NOTICE: (Updated March 5, 2010)

Beginning December 19, 2009, Books 'N Border Collies will be posting but only intermittently while I pursue personal goals. I plan to share some reading I'm doing, but there will be no reviews. I will, however, be sharing my exploration of vegetarian cooking and the cookbooks and websites I use to educate myself. I hope you enjoy it!


Wednesday, October 8, 2008


by Ildefonso Falcones

Cathedral of the Sea has been compared to Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth, and I believe the comparison is a fairly good one, though they are not exactly alike. In fact, there are more differences than similarities, but the feel of the stories is the same. Pillars of the Earth is the story of many people in an English town growing up around the building of a cathedral. Cathedral of the Sea does provide a somewhat similar setting, albeit in an already-established 14th century Barcelona, and a wide variety of characters, but the only ones explored in any real depth are the main two: Arnau Estanyol and his father, Bernat.

Most of the other characters may remain a bit flat for some readers' tastes, but the story in which they live is complex and absorbing. Bernat's escape with his infant son from his cruel lord, their struggle to gain their freedom in Barcelona, the rise of Arnau to prominence and his trial under the Inquisition, all is told in detail rich enough to forgive other short-comings this novel may have. Readers looking for more along the lines of Pillars of the Earth and World Without End should give this one serious consideration.


Michele said...

Nice review, Lezlie. I'm one of the only people left who haven't read Pillars of the Earth or World Without End, although both books are sitting on my bookshelf. Maybe I'll read this one first, just for fun.

Lezlie said...

Michele ~ Thanks! It is a good book, and if you haven't read "Pillars" yet, there is nothing for it to live up to, so you might like it even better.


Anonymous said...

I came across this book in the bookstore this past May, and put it on my TBR list -- it looks so good! I can't wait to get my hands on a copy! (library doesn't have a copy, nor will they order one, yet). :-?

Thanks for the review!


Darlene said...

Great review Lezlie, I loved Pillars so this one is definitely a must for me after reading your review. I love the cover too.

Lezlie said...

MizB ~ That's a bummer! If you can hold out for a few months, the paperback comes out the beginning of April.

Dar ~ Thanks! It is a nice looking book. Good thing it's also a good read! :-)


Michelle Moran said...

This is definitely on my TBR list! For that matter, so is Pillars of the Earth, which I still haven't gotten around to....

Lezlie said...

Michelle ~ I read Pillars at least 10 years ago, probably more. I'd like to revisit that one sometime. I've never forgotten how swept up I was in it.


Teddy Rose said...

I haven't read Pillars of the Earth or World Without End yet, but they are on my TBR. I just added this one as well.

Lezlie said...

Teddy Rose ~ They would all be great winter projects! :-)