Darwin8u's Reviews > Bring Up the Bodies

Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel
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it was amazing
bookshelves: 2012, aere-perennius

“The things you think are the disasters in your life are not the disasters really. Almost anything can be turned around: out of every ditch, a path, if you can only see it.”
― Hilary Mantel, Bring Up the Bodies

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100 pages in and it is hard to miss that this isn't just a nominal sequel to Wolf Hall, but rather the first book's logical annex. There is no drop-off in complexity. No laxity of language. Again, Mantel manages to shift form, change structure and reinvent her style. She even manages to give the character of Thomas Cromwell more depth and complexity, a feat which seemed near impossible after finishing Wolf Hall.

Anyway, Mantel is one of the finest writers of English prose living. Each sentence is crafted like a unique piece in an Italian inlaid music box. She has a purpose for each comma, and makes words seem to dance, fall and recover right off the page. She pulls the history out of the history and has written Tower interrogations so deft and chilling one is left afraid of both language and the law. As readers we watch Cromwell destroy men, overthrow queens and change history with words, paper and a sharp understanding of men's motives. We aren't afraid because Cromwell is a monster, but because he is so heroically human.
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Quotes Darwin8u Liked

Hilary Mantel
“The things you think are the disasters in your life are not the disasters really. Almost anything can be turned around: out of every ditch, a path, if you can only see it.”
Hilary Mantel, Bring Up the Bodies

Hilary Mantel
“Those who are made can be unmade.”
Hilary Mantel, Bring Up the Bodies


Reading Progress

November 20, 2012 – Started Reading
November 20, 2012 – Shelved
November 20, 2012 –
page 100
24.57%
November 21, 2012 –
page 200
49.14%
November 21, 2012 –
page 300
73.71%
November 22, 2012 – Shelved as: 2012
November 22, 2012 – Shelved as: aere-perennius
November 22, 2012 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-11 of 11 (11 new)

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Alyn Rumbold However, in the end Cromwell also got his heroic comeuppance -- and it seems to have had a cheerful response from a lot of folks at court! ;-)


Darwin8u Both Karma and Hamlet would suggest that everyone gets 'hoisted by their own petards' in the end. I'm sure the irony of Cromwell, More & Boleyn's end wasn't lost on Shakespeare.


Alyn Rumbold The way his downfall is portrayed in The Six Wives of Henry VIII is almost gleefully diabolical. Yeesh!


Darwin8u I love the way he is portrayed in this series


message 5: by Fionnuala (new) - added it

Fionnuala We aren't afraid because Cromwell is a monster, but because he is so heroically human.

Well said - and ditto about there not being a comma wasted.


Darwin8u Fionnuala wrote: "We aren't afraid because Cromwell is a monster, but because he is so heroically human.

Well said - and ditto about there not being a comma wasted."


I can't wait until book 3.


message 7: by Shaddy (new) - added it

Shaddy Can I read the sequel (Bring up the bodies) without having read the first one (Wolf Hall)?


Darwin8u Sure, but why?


message 9: by Shaddy (new) - added it

Shaddy Because I haven't bought the first one in the series -Wolf Hall. I got a copy of Bring up the bodies at a local market at a really throwaway price. So I don't have Wolf Hall as of now.


Darwin8u Shahid wrote: "Because I haven't bought the first one in the series -Wolf Hall. I got a copy of Bring up the bodies at a local market at a really throwaway price. So I don't have Wolf Hall as of now."

I'd still go find Wolf Hall. Some series don't need to be read in any particular order (Hainish Cycle), but some do. This series needs the order.


message 11: by Shaddy (new) - added it

Shaddy Thanks cobber! Will go and hunt for the Wolf Hall 😊


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