Although I had read over and over again about the importance of reading and reading and reading some more as a writer, I kept putting off joining Audible because of the fifteen dollars a month it would cost me and because I was sure that I would go through more than one book a month.
When I finally decided to sign up, I did it with the self-agreement that I would buy books based on their length, so a five hour book was right out.
Which lead me to my first purchase, Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. At almost 41 hours long, I figured this would get me through quite a few runs.
This book had been recommended to me years before with this description – “It is a book about a fictional village in England and the building of a cathedral.” With this description I decided, it would be a yawner and not really up my alley. But having recently read my first Ken Follett novel, Night Over Water and really enjoying it, I decided to give it a go.
Unfortunately for the frugal part of my personality, I developed my book ratings on this very first book. This was a truly exceptional read. From the very first run, I found myself adding mileage just so I could find out what would happen next. Soon I was adding trainers rides and my dog was thrilled because we had started going on two and three walks a day just so I would have the opportunity to progress through the book.
The story is so much more than a book about the building of a cathedral. It is about the life and times surrounding the history of the cathedral but it is also about good and evil, love and hate. It is a story of family, faith and all that goes with both.
Each and every relationship in the book pulled me further in. The antagonist has earned my never ending hate and the protagonist has earned my life long respect.
From beginning to end, I loved every moment of this book and understood why Ken Follett would step so far outside of his writing comfort zone to take on a project that everybody in his life discouraged him from taking. This was the book he was meant to write.
The reader, John Lee, was perfect for the book in that he was able to bring every character to life creating a picture of their personalities with every nuance. He goes on to read the follow-up book to Pillars, World Without End, another incredible read.
The only downside to this book is that you cannot listen to it in the car with your children unless you are prepared to answer a lot of questions about sex. The sex is not gratuitous but it is thrown throughout the book and is relatively graphic in nature.
I finished this first book in less than a week, but quickly purchased my next book, understanding that some things really are worth paying for.