Genre: Historical Fiction
Release Date: October 13, 2009 (US), April 30, 2009 (UK)
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
I have been hearing only phenomenal things about this book! I received this book from the publisher for review a little over a week ago but have yet had the chance to read it. Thomas Cromwell was a pivotal key figure in the court of Henry VIII, what a great character to write a book about. Mantel recently received the Booker Prize for this work – it is extremely exciting to see a historical fiction book be recognized on such a high level. I can’t wait to read this book and explore the character of Thomas Cromwell some more.
“In the ruthless arena of King Henry VIII’s court, only one man dares to gamble his life to win the king’s favor and ascend to the heights of political power England in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years, and marry Anne Boleyn. The pope and most of Europe opposes him. The quest for the king’s freedom destroys his adviser, the brilliant Cardinal Wolsey, and leaves a power vacuum.
Into this impasse steps Thomas Cromwell. Cromwell is a wholly original man, a charmer and a bully, both idealist and opportunist, astute in reading people and a demon of energy: he is also a consummate politician, hardened by his personal losses, implacable in his ambition. But Henry is volatile: one day tender, one day murderous. Cromwell helps him break the opposition, but what will be the price of his triumph?
In inimitable style, Hilary Mantel presents a picture of a half-made society on the cusp of change, where individuals fight or embrace their fate with passion and courage. With a vast array of characters, overflowing with incident, the novel re-creates an era when the personal and political are separated by a hairbreadth, where success brings unlimited power but a single failure means death.” (from Book Jacket)
You can read an excerpt from the book here to pique your interest.
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