This book was popular As in a mini phenomenon Seriously Am I being punked Tell the truth no one else read the book It was all an elaborate mediapop culture scheme to trick me into reading this book Please lie to me about this I m not sure I can go on living if I have to believe that this is what my fellow man is reading these daysMy tter disdain for the book comes from many a sourceA It s 900 pages Mind you I ll read 900 pages even 1500 pages if it s amazing But it has to be a crackerjack of a book This was not B Here s where this book and I really parted ways Tom Builder s beloved wife Agnes dies in childbirth on the side of the road Only hours later Tom s rolling in the leaves with an attractive forest wench in a sex scene so ridiculous I could practically hear the bow chicka wow wow music in the background Poor Agnes body isn t even cold yet and Tom s getting it on with a woman he had a 15 minute conversation with earlier in the bookC It s hard to believe this is medieval England what with all the modern sensibilities and modern vernacular C It could have been whittled down by about 500 pages if the scenes of people eating had been omittedE The women oh the women Witches or whores or victims of tag team rape Here s the basic rundown of the plot Building a church building a church building a church Oh crap a plot complication We might not be able to build the church Crafty Phillip overcomes the complication Insert licentious sex scene Building a church building a church building a church Oh crap a plot complication We might not be able to build the church Crafty Phillip overcomes the complication Now insert gratuitous sex sceneLather Rinse Repeat For 900 pagesCross posted at This Insignificant Cinder He was mesmerized by the challenge of making soft round shapes out of hard rock The stone had a will of its own and if he tried to make it do something it did not want to do it would fight him and his chisel would slip or dig in too deeply spoiling the shapes But once he had got to know the lump of rock in front of him he could transform it There are so many memorable characters populating this epic novel that I would be hard pressed to even say who is the main character of this novel but my favorite character is The Lisa Book undisputed His name is Jack and later as he discovers the name of his father he begins calling himself Jack Jackson His mother Ellen falls in love with a man named Tom Builder Jack finds himself nearly starving to death along with Tom s kids Alfred and Martha as they trudge across England in search of someone who needs something built Tom can build anything but his dream his most fervent desire is to build a cathedral Jack is brightnnaturally intelligent in fact and it isn t Alfred who turns out to be best suited to achieve Tom s dreams although Alfred is really good at beating the crap out of Jack on a daily basis It is Jack who travels the world and discovers that cathedrals can soar high into the clouds beyond anything that Tom would have ever believed possible The backdrop for all these trials and tribulations that you will experience while reading this novel is the turbulent 12th century England Henry Ist dies and leaves his daughter Empress Maude on the throne This is extremely controversial because the nobles do not want a Genesis ueen If truth be known they want a king but a weak king they can control Since Maude was born without a penis this leaves the castle door open for her cousin Stephen whom fortune has favored with a penis to snatch the crown from her head and place it on his own The nobles certainly do not want to work for a woman but I think the issue that is even bigger is that Maude is very sure of herself even one might say imperial As her husband Geoffrey of Anjou wouldickly find out she is a handful Civil war breaks out and the people who suffer the most of course are the peasants who just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time The destabilization of the civil structure of law also allows men like William of Hamleigh to do whatever they want to do and take whatever they want to take He is an opportunist who switches sides several times in the dispute between Maude and Stephen depending pon which of the cousins has the wind behind them at the time William is but a brutish thug a tool of his demented greedy mother and then later a weapon of evil for an archbishop named Waleran Bigod great name eh who wishes to obtain and power at the cost of everyone else William and Jack become mortal enemies as Jack tries to build a cathedral at Kingsbridge and William tries to destroy the economy of Kingsbridge to bring wealth to his neighboring town of Shiring William also has an nnatural lust for Aliena that is one part desire and one part pain See nless a woman is crying bleeding and feeling anguish William s wee willie won t work Here is a typical list of topics with which William and his henchmen like to entertain themselves In the evening they would drink beer and sharpen their blades and tell one another grisly stories about previous triumphs young men mutilated old men trampled beneath the hooves of warhorses girls raped and women sodomized children beheaded and babies spitted on the points of swords while their mothers screamed in anguish Then they would attack tomorrow morning Jack shuddered with fear But this time we re going to stop them he thought Jack is Aliena and Aliena is Jack They are soulmates and though many disastrous things happen to them to try and keep them apart I kept hoping that love will conuer all I may like Jack the best but I admire Aliena the most She recovers from a horrendous attack at the hands of
