A Place Called Freedom

by Ken Follett

Hardcover, 1995

Call number





Crown (1995), Edition: First Edition, 407 pages


In 18th Century Scotland, Mack MacAsh, a rebellious youth who tried to escape from a slave mine, is caught and deported in chains to America. On the same boat is the mine owner's son, travelling to his plantation in Virginia, and with him is his fiancee, Lizzie Hallim, who helped MacAsh escape. She and MacAsh will meet again and love will bloom.

User reviews

LibraryThing member miyurose
While not as strong a piece of historical fiction as something by John Jakes or even Diana Gabaldon, Follett does a great job of keeping the pages turning. This kept me reading, even if some of the events have a slight reek of "we have got to stop meeting like this!". Mack is not your typical serf, nor is Lizzie your typical lady.… (more)
LibraryThing member santhony
I've never read a lot of Ken Follett's work. His two historical fiction novels, World Without End and Pillars of the Earth picqued my interest and led me to delve a little deeper into his earlier efforts. I must say after reading this novel that I was quite disappointed.

A Place Called Freedom is at best quite mediocre. There is virtually nothing to recommend it above hundreds of other similar books. There were flashes of interest concerning mining conditions and southern plantation practices in the mid-18th century, but by and large it was utterly unremarkable.

Hard working, ambitious, intelligent Scottish miner, spends 400 pages being attracted to a young open minded highly sexed heiress both in Scotland and over seas in pre-revolutionary America. I wonder how it ends?
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LibraryThing member Fernandame
E-book - Wow another great one by Follett - A wonderful story that flows so easily. The only complaint that I have is that some of his books have a very similar story line but I enjoy reading them anyway.
LibraryThing member Stevejm51
This is not one of Follett's best efforts. It's strictly a by the numbers historical soap opera with paper thin characters and an obvious plot. I did enjoy the description of the mining life Scotland and the justice system in London.
LibraryThing member maysa82
One of my favorite books.
LibraryThing member jaygheiser
A fun soap opera. 18th century Scots settle frontier of America via London & Virginia.
LibraryThing member kaebs
Good story, good characters, well written. It's Ken Follett, what else can I say? Off course it is not 'Pillars', but this book is certainly a good read. I nice epic story about the interlinked lives of two people, spanning two countries, and with plenty of historical accounts mixed in.
LibraryThing member mbotos
Good epic story and characters
LibraryThing member jayne_charles
This wasn't a bad read at all - the story moved along at a cracking pace, and there was plenty of action. The trouble was, having read Follett's two medieval offerings - Pillars of the Earth and World Without End, this felt a bit lacking in depth by comparison.
LibraryThing member EadieB
Master storyteller, Ken Follett, takes us from the Jamisson family coal mines in the Scottish Highlands to the shipping industry in London and onto the Virginia tobacco fields of colonial America with a powerful story of love, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Mack McAsh and Lizzie Hallim are searching for A Place Called Freedom amid a cast of heroes and villains, lovers, and rebels, hypocrites, hell-raisers, and whores. With well-developed characters and a plot with twists and turns, I found the book unputdownable. I look forward to my next Follett book and I would recommend this one to those who love historical adventure.… (more)
LibraryThing member thanesh
Very good read, enjoyed it tremendously.
LibraryThing member SaraAnn05
This book has been languishing on my shelves for years, but having read Pillars of the Earth and World Without End, I was looking for more Ken Follett to read and rediscovered this one. I think I would have enjoyed it more if I hadn't read the other two first, as it had so much unrealised potential. There was so much more I wanted to know and the story ended just as I felt it was getting started.

Overall a good book, but read it before moving on to the more epic stories.
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LibraryThing member ElisabethZguta
I wanted to read another Scottish tale to compare the experience against the Outlander that's back in vogue. I've been reading that series and thought of this book which is set in the same time period (1700) and I like Ken Follett's historical fiction. So I read A Place Called Freedom.

The biggest difference in the experience was the story's voice. I found Ken Follett's writing to be more formal. Though he presents a good image of the characters, time period, and unique human scenes, the prose doesn't touch the heart as deeply. In that regard, Outlander shines a higher score.

This does not mean it's not worth the time reading - it is a good book. The story did tug on my heart, especially the scenes that showed the horrid treatment of the people back then, the miners, and even children. As a mother of four reading the sections, where they were shipped off as 'indentured slaves' and when working in the mine, moved me. I am very thankful things have changed.

The two strong protagonists, Lizzie & Mac have stories that weave together in and out until the final conclusion. They find what they had been searching for - freedom. The storyline has a love relationship that develops over years, a great villain in the character Jay, and lots of confrontation and obstacles to overcome.

If you want not only historical fiction, but also action adventure and romance, then this book's a wise choice to read.
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LibraryThing member dandelionroots
The history the storyline follows is intriguing - in 1767 a Scottish coal miner learns he was not born a slave and continues to question and disrupt the existing power structures around him (reflecting the lower populaces' sentiments) as he journeys to London (coal-heaver offloading ships), Virginia (indentured convict on a tobacco plantation), and finally over the Cumberland Gap to a life in service of what he chooses. But the caliber of writing makes me hesitant to read another work by Follett.… (more)
LibraryThing member lindseyrivers
This is my favorite Follett yet, but mostly because i really like the historical period that he is writing about. Again, another strong female heroine and complicated characters. The only thing I didn't like about it was that it was too short... I was upset that it was over!
LibraryThing member waldhaus1
The story of a Scott enslaved to work on a coal mine who escapes seeking freedom. In the course of his adventures he falls on and out of love. Finally be pursues the Noble daughter of a landowner. He ends up in Virginia where both are pursuing dreams. She has to deal with a small minded spendthrift husband.
Much detail that brings life to the narrative. White slavery is a reminder that slavery is no respecter of color.… (more)
LibraryThing member MsBeautiful
Novel/Drama, nice read




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