Monday, September 5, 2011

An interesting thought because of an interesting character...

After years of string at the book in shops, wanting to read it, I finally found Wolf Hall in the library.

It just brought an important points to my attention. Even though I'm barely half way.

It took a while for me to get into, but there's something wonderful about reading about a relatively famous episode in history from the view of a person who people tend to forget.

Thomas Cromwell can be seen as a winner from the whole situation with Henry VIII's divorce from Catherine of Aragon. And, if memory serves, he kept right on winning all the way through to (I think) Anne of Cleves, wife number four of six.

Given Henry VIII's personality, that's pretty impressive. In fact, he was an impressive person. But for some reason he just faded into the back ground. Perhaps because he was so skilled. He had to be pretty involved, but he always managed to keep ahead of the disasters.

That's probably why he isn't such a presence in our cultural minds. He escaped the drama, the tragedy. The shit that rained down in epic proportions.

He was the guy unafraid of getting his hands dirty, but somehow, he managed to stay clean...

So yeah, Hilary Mantel was brilliant in picking him as a main character. Because he was a truly impressive character and the way she writes him made me see the Tudors in a whole new light.

And that makes me wonder. There are so many periods in history that I love, with so many interesting, but disregarded characters...

It might make for an interesting bit of research for me to go looking for them. IF I finish all the other projects waiting for me.


  1. I'll have to check out this book. I had to learn about Thomas More and the time period for school--it was a fascinating time in history.

  2. I LOVED Wolf Hall. ADORE Hillary Mantel. One of my favorite reads ever. Of course, I love historical fiction and all things Tudor. :)

  3. I've been turned off the Tudor family from all the saturation in the media about them, but I'll be willing to give this a try if it's a fresh as you say it is, Misha.

  4. He had the longest run of any of them although ended about the same as all of them- Henry the VIII was no man to mess around with even when you managed it for the longest amount of time! I love Tudor stuff and read an interesting bio on Anne Boleyn by Allison Weir. She's done a lot on the Tudor's and had a little different take on Cromwell than most. He didn't come off nearly as well as some would like him to. But he is interesting nonetheless. The whole era is! Happy reading!

  5. I do love the idea of seeing events through the eyes of the less well-known people.

  6. Do they have the show The Tudors where you are? I think you'd like it!

  7. I have heard about this book a lot. Will try to get it.

  8. Finally some historical fiction that isn't some no name made up courtier spying on the King/Queen/Earl etc. There were so many titled Lords and advisers that get skimpy treatment when it comes it featuring as protagonists.

    Sounds like a book I'll have to sneak in somehow.

  9. I hadn't heard of him. Glad you're finally able to read the book and that you're enjoying it. Researching to find another lesser known historical figure is a good idea if you like to write historical fiction. Keep us posted if you find someone interesting!

  10. Wow, this sounds great - I'd better add it to my wishlist.


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