution, if you see an opening bracket: [ skip till after you see a closing bracket: ] I’m not complaining, as for a free version in the middle of a pandemic this is an excellent iteration of Sun Tzu’s work, but I can see this being harder to follow for some than other’s.

It was a very easy read.

Thanks for the classic! Always enjoy reading this book.


Very good book. However for my personal tastes, it was really hard to get into and finish. It did feel like the paragraphs were rambling on.

So yeah, if you want to get better at the crucible you should read this.

In this amazing, well-written book that I’ve studied for years almost like a bible to someone that has religion in their life. Once you read behind the subtle hints about strategy you have a masterpiece! Another great book that I’ve studied for years is -On War, by General Carl von Clausewitz. Brilliant work. Tactics, strategy, and a good defense are the three main elements to victory in any battle.

Notes get in the way

Interesting read. Was curious what everyone was referencing

Theres too many notes and uses too many notes without explaining them very well.

Great book, I recommend reading the entire book !

This version is loaded with notes in between the original work. It makes it very difficult to read the original work straight through. Not a good version.

The book itself is excellent as always, but for the most part, the annotations get in the way of reading.

I have been meaning to read this book. I was not expecting the explanations in it. But at times they were helpful.

How can you go wrong with this book. It is mesmerizing!


Sun Tzu - The Art of War Comments

About Sun Tzu Wiki

Sun Tzu ( soon DZOO, soon SOO; traditional Chinese: 孫子; simplified Chinese: 孙子; pinyin: Sūnzǐ) was a Chinese military general, strategist, philosopher, and writer who lived during the Eastern Zhou period of 771 to 256 BCE. Sun Tzu is traditionally credited as the author of The Art of War, an influential work of military strategy that has affected both Western and East Asian philosophy and military thinking. Sun Tzu is revered in Chinese and East Asian culture as a legendary historical and military figure. His birth name was Sun Wu (traditional Chinese: 孫武; simplified Chinese: 孙武) and he was known outside of his family by his courtesy name Changqing (Chinese: 長卿). The name Sun Tzu—by which he is more popularly known—is an honorific which means "Master Sun". Sun Tzu's historicity is uncertain. The Han dynasty historian Sima Qian and other traditional Chinese historians placed him as a minister to King Helü of Wu and dated his lifetime to 544–496 BCE. Modern scholars accepting his hi....

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