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Tuesday, 1 August 2017

WOLF HALL

WOLF HALL - BOOK COVER
Wolf Hall (2009) is a historical novel by English author Hilary Mantel, published by Fourth Estate, named after the Seymour family seat of Wolfhall or Wulfhall in Wiltshire. Set in the period from 1500 to 1535, Wolf Hall is a sympathetic fictionalised biography documenting the rapid rise to power of Thomas Cromwell in the court of Henry VIII through to the death of Sir Thomas More. The novel won both the Man Booker Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award.

The book is the first in a trilogy; the sequel Bring Up the Bodies was published in 2012. The last book in the trilogy will be called The Mirror and the Light and is expected to cover the last four years of Cromwell's life.

Born to a working-class family of no position or name, Cromwell rose to become the right-hand man of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, adviser to the King. He survived Wolsey's fall from grace to eventually take his place as the most powerful of Henry's ministers. In that role, he observed turning points of English history, as Henry asserted his authority to declare his marriage annulled from Catherine of Aragon, married Anne Boleyn, broke from Rome, established the independence of the Church of England, and called for the dissolution of the monasteries.

The novel is a reenvisioning of historical and literary records; in Robert Bolt's play A Man for All Seasons Cromwell is portrayed as the calculating, unprincipled opposite of Thomas More's honour and rectitude.
Mantel's novel offers an alternative to that characterization, a more intimate portrait of Cromwell as a pragmatic and talented man attempting to serve king and country amid the political machinations of Henry's court and the religious upheavals of the Protestant Reformation.

Download the book: Wolf Hall.pdf

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