Series: The Kingsbridge Novels (No. 1) A spellbinding epic tale of ambition, anarchy, and absolute power set against the sprawling medieval canvas of twelfth-century England, The Pillars of the Earth is Ken Follett's classic historical masterpiece. The Pillars of the Earth is the. Read "The Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first download. **#1 New York Times Bestseller. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Tom Builder's dream is to build a cathedral, but in Look inside this book. The Pillars of the Earth by [Follett, Ken] .

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This content was uploaded by our users and we assume good faith they have the permission to share this book. If you own the copyright to this book and it is. 1 New York Times BestsellerOprah's Book Club SelectionIf you liked the Century Trilogy, you'll love the "extraordinary monumental masterpiece" (Booklist). The Pillars of the Earth has 15 entries in the series. OverDrive Read 6 · Adobe EPUB eBook 6 · site Book 3 · cover image of The Pillars of the Earth.

Now that you have finished World Without End , do you still feel that way? I was worried, because so many sequels fall below the standard of the original and seem exploitative. Why did you wait so long to write World Without End? Was it concern about measuring up to Pillars or did you simply need that time to gear yourself up for another major historical novel?


I certainly was concerned to write a novel that would not disappoint the legions of fans of Pillars , but there were other reasons for the delay.

At the end of Pillars , all the major characters are either very old or dead. So I could not write another book about them. Eventually, I decided to write another story set in the same town two hundred years later. Also, I spent a long time searching for a theme as grand and as engaging as the building of a cathedral.

When finally I thought of a story based around the Black Death and the birth of modern medicine, I felt I had at last come up with a big enough theme.

Why did you set World Without End in the fourteenth century, some two hundred years after Pillars? In what sense was that a time of new ideas, ferment, and change? Until the Black Death, everyone believed that the best way to recover from illness was to pray. It destroyed their faith in the old methods. And, in medicine, the emphasis was on observation and record keeping, which gave physicians practical knowledge about what treatments actually worked.

Of course, these changes were fiercely resisted by traditionalists, and this is the background to some of the dramatic conflicts in World Without End. Some of the characters in World Without End are descendants of characters from Pillars. Can you name a few? Caris and all her family have brown eyes flecked with gold, as Tom did. At the beginning of the book, the main characters are all children, but each of them has an aim in life, although they may understand it only vaguely.

Caris wants to be a physician, Ralph wants to be a baron, Gwenda longs to be free, Godwyn aims to be Prior of Kingsbridge. The story shows how they struggle to achieve their ambitions—and how their individual destinies are violently disrupted by the plague. Your work is clearly inspired by the architecture of historical buildings—do you envision that any modern architecture will lead you to create a novel. Are there other interests, hobbies, intellectual pursuits of yours that might one day find themselves the subject of one of your books?

Is that still true? Who are you reading now? Is it harder now, in the age of television and Internet distractions, to find new authors? I still read a lot all the time, some history and biography but mostly fiction. I just finished a wonderful novel called The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri. One of the reasons I liked it so much is that the author engages the reader totally even though not much happens—quite the opposite of my own books, which are full of incident!

Your wife is a Member of Parliament in Britain, and you are also involved in politics. Is that a completely separate realm from writing for you or do they feed one another? I never write directly about my own life, but indirectly everything ends up being used in my work.

For example, in Pillars and in World Without End , there are elections in which the monks choose their prior. My handling of those dramas is strongly influenced by things that I have experienced as a political campaigner. You and your wife have a large blended family, and you all spend quite a bit of time together.

The Pillars of the Earth

How do you balance work and family? Has that changed over the years? The Nightingale. Kristin Hannah. The Woman in the Window. J Finn. Best Kept Secret. Birds of Prey. Cry Wolf.

Men of Men. The Goldfinch. Donna Tartt. The Lake House. Kate Morton. Make Me with bonus short story Small Wars.

