IT was highly unlikely I would ever get round to curling up with a copy of Tolstoy’s War and Peace.

A book that has become synonymous with something, well, very long, might surely be a teensy bit boring ?

So while a television adaptation was probably the closest I was going to come to its labyrinthine story, I was reluctant to devote my Sunday evenings to it.

But since the BBC did not even start to show it until after its festive programming had ended yet still began promoting it way before the tree and lights even went up - it was obviously always going to be expensive and lavish - and worth a look.

Admittedly, there was some American money in there because it is also being shown on HBO, but it was still a risk.

And having now watched the entire six episode series I have to admit their gamble paid off and I am glad I stuck with it.

I couldn’t tell you off the top of my head what all the characters were called but it didn’t really matter.

The acting talent on display was phenomenal including Oscar nominated Paul Dano amongst a sea of British stalwarts from Jim Broadbent to Gillian Anderson and the scenery and battle-scenes worthy of many a blockbuster.

And it certainly wasn’t for the faint-hearted - scenes of amputation and gruesome death in battle certainly brought the point home of the futility of war.

Although, after an hour of Call the Midwife’s myriad birth scenes, War and Peace pushed even my squeamishness threshold to the limit.

I’m hoping now it’s finished they will fill its slot with something a bit less brutal.