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Sarum: The Novel of England, Part 2 Audio CD – Audiobook, 31 Oct 2008

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audiobooks; Unabridged edition (31 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1433254700
  • ISBN-13: 978-1433254703
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 17.8 x 16.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (137 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,472,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A heck of a story...a grand read" (Daily Mail)

"A cavalcade of our island story...a heady and sometimes sexy brew." (Daily Express) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

The towering story of five families through 100 centuries of turmoil, tyranny, passion and prosperity. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

88 of 91 people found the following review helpful By J. Chippindale TOP 500 REVIEWER on 22 Nov. 2004
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book when it was first published and I have just re-read it, something I cannot ever remember doing with a work of fiction. I put this book in the top 5 of all the books I have ever read.
The book is so vast that to give a coherent review in the space available is virtually impossible.
Suffice to say that the book starts 7,000 years BC and ends in modern times. It relates the lives of five families and their histories through this vast time scale.
Read this book for the pleasure it will undoubtedly give you, but at the same time you are receiving a lesson in the history of the British Isles (if only they were like this at school).
Perhaps the main character in the book is not a person at all but a building, the Catherdral at Salisbury.
Rutherfurd brings everything to life in the most magical of ways. If you are interested in historical novels you must read this one.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Ralph Chatterforth on 14 Jun. 2011
Format: Paperback
Sarum is set is Salisbury, Wiltshire; Sarum is the old name for the city, so steeped in history. The novel captures the intertwining histories of five local families; The Wilsons, The Porters, The Masons, The Shockleys & The Godfreys. Each family line represents a different historic grouping that arrived at Sarum at different times. Each chapter in the book takes a different era in Sarum's history and provides a short story based around the events of that time and the central five families. There are 19 chapters in total. There is no real overall plot as you get a snapshot history lesson from Sarum's past - there are some really key events covered such as the building of Stonehenge and building of the cathedral. The book goes right up to 1987, covering 9,000 years in 13,000 pages and is filled with useful maps and family trees. It is one hell of an achievement to cram so much detail into a novel, and inevitably things like characterisation do suffer. However the quality of writing is excellent. Read this epic and you will not be disappointed.

The Spire Chronicle
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30 of 34 people found the following review helpful By "lolokins3" on 1 July 2004
Format: Paperback
Edward Rutherfurd must have a brain like a huge sponge! This book literally absorbs every ounce of English history and then uses it to narrate the entire history of Sarum, AKA Salisbury! The result is a rollercoaster journey through time, told through the eyes of characters who are not unlike those who once may have inhabited the island. The story spans from the lives of the first Britons, who witness the end of the Ice Age and the creation of a new island, through to the present day. Each generation develops amid the shifting Wiltshire landscape and sociology, centred around the ancient ubiquitous presence of the spiritual Henge, a structure which resonates throughout the novel with its ambiguous origins.Take a few Romans, add a few Celts and a couple of Normans and the English ancestory unfolds before your very eyes! I initially thought that the book would cover a similar ground to 'London', however this book only serves to complement it with a far more enticing and mystical approach! Rutherfurd really knows his history and at times there is a lot of historical text between the stories but this is really interesting and helps you understand what is actually happening to the characters. This book enhances the enchanting history that the island has, probing at ancient mythologies and beliefs which altogether provide a fascinating and exciting read. I'm going to go for 'The Forest' next!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By amazon customer on 16 Aug. 2015
Format: Hardcover
The perfect companion for all history enthusiasts is THE ROMA VICTRIX WINE BEAKER Calix Imperium, Roma Victrix Pewter wine beaker

Before I commence with my review it has to be said that I am somewhat biased towards this mighty work right from the start, why? Because I was based in OLD SARUM for over five years, during the early seventies as a member of a specialist Para unit; therefore its a trip down memory lane to one of the most beautiful parts of England, that I came to know and love, before uncontrolled immigration and the internet. Also my first serious introduction to Roman military history and the history of England in general.


Sarum tells the entire, and I mean entire (up to the point it was written, circa 1985) history of England via the cathedral city of Salisbury, once known as Sarum, which sits at the confluence of five rivers and has been a population center for thousands of years, as evidenced by the fact that Stonehenge sits on the edge of Salisbury Plain.

It does so by focusing on several families and their ups and downs over the centuries. Some of them are there right from the beginning, others don't come along until Roman or Anglo-Saxon or Norman times.

The first arrivals are Hwll and his family, seeking high ground as the Ice Age warms and the ocean rises. A paleolithic hunter in a time when there are still a few Neanderthals extant, his is the first of many family feuds that will affect the course of Sarum's history, as he encounters Tep, a sneaky little worm who nonetheless shows him the way to Salisbury Plain and its surrounding hills, where they settle.
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