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.
Winner of Galaxy National Book Awards: Waterstone's UK Author of the Year 2010.
Winner of Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction 2010.
Winner of Independent Booksellers' Week Book of the Year Award: Adults' Book of the Year 2010.
Winner of Spear's Book Awards: Novel of the Year 2009.
Winner of Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2009.
Shortlisted for Orange Prize for Fiction 2010.
Hilary Mantel is the author of seven other novels: 'Every Day is Mother's Day' (1985), 'Vacant Possession' (1986), 'Eight Months on Ghazzah Street' (1988), 'Fludd' (1989), 'A Place of Greater Safety' (1992, winner of the 'Sunday Express' Book of the Year Award), 'A Change of Climate' (1994) and 'An Experiment in Love' (1995). After living abroad for a decade, in Africa and Saudi Arabia, she returned to Britain in 1986.