• France
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • The Netherlands
  • Spain
  • Brazil

Lie Down with Lions

In the Afghan mountains lies the Valley of Five Lions, a place of ancient legend. To it come two young aid workers and an American who has a message for the legendary guerrilla leader, Masud, who is wanted dead or alive by the Russians. Below, in the valley, a woman stumbles upon a terrifying treachery, leading to a chase across impassable mountains and a confrontation that echoes all our nightmares.

Ken’s view

I get a lot of letters about the love scene in this book. I suppose it is rather steamy. I worked for a year on a story, called Country Risk, that I never finished. It was about a group of Russians who take over a Western bank and attempt to manipulate a financial crisis. I did a lot of research and came up with a plot which my agent and my publishers liked.

As I began Chapter One, I started thinking about how people talk about Eye of the Needle and how they are on the edge of their seat, desperate to know what happens next. I realised nobody was ever going to feel that way about a what happens in a bank and I abandoned it. Instead, I came up with Lie Down with Lions, a story about two people escaping from Afghanistan over the Himalayas during the Afghan War. And as in Eye of the Needle, I put a woman at the centre of the story.

Listen to Ken’s view on Lie Down with Lions


Read the first chapter

Listen to an excerpt


  • “A deadly romantic triangle, a clandestine mission with global stakes, an exotic location, a plot as gripping and ingenious as ‘Eye of the Needle’… engineered to perfection with breathless acceleration. I couldn’t put it down!” — Los Angeles Times
  • “Masterful… plot and counterplot, treachery, cunning and killing… keep you on edge every moment” — Associated Press

Published as

Lie Down with Lions by Ken Follett, William Morrow, New York 1986.

Also published in other languages, and available as an audiobook and as an ebook.