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Bring up the Bodies

A Novel

Mantel, Hilary

(Book - 2012)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Bring up the Bodies
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"The sequel to Hilary Mantel's 2009 Man Booker Prize winner and New York Times bestseller, Wolf Hall delves into the heart of Tudor history with the downfall of Anne Boleyn. Though he battled for seven years to marry her, Henry is disenchanted with Anne Boleyn. She has failed to give him a son and her sharp intelligence and audacious will alienate his old friends and the noble families of England. When the discarded Katherine dies in exile from the court, Anne stands starkly exposed, the focus of gossip and malice. At a word from Henry, Thomas Cromwell is ready to bring her down. Over three terrifying weeks, Anne is ensnared in a web of conspiracy, while the demure Jane Seymour stands waiting her turn for the poisoned wedding ring. But Anne and her powerful family will not yield without a ferocious struggle. Hilary Mantel's Bring Up the Bodies follows the dramatic trial of the queen and her suitors for adultery and treason. To defeat the Boleyns, Cromwell must ally with his natural enemies, the papist aristocracy. What price will he pay for Anne's head?"-- "Though he battled for seven years to marry her, Henry is disenchanted with Anne Boleyn. She has failed to give him a son and her sharp intelligence and audacious will alienate his old friends and the noble families of England. When the discarded Katherine dies in exile from the court, Anne stands starkly exposed, the focus of gossip and malice. At a word from Henry, Thomas Cromwell is ready to bring her down. Over three terrifying weeks, Anne is ensnared in a web of conspiracy, while the demure Jane Seymour stands waiting her turn for the poisoned wedding ring. But Anne and her powerful family will not yield without a ferocious struggle. Hilary Mantel's Bring Up the Bodies follows the dramatic trial of the queen and her suitors for adultery and treason. To defeat the Boleyns, Cromwell must ally with his natural enemies, the papist aristocracy. What price will he pay for Anne's head?"--
Publisher: New York : Henry Holt and Co., 2012.
Edition: 1st U.S. ed.
ISBN: 9780805090031
0805090037
Characteristics: xvii, 410 pages ;,25 cm

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Aug 21, 2014
  • modestgoddess rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Such a stunning novel. Love Mantel's way with words. What a picture she paints of Cromwell and Henry and life at court in the days of Anne Boleyn's waning influence. Despite how sympathetically Mantel paints Cromwell, it is easy to see how others despised him - while at the same time respecting his political savvy. Fantastic read, highly recommend. (Also recommend Wolf Hall, which came first and shows Cromwell's rise to influence in Henry VIII's court and which is also fantastic - don't be put off by the length, you'll be sorry when it's over!)

One of the most interesting historical novels of the last few decades, and a deserving Booker Prize winner.

I found Wolf Hall very challenging. Ms Mantel's writing style is idiosyncratic, to say the least. However, it was well worth the effort. Her research is amazing, given that little about Anne Boylen's life is available and actually true. She bring all the characters in BUTB to real life, not someone you had to keep checking the "list of players" at the beginning of WH.
I have been studying the Tudor dynasty, as a hobby. for years. Ms. Mantel's novels are almost superior to the non-fiction works I have read. I look forward to the third book - T Cromwell seems to have disappeared after his years in the sun - and I would NOT have wanted to be in Henry's sun.
Bring up the Bodies is a tantalizing read - kudos to Ms. Mantel. I hope the third Booker prize is ready for her name.

Jun 03, 2013
  • lisahiggs rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This one was less challenging than Wolf Hall, perhaps because I’m practiced now in Mantel’s particular Cromwellian style, or perhaps simply because it’s a shorter book. Mantel keeps masterful track of the dozens of players jousting for position throughout the years around Henry the Eighth, and she manages to be fresh about it in a sea of Tudors pop culture. Not only fresh, but powerfully literary. Mantel won the Booker Prize AGAIN for this second book.

The hunting and death of Queen Anne (that’s hardly a spoiler) seemed a little rushed. I only hope that Cromwell’s death at the end of the trilogy isn’t the same. I assume he dies in the upcoming book, anyway. It has been quite a treat to read a book with Cromwell in it where he is still alive at the end.

May 29, 2013
  • DMRose rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I enjoyed this book immensely, even more than Wolf Hall. Both books, however, pull you in with their immediacy, which is most unusual in this type of historical fiction. It is so refreshing to read from the perspective of someone who, until now, was usually cast in the company of minor characters, with the focus on either Henry VIII, or one of his wives. I thoroughly enjoyed the different perspective of a much loved and familiar tale. I look forward to the third book in the trilogy

Loved this book almost as much as Wolf Hall. Can't wait for the next one in the trilogy.

Another exceptional book - the second in a trilogy. I have nothing bad to say about Hilary Mantel. I hope she is writing the third installment as we speak - or as I write this!

Feb 03, 2013
  • ceedeegee57 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

As good as Wolf Hall, perhaps better. My only complaint was the addition of "He, Cromwell, said..." I know some people found Wolf Hall confusing as the "He" in "He said" was rarely identified, but if you read carefully it was clear as day.
The evolution of Cromwell's character is wonderful and terrifying here. He inches towards evil, his power growing, thankfully there is never a point where there is one single choice/event that could have changed things, he is terribly human and vastly flawed.
The book was over far too soon, and yet completely satisfying.
Waiting feverishly for the final installment.

Jan 22, 2013
  • ambergrey100 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A challenging read but totally worth the effort. The writer is a master of historical fiction, As good as or even better than Wolf Hall.

Jan 08, 2013
  • llwboston rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Although I enjoyed Wolf Hall, I think this sequel is a much more enjoyable read, downright suspenseful, even if you know the history and therefore the outcome of the story. On finishing the book I think I understand why Hilary Mantel thinks Cromwell's story merits a trilogy. The somewhat sympathetic character of Wolf Hall has become a monster by the end of "Bodies". Lookinf forward to the third installment, and his downfall.

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