WINNER OF THE 2009 MAN BOOKER PRIZE
WINNER OF THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR FICTION
A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
The first novel in Hilary Mantel’s magnificent trilogy about Thomas Cromwell and Henry VIII, in a gorgeous new edition to celebrate the trilogy’s completion with the #1 New York Times-bestselling The Mirror & the Light
England in the 1520s is a heartbeat from disaster. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Henry VIII wants to annul his marriage of twenty years and marry Anne Boleyn. The pope and most of Europe opposes him. Into this impasse steps Thomas Cromwell: a wholly original man, a charmer and a bully, both idealist and opportunist, astute in reading people, and implacable in his ambition. But Henry is volatile: one day tender, one day murderous.
Cromwell rises to heights no one could have imagined. The Boleyns, the Howards, the old families and the new, cannot fathom why the king so trusts and relies on a man of no title and an obscured past, even after Cromwell’s mentor Cardinal Wolsey falls from favor. Cromwell manages to deliver the king’s wishes, but what will be the price of his triumph? In Wolf Hall, Mantel inhabits the fascinating mind of a man little understood and widely mythologized, bringing his influence on the making of Britain into new, dazzling light.