Jen Padgett Bohle's Reviews > Fall of Giants

Fall of Giants by Ken Follett
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Simultaneously one of the most compelling and well-rounded fictional accounts of World War I and some of the worst writing I've read in recent memory. There is very little of literary value here, but the suspense, pacing, and history are decent substitutes and are what kept me reading.

Follett lectures the reader continually about the importance of unionization and grassroots activism and is so didactic when it comes to women's subservience, that the novel often read like a morality play or allegory (as many of Folett's novels tend to do --- the good and evil is never multidimensional and characters just end up representing some abstraction instead of being actual people). And the sex scenes are bad. Run-of the-mill -Harlequin romance- with- Fabio -on -the -cover bad. Like, I'm nominating him for a "worst of" award.

The story seems accurate and well-researched, though, and you're getting military and social history of Great Britain, Russia (and the Bolshevik revolution), Germany, and the USA before and during WWI, as well as an insider's account of diplomacy and behind the scenes political maneuvering.

One surely doesn't read Ken Follett for the literary value, so you may as well enjoy where the tides of Follett's history take you. However, and I'm pretty sure others have noted this --- Herman Wouk does the multi-generational historical war tale much better.
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