Summary: When a huge quantity of gold, religious artifacts from the people to the west, comes to the sun worshiping people of Ratharryn in 2,000 BC, the result is years of chaos. Out of this chaos, however, three brothers erect an awesome temple to the gods which will stand the test of time: Camaban the priest, Lengar the warrior and Saban the builder.
Review: The female characters don’t get as much characterization in this, which is typical of Cornwell, though they are a bit better developed than usual by his standards. It’s hard to fault that hugely, since the society of which he writes would have been heavily patriarchal. That’s a single quibble, however. Overall, this is a solid book, though readers should be aware that this is a different read than Cornwell’s usual military history fare.
Read-a-likes: In fact, this book is very reminiscent of Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth (downtrodden engineer struggles against political chaos to build religious structure). For readers seeking novels set in the same area, Princes of Ireland and London by Edward Rutherfurd are worth a look. Reader’s who enjoy the architectural elements should take a look at Beneath a Marble Sky by John Shors or Cathedral of the Sea by Ildefonso Falcones. For some pertinent nonfiction, try A History of Britain by Simon Schama or Stonehenge Complete by Christopher Chippindale.
Availability: This item is available from the Lake Bluff Public Library as an eAudiobook.
Review by Eric.