Thursday, September 29, 2011

Book Review: Pillars of the Earth

The Pillars of the Earth (The Pillars of the Earth, #1)The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was recommended to me by a co-worker and I have to say I wasn't all that excited to read it. The premise seemed a little boring... a story about a cathedral getting built. I was skeptical at best. However, this book got my attention from the very first page and managed to keep it through 32 audio CDs (983 pages for you readers). In the car. During my commutes. That's saying something.

Now just saying this book is about a cathedral getting built doesn't quite cover what it's about. Sure, there is a lot of talk about a cathedral and the architecture of it. But, there is also a great story to go along with it. The characters all had great depth. I cared about the heroes, I hated the villains. Which may seem like an easy thing to do, but surprisingly it doesn't happen all that often.

To give a little background, Ken Follett was an established, popular writer of mystery/suspense novels. He became interested in the architecture and history of cathedrals and spent a lot of time studying them and learning about them. He decided he wanted to take that knowledge and incorporate it into a book... which is where the idea for The Pillars of the Earth came from. With good reason his publicist was a little wary of Follett deviating from his tried and true standard genre. But, Follett wrote the book anyway and it has become his best selling novel to date. And with good reason. This was a wonderful book and I highly recommend it.

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thebluemuse said...

I LOVE Tom the Builder! We listened to Pillars of the Earth to and from Phoenix last year. I enjoyed the detail and slice of life from another time. The sequel (the name of which escapes me) is good, too, but less fabulous than Pillars.

Holly said...

This sounds very interesting; I may have to check it out!