Bring Up the Bodies

A Novel

Hilary Mantel; Read by Simon Vance

Macmillan Audio

  • Man Booker Prize Winner

    Man Booker Prize Winner

  • Buy it now

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?

Bring Up the Bodies is the winner of the 2012 Man Booker Prize

Bring Up the Bodies is one of Publishers Weekly's Top 10 Best Books of 2012 and one of The Washington Post's 10 Best Books of 2012





  • Hilary Mantel on 'Bring Up the Bodies'

    Hilary Mantel talks about her newest book 'Bring Up the Bodies,' the sequel to her Man Booker Prize-winning novel "Wolf Hall.' 'Bring Up the Bodies' delves into the heart of Tudor history with the downfall of Anne Boleyn.

  • Hilary Mantel Interviewed on NPR's Weekend Edition

    Hilary Mantel discusses Bring Up The Bodies on NPR's Weekend Edition.

  • Hilary Mantel interviewed on NPR's Fresh Air

    Hilary Mantel discusses her Man Booker Prize winning novel, Bring Up The Bodies, on NPR's Fresh Air.



Praise for Bring Up the Bodies

“This second volume in Hilary Mantel’s planned trilogy about Thomas Cromwell, right-hand man to Henry VIII of England, is a perfect marriage of the written and spoken word…Simon Vance’s silken tones and expert pacing keep us engaged throughout…Vance enhances the story with instructive vocal portraits of key players and a listenable tempo that keeps us clear and entranced until the end.” – AudioFile Magazine, winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

Can one improve Hilary Mantel’s tale of Tudor intrigue, Bring Up the Bodies, which has racked up both sales and awards? Well, yes, if you add Simon Vance’s acclaimed voice. In an Audie-nominated performance, Vance doesn’t simply narrate the Man Booker winner – he seems to inhabit the characters.” – USA Today, four out of four stars

“If you listened to Simon Slater’s riveting reading of the Booker Prize-wining ‘Wolf Hall,’ the 2009 opener in Hilary Mantel’s trilogy, the news that the sequel has a different narrator won’t be good. Fear not. Simon Vance’s narration is every bit as versatile and nuanced as Slater’s, his intonation for each character is as uncannily distinctive – a critical requirement with so many characters. Even better, Vance’s voice portrayal of the historically maligned Thomas Cromwell, chief adviser to King Henry VII, is almost indistinguishable from Slater’s in ‘Wolf Hall’” – Newark Star-Ledger

“We all know the story, but hearing it described through Cromwell’s eloquent words and inner thoughts on power and ambition, his own included, make it new again, and riveting. Mantel’s language is extraordinary – it’s as though she’s channeled Cromwell from beyond and burrowed into his mind – and Simon Vance’s impeccable reading is a perfect match. A wonderful way to celebrate audio month.” – BookPage

“Narrator Simon Vance’s skillful presentation enhances Mantel’s outstanding description and dialogue. His gorgeous sound, tone and accent add to the beauty and horror of the compelling story.” – Library Journal, starred review

“Narrator Simon Vance shines in his portrayal of the characters, creating a range of distinct voices – including the increasingly tense Anne Boleyn and the earnest Georgey, Cromwell’s mild-mannered young son who is eager to prove himself. Best of all, however, are the measured tones Vance employs for the conniving Cromwell. The narrator captures the soul of this complex character, a man of innate pragmatism and confidence who is also quietly haunted by regrets. Vance also nails the bone-dry wit of the characters. In all, this is an exemplary audiobook.” – Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Vance takes commence of the complex story, reading Mantel’s complicated prose with assurance…Tensions leading up to Anne Bolyn’s execution run high, and Vance relays the emotions with precision and grace, showing that he is attuned to the complicated plot.” – Booklist

“I downloaded Hilary Mantel’s majestic ‘Bring Up the Bodies’ and was pleasantly surprised to hear Vance’s gentle and authoritative voice once again. It was like running into an old friend and knowing that we were about to have a long and satisfying visit.” John Schwartz, The New York Times Book Review

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Hilary Mantel; Read by Simon Vance

  • Hilary Mantel is the bestselling author of ten previous novels, including Wolf Hall, which sold more than 200,000 copies and won the 2009 Man Booker Prize. Her previous works include her novel, A Place of Greater Safety, and her memoir, Giving Up the Ghost. She lives in England with her husband.

  • Hilary Mantel John Haynes
    Hilary Mantel
  • Simon Vance







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    Available Formats and Book Details

    Bring Up the Bodies

    A Novel

    Hilary Mantel; Read by Simon Vance

    Man Booker Prize Winner, Publishers Weekly Best Books of the Year, Washington Post Best Books of the Year, Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year, New York Times Book Review Notable Books of the Year, Time Magazine Top 10 Books of the Year, Entertainment Weekly Best Books of the Year, NPR Best Book of the Year, New Yorker Best Books of the Year, The Independent (UK) Best Books of the Year, Cleveland Plain Dealer's Best Books of the Year, USA Today Best Books of the Year, Costa Book Award - Winner, Audie Award Winner, Walter Scott Prize Shortlist, Man Booker Prize Winner, Costa Book Award - Winner


    Macmillan Audio