“Cathedral of the Sea” by Ildefonso Falcones

Cathedral of the Sea742 pages,but they pass quickly. This is a real page turner of an historical epic. We follow the story of Arnau from his birth to a serf, who runs away to Barcelona, to his old age. We travel with Arnau through the medieval life of 14th century Catalonia, and the trials of the peasantry and the citizens of Barcelona: famine, war, plague, death and the much feared Spanish Inquisition. We also witness through Arnau the building of the Cathedral dedicated to the Virgin Mary. As a motherless boy in Barcelona he seeks a mother in the Virgin Mary, whose statue he believes smiles at him. There are many characters in this tale, good and bad, arrogant nobles, downtrodden peasants, business savvy Jews, social ascending artisans, soldiers, prostitutes and bastaixos (those who carry the stones from the quarry to the church and labour at loading and unloading the ships which are the lifeblood of Barcelona’s trade).

Arnau, the protagonist, is a good and brave man but his journey is beset with various tragedies brought about by his lowly position, the calumnies of his enemies and by elements out of his control like the plague which devastates the city. This book I’d recommend to anyone interested in historical fiction, medieval history or in the history of Barcelona.

My rating 5 out of 5


About jimholroyd365

Hi, my name is Jim, I am an Englishman living in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi. I started this blog to share my interests, my photos and to make sense of my world. I take a lot of photographs of various subjects, some of which I intend to share here. I collect diecast cars and get the same thrill at 50 as I did when I was 8, when I find a car I'm searching for, Don't worry, I have a separate blog for this hobby. Please feel free to comment and ask questions on what I blog. I am quite new to this blogging, I was inspired by reading a book, which began as a blog of a London Ambulance Driver: "Blood, Sweat and Tea". I hope my blog will be entertaining and amusing, I did try stand up comedy in the UK and had seven gigs before I left to teach English in Georgia. I love reading and so the blog will include book reviews of books as I finish them.I don't know about which direction this blog will go, I am a great believer in serendipity...let the journey begin...
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2 Responses to “Cathedral of the Sea” by Ildefonso Falcones

  1. Pingback: Books Read in 2014 | jim holroyd 365

  2. Pingback: A review of my 2014 | jim holroyd 365

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