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The Pillars of the Earth | [Ken Follett]

The Pillars of the Earth

Why we think it’s a great listen: Got 40 hours to kill? You’ll find the time when you start listening to Lee’s take on Follett’s epic – and widely celebrated – novel of 12th-century England. 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...and of the beautiful, elusive Lady Aliena, haunted by a secret shame....
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Publisher's Summary

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 12th-century England, this is Ken Follett's historical masterpiece.

©1989 Ken Follett; (P)2007 Penguin Audio, a member of Penguin Group (USA), Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Follett is a master." (The Washington Post)
"A historical novel of gripping readability, authentic atmosphere and detail and memorable characterization." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Paola United States 05-13-09
    Paola United States 05-13-09 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    92
    2
    Overall
    "The Pillars of the Earth"

    What a great writer and great book. I truly enjoyed it! I am going to listen to his next book now, World without End.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LB in Dallas Dallas, Tx United States 07-14-08
    LB in Dallas Dallas, Tx United States 07-14-08

    marlin515

    HELPFUL VOTES
    236
    ratings
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    396
    71
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    8
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    "It could have been shorter"

    The tale was interesting but it could have been about 3 books rather than one as it spanned multiple generations. Some events are way over dramatized and detailed at great length, but when the main character in more than half of the book dies it's like OK he's dead, let's move on. I found this a bit distracting. An interesting study of cathedral architecture and the pre-Renaissance era.

    1 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robin Columbia Falls, MT, United States 11-21-07
    Robin Columbia Falls, MT, United States 11-21-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    9
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    96
    8
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    0
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    Overall
    "Read First"

    Make sure you pick this up prior to listening to "World without end". What a series!

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Geneva Livingston, TX, USA 08-16-09
    Geneva Livingston, TX, USA 08-16-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Disappointed!"

    I listened to the first 3 hours and couldn't get into it at all. I also was irritated by the narrator's voice. Waste of money!!

    1 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stefanie Gleisweiler Germany 06-17-10
    Stefanie Gleisweiler Germany 06-17-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    REVIEWS
    113
    25
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    0
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    "nice read"

    nothing spezial but well written

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roxanne Marrero, LA, USA 05-27-09
    Roxanne Marrero, LA, USA 05-27-09 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    27
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    171
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    0
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    "Sweeping epic"

    Great characters and setting/sense of the times. This one just draws you in.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathleen Fredonia, NY, USA 05-05-09
    Kathleen Fredonia, NY, USA 05-05-09
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    1
    Overall
    "Awesome!!"

    I am a 22-year-old and I loved this book and narration. Many of my friends made fun of me for devoting so much time to the story of a cathedral being constructed, but you cannot understand why it is so engaging unless you begin listening. Follett weaves a tale that is very interesting if you are any sort of history buff or just great if you love a good story!

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chrismo 04-05-08
    Chrismo 04-05-08 Member Since 2007
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    1
    Overall
    "Didnt like it"

    I really liked the beginning but it just wandered downhill halfway through. Very few characters were likable.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    James CRESCENT CITY, CALIFORNIA, United States 01-21-08
    James CRESCENT CITY, CALIFORNIA, United States 01-21-08 Member Since 2006

    Love the book as a window. Shocked by the number of definitions for the word "turn". Widowed and sad, but thankful. Trying hard to be useful. Have 28 years as a step-father to a fantastic grand-daughter and a not so fantastic drug addicted, step-daughter. Oddly focused on the fun of preparing to die well, and help those left behind, while eating, hot springing, and reading for pleasure.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Amazing"

    For an atheist to write this kaleidoscopik work that bolsters catholic theology is amazing. I feel completely alone most of the time in today's culture. This work lifts a huge weight, at least temporally, of the back.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    08-05-08
    08-05-08
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    55
    1
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    "The Pillars of the Earth"

    Great Book

    0 of 4 people found this review helpful
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