Wolf Hall – Book Review
People told me two things about Wolf Hall. You’re going to love it, or you’re going to hate it, BUT if you hate it, you’re going to love hating it because it’s simply an incredible read.
This is historical fiction for the serious reader, and a real treat for those fans of Tudor times; and I know there are more of you out there than are willing to admit. Take a look at this, you’ll be blown away.
It’s not a light read, it’s not a pick up and put down read. It needs time, and attention, and a small passion for history; or more specifically the reign of Henry VIII, and the story of Thomas Cromwell. I know very little from this period in history, and I found it a bit of a struggle to keep up with the names and events. It’s not a slowly paced story, by any means; you just need to give it the time it deserves.
I couldn’t do it justice by trying to read it on the bus, sandwiched between a stockbroker and a loud mouth tourist. I needed a quiet corner, with no interruptions, and that included meals. Some may find Hilary’s use of ‘he’ hard at the beginning, but there’s a rhythm to it. ‘He’ is Cromwell, brought alive, his actions not necessarily justified, but explained in a sense that puts the people and the purpose aligned. It’s hard to describe the understanding that comes with putting this book down. I may not pick up the second until I’ve had a better look at the history books, but I’m damn glad I’ve ‘done’ the first.
Book Review by Jacq Ellem