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The Pillars of the Earth

The digital edition

In a publishing first, the Amplified Edition of The Pillars of the Earth, an interactive eBook for Apple's iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, showcases striking video clips, beautiful art and original music from the critically acclaimed Starz 8-hour epic television event based on the book.

This visually stunning Amplified Edition of The Pillars of the Earth, produced by Penguin and Reelz, offers a rich and immersive way to read, watch and listen to this beloved story. The Amplified Edition showcases exclusive videos with Ken about his research and the process of bringing his book to the screen, and an innovative Character Tree that provides a remarkable aid to keeping the story’s myriad characters straight, yet prevents plot spoilers.

Updates occur repeatedly while the TV series airs so that consumers who buy the Amplified Edition will have a dynamic user experience that complements the story and the viewing experience of the 8-part series. By the end of the series, the app will contain about 88 videos.

“You would need a science-fiction imagination to come up with the idea of reading a book, pressing a button and seeing a movie of the same story”, Ken says.

Other features include:

  • Contextual video footage and still images blended into the eBook from the corresponding section of the Starz series.
  • An interactive character tree, housed in a virtual stained glass window, which grows as characters are introduced in the book, allowing you to learn more about the selected characters and their corresponding relationships. As the story progresses, the stained glass window becomes more intricate and reveals more and more about the characters.
  • Ken Follett’s multimedia diary – the author’s on-set impressions of bringing The Pillars of the Earth from page to screen.
  • Behind-the-scenes interviews with the actors, director and producers.
  • Sketches of the 12th-century costumes and sets
  • A Listening Lounge – hymns and soundtrack themes from the miniseries.
  • A sneak preview of Fall of Giants


The Amplified Edition of The Pillars of the Earth for Apple's iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch is availabe from Apple’s iTunes store.

  • More information on the Amplified Edition from Penguin.



  • A packed Apple app
    When best-selling author Ken Follett wrote The Pillars of the Earth in the late 1980s, he could hardly have imagined his novel … would become a first-of-its kind “Amplified Edition” electronic book. — USA Today read on…
  • The latest in the new, electronic world of book publishing
    Penguin Group and Starz Entertainment have collaborated on an Amplified version of Ken Follett’s blockbuster The Pillars of the Earth, featuring video and audio clips. — Associated Press read on…
  • Starz, Penguin launch TV-book tie-up on iPad
    Penguin launched on Tuesday the first electronic book with a video tie-in, as the embattled book publishing industry bets on multimedia ebooks to revive flagging growth and boost readership. — Reuters read on…
  • Starz, Penguin launch TV-book tie-up
    The Pillars of the Earth Amplified Edition takes the notion of enhanced e-books to a new level, offering readers a digital version of the prose novel enriched with short video clips from the 8-part TV show as well as longer video diary entries by Follett and a “making of” short feature on the TV series. — Publishers Weekly read on…