Review Round up: The Mirror and the Light By Hilary Mantel

Love London Love Culture rounds up the reviews for the concluding part of Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall trilogy.

The Guardian: “The Mirror & the Light is generously self-sufficient – to read this alone would hardly be skimping: it is four or five books in itself. But it also continues, deepens, and revises its forebears, negotiating with its past as does Cromwell with his.”

The Independent: ***** “The Mirror & the Light is another shrewd character portrait of Cromwell, and it is also a complex, insightful exploration of power, sex, loyalty, friendship, religion, class and statecraft. “

Evening Standard: “Mantel gets so brilliantly right are the intimate details that counted for everything in a Renaissance court – the gossip, the importance of sheer proximity to the monarch, how rumour passes through ladies in waiting, the way the king’s very chamber pot is treated reverently.”

The Telegraph: **** “After an eight-year wait, the third and final part of Hilary Mantel’s trilogy about Thomas Cromwell, the blacksmith’s son who became right-hand man to Henry VIII, is here. Advance orders have exceeded even those for Margaret Atwood’s The Testaments. Waterstones Piccadilly will be holding a special eve-of-publication signing on 4th March, an event that brings back memories of ecstatic eleven-year-olds queuing at midnight for the latest Harry Potter. So strictly has the publisher’s embargo been enforced that reviewers like me have feared that a single loose word, whether of praise or damnation, could see us taken to the Tower for one of Cromwell’s special chats which invariably conclude with your head and body in different postal districts.”

iNews: “Ambitious, compassionate, clear-eyed yet emotional, passionate and pragmatic, The Mirror & The Light lays down a marker for historical fiction that will set the standard for generations to come.” “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.”

The Daily Mail: **** “For sure, it’s the capstone on an amazing feat of sustained achievement, but The Mirror & the Light could break the hearts of ardent Mantelites by not quite living up to the nigh-on impossibly high standards she set with the last two.”

The Mirror and the Light is published on the 5th March.

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