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Ken Follet

Ken Follet is (why not admit it - used to be) my favorite writer. There were many reasons for that. First - I read a bunch of his early works for a start, and the first impression is known to last the longest. A second reason was that I didn't read that much. I started to read him in my pre books-on-tapes days when the reading of one average book consumed a month or so (army, university, girlfriend...)

After dozens of books-on-tape and some printed ones as well I can honestly say that I discovered a whole world out there that wasn't familiar to me, while at the same time Ken Follet release two of his worst novels to date. I used to think of 'Pillars of the Earth' as one of the best books I've ever read. I bought it to so many people (including one particularly successful purchase on the first date with my girlfriend).

The 'Third Twin' was not a good book. The plot was obvious. Read the cover and you can discuss the book in detail. The back cover of the 'Third Twin' announced his up coming novel - 'The Eye of the Dragon' (or something like that - I gave my copy to my brother (who happened to like the book...). I doubt this book was ever published in the states. I think I saw it few months ago in a bookstore in Israel. A single copy that was too expansive for me to buy (part of my 'let's wait for the paperback' policy).

Few weeks ago I took the new novel 'Hammer of Eden' from the public library. I had to return it after a week. I read the first 50 pages and I didn't feel bad at all to return it. Again - read the cover and you got the idea. Yesterday I saw the book on sale at 'Barns and Noble'. Not a good sign for Ken.

All the signs point to over commercialization - the contractual publication, the poor quality, the embarrassing appearance on the Conan O'Brien show, and now the new website.

I didn't like the site. I didn't like the idea of creating such a site. Over commercialized and dull in content

The picture/icon of Follet (authoritatively pondering) appears everywhere and reminds me so much of a company logo. The author is marketing himself like any other commercial organization. Probably pondering on how to maximize profits rather than how to weave an intriguing plot. The things I liked about the site were the audio files (love his accent...) and the painfully laconic 'Masterclass' where the master reveals a fraction of his complicated craft.


Links:
Ken Follet's Site
My brother's (Oren) opinion of Ken Follet

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