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Whatever happened to Martha?




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Hilary Donovan Oh, thank you, Stefano! I'm glad that I don't read books with a very large assortment of characters, as I'd never keep track of them all. Too bad about Martha. She was a sweet little girl.


Stefano Cellini No, it was not Martha. It was Sally (Jack's daughter) who worked with stained glass. Unfortunately, Martha disappeared and it's obvious in a book with a lot of characters.


Hilary Donovan By the end of the book Martha was using her artistic talent--working with stained glass, was it? It was very obvious that Follett wanted to show women who had an interest in their vocations. When she was 26, Jack and Aliena were discussing Martha's love life and Aliena mentioned that she had a love interest and that she'd always been "lusty" although "picky."


Payten Ohh. i forgot that so much time elapsed by the end of the book. I think you're right. It was his daughter.


Katie Payten wrote: "I thought it was implied at the end of Pillars that she did end up finding someone. Jack commented that he thought she would remain unmarried forever since she was already in her late twenties and ..."

You know what, I think you're right. It was either Martha or his daughter.


Payten I thought it was implied at the end of Pillars that she did end up finding someone. Jack commented that he thought she would remain unmarried forever since she was already in her late twenties and Aliena replied that she always thought that Martha would marry, but that she was just picky.


Andreea The truth is that Martha appears for a bit in Ken Follett's novel 'World without end'. Her descendants talk about her in a certain moment. So she did marry and had kids :)


Katie In the Mini-series of Pillars they played up a "lost love" romance of sorts with Martha and Jack. I won't give anything big away but you can tell from the beginning she was smitten with him but backed off when she saw he loved Aliena. I don't know if they did it to make the (kind of) altered ending flow better or if that's what Follett wanted originally and neglected to explain in the book.


Clare Preston would have loved to see Martha and Jonathan find each other as siblings :-( and also to have some more closure on Martha's story


Rachel I also think that Martha was abandoned but only in the sense that the book never explained the relationship she then had with Jonathan. He was obviously so interested in his mother (quite right), someone ought to have tapped him on the shoulder and said 'by the way you have a full sister'. Big ommission there Mr Follett, but good book other than this.


Islam Hosieny In the sequel 'World Without End',several of the main characters (including Edmund Wooler, Caris, Petranella, Prior Anthony, and Prior Godwyn) are descendants of Martha, so the she must have had some kind of relationship resulting in children, though not described in 'Pillars of the Earth'


message 18: by Jula (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jula Silber Oh i see and then "golden eyes" from Jacks mother went to Caris.


Isabel The two books span several generations, so you don't really know. All you know is who descends from whom. Caris descends from Aliena and Jack, if I remember correctly.. And Merthin descends from Martha's children I believe.


message 16: by Jula (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jula Silber poor Martha, i was also looking forward to some closure with her. So whos mother is she in WWE? i read WWE before I read Pillars of the Earth (i know i know, its not really smart).


Isabel Yes, she kind of lost importance as well. Plus, that trial scene was a bit anticlimatic for me. I felt like the evil ones just did what they wanted all throughout the book and in the end everything was wrapped up quite quickly. As in "I don't know what else to do so I'll just punish everyone in a row." :)


message 14: by Rita (new) - rated it 3 stars

Rita This morning, I Just finished reading this book (cue in the choir of angels singing: "Gloria! Gloria! Thank God the book has ended..."

Here's my question: Ellen was another character who was "dropped" - or did I miss something? The story began with Ellen, and she was a main character throughout the story; however, the last we saw her was when she testified (and saved the day!) at Prior Phillip's trial.


Isabel She's not exactly in WWE, she is mentioned as an ancestor of some of the main characters. :/ Not much detail is given.


message 12: by Vanessa (last edited Jun 11, 2012 11:39AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Vanessa Julie wrote: "Follett may have had future plans for Martha, but it was a big omission to leave it out of the first book. Her character WAS abandoned. I felt disappointed with his treatment of both Tom Builder's ..."

I have also just finished this book and mentioned in my review that one of my favourite characters seemed to vanish. It was Martha. Her character seemed to be going somewhere when she was keeping house for Jack and then-nothing..Why was she not their when Johnathan found out that Tom was his father? So nice to know I'm
not alone.
PS don't think Jack and Martha quite appropriate,step siblings and all that..


Now that I know she is in World without End, I will read it


Julie Follett may have had future plans for Martha, but it was a big omission to leave it out of the first book. Her character WAS abandoned. I felt disappointed with his treatment of both Tom Builder's real children. Tom was such a key figure, and we met those kids when they were very small, knew their story. Yet he made one an abusive, dishonest creep and the other was left midstream.


Isabel Well, if you read World Without End you will see that the main characters are descendant both from Jack and Aliena's children and from Martha's children.
He didn't elaborate on Jack and Aliena's daughter either, though she was growing to be quite an interesting character as well.
The book is already huge and though I wouldn't mind having to spend years of my life reading it (brilliant) I can also understand how in such a rich world you just can't follow up on every character, simply because the story would never end. As the mere title of the sequel actually implies.


message 9: by Butterfly (last edited Apr 19, 2012 01:59AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Butterfly I know! And there is the big Jonathan reveal at the end, yet he and Martha never "meet" again as siblings, which I find very sad (= sloppy writing, especially for a story which ties up all the other loose ends so anally).


message 8: by Mweene (last edited Apr 29, 2011 01:22AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mweene Really! It would have been nice to get that from the book itself, but if you say you emailed Mr. Follet then I will take your word for it.


Louise What a nice man to write back!


Linda Ostrom Regarding Martha: I emailed Ken Follett to hear what he had to say. Here is my reply:

"Martha married and had children, and her descendants are featured in 'World Without End' which is currently being filmed as a mini-series and should be released next year."


message 5: by Rika (last edited Apr 18, 2011 01:47AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rika Charles wrote: "I would have loved for her to have approached Jack once Aliena left him (instead of Raschild's daughter). I thought really thought that once she left him, he was going to end up marrying her, in so..."

I don't think he would have married her, and I think she knew that if she did have romantic feelings towards him that he would never return them and that's why she never told him how she felt.
Jack's character had shown throughout the novel how persistent he was in his pursuit of Aliena. He liked her since he was 9, I don't think he would have ever given up on her or stopped loving her he didn't do anything with that Persian (???) chick and he had no intentions to really.


Charles I would have loved for her to have approached Jack once Aliena left him (instead of Raschild's daughter). I thought really thought that once she left him, he was going to end up marrying her, in some sort of second place thingie.


Rika I agree I really liked her character whatever there was of it. I wish Follett had elaborated on her character and given her some sort of happy ending.It definitely bugged me. The theory that she is in love with Jack I think is very plausible.


Mweene No, you missed nothing. I would say she had some sort of unrequited love thing going on for jack but of course jack had eyes only for Aliena. I do not know why Mr. Follet,sort of, abandoned Martha. Its a pity really because she had so much potential.


João Did I miss it or was it Follet that completely neglected her character? He touched upon the fact that she never got married and wanted to always be near Jack, but nothing ever developed. I just finished the book and I have no idea what happened to her, did I miss something?


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