The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I started this mighty book in November of 2010 and finally finished it March 2011. I started out strong, really loving the foundation of this book (*groan* yes I used a building reference). But then Phillip entered the picture and I put the book down for 2 months. Then I started reading it and William entered the picture, so then I put the book down. I eventually got tired of seeing it on my currently reading list so I finished it.
First let stress that it is a well written book, I liked the style, I felt like I was really there and got a good picture of the setting and lifestyle.
What I didn’t like was the cast of characters. Everyone was out for something. They all were extremely clever and one step of the other.
Life was hard but in this book it was HARD!
I’m saving the worst for last, William. I get he was a villain, I have no problem with him being a villain, and doing his villainy things. My problem was that there was no counter balance to him, there wasn’t an opposite hero character that was just as good to his bad. The author really focused and was descriptive of his scenes but didn’t give us an equally tender moment. After the 3rd “active” scene of his, I started to wonder why the author was so focused on that, We got it, we know what William likes and what gets him going. But just in case you didn’t get it the first time, there are about 5 “active” scenes.
Everyone, (except for Jonathan who was a baby for most of this book) has very little redeemable qualities, I hated them all! Yeah I hated them all! I think the author might of realized that he needed to fix that because he makes an about face with some of his characters with about 200 pages left.
This book is highly rated, people loved this book, I just wasn’t one of them. I posed the question Is it still a good book if its well written but hate the cast? Some of my friends said yes, with the exception of one (who I kind of agree with). Here’s another way to look at it: I’m going to take you to a place, these guys have some wonderful stories, and they are convicted thieves, con-artists, rapists, and murderers. It’s at a prison would you still want to go? Now the book isn’t a prison, but it is a good story of thieves, con-artists, rapists, and murderers.
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