The saga that has enthralled the millions of readers of The Pillars of the Earth and World Without End now continues with Ken Follett’s magnificent, gripping new story. Published in September 2017, it was #1 on the bestseller lists in Canada (French edition), Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Young Ned Willard is coming home to Kingsbridge at Christmas as A Column of Fire opens. The year 1558 will turn Ned’s life upside-down and change Europe for ever.
The ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn by religious hatred. High principles clash bloodily with friendship, loyalty and love. Ned finds himself on the opposite side from the girl he longs to marry, Margery Fitzgerald.
When Elizabeth Tudor becomes queen, all Europe turns against England. The shrewd, determined young monarch sets up the country’s first secret service, to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions and invasion plans.
Waiting in Paris is the alluring, headstrong Mary Queen of Scots, part of a brutally ambitious French family. Proclaimed the rightful ruler of England, she has her own supporters scheming to get rid of Elizabeth.
Ned Willard hunts the slippery, enigmatic Jean Langlais, not knowing that the false name hides a childhood classmate who knows him all too well.
Over a turbulent half-century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed, as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. Elizabeth clings precariously to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents.
The real enemies, then as now, are not the rival religions. The true battle pitches those who believe in tolerance and compromise against the tyrants who would impose their ideas on everyone else—no matter what the cost.
Cast of characters
Research and background
Watch Ken Follett visiting research locations and discussing the background to A Column of Fire.
- The United States edition is published by Penguin
- The British and Commonwealth edition is published by PanMacMillan
- The Canadian edition is published by Penguin
- The Bulgarian edition, Устои в пламъци, is published by Artline Studios
- The Brazilian edition, Coluna de fogo, is published by Editora Arqueiro
- The Catalan edition, Una columna de foc, is published by Rosa Dels Vents
- The Danish edition, Den evige ild, is published by Cicero
- The Dutch edition, Het eeuwige vuur, is published by Boekerij
- The Italian edition, La colonna di fuoco, is published by Mondadori
- The Finnish edition, Tulipatsas, is published by Werner Söderström
- The French edition, Une colonne de feu, is published by Robert Laffont
- The German edition, Das Fundament der Ewigkeit, is published by Bastei Lübbe
- The Greek edition, Ένας Στύλος Φωτιάς, is published by Bell
- The Hungarian edition, A tűzoszlop, is published by Gabo
- The Norwegian edition, Den evige ilden, is published by Cappelen Damm
- The Polish edition, Słup ognia, is published by Wydawnictwo Albatros
- The Portuguese edition, Uma Coluna de Fogo, is published by Presença
- The Romanian edition, Coloana de foc, is published by Rao
- The Russian edition, Гибель Гигантов, is published by AST
- The Serbian edition, Temelji večnosti, is published by Evro Book
- The Slovakian edition, Ohnivý stĺp, is published by Vydavateľstvo Tatran
- The Spanish edition, Una columna de fuego, is published by Penguin Random House Grupo Editorial
- The Swedish edition, Den eviga elden, is published by Albert Bonniers Förlag
Also published in other languages, and available as an audiobook and as an ebook.