The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

75%

30 Critic Reviews

When you find yourself snowed in, and looking for something to get swept away with, I absolutely recommend Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.
-http://goodbooksandgoodwine.com

Synopsis

If you liked the Century Trilogy, you’ll love the “extraordinary...monumental masterpiece” (Booklist) that changed the course of Ken Follett’s already phenomenal career.

“Follett risks all and comes out a clear winner,” extolled Publishers Weekly on the release of The Pillars of the Earth. A departure for the bestselling thriller writer, the historical epic stunned readers and critics alike with its ambitious scope and gripping humanity. Today, it stands as a testament to Follett’s unassailable command of the written word and to his universal appeal. 
 
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.
 
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 historical masterpiece.


From the Paperback edition.
 

About Ken Follett

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Ken Follett nació en Cardiff (Gales) y cuando tenía diez años su familia se mudó a Londres. Se licenció en filosofía en la Universidad de Londres y posteriormente se dedicó al periodismo. Durante sus años de reportero empezó a escribir obras de ficción. Sin embargo hasta 1978 no se convirtió en escritor de éxito, con la publicación de El ojo de la aguja. A partir de entonces, cada novela de Ken Follett se convierte en un éxito internacional. Actualmente vive en una vieja rectoría de Hertfordshire con su esposa Barbara.
 
Published January 1, 2007 by Paperback. 1100 pages
Genres: History, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Children's Books. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Pillars of the Earth
All: 30 | Positive: 22 | Negative: 8

Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Kristin Wilson on Aug 23 2012

The storytelling by Ken Follett in the novel is extraordinary. The personality of each character grows as the story progresses.

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Examiner

Good
Reviewed by Magdalene Paniotte on Aug 01 2012

A sweeping saga infused with bloody conflict and divine passion often resolving to wretched scenarios described in painstaking detail, it should be noted that the novel is not for the faint of heart.

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Pajiba

Above average
Reviewed by JK Barlow on Jan 08 2011

POE isn't a bad book. If you're an architecture buff you might really like it. It's very long, but I read the whole thing.

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About.com

Good
Reviewed by Jessica Gribble on Jun 09 2014

It’s no wonder that Oprah picked this exciting, fast-paced, richly detailed, intricately plotted bestseller for her book club.

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Nights and Weekends

Good
Reviewed by Kristin Kramer on Jun 09 2014

The Pillars of the Earth is a fascinating historical novel -- one that captured me right from the beginning and refused to let go until I’d turned the last page.

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Teen Ink

Above average
Reviewed by tmclark on Aug 26 2014

...I thought the book was just plain out amazing. Though some parts were dull, for the most part I was always on the edge of my seat.

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http://skrishnasbooks.com

Good
Reviewed by Swapna Krishna on Aug 21 2011

...Pillars of the Earth really was an exceptional historical novel. I was continually impressed by the depth of the characters, and Follett managed to keep me interested for the entire novel, which is really saying something considering the length.

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Quick Book Reviews

Above average
on Dec 15 2012

There isn't a world to save, a tyrant to dethrone, or even an innocent prisoner to liberate; this is life as it was in a time when the word of the Church was worth more than that of any man, woman or child. Regardless of what kind of ending such a story brings us to, rest assured the ride to it will be more than worth it.

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Fyrefly's Book Blog

Below average
on May 30 2011

Lots of people love it just fine, so it’s probably worth a try for historical fiction fans – but if it’s not grabbing you early on, don’t expect the pace to pick up after you’ve put in a few hundred pages of effort.

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Literate Housewife

Good
Reviewed by Jennifer on Nov 06 2010

I loved the good guys and I loved the villians that much more...It is a long story, but I think you’ll find it worth the investment.

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Literary Exploration

Below average
Reviewed by MICHAEL KITTO on Sep 29 2013

While I had a lot of problems with The Pillars of the Earth, I did like parts of this novel and enjoyed raging at the other parts.

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She Treads Softly Blog

Excellent
Reviewed by Lori L on Feb 06 2010

The novel completely held my attention for all of the 973 pages. I really can't believe I avoided reading it for so many years. Very Highly Recommended - one of the best

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http://goodbooksandgoodwine.com

Excellent
Reviewed by April Conant on Dec 28 2010

When you find yourself snowed in, and looking for something to get swept away with, I absolutely recommend Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.

