It took me about a month and a week, but I’ve done it, I finished the 943 page behemoth seen above! I got this book for Christmas 2012 and FINALLY got around to reading it. Now I’m a bit sorry that I waited as long as I did to read it. Why? Because so many of the people/characters from his previous book, Fall of Giants appeared in this book as well. If not the exact same characters, then the direct family members of the characters…. and I’d forgotten a lot of them. Follett has a way of bringing it all back, reminding you ever so gently of who did what to whom. Winter of the World starts in 1936 and works and winds it’s way through the war years of 1939-1945, then finishes up in the late 1940’s. I will admit that the first 250 pages or so were a struggle for me, but I KNEW it would be worth it to take the time to get reacquainted with the characters and families. I was right, it was SO worth it. If you’ve read my book reviews through the years, you’d know I am crazy for books set just before, during, and just after WWII. It’s my favorite era, and the funny thing is that it’s been my favorite era now for years. Since this book is quite detailed about armies and war plans and the like, you had better appreciate the WWII era, or at least be a history fan to completely enjoy this one. Personally, I loved it. Feel free to read my not quite as stellar review of the first book in the trilogy here. One of the complaints I had regarding the first book were the unlikely meetings of main characters. While I expected that would happen again in Winter of the World, it didn’t. In my opinion, all the chance encounters of the main characters were much more believable this time around. As mentioned in that review, the final book of the trilogy will be apparently about Vietnam and other events that happened towards the end of the century. I’m still thinking I’ll skip that one, but I’m reserving the right to change my mind! My biggest beef about this novel is that it was heavy and bulky to tote around, and nearly impossible to read in bed (which I love to do). It may be time to accept the inevitable, and just get books as big as this one loaded onto my easily maneuverable Kindle!
Be on the lookout for another review soon – I’m nearing the end of a Kindle book I can’t wait to tell you about!