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World Without End Audiobook

World Without End: The Kingsbridge Novels, Book 2

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Publisher's Summary

On the day after Halloween, in the year 1327, four children slip away from the cathedral city of Kingsbridge. They are a thief, a bully, a boy genius and a girl who wants to be a doctor. In the forest they see two men killed.

As adults, their lives will be braided together by ambition, love, greed and revenge. They will see prosperity and famine, plague and war. One boy will travel the world but come home in the end; the other will be a powerful, corrupt nobleman. One girl will defy the might of the medieval church; the other will pursue an impossible love. And always they will live under the long shadow of the unexplained killing they witnessed on that fateful childhood day.

Ken Follett's masterful epic The Pillars of the Earth enchanted millions with its compelling drama of war, passion and family conflict set around the building of a cathedral. World Without End takes readers back to medieval Kingsbridge two centuries later, as the men, women and children of the city once again grapple with the devastating sweep of historical change.

World Without End is followed by the third of Ken Follett's Kingsbridge novels, A Column of Fire.

©2007 Ken Follett (P)2007 Penguin US

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (222 )
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Story
4.6 (172 )
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Performance


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  • P
    LINCOLN, United Kingdom
    3/29/15
    Overall
    "Fabulous"

    Outstanding writing and so easy to imagine the characters and the habitant in which they live. A book you don't want to end!! Better still a third book to follow on!!!
    Narrative is excellent John Lee has such a talent for storytelling and a wealth of accents. Fabulous I can't say more. Thank you Ken Follett:)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • dicky
    2/26/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A great follow up"

    World without end ties itself nicely to its predecessor pillars of the earth with occasional historical references. Much like the first book you can't help but fall in love with main characters and despise the evils of medieval England. There were many moments I found myself frozen whilst cooking or not noticing the traffic lights changing colour, as the books mini episodes came to their crescendo. A huge nod to to the author for successfully treading where some many before him have failed, the sequel!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • michael.thompson@btinternet.com
    England
    2/17/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Ken Follett at his best.
    "

    A well written historical drama that was equally well narrated by John Lee.
    This is a graphic account of the English set at the time of the Black Death. Cannot wait for more of the same.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Caterina
    2/14/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "So sad it's over!"

    Great story I just didn't want it to end. Loved the characters & the narrative as much as the first book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • dannacet
    1/12/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book and excellent narrator"

    I really enjoyed this and its prequel. whilst being about the everyday lives of the people of Kingsbridge, it is never dull and kept me enthralled. The narrator is excellent and I would certainly seek out other books he has been involved with. A worthy sequel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Bookworm
    12/29/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "loved it"

    loved it.the reading by John Lee was excellent in this and pillars of the earth.everything is interwoven wonderfully

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • JPK
    12/12/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "More of the same..."
    What made the experience of listening to World Without End the most enjoyable?

    John Lee reprises his role from the first book effortlessly to deliver another fantastic performance. The voices are distinct, the narration relaxing and the French accents believable. No complaints here!<br/><br/>The religious themes that got a little tiring in the first book are played down and the political themes played up this time round, with a greater emphasis on political intrigue and scandal.<br/><br/>Characters are likeable, and usually somewhat grey.<br/><br/>Kingsbridge and the surrounding area feels more real and fleshed out than in Pillars.


    What does John Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    French accents.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. As addictive as it is, this is a book to take in smaller chunks.


    Any additional comments?

    If you are interested in this audiobook you have presumably already read the the first book and are familiar with Follett's loose narrative style. This time around the story is even less focused, and a central plot largely non-existant. This is by no means a bad thing, but the lack of direction may frustrate some.<br/><br/>Thematically the book isn't as dark as the first, and the lives of its characters feel far less brutal and precarious, despite their many hardships.<br/><br/>My main criticism is that everything in this book seems to be recycled from the first. Many characters are carbon copies (Mervin Fitzgerald/Jack Builder), key events paralleled (the collapsing bridge/cathedral) and the character's motivations are tired and stale ("I want to build the tallest tower in England!" *Yawn*). <br/><br/>I actually enjoyed this book more than the first one, and found its execution more satisfying, but it really feels more like a retelling than a sequel. A Final Fantasy game is a comparison that comes to mind.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Jo Blogs
    England UK
    12/6/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Could not get into it"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Shorten the book


    Has World Without End put you off other books in this genre?

    Probably


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Narrator was fine


    What character would you cut from World Without End?

    Too many characters, I do not think it translates well into audible.<br/>Wanted to enjoy it, will try and keep on trawling through it at some point.


    Any additional comments?

    bored, but wish I was not....

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • eatough1999
    Northumberland, UK
    10/29/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A worthy sequel to Pillars of the Earth"

    Having being swept along with Pillars of the Earth, I was keen to listen to the sequel. Having listened to it, the need to listen to Pillars is not wholly necessary as there are only tentative links, so it can be listened to as a stand alone. However having said that the descendants of the previous characters in Pillars helps you understand some of the behaviour in this work.

    There is a long underlying love story underpinning the book and there is a definite sense of will they/won't they which I found quite realistic. The main female character whilst not being absolutely squeaky clean (my review of Pillars states I am not convinced by the squeaky character) was made out to be pretty righteous which at times became a little tiresome. She pretty much single-handed was responsible for initiatives that kept the 'plague' at bay....

    I felt Lola was a much underdeveloped character and her wandering off on a tangent towards the end of the book not wholly plausible.

    The books' main villian was truly vile - bravo! You want your villian to be just that, yet there were elements of his vulnerability which had the possibility of one feeling slightly compassionate towards him.

    There is intrigue a plenty, skullduggery, scheming, manipulation - and that was just the monks and nuns.

    Once again the narrator brought the book to life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Marge Simpson
    UK
    9/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Story Without End!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of World Without End to be better than the print version?

    45+ hours of listening made this book feel like it would never end. I can't imagine reading such a huge tome, although in print form I could at least have skipped over the laborious bits. If you like Ken Follett's writing style though, I'm sure you could enjoy this.


    If you’ve listened to books by Ken Follett before, how does this one compare?

    Although I found the prequel (The Pillars of the Earth) hard going at times, I had to listen to this book too, to see if the general story arc could be as interesting. However, I was hoping that some of the author's style of storytelling might have improved. It hadn't.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    It's hard to pick out a specific scene, but the building of the bridge and depictions of a peasant agricultural society probably held the most interest throughout this book. I think Gwenda could have been an interesting character but somehow felt she was sidelined and her motivations portrayed too simplisticly. I would be interested in a more punchily written spin off version of Gwenda's life, from childhood to beyond WWE.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    There were many moments that made me cringe (like his previous book) but not enough feeling of engagement with the characters to provoke a strong response. The ending was very sudden, as though the author felt he'd written enough and it was time to tie up the loose ends in a couple of pages. I'd have been grateful to come to the end, after such a long book, but it came without warning when I didn't have another audiobook ready to go!


    Any additional comments?

    I can't really imagine myself ever re-listening to this or its prequel, as they are so very long (you get your money's worth for an audible credit!), and the author's style (especially his one-dimensional, laboured sex scenes, which showed no understanding of the fairer sex) has not left me wanting to experience any of his other works (especially if they are this long). The narration was fine on the whole, although I wouldn't go out of my way to seek this narrator out.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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