Unparalleled historical fiction,
This review is from: Bring Up the Bodies (Hardcover)
I was enthralled by Wolf Hall, and started reading 'Bring up the bodies' immediately afterwards. It's as good, it's absolutely brilliant. Cromwell dominates the novel as he did in 'Wolf Hall', and - whatever we may think of the historical character - Mantel has succeeded in creating an absolutely mesmerizing fictional character here. You get a real sense of the man and his feelings, thoughts and ambitions as if he were explaining himself 'live' to you. And it's not just him, all the characters and Tudor London are brilliantly drawn. Perhaps the most stunning part is how Mantel succeeds in creating an incredible sense of suspense. Even though we all know how the story will end, you cannot help reading on as if this were a vintage Le Carré-novel, and relish the intrigues and counter-intrigues at court, the scheming and plotting as if it were a game of chess (but one for the highest possible stakes).
So now begins the long wait for part three... But until that is published, these two novels have so sparked my interest in Tudor times that I'll be starting A Short History of the Wars of the Roses (I.B. Tauris Short Histories) this very day, moving on after that to Lancaster And York: The Wars of the Roses, Tudors: A History of England Volume II (History of England Vol 2) and The Rise & Fall of Thomas Cromwell: Henry VIII's Most Faithful Servant. Now isn't that a delightful prospect?