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A Column of Fire by Ken Follett

A Column of Fire (original 2017; edition 2018)

by Ken Follett (Author)

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1,392508,977 (3.93)37
"International bestselling author Ken Follett has enthralled millions of readers with The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End, two stories of the Middle Ages set in the fictional city of Kingsbridge. The saga now continues with Follett's magnificent new epic, A Column of Fire. In 1558, the ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn apart by religious conflict. As power in England shifts precariously between Catholics and Protestants, royalty and commoners clash, testing friendship, loyalty, and love. Ned Willard wants nothing more than to marry Margery Fitzgerald. But when the lovers find themselves on opposing sides of the religious conflict dividing the country, Ned goes to work for Princess Elizabeth. When she becomes queen, all Europe turns against England. The shrewd, determined young monarch sets up the country's first secret service to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions, and invasion plans. Over a turbulent half century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. Elizabeth clings to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents"--… (more)
Title:A Column of Fire
Authors:Ken Follett (Author)
Info:Penguin Books (2018), Edition: Reprint, 928 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Historical Fiction, Epic, 1500's England, Renaissance, Renaissance England, Spies, Tudors, Elizabeth I, Doorstop Epic

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A Column of Fire by Ken Follett (2017)

Recently added byLellyMac, private library, lanapura, Leahbmartin, MrsDrYoder, fzkl, armasdan, dahoon, Kjell_Henrik
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    Shogun by James Clavell (karatelpek)
    karatelpek: Another historical epic with the Catholic/Protestant divide serving as the backdrop.

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» See also 37 mentions

English (36)  Spanish (6)  German (2)  Catalan (1)  Hungarian (1)  Dutch (1)  French (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (49)
Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
No smud! You can say that I was shocked, shocked I say that there was no real smud at all! Especially after World Without End was full of it.
The story itself was a fun read. I appreciate when a history novell is well researched and I can overlook some artistic freedoms.
In the end though it suffered from too much story. The last third seemed to be kind of dragging along. A lot happened during the reign of Elizabeth I but did the main character really had to have his fingers in all of it? Did he really had to be part of the shipcrew during the Spanish Armada episode, when his brother was already participating?
Speaking if brother, the book kind of ends sudden with questions open of what happened to the rest of the family. We know when Margery died, but not Barney. Did he settle down for good? Did he died at sea?
And what about Carlos?
Too many loose ends there which I would have prefered to tie up instead of having the Guy Fawlks episode.
It also felt like that the writing style got even more simple towards the end, as if the heart was not in it anymore but the determination to get more history lesson in.
Anyway, it was a fun book, even without the smud ;-) ( )
  Black-Lilly | Mar 8, 2020 |
TROP BIEN, émancipation de la religion ( )
  Asteracee | Feb 23, 2020 |
Honestly, this was so disappointing, the history of the time was fascinating, however, the plots and writing were very poor.
It was hard to believe that Ken Follett actually wrote it.
The writing was childlike and immature ( )
  karenshann | Dec 31, 2019 |
This is a wide ranging novel of historical fiction set during the time of Mary Tutor, Elizabeth I, and James I, located in England, France, Spain, and the Netherlands. The basic plot revolves around religious persecution and the people who counsel the royal families of England and France. Ned Willard from Kingsbridge becomes a counselor to Elizabeth I and functions as part of the secret service protecting Elizabeth I from plots to kill her and place Mary Queen of Scots on the English throne. Rollo Fitzgerald (Willard's nemesis from childhood) becomes a Catholic priest bent on returning England to Catholic rule. While people on each side try to promote tolerance for religion, both the Catholics and Protestants believe theirs is the only true faith and relentlessly persecute the other. ( )
  baughga | Jul 21, 2019 |
This is awful historical fiction. I don’t know why I finished this tale of life during the Elizabethan era in England and France. Some historical characters provide the background to this dreary tale of the political and religious strife between Catholics in France and Protestants in England.
The characters are one dimensional, the historical context too briefly explained and the story very predictable and long.
My last Ken Follett book. ( )
  MaggieFlo | Jul 3, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 36 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ken Follettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ahlberg, JensTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Karlin, LenaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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By day the LORD went ahead of them in a column of smoke to lead them on their way. By night he went ahead of them in a column of fire to give them light so they could travel by day or night.

Exodus 13:21, God's Word Translation
To Emanuele:
49 years of sunshine
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Ned Willard came home to Kingsbridge in a snowstorm.
"Three great women of the 1500s were dead: Elizabeth, Queen Caterina of France, and Margherita of Parma, govenor of Netherlands. They had all tried to stop men killing one another over religion." pp 844
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