A theme this week – after the cushion – seems to be that sometimes you need to persevere.
I have loved many of Hilary Mantel’s books, especially A Place Of Greater Safety and Beyond Black. As I have something of a Tudor fetish, I couldn’t wait for Wolf Hall, but to say that I was disappointed is an understatement. As my mother would say, I just couldn’t get away with it. Even though I already knew the plot – the book, which is the first of a trilogy that follows the life and career of Thomas Cromwell, covers the rise of Anne Boleyn – I was still confused and, at the end, none the wiser.
And yet, I asked for ‘Bring Up The Bodies’, the sequel to ‘Wolf Hall’, for my birthday, and Jude bought it for me, and I read it.
And I loved it. Loved it to the extent of lugging it to Glasgow for a 24 hour work trip even though I know a Kindle is a better bet than a book the size of a breezeblock. Stayed up too late loving it. Ignored people loving it. Felt very, very sad when I got to the end loving it.
Apart from the ending – the beautifully, breathtakingly written ending – here’s my favourite bit. No prizes for guessing why. Cromwell reflects:
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.
You can buy ‘Bring Up The Bodies’ here. If you do, I hope you enjoy it.