Matt Schiariti's Reviews > Winter of the World

Winter of the World by Ken Follett
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Nov 14, 12

Read in September, 2012

There are reasons why Ken Follett is one of my favorites, if not THE favorites and Winter of the World is another shining example of why.

WOW picks up ten years after the end of Fall of Giants. While it does have the original cast from the previous installment, it's more about the second generation: their children. It spans the time from the rise of Hitler and his Nazi regime, through the Spanish Revolution, WWII, Pearl Harbor, the advent of the nuclear bomb, the subsequent bombing of Japan and ends in the 50s.

While its well researched and equally well told, it wouldn't be anything more than a history book if it weren't for a diverse and nicely constructed cast. Winter of the World has that in spades. While putting his characters through all kinds of world changing and hellish scenarios, Follett never diverges away from interpersonal drama, relationships and subplots. What he puts his characters through runs the gamut from the uplifting to the downright terrifying. Loves are won and lost, families are born, battles are fought, atrocities are lived through and overcome. Each and every character is well fleshed out and reacts logically. Using a combination of personal motives and moral codes, Follett's characters react to the real world and historical events he's made them a part of in a believable and logical way. They react to what's going on around them and make their decisions based on their beliefs and the state of the world around them. Nobody puts fictional characters into true events like Ken Follett. *As an aside, my favorite characters and story lines center around Lloyd, Carla, Woody and Daisy.*

It's an amazing accomplishment that, for the second time, he's interspersed the real and the fictional into such a broad sweeping and well written work. I don't know how he does it but he does.

I've read many of the previous reviews and see the low average rating. As it turns out, many of the one and two star reviews are from people complaining about the price...even BEFORE the book was released. Rating a book solely based on the price before ever even reading it is, in my humble opinion, silly, uninformative and unfair to the author. If it's too costly, go to a library. If if wasn't to your liking AFTER having read it, then base the review on that. Complaining about price is a waste of everybody's time.

But I digress.

Winter Of The World is a fine example of why I love Ken Follett's books and, more importantly, why I love to read. You just can't help but get swept up in the characters and the time periods he writes about. Fantastic.
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