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Fall of Giants Audiobook

Fall of Giants: The Century Trilogy, Book 1

Regular Price:$41.10
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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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  •  
    Stephen TOMBALL, TX, United States 12-12-12
    Stephen TOMBALL, TX, United States 12-12-12
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    "Great Start To A Fantastic Trilogy"
    Where does Fall of Giants rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The narriator for this book is amazing with the different voices. One of the best audiobooks I have listened to.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Fall of Giants?

    Don't want to give anything away. The stories of all the characters and how they all come is so well told. Every second of this book kept me wanting more.


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

    The voices of the characters. He does a fantastic job with the different accents around the world.


    If you could rename Fall of Giants, what would you call it?

    Not sure. That name is almost perferct for the story.


    Any additional comments?

    Can't wait to listen to Winter of the Worlds.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth 12-12-12
    Elizabeth 12-12-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Great Story & Book! More than historical fiction!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Fall of Giants to be better than the print version?

    Yes. The audio version is like listening to a storyteller. It is easier to keep track of the characters listening rather than reading.


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

    Walter Erlich. John Lee had the accent and tone of the character down pat!


    Who was the most memorable character of Fall of Giants and why?

    Ethel Williams. She came from a loving family who was economically lower-class. She had the highs and lows of life. But had great moral character to make the correct decisions and had strength to become a leader, but the compassion to care for people!


    Any additional comments?

    Listeners will be enchanted by "The Fall of Giants." This is a great series. It is historical fiction during WWI. The author was true to history and wove a wonderful set of fictional characters, representative of real lives at the time. The characters represented extended families in 4 major countries, England, Germany, Russia and America. The political decisions of the time and the moral and family decisions were all included. Very fascinating! Ken Follett truly paid attention to all the details of people living in those countries and era. I didn't ant to series to end! Gratefully, I found he wrote a follow-up series to "The Fall of Giants", extending into time (WWII) and with the same characters and their families. This series is "The Winter of the World".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandy Orlando, FL 12-12-12
    Sandy Orlando, FL 12-12-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Fantastic WWI history and Story wrapped up in one"

    I am not much of a WWI history buff, but I love Ken Follett and how he writes a story. This gave me a good listen to the history of the early 1900's and also created wonderful characters to make the story come to life. I love the characters he created and very anxious to read the sequel. John Lee, as always is a fantastic narrator. He has more accents than you can imagine and does such a great job with all of them. Well worth the listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Bowie, MD, United States 12-11-12
    Linda Bowie, MD, United States 12-11-12 Member Since 2012

    Amazon Fan

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    "Fall of Giants is Awesome! Follett is Superb!"
    Would you listen to Fall of Giants again? Why?

    Yes. The characters and interactions are so complicated that I'm sure one listen did not impress all the intricacies going on between the couples. The reader had to be able to speak with a French, German, American, English, and Welsh accent and was superb at all. The story covers so much ground and grabs the reader right from the beginning. Can't wait for the next book in this trilogy.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked the way the characters remain true to their nature throughout the book, even when they are adapting to the major changes going on around them. The older people are cast in the past while the younger ones adapt much more quickly. Historical fiction is such a great way to learn about the past that no one wants to read about in history books.Follett has done a remarkable job of researching the World War I material and then creating characters to fit the positions. All are very believable. Don't know if they really lived but someone lived with the same beliefs. Maud and Walter are able to walk the line even though his father can't see it.Whether 1917 or 2012, the same situations exist.


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

    Billie without a doubt. He is so true to his beliefs and loves his family so much but is able to survive.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes but who could sit that long (laughing). I found myself repeating chapter beginnings to be sure I understood where I was. I listened to it day and night until I finished it. Even skipped some of my favorite TV shows so I could listen.


    Any additional comments?

    Ken Follett has been one of my favorite authors beginning with 'Eye of the Needle' in 1978 and it is amazing how he has grown with each of his books. He is an amazing writer and continues to evolve.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cyndi LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 12-11-12
    cyndi LAS VEGAS, NV, United States 12-11-12 Member Since 2011

    Kindaholic

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    "Captivating...great story...great performance."
    Would you listen to Fall of Giants again? Why?

    No, but only because I never re-read or re-listen to books! Enjoyed this one very much though...


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

    Loved the character of Maud! Strong, independant women characters are always interesting to me. Of the male characters, I really liked Billy because of his intelligence and values.


    Any additional comments?

    The book was very good and I loved learning about the events leading up to WWI. I had only the most basic knowledge of that time frame before reading this. What I particularly enjoyed was how the different families were woven into the history and story. There are a lot of coincidences that were perhaps a little unbelievable but they do make the story work. Looking forward to the next two books!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alaina 12-11-12
    Alaina 12-11-12
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    "Awesome- & I don't usually like historical fiction"

    This book was very engaging and easy to listen to, I was surprised when the book ended because I didn't think it had been 30 hours yet. Some of the battle descriptions and troop movement descriptions ran too long, but overall I enjoyed this audio book and would definitely recommend it. The difference between Pillars of the Earth and this one is that POE was more about the human storyline, while this book concentrates more on historic events to drive the plot. John Lee narrated in an energetic way with great character voices- I wish I could give him six stars.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Annika 12-10-12
    Annika 12-10-12 Member Since 2017

    indiannika

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    "Amazing narrator, sweeping novel"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes. John Lee makes listening to any book a treat, and since this book was 31 hours long, it needed a strong reader. The novel, in itself is quite interesting as well, following the lives of several interconnected characters taking part in different parts of a very tumultuous time in history.


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

    The accents. I had no idea what a Welsh accent sounded like. After I listened to this, I looked up videos of native speakers and saw that his version was spot-on.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Di Bono 12-10-12
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    "why a four star and not a five!"
    Would you listen to Fall of Giants again? Why?

    Follett is best when he is writing a saga, like Pillars of Earth, etc. This certainly qualifies! Developing the story line across the key nationalities and socio-economic classes leading up to WW1 brings the history to a personal level.


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

    John Lees's narration is excellent. The characters are given consistent voices that enrich the story. Personalities are made real.


    Any additional comments?

    I give this four stars, and not five, for one reason. All the liberal-minded characters are good. All the bad and evil characters are right-wing, money-grubbing conservatives. Surely in the thousand plus pages of this book, history would have found a few exceptions!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Frank Barrie, ON, Canada 12-08-12
    Frank Barrie, ON, Canada 12-08-12

    I commute daily for work. My brother introduced me to audio books to allow me to get quality entertainment while captive on the highways.

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    "Detailed, enjoyable history and a great story."

    Truly drawn into the lives and times of the day. Great points of view from the different families. Always left wondering, between listens, what was coming next and how the families are connected, or not connected.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Divya saratoga, CA, United States 12-05-12
    Divya saratoga, CA, United States 12-05-12 Member Since 2012
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    4
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    "Fantastic and Gripping!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, accurate history meets well rounded characters, and the narrator is terrific!


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

    Maybe to kill a mockingbird because each character is so interesting to meet.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    My favorite scene was when Ethel starts taking over London beginning at the factory.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Ethel was turned away from her job for being pregnant and unwed, and negotiated her way out of it


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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