Wolf Hall

Wolf Hall

Book - 2009
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Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2009

'Lock Cromwell in a deep dungeon in the morning,' says Thomas More, 'and when you come back that night he'll be sitting on a plush cushion eating larks' tongues, and all the gaolers will owe him money.'

England, the 1520s. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is his chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. Into this atmosphere of distrust and need comes Thomas Cromwell, first as Wolsey's clerk, and later his successor.

Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with a delicate and deadly expertise in manipulating people and events. Ruthless in pursuit of his own interests, he is as ambitious in his wider politics as he is for himself. His reforming agenda is carried out in the grip of a self-interested parliament and a king who fluctuates between romantic passions and murderous rages.

From one of our finest living writers, Wolf Hall is that very rare thing: a truly great English novel, one that explores the intersection of individual psychology and wider politics. With a vast array of characters, and richly overflowing with incident, it peels back history to show us Tudor England as a half-made society, moulding itself with great passion and suffering and courage.

Publisher: London : Fourth Estate, 2009.
ISBN: 9780007230181
Branch Call Number: MAN
Characteristics: xvii, 653 pages :,genealogical table ;,25 cm


From Library Staff

Historical - Philippa Gregory read alike

quagga Jun 27, 2010

I needed a big, fat book to get me through a weeklong trip by air to Whitehorse and Wolf Hall, the 2009 winner of the Man Booker Prize - at 650 pages long - was just right. It's about Henry VIII and how he - rather than the pope - became the head of the church in England in order to divorce his f... Read More »

sit_walk Nov 26, 2009

An interesting book, well worth the challenge it can be at times. And as a chronicle of a defining moment in English history it's quite gripping. Definitely bears multiple readings.

sfl Dec 06, 2009

December 7
Page 189

From the critics

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Apr 05, 2017

Fun read. I am not sure I wouldn't like a good history book about the same era just as much, maybe more?

Feb 09, 2017

Easy to read, continully enthralling. A guise of history in soap opera form. Too many names to remember.

Bunny_Watson716 Dec 12, 2016

For fans of dense historical fiction who enjoy novels set in Tudor England. This is a book you can sink your teeth into and you won't be disappointed with Mantel's richly detailed writing style.

Jan 17, 2016

too many characters with too many names and too much going on for me to keep track of it all very easily. at times I thought it was a great book and at other times it was so boring that I had to put it down and read another book. I borrowed the dvd and will see if that is any better.

Middle Town
Aug 17, 2015

Not the most well-written, but but a fresh take on the events surrounding Henry VIII

Aug 05, 2015

Set during the reign of Henry VIII, Wolf Hall is the story of Thomas Cromwell's rise in station and fortune. A learned man, Cromwell is privy to much of Henry's business (the country's as well as the king's personal affairs) as he works his way to the upper echelons of state and earns his place in history. If you enjoy historical fiction, add this title to your " Wanna Read" list.

Jul 10, 2015

March 10 - Vera-Marie

Jun 30, 2015

Brilliant! I can't wait to read Bring up the Bodies and The Mirror and the Light!

Jun 20, 2015

I did not like this book at all, and I read a lot of historical- or historically based books. The present tense bothered me. The plethora of characters , each one having several names, forcing me to constantly go back to the list of characters to find out who was who, the constant "he said" making you divine that it was Cromwell, the little side stories meant to give a "couleur locale", all turned me off.

Jun 09, 2015

So many books have been written about the Tudors that it is difficult to imagine a new work on the subject, but Mantell has done just that. Her research is extensive and her imagined dialogue is fitting. I waded my way through the book, but prefer Philippa Gregory's historical writing.

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Jan 30, 2011

Violence: This title contains Violence.

Jan 30, 2011

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

Jan 30, 2011

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.

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Jul 05, 2013

pagetraveler thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 16 and 99

Jan 30, 2011


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Nov 25, 2013

Very well written.
But for someone who gets to read just 30 or so minutes at bedtime, it was too long - nearly 700 pages!

Jul 05, 2013

Based on English history and the time of the Tudors. Takes the point of view of Thomas Cromwell to tell the story of Henry the VIII and his 1st and 2nd wives and his relationship with the church.


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Jul 17, 2012

You learn nothing about men by snubbing them and crushing their pride. You must ask them what it is they can do in this world, that they alone can do.

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