Reveal: Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett comes in at Books & Beginnings XIX. This is a historical fiction with a great deal of magical realism that revolves around the building of Canterbury Cathedral during an extended period of political unrest in Britain. Yes, I realize. All periods are of unrest where those isles are concerned. It lends great character to the place.
No power tools, no bulldozers, no modern instruments and yet a small group of common men built a monument that still stands in defiance of man’s fallen nature. This is a tale of such great character, intrigue, and brilliance, I can’t even find the words.
Next Up: So my favorite book combined a bunch of passions. I am an anglophile. I adore history. I am in awe of man’s achievements in the face of man’s failings. Great character. Great stakes. Fantastical accomplishments. Follett brought a dark period to life and redefined the nature of time for me. It is a remarkable book.
However, my favorite genre is fantasy, remains fantasy. And in the mid to late 1990s, I discovered a writer who has become my favorite author of all time, surpassing even the canon greats of Tolkien and Lewis. There are others that I have deep reverence for but this author brought fantasy into reality. I could picture myself having a beer with her characters. She put flesh on words. And no one, no one at all, does dragons better than this woman.
My pen falters, then falls from my knuckly grip, leaving a worm’s trail of ink across Fedwren’s paper. I have spoiled another leaf of the fine stuff in what I suspect is a futile endeavor.