This is what I’m reading now:
I’m about 10 pages into it, so not very far. Especially considering it’s about 600 pages. And the first part was a list of characters — that spanned about 7 pages — and then a few pages of family trees. Good grief. I picked this book up because the second in the series, “Bring up the Bodies,” made the list of the top 100 book of 2012 according to The New York Times.
Here is a review of “Wolf Hall.”
And another, from NPR.
And some commentary on the Duchess Kate by the author (random celebrity/royalty link).
And a note calling Hilary Mantel one of the most influential people in the world:
Unlike most historical novelists, she writes without sentimentality. Her two hefty volumes on Thomas Cromwell, brutal adviser to King Henry VIII — the King who destroyed the English monasteries and beheaded two of his six wives — have captured the British reading public and carried off all the prizes with the vigor of the narrative and minutely evoked detail of Cromwell’s day-to-day life. Amazingly, she makes a man renowned for nastiness into a sympathetic hero.
The book is a beast, but I’m game. I just finished “Sharp Objects” in two days — staying up way too late one night to get through it. It was great, though like “Gone Girl,” I thought the ending was a little too … neat? I don’t even know what the word is. But I liked it.
I didn’t realize how giant “Wolf Hall” was until I picked it up from my holds at the library. Then I sat down on the couch last night and opened it up.
“Oh no,” I told Philip.
“What?,” he said. “Tiny print?”
“Worse,” I said. “A list of characters and a family tree!”
That always guarantees I’ll be confused from the start. Sometimes I just have to give in to my horrible memory and mow through a book, remembering as best I can who all the characters are. Otherwise, I turn back to that list every 3 pages and eventually get frustrated.