WILLIAM OF HAMLEIGH TO BECOME THEof Hamleigh to become the wool merchant in the area This "is remarkable for anyone but for a woman "remarkable for anyone but for a woman woman who has never had to work a day in her life and a pe This was incredible After reading this for weeks I ll need a bit to sort out my thoughts on this one Review to come Also how great is the feeling when you re the first person to check out a brand new replacement copy via the library The most expensive part of building is the mistakes Look it s difficult to explain exactly why I liked this book Seriously if you take a look at the blurb note the 973 pages and the fact it s a very long story about building a cathedral in Medieval England you might think I ve been smoking something But for me and I m assuming for a large number of other readers it was so damn compellingI m going to get the crap out of the way first if you are sensitive to scenes of rape DO NOT READ THIS BOOK Medieval England is a shitfest of misogyny violence accusations of witchcraft and yes rape One of the scenes is especially disturbing and graphic I actually had to take a break from the book after reading it I should say that it is not portrayed as a positive or even a normal thing Scenes of rape and brutal violence in the book largely serve to make s despise William Hamleigh with a ferocious passion It turns out that a deep seething hatred can really keep you turning pages waiting for that bastard to get what he rightly deserves Anyway yes the main plot is about the building of the fictional Kingsbridge cathedral But really it is about all the characters that come into contact with Kingsbridge its cathedral and Prior Philip their loves desires ambitions conflicts and heartbreaks I was pulled in from the very dramatic prologue when a young woman arrives at a hanging and curses the three men who guaranteed her beloved s executionThere are love stories in here as well as tales of ruthless ambition and betrayal Follett has created some incredible and The Christian at Mass unforgettable characters Tom Builder Philip Ellen Jack Aliena and Waleran Bigod And of course that snivelling stain on humanity that is William HamleighI haven t read any of Follett s other work but it is not surprising to hear he was a thriller writer before beginning The Pillars of the Earth He has carried that with him into this story Just when everything seems to be going right some catastrophe happens to throw a spanner in the works Just when it looks like Philip is going to succeed some shit happens But it was an effective way to keep me looking over my shoulderIt s a strange book because it s a bloody heart pounding page turner wrappedp in a 900 page serious looking cathedral building package Strange and yet I find myself wanting I guess I ll have to read World Without EndBlog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube I did not hate this book hate would be too strong a word and I can t hate it because I applaud the fact that Ken Follett attempted to write an epic novel But I did not like it I didn t like it from the start his writing style hit me like a brick but Jim thoroughly enjoyed the book that I kept trying to convince myself that I ought to give it a chance hoping it would get better When I was about 500 pages in he saw how miserable I was and asked why I didn t just stop reading it but at that point I was invested in it I had spent all that time getting that far that I needed to finish it and I couldn t wait to come to the end I kept counting down Only 450 pages left only 300 to go last 200 pagesyay I have 50 pages left Those fifty pages were the toughest to get through By the time I was at the end I thought it was a wasted effort both on his part and mine It s so much easier to explicate on what I did not like because there were so many things I loathed the writing style he vacillated between pages and pages of highly complex architectural discourses to third grade level simple sentences grouped into short paragraphs Sometimes it was bearable Other times I wanted to pull my hair out There were times when I felt the only time he came alive as an author was when. Mestre indiscutible del thriller Ken Follett s'endinsa en auesta novel·la en el món complex i fascinant de l'edat mitjana Bisbes intrigants constructors de catedrals ambiciosos nobles rurals i pagesos desposseïts poblen l'univers d'Els pilars de la Terra Centrada en l'accidentada construcció. He was discussing architecture but these parts were so didactic in nature that it couldn t hold my interest for long periods of