Saturday, March 26, 2016

A Breathtaking Sweep

World Without End
By Ken Follett

It is a little unusual, I think, for a grand book to have a sequel. I've heard of trilogies of course, but an actual sequel seemed odd. Nonetheless, having read and enjoyed The Pillars of the Earth, I just had to see what befell Kingsbridge and its cathedral a century later. In World Without End, Ken Follett goes far beyond what he did previously - with a bit of medieval feminism thrown in to boot!

This novel was clearly meant to convey many things. If the first edition of the story was about the power or religion in shaping man's fortunes, the second one clearly questioned that power, as the historic enlightenment can ever closer. That is perhaps the greatest achievement of the book - it puts itself in an appropriate historical context, and doesn't just borrow historical characters. Written in Follett's typical narrative, it made for a great read.  

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