A spellbinding epic tale of ambition, anarchy, and absolute power set against the sprawling medieval canvas of twelfth-century England, this is Ken Follett's classic historical masterpiece. The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world ...
A spellbinding epic tale of ambition, anarchy, and absolute power set against the sprawling medieval canvas of twelfth-century England, this is Ken Follett's classic historical masterpiece. The Pillars of the Earth tells the story of Philip, prior of Kingsbridge, a devout and resourceful monk driven to build the greatest Gothic cathedral the world has known ...of Tom, the mason who becomes his architect - a man divided in his soul ...of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame ...and of a struggle between good and evil that will turn church against state, and brother against brother. 'Enormous and brilliant ...this mammoth tale seems to touch all human emotion - love and hate, loyalty and treachery, hope and despair. This is truly a novel to get lost in' Cosmopolitan 'A historical saga of such breadth and density ...Follett succeeds brilliantly in combining hugeness and detail to create a novel imbued with the rawness, violence and blind faith of the era' Sunday Express
Fair. Well read and well worn. Small scuff inside back cover. Mass market paperback. Glued binding. 983,  p. Ken Follett, internationally-acclaimed master of split-second suspense, author of six #1 bestsellers, reaches beyond the expected to achieve his most brilliant and remarkable novel. The epic story of the building of a cathedral in 12th century England and the lives of the people entwined with it and each other is a sensuous, enduring narrative, and a gripping tale of faith, ambition, bloodshed and betrayal. From Wikipedia: "Kenneth Martin "Ken" Follett (born 5 June 1949) is a Welsh author of thrillers and historical novels. He has sold more than 130 million copies of his works. Many of his books have reached the number 1 ranking on the New York Times best-seller list, including Fall of Giants, The Key to Rebecca, Lie Down with Lions, Triple, Winter of the World, and World Without End. Follett was born on 5 June 1949 in Cardiff, Wales. He was the first child of Martin Follett, a tax inspector, and Lavinia (Veenie) Follett, who went on to have three more children. Barred from watching movies and television by his Plymouth Brethren parents, he developed an early interest in reading but remained an indifferent student until he entered his teens. His family moved to London when he was ten years old, and he began applying himself to his studies at Harrow Weald Grammar School and Poole Technical College. He won admission in 1967 to University College London, where he studied philosophy and became involved in centre-left politics. He married his first wife, Mary, in 1968, and their son Emanuele was born in the same year. After graduation in the autumn of 1970, Follett took a three-month post-graduate course in journalism and went to work as a trainee reporter in Cardiff on the South Wales Echo. After three years in Cardiff, he returned to London as a general-assignment reporter for the Evening News. Finding the work unchallenging, he eventually left journalism for publishing and became, by the late 1970s, deputy managing director of the small London publisher Everest Books. He also began writing fiction during evenings and weekends as a hobby. Later, he said he began writing books when he needed extra money to fix his car, and the publisher's advance a fellow journalist had been paid for a thriller was the sum required for the repairs. Success came gradually at first, but the publication of Eye of the Needle in 1978 made him both wealthy and internationally famous. Each of Follett's subsequent novels has also become a best-seller, ranking high on the New York Times Best Seller list; a number have been adapted for the screen. Ken Follett has written 29 books in the past 35 years. The first five best-sellers were spy thrillers: Eye of the Needle (1978), Triple (1979), The Key to Rebecca (1980), The Man from St Petersburg (1982) and Lie Down with Lions (1986). On Wings of Eagles (1983), was the true story of how two of Ross Perot s employees were rescued from Iran during the revolution of 1979. He then surprised readers by radically changing course with The Pillars of the Earth (1989), a novel about building a cathedral in the Middle Ages. It received rave reviews and was on the New York Times best-seller list for 18 weeks. It also topped best-seller lists in Canada, Britain and Italy, and was on the German best-seller list for six years. It has sold 18 million copies so far. The next three novels, Night Over Water (1991), A Dangerous Fortune (1993) and A Place Called Freedom (1995) were more historical than thriller, but he returned to the thriller genre with The Third Twin (1996) which in the Publishing Trends annual survey of international fiction best-sellers for 1997 was ranked no. 2 worldwide, after John Grisham's The Partner. His next work, The Hammer of Eden (1998) was another contemporary suspense story followed by a cold war thriller Code to Zero (2000). Follett returned to the WWII era with his next two novels, Jackdaws (2001), a World War II thriller about a group of women parachuted into France to destroy a vital...
Rohr-Rouendaal, Petra. Very good in very good dust jacket. Price clipped. No marks, writing or bent pages other than owner's name on front and back fep's and a few small red marks inside back board. Boards near fine. Jacket is price clipped with age tanning and slight... Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. With dust jacket. 973 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: General/trade. First edition first printing hardcover.
