Ken Follett - Master Storyteller and Best-Selling Author

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  • United States
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MY NOVELS

Edge of Eternity

Edge of Eternity, the sweeping, passionate conclusion to the Century trilogy, was published in the USA, UK, Brazil, Canada (English edition), Denmark, Germany, Italy Spain and Sweden on 16 September 2014. It will be published in France and Canada (French edition) on 25 September, in the Netherlands on 30 September and in Serbia on 2 October 2014.

 

Throughout the 'Century Trilogy', Ken has followed the fortunes of five intertwined families – American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh – as they make their way through the twentieth century. Now they come to one of the most tumultuous eras of all, the enormous social, political, and economic turmoil of the 1960s through the 1980s, from civil rights, assassinations, mass political movements and Vietnam to the Berlin Wall, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Presidential impeachment, revolution – and rock and roll.

East German teacher Rebecca Hoffman discovers she’s been spied on by the Stasi for years and commits an impulsive act that will affect her family for the rest of their lives…George Jakes, the child of a mixed-race couple, bypasses a corporate law career to join Robert F. Kennedy’s Justice Department, and finds himself in the middle not only of the seminal events of the civil rights battle, but a much more personal battle of his own…Cameron Dewar, the grandson of a Senator,  jumps at the chance to do some official and unofficial espionage for a cause he believes in, only to discover that the world is a much more dangerous place than he’d imagined…Dimka Dvorkin, a young aide to Nikita Khruschev, becomes a prime agent both for good and for ill as the U.S. and the Soviet Union race to the brink of nuclear war, while his twin sister Tania carves out a role that will take her from Moscow to Cuba to Prague to Warsaw – and into history.  

As always with Ken, the historical background is brilliantly researched and rendered, the action fast-moving, the characters rich in nuance and emotion. With the hand of a master, he brings us into a world we thought we knew but now will never seem the same again.

Publication dates

United States Edge of Eternity Dutton 16 September 2014
United Kingdom Edge of Eternity Macmillan 16 September 2014
Commonwealth Edge of Eternity Macmillan 16 September 2014
Brazil Eternidade por um Fio Editora Arqueiro 16 September 2014
Canada Edge of Eternity Penguin 16 September 2014
Denmark På kanten af evigheden Cicero 16 September 2014
Germany and Austria Kinder der Freiheit Bastei Lübbe 16 September 2014
Italy I giorni dell'eternità Mondadori 16 September 2014
Hungary Az örökkévalóság küszöbén Gabo 16 September 2014
Portugal No Limiar da Eternidade Editorial Presenca 16 September 2014
Spain El umbral de la eternidad Plaza & Janés 16 September 2014
Sweden Evighetens Rand Albert Bonniers Förlag  16 September 2014
France Aux portes de l'éternité Robert Laffont 25 September 2014
The Netherlands Kou uit het oosten Unieboek Het Spektrum 30 September 2014
Serbia Na rubu veãnosti Evro-Giunti 2 October 2014
Norway På grensen til evigheten Cappelen Damm Early October 2014
Poland Krawędź Wieczności Wydawnictwo Albatros 5 November 2014
Edge of Eternity will also be published in China, Czech Republic (May 2015), Finland, Greece, Israel, Japan, Korea, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia.

Ken reading Edge of Eternity

Ken reads from Edge of Eternity on YouTube. Watch here.

 

 

Timeline of major events

Edge of Eternity timeline

 

A timeline of the major events of the era, kindly provided by Editora Arqueiro, the publishers of the Brazilian edition, Eternidade por um Fio. Click on the image for a larger version or download it.

 

Advance reviews

He is able to create characters so vivid it is easy to keep them alive in our mind … What is most impressive about this book and the two that preceded it, is the fact Follett never forgets he is telling a story. The historical events are the backdrop but the characters are the focal point. Good storytellers know this and Follett is an excellent one. We can only anxiously anticipate what he will present to us next.
– Jackie K Cooper in the Huffington Post

 

This mesmerizing final installment is an exhaustive but rewarding reading experience dense in thematic heft, yet flowing with spicy, expertly paced melodrama, character-rich exploits, familial histrionics, and international intrigue.

Publishers Weekly, 23 June

 

The Century Trilogy concludes with this historical novel that captures the essence of historical events from 1961 to 2008. It is thrilling in its evocation of critical events and their participants, who capture the successes and failures of freedom’s evolution in America, Germany, Poland, Hungary, Vietnam and more notable places.

The early conflict of the Freedom Riders, who began the fight for civil rights for African-Americans, is riveting reading. The leadership and shocking deaths of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Martin Luther King, and Bobby Kennedy are depicted as suddenly and dramatically as they occurred, as well as the legacy they left with regard to the Berlin crisis, the attempts at segregating public facilities and educational institutions, the conflict in Vietnam, and more. The evolution of communism in Russia, Germany and Poland is documented in its notorious stages. Bitter rivalries and debates fill these pages with the intensity that is normal for this author’s writing style; this enriches the readers’ experience, as it is so full of human ability, deception, and manipulative machinations. Popular culture is also given its due as music evolves from the acceptable social norm to rock music and lyrics which parallel the increasing demand for freedom and human rights.

What makes this all work so phenomenally well is that we follow the story through a set of characters who live and engage in all these events over the years, with romance, terror, frustration, determination, fury and celebration. It is their involvement that saves this novel from just being a skimming of the surface of history, and it’s a glorious conclusion to a remarkable trilogy that is wonderful, exhilarating reading for all ages. Fine, fine historical fiction!

– Viviane Crystal, Historical Novel Society HNR 69

 

Those eagerly awaiting volume three of Follett’s ambitious Century Trilogy will not be disappointed. Despite the long wait – Winter of the World was published in 2012 – both the history propelling the multiple plots and the third generation of the interrelated cast of characters are so familiar, readers should have no trouble picking up the threads of the story line left dangling at the end of the previous installment.

Spanning the globe and the latter third of twentieth century, this saga continues to follow the lives and loves of the members of five global families, as they struggle against a backdrop of tumultuous international events. As the years roll by, the Cold War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Berlin Wall, the assassination of JFK, the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, and the crumbling of communism are intimately viewed through the eyes and emotions of a representative array of witnesses to history. Follett does an outstanding job of interweaving and personalizing complicated narratives set on a multicultural stage.

High-demand backstory: Follett needs no hard sell. The previous two installments of the ambitious Century Trilogy were best-sellers; expect no less from this superb concluding chapter.
Margaret Flanagan, Booklist, 1 June

 

Bestseller lists

Spain – El umbral de la eternidad reached No. 1 on El Mundo's bestseller list on 18 September 2014.

 

Behind the scenes

Watch a series of videos where Ken discusses his research.

On The Trail of History for Edge of Eternity, Part 1

On The Trail of History for Edge of Eternity, Part 2

The struggle for civil rights in the United States – retracing the route of the Freedom Riders.

Also see

Fall of Giants – Book I of the Century Trilogy

Winter of the World – Book II of the Century Trilogy