Ken Follett – A Column of Fire (Kingsbridge, Book 3) Audiobook
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A Column of Fire is a 2017 historical fiction book by Ken Follett. It’s the third publication in Follett’s Kingsbridge collection and functions as a loose follow up to his other stories, The Columns of the Planet and also World Without End. A Column of Fire Audiobook Free. Like the various other two stories in the series, A Column of Fire complies with a set of star-crossed enthusiasts from the village of Kingsbridge through a period of substantial historical events; in this instance, via the religious strife in between Catholics and also Protestants previously, throughout, and after Queen Elizabeth’s reign. Follett is a British writer of successful spy thrillers and also historic stories, including the Kingsbridge collection and also such jobs as Edge of Eternity and An Unsafe Ton of money.
The novel begins in 1558, at the end of Mary I, or “Bloody Mary”‘s regime. The Queen is a passionate Catholic recognized for burning Protestants at the risk under costs of heresy. Ned Willard of Kingsbridge is the lead character, lately returned from Calais and ready to wed the love of his life, Margery Fitzgerald. Yet he comes home to a series of awful surprises. Margery’s papa as well as her bro, Rollo, have assured her instead to Bart, child of the Earl of Shiring, an extra thriving– and also Catholic– match. At first Margery protests, but eventually makes a decision the match is God’s will, and consents to marry Bart. Ned’s mom Anne also loses the household’s money to a bad deal made with the Fitzgeralds.
Ned experiences a turning point when Rollo burns a Protestant citizen at the stake. Frightened, he pledges that he will invest his life benefiting religious resistance. He never wants to witness the death of a fellow compatriot over religious mistreatment once again. Accordingly, he mosts likely to Westminster to support young Princess Elizabeth, possible beneficiary to Mary’s throne. He really hopes Elizabeth, a Protestant, will certainly verify an extra forgiving ruler over both her Catholic and Protestant subjects.
At the same time, in France, a young pupil called Pierre Aumande is caught trying to use the royal Role last name and also offered the Cardinal and the Fight It Out of Role for questioning. Pierre is technically a Guise, however he is invalid, as well as has no legal case to that part of his heritage. Pierre, a creative young boy, talks his escape of difficulty and right into a position as a spy to capture any kind of Protestants living undercover in France. Pierre satisfies the Protestant Palot household, who run a printing organization. They likewise publish Protestant Bibles on the sly. He constructs a connection with young Sylvie Palot, going so far as to marry her so she will eventually expose the members of the Protestant area to him. He maintains a list of names and also delivers them to the Cardinal.
When Pierre has the name of every Protestant in Paris, the Fight it out of Semblance prompts the St. Bartholomew’s Day Bloodbath, a ruthless slaughtering of Protestants. Sylvie is the only survivor. She ends up being poverty-stricken and takes into consideration resorting to prostitution to make it through.
After Elizabeth becomes Queen, she selects the faithful Ned as the head of her secret services. He functions as a spy to reveal stories against her life. England is currently a Protestant nation, however still forgiving of Catholics. He gets here in Paris to check out a questionable man named Jean Langlais. What he doesn’t know is that this name is an alias: Jean Langlais is none besides Margery’s sibling Rollo. He has actually been working to smuggle Catholic priests into England for years, commonly with Margery’s help– she is uninformed of the sinister side of his stories, as well as believes she is only assisting guys of confidence. Pierre Aumande turns into one of Rollo’s partners, in addition to an advisor to Henri of Semblance.
Ned fulfills as well as falls for Sylvie. Audiobook Online: A Column of Fire by Ken Follett. He weds her, however she is barren, so their marital relationship is childless. Margery is more productive: Ned visits Kingsbridge and also the two lose control, giving in to their interests. Later on, Margery gives birth to a child who strongly resembles Ned.
When the Spanish Armada attempts to get into England and also overthrow the queen, Ned’s brother Barney, a seafarer and currently a principal in the English Navy, witnesses the English counterattack. The Armada is beat, as well as Pierre is executed.
The intrigues proceed when Rollo tosses his assistance behind the Catholic Mary, Queen of Scots. Elizabeth imprisons her, and Rollo smuggles her letters, once more with Margery’s help. Margery discovers the reality about his intrigues as well as his treasonous stories to depose the queen and confronts him. She rejects to help him ever once more. Mary is performed, partially because of Rollo’s actions.
Ned is still in quest of the strange Jean Langlais, still with no concept of his real identification. Sylvie, nonetheless, presumes the reality. She adheres to Rollo onto a roof and accuses him of treason. In reaction, Rollo tosses her from the roof. She passes away.
The plot avoids forward several years: Ned is now married to the widowed Margery, as well as the two are finally happy. Elizabeth dies, to Ned’s sorrow, and is replaced by her heir, the Protestant James I. Rollo, still determined to see a Catholic England, embarks on one final mission: to depose James and install James’ Catholic daughter on the throne. He recruits Guy Fawkes to his cause and the two store gunpowder in hopes of blowing up the House of Lords while James is in attendance. Margery learns of the plan and reluctantly informs Ned. To do so, she must also admit that she has known for years that Jean Langlais was her own brother. Ned is furious that she has kept this from him. He foils the plot, and Rollo is killed. Afterwards, Ned forgives Margery and asks James to pardon her.