Very Good in Very Good jacket. Size: 8vo-over 7¾"-9¾" tall, 973 pp. Mottled beige endpapers. Half cloth, brown over brown boards with gilt to spine and stamped gilt facsimile of author's signature on front board. Colour illustrated dust jacket is wrapped in a Brodart archival jacket cover.
Nothing to complain about, fast delivery at very good price.
Mar 1, 2013
Pillars of the Earth
Great story, highly recommend the book and also the mini series, which is excellent.
Dec 6, 2012
I bought this book because of an attractive review by someone I won't pay much attention to in future. 'Pillars' does have its charms, but it ain't literature, in my opinion. It makes me think of Louis L'Amour, although it's a bit more pretentious and doesn't grip the reader quite so tightly. The book is about as long as War And Peace, and that invites comparisons between the two, which is hardly to Follett's advantage. Don't come here for depth and philosophy or for a "ripping good story" of adventure and/or action.
"So if you feel that way, Joel, why are you reading it?" Well it's hard to say. I started it and I don't like not finishing a book I've started, especially when it's not full of ungrammatical gibberish. 'Pillars' has been well edited - the grammar and prose style are quite good, so that it doesn't offend the intelligence of the reader. On the other hand, it doesn't satisfy whatever it is that makes me want to read a major book. I'm not a snob -- I do read L'Amour and mystery books -- but this book doesn't live up to its pretensions, in my opinion.
Feb 25, 2012
Long adventure into the past
Loved the book and the characters, but its a long tale!
Feb 16, 2012
A real find!
I borrowed this book from my granddaughter and read it inside of a week. It really was one of those books I found hard to put down, leading to lots of late nights.
Follet manages to keep the story going at a pace - I always wanted to find out what was going to happen next. The fact that I learned a fair bit about that particular period of English history was a bonus.
I loved this book so much that I bought a copy of it for my husband, who is now enjoying it.
Publishers Weekly, 2008-02-25 Tom Builder's dream is to build a cathedral, but in the meantime, he must scrounge about to find a lord that will hire him. His search pulls him and his family into the politics of 12th-century England, as different lords vie to gain control of the throne in the wake of the recently deceased king. Prior Phillip, a man raised in the monastery since childhood, also finds himself drafted into the brewing storm as he must protect the interests of a declining church. Richard E. Grant seduces readers early on with a soft and deliberate voice that is like a loud whisper. However, his full range quickly reveals itself as he delves into characters with animated voices that exert their true essence. Even throughout the narrative, Grant musters a lively voice that imbues energy into the story. The only shortcoming is that the abridgment of Follett's 1989 novel proves to be too choppy. Though the story appears complete, there still remain abrupt moments throughout the tale. Penguin Audio's unabridged version is read by John Lee and runs 41 hours. (Dec.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
Publishers Weekly, 1990-06-22 Set in 12th-century England, the narrative concerns the building of a cathedral in the fictional town of Kingsbridge. The ambitions of three men merge, conflict and collide through 40 years of social and political upheaval as internal church politics affect the progress of the cathedral and the fortunes of the protagonists. ``Follett has written a novel that entertains, instructs and satisfies on a grand scale,'' judged PW. (Aug.)
Publishers Weekly, 1989-06-30 With this book, Follett risks all and comes out a clear winner, escaping the narrow genre of suspense thrillers to take credit for a historical novel of gripping readability, authentic atmosphere and detail and memorable characterization. Set in 12th-century England, the narrative concerns the building of a cathedral in the fictional town of Kingsbridge. The ambitions of three men merge, conflict and collide through four decades during which social and political upheaval and the internal politics of the church affect the progress of the cathedral and the fortunes of the protagonists. The insightful portrayals of an idealistic master builder, a pious, dogmatic but compassionate prior and an unscrupulous, ruthless bishop are balanced by those of a trio of independent, resourceful women (one of them quite loathesome) who can stand on their own as memorable characters in any genre. Beginning with a mystery that casts its shadow on ensuing events, the narrative is a seesaw of tension in which circumstances change with shocking but true-to-life unpredictability. Follett's impeccable pacing builds suspense in a balanced narrative that offers action, intrigue, violence and passion as well as the step-by-step description of an edifice rising in slow stages, its progress tied to the vicissitudes of fortune and the permutations of evolving architectural style. Follett's depiction of the precarious balance of power between monarchy and religion in the Middle Ages, and of the effects of social upheavals and the forces of nature (storms, famines) on political events; his ability to convey the fine points of architecture so that the cathedral becomes clearly visualized in the reader's mind; and above all, his portrayals of the enduring human emotions of ambition, greed, bravery, dedication, revenge and love, result in a highly engrossing narrative. Manipulating a complex plot in which the characters interact against a broad canvas of medieval life, Follett has written a novel that entertains, instructs and satisfies on a grand scale. 400,000 first printing; $400,000 ad/promo; Literary Guild main dual selection; author tour. (Sept.)
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