Lyv's Reviews > World Without End

World Without End by Ken Follett
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's review
Jan 13, 2011

liked it
bookshelves: 2011, historical, owned-ml, move-boite12
Read from March 15 to April 04, 2011 — I own a copy

** spoiler alert ** I'm exactly half way through the book. I've just ended part 4, when Merthin leaves.
Before buying this book, I've read many reviews, many of them saying that it was merely a copy of the The Pillars of the Earth, some saying it was still an excellent read, others saying that one shouldn't be bothered.

When I started reading, I indeed realised that the characters were quite similar in both books : A clever builder, who falls in love with a rich girl, as his own family becomes poor, this girl, independent and courageous, who happens to be a wool merchant (what a surprise), a mean knight who can commit every crime he wants without being punished, and a very stupid clergyman, pushed by his ambition only, and taking God as an excuse for every evil trick he would make. Good, at least this was set at the beginning.

I was almost happy, telling myself that I loved The Pillars of the Earth so much, that it was like reading it again, but with new surprises. Error! No surprises so far. When you've read the Pillars, you can easily anticipate what will happen to each of the characters. You know that the bad ones won't be punished when you expect it, you know that the lovers won't be together when they're supposed to be. You know there will always be something going wrong.

But what is worse it that most difficulties are a pale copy of those encountered in the Pillar. Especially in the last chapter I've read. Caris becoming a nun, seriously?? But where has Ken Follet imagination gone?? Jack was a monk, Caris is a nun. Now Merthin is going to Florence exactly like Jack went to France. Evil/disgusting Ralph is made a knight. I can guess what will happen next : Merthin and Caris live ten years separated and finally get together, Ralph is made Earl of Shiring or something like this, Godwyn becomes Archbishop?? And at the end Merthin and Caris are magically together, and all the bad ones are punished. Come on.

Plus I find the characters much less powerful, life is almost made easy for them compared to the Pillars. For me Caris is not as strong as Aliena, and Godwyn not as machiavellous and ambitious as Waleran, he is plainly stupid in my opinion. (See, I end up comparing the characters, bad sign)

If I was reading this book for the first time, I would find it excellent, really. But it's not the first time I read it, and it's not funny to anticipate right everything that is going to happen. I'm disappointed that the story line is exactly the same. I will finish the 600 remaining pages, but at this very moment, at 2:40 am after hours of reading, I really think Ken could have done better. (Tell me, please, that I'll change my mind!!)


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Reading Progress

03/19/2011 page 14
01/04/2015 marked as: to-read
01/18/2016 marked as: read
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