In an epilogue set in 1620, an aging Ned is alone. He has outlived Margery, but enjoys the company of his children and grandchildren. His grandson, James, announces that he will leave England for the New World on a ship called the Mayflower.
A Column of Fire was a bestseller, like its predecessors. A review in The Washington Post called the book “absorbing, painlessly educational, and a great deal of fun.” Some readers noted some jarring anachronisms in dialogue and lamented that the setting did not focus as tightly on Knightsbridge as Follett’s previous novels. The book was a Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Historical Fiction. The epilogue hints that there will be another novel in the series set in colonial America.
A Column of Fire, written by Ken Follett, is a historical epic that details specific events during the reign of Queen Elizabeth Tudor and the fallout of the Catholic Church’s loss of power. It faithfully tells the story of three countries that includes England which faces civil war after Elizabeth attempts to enact her belief in tolerance; France where Mary Stuart (or Mary Queen of Scots) declares herself the true Queen of England, but loses her throne to the tolerant Queen Caterina after the death of Mary’s husband, King Francis; and Spain, a country ruled by ruthless Catholic royalty. All three of these countries and the smaller ones they interact with such as the Netherlands and Scotland face the beginning of a new era as Protestants fight for their freedom and Catholics feel threatened by the new concept of religious tolerance. The main conflict of the novel is Protestants versus Catholics, leading to war between England and the rest of the world. The real story of the novel lies in the various fictional characters that are seamlessly written into the historical context. Each character has a personal narrative, but all come together as the various countries begin to interact. Due to the complexities of the story, the summary is divided in five sections, representing the significant time skips in the novel itself.
Part One, set in 1558, introduces all of the characters and details the events leading to the ascension of Queen Elizabeth. In Kingsbridge, England, the reader meets Ned Willard, a son of a merchant who believes in tolerance above all and dreams of marrying the second main character, Margery Fitzgerald. However, as Ned’s main rival and Margery’s brother, Rollo is staunchly against this marriage. Rollo helps his parents convince Margery that it is God’s duty for her to marry a less intellectual and more violent man named Bart.
Rollo’s father, Sir Reginald, forces Ned’s mother Alice to give him a loan for a bad deal. Then, he and Rollo work with a corrupt priest named Bishop Julius to force Alice to forfeit the loan, as well as execute the man behind the business deal, a well known Protestant named Philbert Cobley. This convinces Ned to head to Hatfield and accept a job as one of Elizabeth’s advisers, working under William Cecil to ensure her succession following the death of her half sister, Mary Tudor, much to the anger of many Catholics, including Rollo.
Meanwhile, a Protestant girl named Sylvie in France works with her family to sell illegal Protestant materials in Paris. She meets and falls in love with Pierre Aumande, who is secretly a spy for the Catholic Guise family with plans to rule France through their cousin, Mary Stuart, and her best friend and closest servant Alison. After Mary marries Francis, the heir to the throne, she is in line to become the next Queen of France. Lastly, Carlos, Barney, and Ebrima, a slave who makes a living in metalwork for the King of Spain, face religious persecution after they are denounced by one of Carlos’ rivals and forced to join the Spanish army to escape with their lives.
Part Two is set between 1559 and 1563. Elizabeth has announced herself as a Protestant, and she has turned Catholicism into a heretical practice. However, her true wish is for tolerance, and she refuses to enforce any of the laws that would kill Catholics for their beliefs. This causes issues in Kingsbridge, as the Catholic Fitzgeralds begin fighting against the Protestant Cobleys who want revenge for Philbert’s death. Margery remains faithful to Bart, but she is raped by her father-in-law on numerous occasions. This leads her to push Ned to thwart violence between the Kingsbridge religious groups, while ensuring that her father-in-law dies. Ned succeeds in ruining the plans of both sides, while having Margery’s father-in-law executed for treason.
In France, King Henri dies of a jousting injury, placing a weak King Francis and his wife Mary Stuart on the throne. This effectively puts the Guise family in charge of the country. Pierre, in an attempt to solidify himself among the noble Guise family, pretends to marry Sylvie, before betraying her and her congregation to the Guises. This leads to the death of their pastor and Sylvie’s father. While Pierre is formally brought into the family by changing his last name, he is forced to marry a servant named Odette to cover up an affair by a member of the Guise family meant to become a priest. Although humiliated, Pierre is determined to remain valuable to the Guise family, using his extensive knowledge of politics to push them toward decisions that help fulfill his own ambitions. A Column of Fire – Kingsbridge Book 3 Audio Book Free. However, when Odette has her child, Pierre is prevented from leaving it at a nunnery and told that he will take care of both her and the child for the rest of his life. Even worse, King Francis dies, and Queen Caterina manipulates both the Guise family and their enemies to take control of the crown herself. This prompts the Guise family, led by Pierre, to massacre of group of Protestants leading to a civil war. The violence is stopped when the Duke of Guise is killed. However, Pierre ensures that his young son Henri, the new Duke of Guise, relies on Pierre while maintaining his hatred for the Protestant leader Gaspard de Coligny.