Sunday, January 20, 2008

Thoughts on "The Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follett

I loved that this book was set in medieval times. I got very caught up in the romance of the age. People travel, build homes, live, and die with a minimum of public records, taxes and bureaucracy that we live with today. The book is set around the framework of the building of a cathedral. It is interesting to read about the processes and equipment used to build these massive and stunning buildings in these times.

To me the book is ultimately good vs. evil. Prior Phillip strives to build his cathedral and maintain a productive monastery and town and live the way God would have him live. He is often thwarted by and sometimes triumphs over the power hungry Bishop Waleran Bigod. Aliena, a born lady and earl's daughter, should have lived a life of ease and wealth. Instead she is thrown from her home and livelihood by the greedy and evil William Hamleigh and his family. She is resourceful and figures out how to make a living by herself and support her brother in his quest to become a knight and win back his father's earldom. She seems to face William Hamleigh at every turn. He seems to be the devil incarnate as he pillages, rapes and greedily takes anything that he wants. There are several other characters and love stories that twine in and out of these main story lines.

I love this story because good wins out in the end. Not without difficulty or heartache, Prior Phillip and Aliena keep struggling and persevering to do what is right and to live up to their potential. It is a story of endurance, love and betrayal.

One of my favorites.

1 comment:

Corinne said...

I REALLY liked this book!