Ken Follett seems pretty at-ease for a man who is about to have a million copies of his book “Fall of Giants” released today.
“Oh, it’s only a million in the U.S.,” he corrects us when we asked if his nerves are rattled by the enormity of having so many copies of his work going to the reading public at once. “There are several million more translations being released simultaneously worldwide — I haven’t actually counted how many.”
If Follett is a man who doesn’t seem modest, that’s OK. He can afford to be confident — the British writer has sold more than 100 million copies of his fiction, which includes both popular thrillers such as “Eye of the Needle” and “The Key to Rebecca,” and historical pop fiction including “The Pillars of the Earth” and “World Without End.” “Fall of Giants” has Follett once again returning to historical fiction.
“I had such a wonderful success with ‘World Without End’ that I wanted the same again. I guess I’m greedy for acclaim, it seems,” he laughs.
Why he must be ‘Giant’
“I didn’t want to go back to writing thrillers and didn’t want to do another medieval story and I’ve always liked to change. It’s a good idea for me to move to fresh subjects. So I thought, ‘What can I write about that would give me the sweep of history and cataclysmic events that I had in ‘World Without End’? I thought about the 20th century and how it’s our history — where we come from — and I got excited about it.”