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
A scientist in training with her head in the clouds. With no time to read but plenty to listen, audible has changed my life forever.
Top 3 for sure. I couldn't stop listening. Finished it in 3 days
Follett has a way of weaving such amazing stories, characters, and history together into an addicting read/listen. The story was fantastic and did not let me down.
I wasn't fond of his American accent, but I loved the way he did Lloyd.
Well it's a little long but I did manage to finish it in 3 days. If I could have listened for 20 hours straight, I would have though. It was hard to press "pause"
I love Ken Follett. I learn so much history. His character development is amazing. He ties together many families, many generations, many countries and intertwines the history and real people of the period.
There was not one favorite character.
I just waited for each new scene.
I have read Pillars of the Earth and World Without End. They followed each other by a couple of hundred years. I read Fall of Giants and am almost finished with Winter of the World. I cannot wait for the final sequel.
Ken Follett has an outstanding ability to bring history to life - even parts we might like to not recall! John Lee matches that ability with his narration.
I've now read the first two books in the trilogy - can't wait until the third one comes out. I liked this one even better than the first. The characters are all interesting and it's fun the way their lives continue to intertwine with each other. So far I've loved every Ken Follett book I've read and this one was no different - couldn't wait to see what was going to happen next. Even though you have some knowledge of the historical events that are about to happen, you get a more personal take on them. Even though it's fiction, it feels very real.
Yes. The combination of well researched historical data combined with so many colorful and developed characters make this both entertaining and educational.
Pillars of the Earth, and Fall of Giants both because of the well developed characters and well researched history.
It meshes well with the characters from the previous book while also introducing a lot of new characters. World War II is also one of the most dramatic time periods of modern history and one of my favorite to read about so listening to hit from a historical fiction perspective was very interesting. And of course there is plenty of action. I was a bit disappointed that some aspects of the war were skimmed over or only mentioned rather than really experienced by any of the characters. Dunkirk, Stalingrad and the D-Day landings were among these moments that I had really been looking forward to hearing more about, but were only mentioned by the characters. I think this was partially deliberate on Follett's part though. These events have been written about thousands of times from every possible perspective so instead he gives us a glimpse into some of the less well known aspects of these events.
Typical Ken Follett
The good guy (almost) always wins. Plus, you can tell Follett does his homework, I always learn something new from reading Follett books.
I always love John Lee, he does well differentiating different character voices.
Five families, four countries, World War II
Dear John Lee, please call me before you do another Buffalo accent! I am a Buffalo native (who has moved away and come back) so I know how the Buffalo accent sounds. Daisy and Greg sounded like gangsters from Brooklyn in a 1930s film . Buffalo's accent is more mid-western, less NYC. The accent you used was so wrong I laughed outloud, which then made me feel bad, because I really love your work.
I have not read the print version, so I cannot compare. I enjoyed the Fall of Giants, the first book of the trilogy, better than this one.
Seeing the impact of the society and war on regular people provides some insight into the period of time.
He is wonderful. His change of accents is flawless which assists greatly in following dialog. He should definitely be kept for the next volume.
Carla von Ulrich, Lloyd Williams, or Daisy Peshkov. Carla's brave act to protect the unknown girl and her love for the child standout as extraordinary actions.
The transitions from the first book could have been better in spots to remind the reader where a character originated. I tend to forget over a few months. A family history chart might be a nice printout addition.
For anyone wondering where the missing audio comes in it is before the attack on Pearl Harbour. Volotya is talking to Gregorie, I can't remember what about exactly, and all of a sudden it jumps to the middle of the Pearl Harbour attack. Hope that helps.
As usual, Ken Follett is a great story teller. He brings history to life. A must listen if you like Ken's other books.
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