time I did not like the author s narrative style He had to tie everything together causality was so prevalent throughout the text that I wondered how he didn t work in how the killing of a fly affected events 60 years later Every single storyline was wrapped Sunce je počelo da se zlati up too neatly for my liking in some cases Everyone was tied to someone else it was like playing Six Degrees every single character had to have a denouement every little plot twist had to be explained closure had to be achieved no matter how preposterous the circumstances over time and space The characterization was poor In fact it was appalling how two dimensional these characters were Good people were good Bad people were loathsome As time went on the good were always suffering one thing or another they were putpon they were harrassed they were constantly challenged and put to the test like Job something Follett actually ハリー・ポッターと賢者の石 (ハリー・ポッターシリーズ used as a sermon The badfolk became oppressive over time they were not only detestable but they had absolutely no redeemingalities And to go with a typical medieval stereotype the good were always excessively beautiful honorable intelligent geniuses or savants even and if they weren t rich they would be at the end I half expected Havelok the Dane and his refrigerator mouth to pop From Beautiful Zion to Red Bird Creek up somewhere proving once and for all that in the medieval period to be good was to have the purest light shining out of your mouth each time you opened it Nevertheless the bad becameglier became despotic scheming throughout life to get the better of their enemies the goodfolk But in the end good always triumphed over evil those who could repented and were forgiven Those who couldn t were killed off somehow because apparently death is the only way an evil person gets his or her dues And then everyone had a happy ending I hate happy endings when they re so obviously contrived And this work was so elaborately exhaustively thoroughly contrived Maybe it s not too late for me to change my mind and say I hated it grin Historically speaking there was so much left to be desired Granted this novel was written two decades ago and there have been new discoveries about the medieval period since Follett started his research But he got it all wrong anyhow His idea of medieval life was sooff that it hurt my head to continue reading sometimes I had to pause periodically and rant to Jim about what I currently found off putting for example there weren t many literate people at the time at the time this novel was set there was still a distinct divide between England and Wales reading and writing were two separate skill sets and people who knew how to read did not necessarily know how to write and vice versa orality was a prevalent part of storytelling back then and books not so much and yet somehow he conflated much of both manuscript writing was either orally dictated or copied tediously by the monks his concept of a scriptorium was incomplete defective and there has been so much written about this that it saddened me he Sex, Rock Optical Illusions used modern translations of medieval poeticalverse works and couldn t explain even alliterative verse form effectively I even wonder if he knew what it was hisnderstanding of the languages of the period Old English Middle English Latin Norman French Old French Middle French etc and what was spoken by the aristocrats vs the peasants vs the growing middle classes disgusts me he showed a lack of nderstanding of medieval law medieval rights the social classes gender roles even the tales and legends of the period in both England and France priests were ite low on the totem pole in terms of the religious hierarchy and were Disney Infinity: Character Encyclopedia uite disparaged yet somehow that didn tite come across in this novelI could go on and on but I won t And the historical part of the novel I just found lacking There are enough histories and chronicles contemporaneously written of the time that he did not have to deviate much from history There is so much written about the period between the death of Henry I through the civil wars between the Empress Matilda and King Stephen to the time that Henry II ascended the throne including the martyrdom of Thomas a Beckett that I don t Dance With The Devil uitenderstand how he couldn t have mined the chronicles for better material I Smitten understand that this is why it s called historical fiction and that there will always be some element of fiction interspersed with historical fact But the fictional aspectssually have to do with surrounding characters and situations that bolster the history The fiction is not necessarily to the history itself Many times when writing historical fiction the author has to beware the pitfalls of creating a revisionist retelling interspersing his or her own ideals or beliefs of what should have been to what was If this novel had been marketed as a revisionary narrative it would have been okay But it wasn t I m just glad that the historical aspect of the novel just served as the background and not the "real