We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
The protagonist is a 12th C English stonemason who travels to France to learn about the new design fad we now know as Gothic. Besides the architecture, there's a lot of novel in this novel. Good fun and a compelling portrait of 12th C England.
My sister recommended "The Pillars of the Earth" to me years ago. I'm a voracious reader so I was happy to see it was a big, long book and I'm also a Ken Follett fan so it was double good fortune. I'm sorry to say the book was total dreck. More like reading a soap opera than literature. I picked it up several more times and tried to read it but finally threw it away.
I agree - I could not finish this book. Most of descriptions of the architecture and trades’ work were truly interesting but I simply could not slog through the story. I was looking and looking for a story and couldn’t find it. It seemed as if someone other than Follett wrote the book. His other work is crisp and solid and sharp on the story. If it was a stylistic departure, I don’t think it was a success. I know - everyone but me loved it......
That's an epic book by Ken Follett. I had read his spy excellent novels before (Eye of the Needle , Key to Rebecca), but was surprised when he came out with Pillars of the Earth. I can't say enough good things about the book. They made a mini-series out of it, too.
My brother gave it to me a few months ago, saying that in his opinion it was the world's best book. I enjoyed it very much but was surprised that he liked it because it's basically a historical romance novel.
It is an epic. I think there is Salt of the Earth and maybe another sequel. I read it when it came out as one of the huge books I took on deployment and got into it. It's not everyone's cup of tea.
The cathedral building portions were wonderful and describe pretty closely, probably, what the world and conditions were like for the men and women that built the cathedrals just like Notre Dame.
As with his spy books, I think Ken did a good job with his craft and spun a good yarn on an epic scale.
I'm going to laugh if I hear anyone whine about the length or romance aspects who got sucked into Game of Thrones. I read the books as they came out up until 4 and then I gave up. It was a twisted reality I wanted no part of and yet there appear to be millions of fans of the show.
I read P o t E because I had enjoyed other KF novels. Then I made my first trip to Paris. My main takeaway of the book was the description of the evolution of the architecture from the massiveness of the walls and flying buttresses of ND compared with the lightness and elegance of latter church’s as demonstrated by St Chapelle including making big columns appear as a group of several smaller, lighter columns and massive windows and light.
The first steps toward public health. There is a sentence somewhere in the story, almost a non-sequitur, where a character observes, pretty much in passing and only to himself that since the village was rebuilt after the fire that had leveled it there had been very little disease. To me, it suggested Follett had completely immersed himself in that era and in the lives of his characters.