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Jordens søjler by Ken Follett
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Jordens søjler (original 1989; edition 2001)

by Ken Follett

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
23,526689107 (4.18)879
Adventure saga of 12th century England, from a stone mason whose dream is to build a glorious cathedral to a man of God in a web of dangerous political intrigue.
Member:jakla
Title:Jordens søjler
Authors:Ken Follett
Info:Kbh. : Cicero, 2001.
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:None

Work details

Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett (1989)

  1. 102
    Cathedral of the Sea by Ildefonso Falcones (crgalvin, OTVTT2010)
    OTVTT2010: Molemmat mieleenpainuvia lukukokemuksia, laadukasta viihdettä.
  2. 81
    The Physician by Noah Gordon (ecureuil)
  3. 51
    The Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century by Ian Mortimer (Taphophile13)
  4. 20
    The Stones of the Abbey by Fernand Pouillon (Stbalbach)
    Stbalbach: Novel about a 12thC medieval master builder in France
  5. 20
    The Corner That Held Them by Sylvia Townsend Warner (nessreader)
    nessreader: CTHT is another medieval-set, multiple generation, religous institution novel, about a minor convent in England, sprawling over multiple generations and giving a sense of time passing, lightly touching on the lives of the nuns, but with the institution as the main character.… (more)
  6. 32
    Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd (mcenroeucsb, al.vick)
  7. 32
    The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo (bugaboo4)
  8. 00
    Kingmaker: Winter Pilgrims: (Book 1) by Toby Clements (Stepn)
    Stepn: As good, if not better.
  9. 00
    Das Haupt der Welt: Historischer Roman by Rebecca Gablé (MissBrangwen)
  10. 00
    World Without End by Ken Follett (delma28)
  11. 00
    When Christ and His Saints Slept by Sharon Kay Penman (Anonymous user)
  12. 11
    The Lost Angel by Javier Sierra (albavirtual)
  13. 11
    Hild by Nicola Griffith (kiwiflowa)
  14. 01
    The Archer's Tale by Bernard Cornwell (Cecrow)
    Cecrow: Similar period, albeit more battle oriented.
  15. 02
    The Jester by James Patterson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: The Jester and The Pillars of Earth are intricately plotted, suspenseful tales set in the Middle Ages. These books focus on the treachery and drama of the period.
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» See also 879 mentions

English (601)  Spanish (26)  Catalan (15)  French (11)  Italian (8)  Danish (7)  Dutch (7)  German (7)  Hungarian (2)  Swedish (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (686)
Showing 1-5 of 601 (next | show all)
This started off as an engaging page turner. Then slowly the characters became predictable, the story line monotonous and the historical inaccuracies glaring and bothersome. The violence and sex scenes seemed glaringly gratuitous and redundant. How many times did the author need to tell us that the evil enemy was evil? I didn't want to finish the book, did because it was for a new book club and wished I could have those several days back. ( )
  ColourfulThreads | Feb 18, 2021 |
I've been meaning to read this for years. Borrowed the audio from the library for a long solo drive and was riveted. I ultimately alternated reading and listening (which, surprisingly, didn't detract from the book for me.) Having said that, I actually had to fast-forward through the rape scenes, which were just too disturbing for me. This is not a criticism of the book; on the contrary, I think it speaks to what a great writer Ken Follett is. I love history, but nothing I've read about this period made the horrors feel as real as this did. ( )
  GiGiGo | Feb 5, 2021 |
Sprawling and beautiful like the cathedral at its heart, Follett's story of men and women struggling to survive and find some meaning in a time of calamity is just absolutely fabulous. Highly recommended. ( )
  skolastic | Feb 2, 2021 |
In a word: monumental

I finished it! My nightstand has been relieved of two and a half pounds of paperback. I gave the book four stars because I can tell it's fantastically well done, even though it's not my cup of tea. I read it because it's a friend's husband's favorite book.

There's lots of dastardly 12th century action—I think all seven deadly sins are committed multiple times. My favorite parts of the book involved the descriptions of the cathedrals, but nearing the end and as the cathedrals got more intricate, I found them harder to visualize. It's possible I just got lazy and impatient for the conclusion.

I got the deluxe edition paperback for a pittance at the Goodwill store—my favorite "lending" library.

