Ken Follett here follows up his number-one New York Times best-seller Fall of Giants with a brilliant, pause-resistant epic about the heroism and honor of World War II and the dawn of the atomic age.
Fall of Giants, the first novel in his extraordinary new historical epic, The Century Trilogy, was an international sensation, acclaimed as "sweeping and fascinating, a book that will consume you for days or weeks" (USA Today) and "grippingly told and readable to the end" (The New York Times Book Review). "If the next two volumes are as lively and entertaining as Fall of Giants," said The Washington Post, "they should be well worth waiting for."
Winter of the World picks up right where the first book left off, as its five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, Welsh - enter a time of enormous social, political, and economic turmoil, beginning with the rise of the Third Reich, through the Spanish Civil War and the great dramas of World War II, up to the explosions of the American and Soviet atomic bombs.
Carla von Ulrich, born of German and English parents, finds her life engulfed by the Nazi tide until she commits a deed of great courage and heartbreak.... American brothers Woody and Chuck Dewar, each with a secret, take separate paths to momentous events, one in Washington, the other in the bloody jungles of the Pacific.... English student Lloyd Williams discovers in the crucible of the Spanish Civil War that he must fight Communism just as hard as Fascism.... Daisy Peshkov, a driven American social climber, cares only for popularity and the fast set, until the war transforms her life, not just once but twice, while her cousin Volodya carves out a position in Soviet intelligence that will affect not only this war - but the war to come.
These characters and many others find their lives inextricably entangled as their experiences illuminate the cataclysms that marked the century. From the drawing rooms of the rich to the blood and smoke of battle, their lives intertwine, propelling the reader into dramas of ever-increasing complexity.
As always with Ken Follett, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion. With passion and the hand of a master, he brings us into a world we thought we knew, but now will never seem the same again.
©2012 Ken Follett (P)2012 Penguin Audiobooks
from the Eye of the Needle, The Man from St. Petersburg, Lie Down with Lions, the Key to Rebecca and the Pillars of the Earth.
It was fascinating to hear his characters come alive in World without end. and get reacquainted with them and their children in Book 2. The only draw back in listening to a book of this multitude of characters and stories, is understanding and remembering the names and how they are interconnected. I read World Without end first and decided, before listening to Book 2, that I should purchase and listen to Book 1. I am glad I did.
I look forward to Book three.
War and Peace,
In this second book, Mr. Follet continues the stories of the families from the first book in a compelling and sympathetic way. You already know about the Nazis' rise to power, but the example of the brownshirts breaking up a political meeting gives you a feeling of what it might have been like to live through such a thing. This Winter of the World is well worth listening to.
Does Ken follett ever write something boring? He researches his work to minute detail and delivers a winner every time. This will not let you down.
I don't know, not having read the print version
The murder and disposal of the body of the young Nazi piano student
At first I was annoyed by the "upper class" diction but as time passed came to appreciate his wonderfully clear reading.
This was a gripping tale and a fine companion on a long car trip. I was six when WWII broke out and am well aware of all of the events recounted. It was a pleasure to see how Follet placed his characters inside the events and made them come alive.
This was my first audio book and I truly enjoyed it.
This is the first time I listened to John Lee and his performance was very good. I liked the different voices especially the russians.
as good as The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
The characters are so well developed that you feel like you know them. The book does an amazing job of keeping the story moving while still staying true to the historical events of the time.
I loved the characters and the way they were woven into the history of WWII. It is an amazing feat when an author can do lengthy stories such as this one and the other series as well as write amazing spy novels. Ken Follett is a terrific author.The best part of Winter of the World is how Daisy grows into such a remarkable woman; and how Carla is able to step up and protect her family, yet still love her totally obnoxious brother. The characters truly come alive under John Lee's narrative.
I think of Herman Wouk's Winds of War and War and Remembrance. Lots of similarities. I've read them both but will listen to them one of these days.
yes. I liked Mr. Lee's performance. He brought the characters to life and was able to do all the voices in all the dialects beautifully.
It is hard to pick out just one character because they all had such remarkable 'stories' but it's hard to not focus on Lloyd Williams since he was quite an amazing young man. He was loyal to his roots but able to adapt to the changes around him. He also waited for Daisy to grow up and recognize him as the man for her. There were so many strong characters in this book....even when selecting the wrong direction to follow, the characters were strong, if misguided.
I can't wait for the next installment. Ken Follett does such a great job with these massive historical books. I was hesitant when I read some of the reviews that said he had phoned it in. He didn't. This book is worth all the time it will take you to read it.
Maybe. It is complex enough that we might revisit it again.
I think it was better than The Fall of Giants, but a close comparison.
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