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The Mirror and the Light

The Mirror and the Light 8

by Hilary Mantel
Publication Date: 05/03/2020
4/5 Rating 8 Reviews
RRP  $45.00 $29.95

Preorder the long-awaited sequel to Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, the stunning conclusion to Hilary Mantel’s Man Booker Prize-winning Wolf Hall trilogy.

‘If you cannot speak truth at a beheading, when can you speak it?’

England, May 1536. Anne Boleyn is dead, decapitated in the space of a heartbeat by a hired French executioner. As her remains are bundled into oblivion, Thomas Cromwell breakfasts with the victors. The blacksmith’s son from Putney emerges from the spring’s bloodbath to continue his climb to power and wealth, while his formidable master, Henry VIII, settles to short-lived happiness with his third queen, Jane Seymour.

Cromwell is a man with only his wits to rely on; he has no great family to back him, no private army. Despite rebellion at home, traitors plotting abroad and the threat of invasion testing Henry’s regime to breaking point, Cromwell’s robust imagination sees a new country in the mirror of the future. But can a nation, or a person, shed the past like a skin? Do the dead continually unbury themselves? What will you do, the Spanish ambassador asks Cromwell, when the king turns on you, as sooner or later he turns on everyone close to him?

With The Mirror and the Light, Hilary Mantel brings to a triumphant close the trilogy she began with Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. She traces the final years of Thomas Cromwell, the boy from nowhere who climbs to the heights of power, offering a defining portrait of predator and prey, of a ferocious contest between present and past, between royal will and a common man’s vision: of a modern nation making itself through conflict, passion and courage.

Historical Fiction
Publication Date:
HarperCollins Publishers Australia
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Hilary Mantel

Hilary Mantel is the author of fourteen books, including A Place Of Greater Safety, Beyond Black, the memoir Giving Up The Ghost, and the short-story collection The Assassination Of Margaret Thatcher.

Her two most recent novels, Wolf Hall and its sequel Bring Up The Bodies, have both been awarded the Man Booker Prize - an unprecedented achievement.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating

4 / 5 (8 Ratings)
5 stars (5)
4 stars (0)
3 stars (2)
2 stars (1)
1 stars (0)
  • Disappointed

    by on

    I had not read any of Mantel's works previously, but know she was a much praised author, which encouraged me to purchase the book.
    Regretfully, as an amateur historian, I could not accept the fiction intermingled with the facts, and gave it away after a couple of chapters.
    Not her fault, mine.

  • Mantels final work about Thomas Cromwell?

    by on

    The final work in the Cromwell trilogy. A bit too much minor detail is included, and some flashback reference to happenings referred to in the previous 2 volumes. (Some might call it 'padding') Overall, its attention to detail, however minute, indicates research of the highest quality.
    Not a 'cannot put it down' style of book, perhaps to its size? Overall, if anyone is a fan of Mantel's work, it is a must read volume. Henry it appears is 'The mirror and the Light' referred to by the title.
    Cromwell appears to be the real Man for all Seasons, rather that the Thomas More of previous publications!!

  • The Mirror and the Light

    by on

    What a brilliant ending to a quite extraordinary trilogy. I think, no less than a masterpiece of story-telling set in the context of the rather turbulent years of Henry VIII's reign. I loved all three books and I just wish Hilary Mantel would write more in this vein.

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