Jun 12, 2017
By Frank Proctor
At long last we’re getting some warm weather! Thank Goodness for that. But along with the warm weather come warnings that this summer is going to be one where we’re going to have more mosquitos attacking our exposed areas So, pretty soon we’ll be trekking off to the beach armed with a towel and Deet to ward off those little bloodsuckers. Along with those items, most people take along a book. Are you a reader? I mean do you REALLY like to read? I do and have ever since I was a kid getting my start by devouring Archie comic books and the like. I must have read Huckleberry Finn fourteen times. I liked Tom Sawyer too, but Huck kinda hit the sweet spot with me. I even read the back of the cereal boxes before I hopped on my bike and rode to school. Whenever I go to a restaurant by myself there’s always a newspaper under my arm and I’ll read it from stem to gudgeon between bites of my sandwich. And when hitting the sack, I always have a book on the bedside table. Okay, what’s the point in all of this? Pretty simple really. I simply want to recommend a book to you. A book I can’t put down. It’s not even a new release. It was printed in 1989 for heaven’s sake. I discovered it at a friend’s place and asked if I could borrow it. I feel almost embarrassed to admit I haven’t read his work before. Many will know the author; Ken Follett, the international best-selling author of suspense thrillers. He burst into the book world in 1978 with Eye of the Needle. The book won the Edgar award and became an outstanding film starring Kate Nelligan and Donald Sutherland. I remember the movie but has forgotten it was based on his book.
He went on to write four more best-selling thrillers: Triple; The Key to Rebecca; The Man from St Petersburg; and Lie Down with Lions. He also wrote On Wings of Eagles, the true story of how two employees of Ross Perot were rescued from Iran during the revolution of 1979.
He then surprised readers by radically changing course with The Pillars of the Earth, a novel about building a cathedral in the Middle Ages. This is the novel that has hooked me. Published in September 1989 to rave reviews, it was on The New York Times bestseller list for eighteen weeks. And I’m now just discovering it!! Never mind. Better late than never. It’s not a book you can fly through in one evening; some 900 plus pages. It’s one of those books you don’t want to ever end. At least for me. I hope you get as much pleasure from it as I. So in your travels to garage sales and used book stores, keep an eye out for this wonderful adventure. Follett takes us back in time to the Eleven Hundreds for the story of a monk and his family who is obsessed with building a towering tribute to God. His word pictures of that time are so clear, you’re drawn in by the authenticity of the characters and locales being described. Have a great summer and “Good Reading” to all!!