Around the year in 52 books challenge notes:
#3. A book that you are prompted to read because of something you read in 2019 ( )
  Linda_Louise | Jan 20, 2021 |
I was totally engrossed by this book while I was reading it and the 1000 or so pages just flew by. I was especially fascinated by the detailed description of the building process. Somehow I was also eager to see the plot develop and wanted to find out what would happen to the characters.

However, after I had finished the book I was horrified to find that what stuck in my head the most were the overly explicit rape and murder scenes. I am certainly not squeamish and usually not bothered by violence in literature or film. But after reading the book I realized that the explicitness was there for shock value and did not serve any other purpose. And I was outright angry that these images remained so much clearer in my memory than those of having "witnessed" the building of a cathedral across centuries.

I haven't bothered with the sequels because this is not something I want out of books. ( )
  SpookyFM | Jan 18, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 601 (next | show all)
Great literature? Of course not. To begin with, the plot relies far too heavily on coincidence, and the characters tend to be chiseled into predictability. The writing depends heavily on dialogue - and although it's well-done dialogue, it's the stuff of escapism, not of the ages. But so what? It's a long, rich and rewarding story, full of glory and violence told in the tradition of medieval troubadors. Few among us could turn away from a tale that begins: ''The small boys came early to the hanging.''
added by Shortride | editSt. Louis Post-Dispatch, Harry Levins (pay site) (Sep 3, 1989)
 
A novel of majesty and power.
added by Shortride | editChicago Sun-Times, Algis Budrys (pay site) (Aug 20, 1989)
 

» Add other authors (32 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ken Follettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Conrad, Gabrielesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Grant, Richard E.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kiel, AchimIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lohmeyer, TillÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lundborg, GunillaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Piggott-Smith, TimNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Przygodda, ThomasIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Röhr-Rouendaal, PetraIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rosenthal, JeanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rost, Christelsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vázquez, RosalíaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
Le nuit du 25 novembre 1120, le Vaisseau blanc appareilla à destination de l'Angleterre et sombra corps et biens au large de Barfleur: il n'y eut qu'un survivant... Le vaisseau représentait le dernier cri en matière de transport maritime et il était muni des plus récents perfectionnements connus de la construction navale d'alors... Si l'on a beaucoup parlé de ce naufrage, c'est en raison du grand nombre de personnalités qui se trouvaient à bord; outre le fils du roi, héritier présomptif du trône, il y avait deux bâtards de sang royal, plusieurs comtes et barons et presque toute la maison du roi... Cela eut pour conséquence historique de laisser Henry sans héritier... Cela provoqua la guerre de succession et la période d'anarchie qui suivit la mort d'Henry.
A. L. Poole
From Doomsday Book to Magna Carta
On the night of 25 November 1120 the White Ship set out for England and foundered off Barfleur with all hands save one. ... The vessel was the latest thing in marine transport, fitted with all the devices known to the shipbuilder of the time. ... The notoriety of this wreck is due to the very large number of distinguished persons on board; beside the king's son and heir, there were two royal bastards, several earls and barons, and most of the royal household ... its historical significance is that it left Henry without an obvious heir ... its ultimate result was the disputed succession and the period of anarchy which followed Henry's death.
-A. L. Poole,
From Doomsday Book to Magna Carta
Dedication
To Marie-Claire,
the apple of my eye
First words
Preface
The small boys came early to the hanging.
Chapter 1
In a broad valley, at the foot of a sloping hillside, beside a clear bubbling stream, Tom was building a house.
Quotations
The baby cried, and the sound tugged at his heartstrings like a well-loved hymn. p.89
All birds and men are sure to die, But songs last forever.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Norwegian translation is split into two parts: Stormenes tid I
sverdet og korset AND Stormenes tid II katedralen
Please do not combine an abridged audio with the complete work. Thank you.
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Adventure saga of 12th century England, from a stone mason whose dream is to build a glorious cathedral to a man of God in a web of dangerous political intrigue.

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Book description
From Publishers Weekly
Set in 12th-century England, the narrative concerns the building of a cathedral in the fictional town of Kingsbridge. The ambitions of three men merge, conflict and collide through 40 years of social and political upheaval as internal church politics affect the progress of the cathedral and the fortunes of the protagonists. "Follett has written a novel that entertains, instructs and satisfies on a grand scale," judged PW.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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