In this second book of the trilogy, Follett continues the story of the century through the years of Hitler and the second war. Even though you have read many books on these subjects, Follett manages to make the story fresh and interesting, contributing a human face to the facts and telling the story in a way newly compelling.
Reading is great, but I LOVE audiobooks! I would never get this much read or done without them...
After Fall of Giants I had high expectations - Winter of the World did not disappoint. I enjoyed this book very much; it took me back in time in a way that no history book could. Although the characters are fictional, it gave an insight into what people may have been thinking, feeling and surviving (or not) before, during and after WWII. It really is unfathomable and mind-blowing to anyone growing up in the post-war era. Although many of the horrifying parts were difficult to read, the characters and their stories were so compelling that I was eager to continue listening and following them until the very end.
I know Ken Follett must research this series relentlessly, but he's made at least one serious historical error. At one point he is discussing sports teams in Washington DC in 1941. He refers to the Washington Nats, (Nationals). In 1941 the MLB team in Washington was known as The Senators (Although the "Nationals" was part of the team's formal name. Hometown folks called them the Senators.)
Baseball fans will call him out on that one.
But that hardly matters, it is a great sequel, and carries on in the tradition of Fall of Giants.
I enjoyed the first book in this series. I was excited to see this one come out, and am admittedly only half way through it now. But unless it gets much better, and fast, I am mostly bored out of my mind. The reader's voice is starting to get on my last nerve too. It's very similar to the last book in many ways, but less gripping somehow. I just don't care as much about the characters, and could do without all of the politics. I'm sorry I spent the money and am going to waste this much time listening to a book that is just so-so (because I have a thing where if I make it half way, I have to finish it no matter what). Ugh.
A great book and worth the wait. I can’t fathom how someone can weave history and characters together so effectively. He’s an amazing talent. I thought the earlier events and characters were referenced about the right amount….enough to remind you, but the current stories and people were sufficient to enjoy the book.
One thing that rang true for me was his portrayal of women, especially with respect to sex. The way women thought and felt seemed believable to me, and I can connect with it myself as well as through my parents, who would have been young adults in the war years. Some writers, such as Alan Furst, seem to have their characters hop from one sensual adventure to the next, with an endless string of available women. That is one outlook and it reveals the male character’s view of women as sensual delights, which is fine. But it’s not really portraying a woman’s point of view in its fullness. For example, pregnancy or birth control never seems to factor into Alan Furst’s books, but does in this book by Ken Follett. That seems more accurate and reflective of real women, especially in the 1930’s and 40’s.
John Lee, of course, is superb.
I no longer live in Worcester. I now live in Brooklyn, NY.
I do find the "cast of characters" on the authors website very helpful. I wish my memories of Fall of Giants were more precise. I plan to relisten to Books 1 and 2 immediately before I tackle Book 3 (which of COURSE I'll buy the day it is released.) I learned so much about how the Brits felt before WWII started. I just watched the start of the new season of Upstairs/Downstairs and this meshed with it very nicely. The description of the attack on Pearl Harbor was as exciting as any of the many I have read/listened to.Thank you Ken Follett......I'm waiting for the next one!
The subject of the novel could be a trilogy unto itself. The focus on a half dozen characters from all over the world, all connected by blood, marriage, or friendship, and their connection to big historical events should have been blunted. I wish I did not have the feeling I was watching a HIstory Channel enactment.
Not made tying all the characters and history together with a neat bow dominate the narrative.
I liked him better in the first of this series, and other of his Follett narrations.
I listened to this after just listening to Cpnnie Willis' sci-fi dyptich about the blitz in England, a similar kind of WW2 historical yarn. Her depictions were so much more vivid, characterizations so much more realized and compelling, that I could not help but be disappointed by contrast. I usually like Follett, but this seemed to skim through events rather quickly, each being sketched rather than fully realized. And the book had the annoying Forrest Gumpisms (without the comedy) of seemingly being witness to every event of major note possible, while all, Brit, American, German, and Russian somehow being interrelated, sometimes by blood--both plot devices, a bit heavy handed for my taste. The first of this series was a stronger effort.John Lee was fine, though the plethora of voices and accents did not always serve him as well as in other readings by him.
Great Epic Novel
Surprisingly Daisy,,,, her spirit and how she changed
Starting with Pillars,, he is one of my favorites
Winter of the World, the era of my parents
Look forward to the next book
One can only hope that we've learned from this time in our history. Ken Follet gives a picture of many views of the war; of the time.
I was so sad!! I have been waiting for this book to be released for over a year because I just loved the first one! Sadly it is just not as good of a story line and the characters are not as interesting as they were in the first book. But I listened to every minute of it because I feel Ken Follett will come back and wow us with the third in the series! Don't worry Jonh Lee...still love ya!!