From the double Man Booker prize-winning author of ‘Wolf Hall’, this is a dark fable of lost faith and awakening love amidst the moors.
Fetherhoughton is a drab, dreary town somewhere in a magical, half-real 1950s north England, a preserve of ignorance and superstition protected against the advance of reason by its impenetrable moor-fogs. Father Angwin, the town’s cynical p...more
The novel revolves around the parish priest Father Angwin who long ago lost his faith and believes only in the devil and tradition. He is plagued by the Bishop who is modern and trying to bring ...more
- Hilary Mantel, Fludd
After devouring Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, I was ready for another Mantel. Fludd is a small, tight irreverant novel about God, belief, love, faith, innocence and knowledge. There were segments of this novel wher ...more
Mantel won the Booker Prize a few weeks ago for her new novel, which alas sounds totally unappetizing to me. However, I decided it really was about time I read some of her work -- and Fludd was the first book that came to hand.
In the mid-1950s in a ghastly English Midlands village called Fetherhoughton, whose shambling atavistic inhabitants regard themselves, probably wrongly, as at least superior to the denizens of neighbouring village Netherhoughton, there's trouble afoot in the Catholic churc ...more
There have been a flurry of reviews on Goodreads and Amazon recently by people who have read Wolf Hall and want to ...more
Mantel tells the story of Fetherhoughton, a Northern mill village inhabited largely by 'brutish tea-swilling inhabitants', according to the blurb on the back cover. This IS largely true, but the blurb also ma ...more
I dunno. Maybe I read too many books that have a nice, neatly packaged ending and a moral worthy of an after-school special, but this book left me wondering, 'Is that it?' ...more
I have a theory that this is primarily a story about compassion (as in "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people", Isa 40:1) - compassion on a grand scale, not merely for the individual characters specifically affected by Fludd's visit but also for the undifferentiated mass ...more
“Or perhaps, she thought, it is some poor sinner with blood on his hands ridden over the wild moors to ask for absolution. But glancing at the clock she knew this could not be so for the last bus from Glossop had passed through twenty minutes earlier.”
“'No time for tea,' said the Bishop, 'I've come to talk to you on the subject of uniting all right-thinking people in the family of God.'”
Mantel rej ...more
1. The narrator is just fantastic. She (no gender is indicated, so in the spirit of misandry I'm assuming she's female) is straight-faced but very funny; she is wearily contemptuous of the villagers of Fetherhoughton, but also understands them so thoroughly that it's clear there's not as much distance between them as she might like. Consider this description:
For shoes, the women wore bedroom slippers in the form of bootees, with a big zip up the middle. When they went outd...more
Set in the midlands (in my perspective, a ...more
"The Protestants were damned, of course, by reason of this culpable ignorance. They would roast in hell. A span of seventy years, to ride bicycles in the steep streets, to get married, to eat bread and dripping: then bronchitis, pneumonia, a broken hip: then the minister calls, and the florist does a wreath: then devils will tear their flesh with pincers. It is a most neighborly thought."
Obviously, it's very well-written and some bits are quite witty, but...I don't know, I just don't think this book ever really got going? It feels like everything happens at the end, and what happens is actually very cliched? What *else* could poss ...more
But there is a generous moral imagination at work here that exceeds such caricatures - and it works through Mantel's marvelous descriptions, which others have n ...more
The curate Fludd is sent to the village of Fetherhoughton to assist Father Angwin in his priestly duties. Fludd, however, is not at all as expected - to quote from the blurb: "loving beauty and language, sowing scandal and unrest in Fetherhoughton, might he not be the devil?"
Almost a month later, I'm still not quite sure what to make of Fludd.
- small village idiosyncracies; bonus points for inter- ...more
They were few but conspicuous; their maroon school uniform, bought large so that they could gr...more
|What's The Name o...: Book about a young priest in an Irish town in the 60s[s]||16||169||Nov 21, 2012 10:54AM|