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Fall of Giants: The Century Trilogy, Book 1 | [Ken Follett]

Fall of Giants: The Century Trilogy, Book 1

Ken Follett's World Without End was a global phenomenon, a work of grand historical sweep beloved by millions of readers and acclaimed by critics. Fall of Giants is his magnificent new historical epic. The first novel in The Century Trilogy, it follows the fates of five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh - as they move through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for women's suffrage.
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Publisher's Summary

Fall of Giants is Ken Follett's magnificent new historical epic. The first novel in The Century Trilogy, it follows the fates of five interrelated families—American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh—as they move through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for women's suffrage.

Thirteen-year-old Billy Williams enters a man's world in the Welsh mining pits…. Gus Dewar, an American law student rejected in love, finds a surprising new career in Woodrow Wilson's White House…. Two orphaned Russian brothers, Grigori and Lev Peshkov, embark on radically different paths half a world apart when their plan to emigrate to America falls afoul of war, conscription, and revolution…. Billy's sister, Ethel, a housekeeper for the aristocratic Fitzherberts, takes a fateful step above her station, while Lady Maud Fitzherbert herself crosses deep into forbidden territory when she falls in love with Walter von Ulrich, a spy at the German embassy in London….

These characters and many others find their lives inextricably entangled as, in a saga of unfolding drama and intriguing complexity, Fall of Giants moves seamlessly from Washington to St. Petersburg, from the dirt and danger of a coal mine to the glittering chandeliers of a palace, from the corridors of power to the bedrooms of the mighty. As always with Ken Follett, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion. It is destined to be a new classic.

In future volumes of The Century Trilogy, subsequent generations of the same families will travel through the great events of the rest of the 20th century, changing themselves—and the century itself. With passion and the hand of a master, Follett brings us into a world we thought we knew, but now will never seem the same again.

Exclusive interview: Ken Follett and John Lee Talk about Fall of Giants.

©2010 Kevin Follett (P)2010 Penguin Audio

What the Critics Say

"A big Book, Follett''s hugely ambitious saga is a sweeping success. Ken Follett has hit another one out of the park with the initial installment of the hugely ambitious Century Trilogy. His fans will rejoice at the richness, complexity, historical sweep and simmering lust in a saga spanning the years 1911 to 1923." (Newark Star Ledger)

"A dark novel, motivated by an unsparing view of human nature and a clear-eyed scrutiny of an ideal peace. It is not the least of Follett''s feats that the reader finishes this near 1000-page book intrigued and wanting more." (Chicago Sun-Times)

"[Follett] meticulously reconstructs an era and leads us through the follies and occasional heroics of its protagonists real and imaginary. He is masterly in conveyers so much drama and historical information so vividly...Grippingly told, and readable to the end." (New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    B 05-10-12
    B 05-10-12

    myliebe

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    "Great read with historical significance"

    This book follows several families throughout the time preceding and during WWI. The character development is excellent. While there are some slower sections, the combined storyline was well laid out and executed. I learned more detail about how life may have been during this time than expected. I enjoy Follett's books. I am a huge fan of James A. Michener, and Follett's Fall of Giants and Pillars of the Earth remind me of his works. I recommend the book, and despite taking months to complete, I truly enjoyed it all!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joanne North Ryde, Australia 05-06-12
    Joanne North Ryde, Australia 05-06-12
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    5
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    "Very entertaining and informative"
    What made the experience of listening to Fall of Giants the most enjoyable?

    I really enjoyed the telling of history in such an entertaining and engaging way.


    What other book might you compare Fall of Giants to and why?

    If you liked World without end or Pillars of the Earth you will like this.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lia 05-05-12
    Lia 05-05-12 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Amazing!"

    I am desperate for book 2! This was an amazing story with an amazing narrarator!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Don DENNISON, MN, United States 05-05-12
    Don DENNISON, MN, United States 05-05-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Awesome book!"

    I love the books 'Pillars of the earth', and 'World without end'. I really thought he would have a tough time coming close to writing a book anywhere near as good as these. But, he did it! Fall of Giants is an excellent book and I can't wait for the others in this trilogy to come out! This, (and the other two mentioned here) are must have books for everyones library!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessamyn 04-27-12
    Jessamyn 04-27-12
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    5
    2
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    "Ken Follett & John Lee, a perfect match"
    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    John Lee's range of voices and perfect timing make this story great. Being in grad school, I wouldn't have time to read a book this long, but listening to it in the car during my commute is perfect to pass the time. Can't wait for the next book in the trilogy, fingers crossed John Lee narrates again.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Calgary, AB, Canada 04-27-12
    Carol Calgary, AB, Canada 04-27-12 Member Since 2009
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    "A fun way to bone up on my History."

    This story was most enjoyable. All through the book I found myself googling different places and battles and the several real life characters in the book just to learn more about it. We've had the events of the 2nd World War drilled into us through school, parents and of course movies (not that I'm complaining of course), but other than high school all those many years ago I've learned very little about the 1st World War. I'm going to see if I can get my teenager to listen to this - it might just do the trick in convincing her that the "olden days" weren't all that boring after all. In my opinion the book was wonderful.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol State College, PA, United States 04-26-12
    Carol State College, PA, United States 04-26-12 Member Since 2009

    Just a book listening girl..

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    "Long and Lavish, but great read/listen"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, I would recommend this book. It is definitely LONG! But, sometimes I like that. The characters and their stories were quite enjoyable. It was interesting how he made them twist and intersect. I am definitely looking forward to the next book in this series.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The way he used history to be the background of interesting characters and the way he interwove their stories.


    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    no cramps in your hands from trying to hold an incredible HUGE book. haha


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    helle 04-25-12
    helle 04-25-12 Member Since 2015
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    "A superb book"
    Where does Fall of Giants rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Fall of Giants is one of the best books I have read to date.
    It is a historical book and at the same time a very good story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Krista Stephenson, MI, United States 04-24-12
    Krista Stephenson, MI, United States 04-24-12
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    2
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    "Awesome"

    This book was wonderful, I learned so much while being entertained at the same time! The narration was very good, John Lee is a keeper in my opinion. The characters were all represented in a wonderful, believable way. I can't wait for the second book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Whit 04-24-12
    Whit 04-24-12 Member Since 2013
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    "Brings history Back to life!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes... Fall of Giants breathes a new life into the History of WWI.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Ethel... Her strong will and determination was inspiring.


    Which character – as performed by John Lee – was your favorite?

    Hmm... Probably Billy, but all round, i think he did a fantastic job.


    If you could take any character from Fall of Giants out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Fitz - He disappointed me the most.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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