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Lee Child. The Illegal: A Novel. Lawrence Hill. The Crossing. Michael Connelly. The Martian. Andy Weir. The Clockmaker's Daughter. And the Mountains Echoed. Khaled Hosseini. The Last Mile. This Was a Man. Sycamore Row. A Falcon Flies. The Eye of the Tiger. Personal with bonus short story Not a Drill.

The Guilty. The Sins of the Father.

The Alice Network. Kate Quinn. The Girl in the Ice. Robert Bryndza. Power of the Sword. The Burning Room.

The Good Daughter. Karin Slaughter. The Luminaries. Eleanor Catton. Leaving Time with bonus novella Larger Than Life. Jodi Picoult. The Rooster Bar.

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The Diamond Hunters. The Whistler. The Escape. The Nest. Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney. The Throwaway Children. Diney Costeloe. The Bone Tree. Greg Iles. Natchez Burning.

The Invention of Wings. Sue Monk Kidd.

Shout at the Devil. Fools and Mortals. Bernard Cornwell. The King's Curse. Philippa Gregory. The Cuckoo's Calling. Robert Galbraith. The maids thought he was ugly; the old women felt sorry for him; and the small boys laughed until they fell down.

The sheriff was a familiar figure, but the other three men who had sealed the thief's doom were strangers. The knight, a fleshy man with yellow hair, was clearly a person of some importance, for he rode a war-horse, a huge beast that cost as much as a carpenter earned in ten years. The monk was much older, perhaps fifty or more, a tall, thin man who sat slumped in his saddle as if life were a wearisome burden to him. Most striking was the priest, a young man with a sharp nose and lank black hair, wearing black robes and riding a chestnut stallion.

He had an alert, dangerous look, like a black cat that could smell a nest of baby mice. A small boy took careful aim and spat at the prisoner. It was a good shot and caught him between the eyes. He snarled a curse and lunged at the spitter, but he was restrained by the ropes attaching him to the sides of the cart.

The incident was not remarkable except that the words he spoke were Norman French, the language of the lords. Was he high-born, then? Or just a long way from home?

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Nobody knew. The ox cart stopped beneath the gallows. The sheriff's bailiff climbed onto the flatbed of the cart with the noose in his hand. The prisoner started to struggle.

The boys cheered--they would have been disappointed if the prisoner had remained calm. The man's movements were restricted by the ropes tied to his wrists and ankles, but he jerked his head from side to side, evading the noose. After a moment the bailiff, a huge man, stepped back and punched the prisoner in the stomach. The man doubled over, winded, and the bailiff slipped the rope over his head and tightened the knot. Then he jumped down to the ground and pulled the rope taut, securing its other end to a hook in the base of the gallows.

This was the turning point. If the prisoner struggled now, he would only die sooner.

The men-at-arms untied the prisoner's legs and left him standing alone on the bed of the cart, his hands bound behind his back. A hush fell on the crowd. There was often a disturbance at this point: the prisoner's mother would have a screaming fit, or his wife would pull out a knife and rush the platform in a last-minute attempt to rescue him. Sometimes the prisoner called upon God for forgiveness or pronounced blood-curdling curses on his executioners. The men-at-arms now stationed themselves on either side of the scaffold, ready to deal with any incident.

That was when the prisoner began to sing. He had a high tenor voice, very pure. The words were French, but even those who could not understand the language could tell by its plaintive melody that it was a song of sadness and loss. A lark, caught in a hunter's net Sang sweeter then than ever, As if the falling melody Might wing and net dissever. As he sang he looked directly at someone in the crowd.

Gradually a space formed around the person, and everyone could see her. She was a girl of about fifteen.Robert Galbraith. A departure for the bestselling thriller writer, the historical epic stunned readers and critics alike with its ambitious scope and gripping humanity. The Eye of the Tiger. The bailiff looked at the sheriff, waiting for the nod. Caris wants to be a physician, Ralph wants to be a baron, Gwenda longs to be free, Godwyn aims to be Prior of Kingsbridge.

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