story Because then I probably would ve stopped readingThe premise was a one and "story Because then I probably would ve stopped readingThe premise was a good one a lot of promise It could ve been a great historical epic had it been handled by a assured writer By someone who was of a visionary someone who had the patience to do exhaustive research or who knew how to craft richly developed characters It needed an author who nderstood the epic genre who knew how to mold the epic who knew how to keep the narrative going seemlessly binding time with narration and the human condition without "resorting to stereotypes and grating drama And most importantly it needed "to stereotypes and grating drama And most importantly it needed who nderstood when the story had been told that while there will always be other stories to tell that each book has its own natural end and that these stories may not belong in this bookKen Follett may be a bestselling author of suspense novels and even historical fiction such as Pillars of the Earth and World without End but he is no writer of epics Compared to writers of historical fiction such as Edward Rutherford James Michener Bernard Cornwell or Margaret George Ken Follett has a long way to go This book was so completely fantastic that I almost forgot the outside world existed when I was reading it I ve never be so emotionally invested in a story as I was with this It s a rare book that does this to me I think it s because it follows the characters through such a large proportion of their lives resulting in a large amount of intimacy and investment with them Indeed this novel spans a massive period of forty years and has 1000 pages this is no light reading it is deep emotive and completely brilliant The intense story So much happens within this novel It s impossible to lay it down in a brief summary these characters 1898 uite literally go through hell Such is the life of commoners in the period They are good folk and are just trying to erect a church for the betterment of their town However the corruptness of the local nobility and the church hierarchy itself almost prevents them from achieving their aim Prior Phillip and Jack the Builder are forced to seek out the aid from their monarch but because of the turmoil of the civil war this monarch keeps changing They have a choice of two royal courts to appeal to Both are convinced they have the legitimate claim to England s throne Picking the wrong side would lead to theltimate ruination of a folk that simply want to live in peace and celebrate God s glory on earth Well this is the mere surface level of the plot This book is so much beyond it It is a story of betrayal and seduction it is a story of love and hardship it is a story of human nature and the all encompassing morals that imposes It is just fantastic in every sense The characters are real and their hardships are even realer These are truly some of the most human characters I ve ever read about these people could have existedThis is no less true for the villains of the book William Hamleigh in particular is characterised superbly For all his ruthless aggression and sense of entitlement he s still a coward at heart He d never admit it to anyone but the reader knows of what he is the reader can see his blackening yellow heart He is a product of society and his parent s ruthless ambition He doesn t deserve sympathy because of this but the reason why he is the man he is can be seen by looking at his origins His parents ruined him he has no restraint he has nobody to tell him no So to his mind he can get away with anything He even has a Bishop who will gladly absolve all his sins He s actions have no conseuences he can murder and rape without feeling the conseuences This is an incredibly dangerous mind set and one that almost destroys the protagonists of the book He s a nasty man The strength of the church Follet also weighs the potential power of the church I love the way he contrasts godly Prior Phillip with the twisted Bishop Waleran It shows Night of the Werewolf (Choose Your Own Nightmare, us two routes the church could take it showss two possibilities for God s monument on Earth Prior Phillip is everything the church should be he is kind and forgiving he is benevolent and just he is a true believer of Christ s teachings He is in the church for the simple reason that he is a man of faith Contrastingly Bishop Waleran is a tyrannical despot He represents evryhting the church shouldn t be he is the personification of its potential evil The Bishop is vain greedy and ambitious In this his will is his own he is completely self serving He abuses his power to meet his own ends and self aggrandisement So he is slightly corrupt He s only in the church for its political power and rewards In this he is not a true believer. D'una catedral gòtica la novel·la de Follett és Lay My Burden Down una recreació acolorida d'una època convulsa i violenta de la història d'Anglaterra on la gent senzilla lluita per sobreviure enn país assolat per na guerra civil inacabable tot ignorant les mauinacions dels poderosos A banda de les apassi.