Bookin' It

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Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd

Edward Rutherfurd's Sarum Cover

My Rating: 5 of 5 Stars

While I’m thinking about historical fiction, I figured I might as well post about one of my favorite examples of the genre.  Where Cold Mountain was about one man’s experiences during a relatively brief period of American history, Sarum is a monumental recounting of the entire history of England.  We are talking Epic, here, in the most wide-sweeping sense.

The book begins in the Stone Age, and loosely follows the story of five family lines, as their descendants come forward through the centuries to modern day England.  It seems daunting, especially when you see the size of the book, but it is  actually very readable.  I found Sarum shortly after it was published in 1997, and I remember that I could not put it down.  It was one of those books that makes history come alive, and we are talking about everything from the first conquerors that swept into Britain, to the creation of Stonehenge, to the building of the Roman baths and the great cathedrals.  And every story along the way pulls you in completely.  I learned more about the history of England from this book than I ever learned in school.  Of course, I’ve forgotten a lot of it since 1997, but I do remember how riveting it was.  This is how history SHOULD be taught.  Instead of memorizing dates and battle sites, ad nauseum, you experience historical events through the eyes of those who lived them.

For anyone who wants to know…well…EVERYTHING…about England, including Cro-Magnon man, the Celts and the Romans, the Vikings and the Normans…this is one-stop shopping.  I’ll bet you’ll be as fascinated by it all as I was.

Sarum: The Novel of England

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4 thoughts on “Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd

  1. Sounds interesting…I have it saved on my wish list at Amazon. After vacation I will order it.


  2. Oh, good. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Be sure to stop back by here and let us know what your thoughts are. Thanks for posting!


  3. I read this, and enjoyed it very much. I also read two other books of his …. Russka, (great book) and I can’t at the moment remember the other.


  4. Hi, Kathy! I loved this book. It was mesmerizing! I also read London and The Forest, and loved them, too. I got bogged down in Russka, but that seems to be a common predicament for me when I try to read any book with characters whose names are longer than I am tall. I used to read a lot of Michener, took but never made it through any that dealt with Russia much, including Alaska. Maybe it’s a hangover from the Cold War days! So nice to see you here! You’ll probably discover that I read a WIDE variety of stuff. I can’t stop myself!


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