World Without End
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World Without End

4.23 (146,810 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

#1 New York Times Bestseller In 1989, Ken Follett astonished the literary world with The Pillars of the Earth, a sweeping epic novel set in twelfth-century England centered on the building of a cathedral and many of the hundreds of lives it affected. Critics were overwhelmed--"it will hold you, fascinate you, surround you" (Chicago Tribune)--and readers everywhere hoped for a sequel. Look out for the next book in this series, A Column of Fire, available September 2017. World Without End takes place in the same town of Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building the exquisite Gothic cathedral that was at the heart of The Pillars of the Earth. The cathedral and the priory are again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge, but this sequel stands on its own. This time the men and women of an extraordinary cast of characters find themselves at a crossroads of new ideas--about medicine, commerce, architecture, and justice. In a world where proponents of the old ways fiercely battle those with progressive minds, the intrigue and tension quickly reach a boiling point against the devastating backdrop of the greatest natural disaster ever to strike the human race--the Black Death. Three years in the writing and nearly eighteen years since its predecessor, World Without End breathes new life into the epic historical novel and once again shows that Ken Follett is a masterful author writing at the top of his craft.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 1014 pages
  • 166.9 x 231.9 x 28.2mm | 716.67g
  • VIKING
  • New York, NY, United States
  • English
  • 0525950079
  • 9780525950073
  • 83,671

Review quote

aThe peasants are revolting. Some, anyway. Othersathe good-hearted varlets, churls and nickpurses of Follettas latestaare just fine. In a departure from his usual taut, economical procedurals ("Whiteout," 2004, etc.), Follett revisits the Middle Ages in what amounts to a sort of sequel to "The Pillars of the Earth" (1989). The story is leisurely but never slow, turning in the shadow of the great provincial cathedral in the backwater of Kingsbridge, the fraught construction of which was the ostensible subject of the first novel. Now, in the 1330s, the cathedral is a going concern, populated by the same folks who figured in its making: intriguing clerics, sometimes clueless nobles and salt-of-the-earth types. One of the last is a resourceful young girlaand Follettas women are always resourceful, more so than the menfolkawho liberates the overflowing purse of one of those nobles. Her father has already lost a hand for thievery, but thatas an insufficient deterrent in a time of hunger, and a time when the lords awere frequently away: at war, in Parliament, fighting lawsuits, or just attending on their earl or king.a Thus the need for watchful if greedy bailiffs and tough sheriffs, who make Gwendaas grown-up life challenging. Follett has a nice eye for the sometimes silly clash of the classes and the aspirations of the small to become large, as with one aspiring prior who ahad only a vague idea of what he would do with such power, but he felt strongly that he belonged in some elevated position in life.a Alas, woe meets some of those who strive, a fact that touches off a neat little mystery at the beginning of the book, one that plays its way out across the years and implicates dozens ofcharacters. A lively entertainment for fans of "The Once and Future King, The Lord of the Rings" and other multilayered epics. a"Kirkus Reviews," Starred Reviewshow more

About Ken Follett

Ken Follett is one of the world's best-loved authors, selling more than 160 million copies of his thirty books. Follett's first bestseller was Eye of the Needle, a spy story set in the Second World War. In 1989 The Pillars of the Earth was published, and has since become the author's most successful novel. It reached number one on bestseller lists around the world and was an Oprah's Book Club pick. Its sequel, World Without End, proved equally popular, and the Kingsbridge series has sold 38 million copies worldwide. The third book, A Column of Fire, will be published by Viking in Fall 2017. Follett lives in Hertfordshire, England, with his wife Barbara. Between them they have five children, six grandchildren, and three Labradors.show more

Rating details

146,810 ratings
4.23 out of 5 stars
5 46% (67,103)
4 36% (53,560)
3 14% (20,672)
2 3% (4,253)
1 1% (1,222)
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