My Fall of Giants

Tonight I’ll be finishing Fall of Giants, by Ken Follett. I absolutely loved (& read a dozen times) Pillars of the Earth. Although I can’t say he is a favorite authorĀ  of mine, these are both great reads!

Cover of "Fall of Giants (The Century Tri...

Cover of Fall of Giants (The Century Trilogy)

FoG pretty much gripped me on page one. And it never let up. I was surprised that, with the large cast of charachters, he was able to bring them all to life & I was able to keep them all straight & care about them! With all of the WWII stories I have read, WWI stories are in the single digits. Now I know more about it. And the picture it painted of Wales, Britian, & Russia at that time were vivid.

One of the reasons it got me on the first page is the story about the Welsh coalminers. Early in the century, the coalminers striked. The book (*which I haven’t read. yet.) & movie How Green Was My Valley chronicles some of their trials. I only watched the movie after being pressured by my Mom. Her mother, my beloved “Nan”, grew up a Welsh coalminer’s daughter. I have been told that when they striked, Nan’s father never worked again. And my Mom says that when she visited Wales as a child the scene of the coalminers coming down the hill covered in soot is just what you see in the movie.

So that definately endeared the story to me. As the book was wrapping up, the war is ending & soldiers are returning “home”. It occurred to me that I never heard Nan talk about this period. Or even what it was like growing up in a coal town. My Mom died 363 days ago. I know there’s been a few times over the last year that I thought, for a split second, “I should ask Mom”. I don’t remember what those things are, but obviously the “what” isn’t the important part. That I missed the boat on any more questions is What Sucks.

I do, however, have a consolation prize. My aunt gave me (loaned me) my Nan’s manuscript of her life. I am going to have it copied & bound for a few family members.