Winter of the World by Ken Follett (Macmillan)

Germany between the wars, and a slow tide of political change is sowing seeds of fear and division. For young Berliner Carla von Ulrich, this presents choices and challenges she could never have imagined, as her parents are pulled under by a wave of fascism.

Meanwhile the family connections in England, Wales and America begin to feel their own changes. Daisy Peshkov, determined to rise to the top of the social stratum, connects herself with a man who has dark secrets that will force her to reevaluate her priorities. In Russia, Daisy’s cousin Volodya is rising through the ranks of the secret service.

When war comes, none of the protagonists can remain unchanged and untouched, and Follett weaves his familiar magic as he tells each story against the historical backdrop, always allowing his characters to lead the way.

Follett’s books are big in scope, sweeping in their narrative, and memorable in their characterisation. A mark of his story-telling skill is how his readers are always asking for more of his large, satisfying portions of historical drama.

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