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Description

Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2020

Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2020

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

©2020 Hilary Mantel (P)2020 W. F. Howes Ltd

Commentaires

“You’ll frequently hit the rewind button to fully appreciate the many, many perfect passages.” (Irish Times)

“Actor Ben Miles played Cromwell in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s adaptations of Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, making him the perfect choice to narrate the remarkable final instalment in the Man Booker Prize-winning trilogy.” (Vogue)

Ce que les auditeurs disent de The Mirror and the Light

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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This is a masterpiece.

Ignore what some critics say about this being too wordy. It is not. I hate books with lengthy descriptions but I loved the descriptions in this book. Sometimes I think that the critics are just jealous of the genius of Hilary Mantel. And the performance of Ben Miles only enhances the book. Superb.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • David
  • 10/03/2020

Excellent writing, perfect casting

Easily the best performance of all the books. Ben Miles injects Cromwell with the kind of quietness, ruthlessness, yet down to earth humour you would expect of someone of Cromwell's heritage and journey in life. Miles has played Cromwell excellently on stage with the RSC, but in this performance he actually channels Mark Rylance's incredible portrayal of Cromwell in the series Wolf Hall in my opinion, and does an excellent job. So ignore those complaining about accents and the like, and listen for yourself. The book itself, as you would expect, is excellent. The writing is exquisite and the conclusion to this trilogy is everything you would expect and more.

3 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

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  • Bjerkana
  • 14/04/2020

Fabulous trip back in time

I began this book, having already listened to the previous two books in the trilogy, just at the beginning of the Coronavirus "social distancing" and it has been my companion on all my "exercise walks" for the past couple of weeks. What a marvellous book! I have been so absorbed in Cromwell's story that I felt I had lost a friend by the time I finished it and cried walking along the path at the end. The final interview between Hilary Mantel and the Narrator, Ben Miles, whose outstanding telling of this story took me right into the Court of Henry VII, added another dimension. Ben has truly inhabited the character of Cromwell and feels more familiar than my own family at this time of physical separation. I can't recommend this book highly enough - but if you haven't already heard the first two books in the trilogy I strongly suggest visiting them first. That way you live Cromwell's entire life through the series. This is a series I'm very sad to have concluded.

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  • Global
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  • Sylla
  • 31/03/2020

A perfect match between narrator and narrative

What else is there to say but that this is the most accomplished audio book I ever listened to? Mantel gives us an extraordinarily inspired and inspiring conclusion to the Wolf Hall trilogy with this book. And here her creation is served by the narrator with a level of authenticity and artistry that left me unable to imagine that it was not Cromwell himself speaking to me for the many hours of this book. It felt incredibly intimate and as a polyglot myself, I appreciated the accuracy of the Italian or French at times spoken with just the right English accent. Simply phenomenal.

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  • Jelena
  • 15/07/2020

Great imersion into the torn court of Henry VIII.

Masterfully narrated; the pace and recognizable character voices add a special charm. This is a slow burn that one wishes will go on and on.

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  • Matt Mole
  • 25/06/2020

The best of the trilogy

I found this to be the best of the trilogy. Ben Miles is an excellent narrator and makes great use of the text. I still don’t enjoy the author’s style of writing probably because the constant use of memories and flashbacks stalls the progress of the story. That being said the historical research and characterization are faultless.

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  • Tim Pillar
  • 04/10/2020

beautifully written and performed

wonderful book and the ending is inspired performance is excellent and clear. highly recommended. a classic audio trilogy

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03/10/2020

Unputdownable and addictive

Redolent of time and place this third book in the Wolf Hall trilogy does not disappoint. Thomas Cromwell continues to evolve as a complex complicated man of his times. A political engine. He remains eternally likeable. Ben Miles is a remarkable actor and here as narrator of this tome he embraces all the characters of the story giving them each three dimensional characters I own the wolf hall books as hard copy and audiobooks. This one I began again as soon as it concluded the first time. Thank you Ms Mantell and Mr Miles. You have managed to make a man much reviled over time into a three dimensional figure who is eminently likeable human and fallible I can not recommend this and the rest of the trilogy more highly

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  • Sylvia Davies
  • 13/09/2020

Brilliant

I feel as though I have been to a shakespearean performance on one hand, and immersed in the world of Cromwell with such wonderful language detail and understanding from his point of view. I love him as a man and have an increased understanding of life in those years. Superb writing and equally superb narrator. Thank you In fb HN

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  • Kylie Ahern
  • 04/09/2020

Exceptional

I didn’t think the series could get better. Not a wasted word - everything she writes is so compelling. Ben Miles’ narration was exceptional. This book gave me an intense gaze into that period - the mindset, the politics, power plays just to stay in favour of a largely sociopathic ruler.

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  • MR CONOR CAHILL
  • 03/09/2020

Flawless

Superbly crafted final book in the series. One of the best narrated audiobooks that I've encountered, every character has their own, recognisable voice and tone. In particular, female characters are portrayed believably without the narrator putting on a 'high voice', a crime against listening that I've encountered far too frequently. The storytelling is superb and natural. Impossible to tell where history ends and fiction starts. Enjoyed every minute.

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  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Roberta
  • 20/04/2020

Third part of Cromwell trilogy

Very good book, I have read the first two parts of the trilogy so knew what was coming. However there are a lot of names in this historical story and, as this is my first Audible, I have discovered of course I do not have a list of characters. This is of course at the front of the books....not obviously part of the audible edition. However the reading is excellent, but the story is very very long and I have a feeling I would prefer the book in my hand. However the writing is just amazing...the end of a wonderful story.....Hilary Mantel is a treat to read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 17/10/2020

Breathtaking!

Ben Miles turns this compelling story into a vivid narration that accompanies you during your amazing journey to the court of Henry. I hope that you will enjoy this listening experience as much as I did.

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  • Sonja Leibold
  • 14/08/2020

Sad to see the saga end

Loved the whole series. The third part of the trilogy could possibly have been trimmed by a few pages, but it is still as vibrant, poignant and immersive as it's two predecessors. Ben Miles does an outstanding job with the narration. I will come back to the trophy again and again, as it will leave a hole...

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Scott MacRae
  • 28/05/2020

Beyond praise

Outstanding storytelling and an outstanding performance. Made self-isolation a pleasure and audiobooks the way to go.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Ernst
  • 26/05/2020

Even better then I hoped for

Mantel has surpassed herself. Great writing, on several levels. A beautiful trilogy and Ben Miles is superb in huis performance.