Another fine effort by Ken Follett. This time we are looking at the Prequel to his Kingsbridge Cathedral Series, and while it ends about 125 years before Pillars of the Earth begins, he tells a story of how Kingsbridge developed.
As with all of Follett’s works he is meticulous in his history research, and I particularly enjoyed learning how important Eels were to the British diet! He has his usual assortment of villains and in this book there are a lot of people to dislike!!
We follow the lives of 3 main characters, a Norman/English noblewoman, a shipbuilder/craftsman and an abbot. There stories are intertwined with the development of the town, the governance of the regions and how these three main characters act and interact to the evils and disappointments that come into their lives.
It is not always a happy picture he paints of the era from 997-1007 AD, but at the same time it was not the best of times in England. The Vikings were raiding almost annually, the area is governed by a truly evil family who even controls the church and uses that institution to advance their own power and wealth, even though they constantly make decisions that go against the welfare of the citizens of the area.
I read this book on my Kindle and found it an easier read than his other novels in the series, I think this is because I could control the font size and brightness of the screen, and the Kindle is so much easier to carry about than then the actual book. Tremendous effort, once again by Follett and I am already looking forward to his next book!