• The Pillars of the Earth

  • The Kingsbridge Novels, Book 1
  • By: Ken Follett
  • Narrated by: John Lee
  • Series: The Kingsbridge Novels, Book 1
  • Length: 41 hrs
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 18-10-10
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars 4.6 (2,814 ratings)

Editor reviews

Award-winning novelist Ken Follett is at his most magnificent in Pillars of the Earth, Book One of the Trilogy series by the same name, narrated by professional voice artist John Lee. This incredible book has been voted in the top 100 of Britain’s Best Loved Books in the BBC The Big Read. The scope of detail in this audiobook is unparalleled. Its intricate plot is weaved with history, religion, politics, love and dishonour. It is an all-encompassing saga, delicately capturing the very core of existence in 12th Century England. Available now from Audible.
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Summary

A spellbinding epic tale of ambition, anarchy, and absolute power set against the sprawling medieval canvas of twelfth-century England, this is Ken Follett's classic historical masterpiece.
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.
The Pillars of the Earth is followed by World Without End and A Column of Fire.
©1989 Ken Follett (P)2007 Penguin US
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Critic reviews

"Enormous and brilliant . . . this mammoth tale seems to touch all human emotion - love and hate, loyalty and treachery, hope and despair. This is truly a novel to get lost in." ( Cosmopolitan)
"A historical saga of such breadth and density... Follett succeeds brilliantly in combining hugeness and detail to create a novel imbued with the rawness, violence and blind faith of the era." ( Sunday Express)
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Regular price: £39.99

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Robert on 31-10-10

The Pillars of the Earth

Watching the current TV series is rather like reading the abridged version of this epic tale which is the only version that was hitherto available in the UK. One of the things that really draws you into this tale is the vast array of interesting characters and the depth of their characterisation. Enjoy the minutae of their everyday lives, the way that people ate, slept, worked and were beholden to their Lords & Masters in the 12th century. Historical facts like the English civil war and battles fought in 1142 are interwoven with everyday tales of love, hate, treachery and corruption. Absolutely compelling listening and despite the length, I was dissapointed when I finally came to the end.

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59 of 62 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Mrs on 23-12-12

Fabulous book

Ken Follett's ability to keep his readers interested in long novels is wonderful - this is epic Follett, wide ranging, believable characters, he gives a real sense of history. This kept me entertained through ironing, mucking out the horses and driving to work! The second time I listened to it was as good as the first - there were bits I hadn't really taken in. A great listen.

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10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Alan on 02-10-11

Very very surprised

I am usually a fan of thriller type books and have listened to authors like Charlaine Harris and Nelson Demille, who I rate very highly.... I drive roadtrains for 12 hour shifts so like going for longer type books, and saw this book was 41 hours long and had seen a good review for it...so I got it with my credit for the month since it cost a little more. I thought there was a good chance it was going to be a mistake... I mean set in the 12th century about building of a cathedral, haha, i am not religious or much of a history buff....
Well all I can say is "This is one of the best books I have listened to since joining audible.com and I have listened to heaps"... Totally engrossed in it from the first 30 pages and it never stopped..... Get it and listen to it you won't be dissapointed whether you are a harley riding dude or a chick working in a lawyers office, you won't regret it.....

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17 of 17 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Janine on 02-01-11

As good the second time around...

I read Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth when it was published in 1989 - and the epic is no less engaging the second time around. Follett has woven in all the elements of a top notch tale - good, evil, justice, injustice, ambition, greed, redemption... The addition of Follett's preface adds insights into the creation of the novel and his transition from thrillers to the much more complex structure and story of Pillars.

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7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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