The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

The Pillars of the Earth

By Ken Follett

  • Release Date: 1990-07-09
  • Genre: Historical
Score: 4.5
From 770 Ratings
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#1 New York Times Bestseller

Oprah's Book Club Selection

The “extraordinary . . . monumental masterpiece” (Booklist) that changed the course of Ken Follett’s already phenomenal career. Look out for Ken's newest book, A Column of Fire, available now.

“Follett risks all and comes out a clear winner,” extolled Publishers Weekly on the release of The Pillars of the Earth. A departure for the bestselling thriller writer, the historical epic stunned readers and critics alike with its ambitious scope and gripping humanity. Today, it stands as a testament to Follett’s unassailable command of the written word and to his universal appeal. 
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.
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 historical masterpiece.


  • Didn't want to put it down

    By Dicupcake
    Just an excellent read. Follett really knows how to develop his characters in such a way that you feel as if you know them. Very interesting information on building a church during the Middle Ages. I'm looking forward to reading the next in this series.
  • Highly recommend

    By Ambercgil
    One of my favorites of all time - a tale of intrigue, romance, faith, endurance, betrayal, and so much more. Do yourself a favor and give this one a shot.
  • Terrific read

    By Oregon777
    I loved this book, a summer read, engaging, action packed and full of great details about people of the time. Recommend!
  • Breathtaking!!!

    By mtbo
    A master piece done by the author. I couldn't stop reading...I love it. It's a book with a lot emotion; sometimes I can feel the pain while I was reading some sad passage so the book. A fantastic book.
  • Captivating !

    By Mary Ward Taylor
    Remarkable saga of the Middle Ages, the church, the culture of corruption, the deplorable living conditions of the 1100's England. Fascinating study of the period and the building of great cathedrals, woven around the lives of a few flawed but dedicated individuals. Highly recommend.
  • Spectacular!

    By Jojo138
    One of the finest books I have ever read. Brilliantly crafted over the course of decades with characters full of depth. The frustrations and triumphs during the build of the cathedral and the trials and tribulations of those involved in it's construction kept me deeply invested in this novel from beginning to end. Utterly incredible read!
  • All time favorite book!!

    By Laurie Gum
    I could read this a million times and will still love it!!
  • Absolutely wonderful

    By Conlippert
    Loved this book and its sequel is just a riveting!
  • Loved every page

    By Jessiep813
    This was my first Ken Follet book and I loved every second of it.
  • A very looong story

    By Gearhouse
    I like Ken Follet's writing, but this story is just waaaay to drawn out. And the worse thing about it is that it doesn't seem to go anywhere! If you are an architect with keen interest in cathedral design then i would suggest this book, otherwise steer clear..