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Shelf Love

Below average
Reviewed by Teresa on Jan 19 2009

Some judicious cutting would have given readers 500-600 of thumping good historitrash. Too bad I had to wade through 400 pages of dreck to find it.

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Guys Lit Wire

Above average
on Dec 02 2009

I've never read anything else by Ken Follett and I don't know that I ever will after this. That's not meant as an insult, but rather as a testament to the entertaining power of this one, singular novel.

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https://suite101.com

Good
Reviewed by Laurie Hodges Humble on May 04 2008

It is because of his engaging, likeable protagonists, and equally engaging yet despicable antagonists it is easy to understand why The Pillars of the Earth is Follett’s most popular book yet.

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Confessions of a Bibliophile

Good
on Oct 22 2007

Epic doesn’t even begin to describe this one. I would consider this to be Follett’s masterpiece. It’s a little slow in parts, but soon you find yourself so sucked into it that you can’t stop.

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I'd So Rather Be Reading

Excellent
Reviewed by Kelli on Jan 27 2014

If you want a story that includes betrayal, murder, treachery, torture, love, faith, and triumph over difficult circumstances, read The Pillars of The Earth. You won't regret it!

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So Many Books, So Little Time

Good
Reviewed by DeniseF on Aug 30 2012

I don't know much about this period in history so I have no idea how historically accurate the story is. That being said, it is still a wonderful work of historical fiction that I highly recommend.

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Simply Books

Below average
Reviewed by Simply_Megan on Aug 16 2011

I usually love historical fiction and was originally excited to read The Pillars of the Earth because I don't know much about the Middle Ages. However, the story just didn't seem authentic. I didn't feel remotely like I was living in the twelfth century.

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The Wertzone

Above average
Reviewed by Adam Whitehead on Mar 22 2008

...an ambitious and impressive work that reaches for true greatness but is let down by cartoon bad guys and a lack of character depth. As a melodrama it works well and it's certainly page-turningly compulsive at times...

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A Striped Armchair

Good
on Feb 22 2008

This is one of those books that everyone should read (don’t be intimated by the length-it flies by)! And I’m just going to leave it at that.

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Historical Novel Review

Good
on Sep 24 2010

While there is often something lacking in the dramatization of historical fiction, and certain story elements are different, both the series and the book are excellent. The Pillars of the Earth is a must-read for anyone who loves historical fiction.

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Between The Pages

Excellent
Reviewed by Daisy on Sep 13 2010

All in all, this is such an epic tale of everything about human life, with lovable and strong characters and it completely blew me away. If I wasn't so busy, I probably would have read this without putting it down, it was that good...

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Fly High

Above average
Reviewed by Maria Grazia on Aug 30 2010

I find Ken Follett’s language quite elementary sometimes. Wanted or not, I find that he could have made diction a bit more refined. It is such a good story!

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Hungry like the Woolf

Above average
on Dec 07 2010

...Follet is a bestselling thriller-writer for a reason. There are loads of characters and you will definitely be able to find one of the type you might imagine yourself to be, particularly if you are a man.

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Senceless Pie

Below average
on Aug 26 2014

Follett is primarily known for his spy thrillers, so it was no great surprise to me that this novel is not “great literature” (in fact, it’s not even “good literature”). That said, it IS pretty entertaining in places...

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The Incurable Bluestocking

Good
on Jun 20 2013

Overall, The Pillars of the Earth is just flat-out a masterpiece. It’s beyond engaging, it’s absorbing. Follett makes England of 900 years ago seem real and vital...

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Confessions of a Bibliophile

Above average
Reviewed by CAEDMONERIES on Jan 26 2012

...don’t like that the big climax came with just about 100 or so pages left to go, and that kinda sucked because the rise and fall of the wrap-up shouldn’t necessarily need 100 pages...

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The Fringe Magazine

Good
Reviewed by Scott Wilson on Aug 16 2011

The Pillars of the Earth is a novel that demands the reader's full attention, but it is well worth the effort. It is ambitious in its scope and captivates from the very beginning.

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Reader Rating for The Pillars of the Earth
83%

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