Wolf Hall

Wolf Hall

A Novel

Book - 2010
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Assuming the power recently lost by the disgraced Cardinal Wolsey, Thomas Cromwell counsels a mercurial Henry VIII on the latter's efforts to marry Anne Boleyn against the wishes of Rome, a successful endeavor that comes with a dangerous price.
Publisher: New York :, Picador,, [2010]
Edition: 1st Picador ed.
Copyright Date: ©2009
ISBN: 9780312429980
Branch Call Number: FIC MANT
Characteristics: xxiii, 604 pages : portrait, genealogical table ; 21 cm


From Library Staff

604 pages. Also available in OverDrive.

From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Apr 01, 2020

All hail Hilary Mantel, master of bringing the Tudor court to life so palpably you feel you are really there! As a lover of this time period, I will read anything centering on the Tudor dynasty from Shakespeare to the silliest YA romp. However, Mantel's masterpiece outshines them all, following the rise of lowborn Thomas Cromwell as he becomes Henry VIII's closest advisor. Cromwell is often portrayed as a villain in Tudor fiction, so it was fascinating getting to know him, his family, and his political allies and enemies through a protagonist's lens.

Wolf Hall is dense (almost 700 pages) and it can be difficult to keep track of its numerous characters (especially when so many of them have the same first names), but don't let that deter you. If you're a fan of court intrigue, you won't want to miss this winner of the 2009 Booker Prize.

Mar 23, 2020

Mantel begins her trilogy with a gripping novel of the rise of Thomas Cromwell in the heady (and dangerous) political landscape of Henry VIII's court. Figures like Katherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Cardinal Wolsey, Thomas More, William Tyndale, and Archbishop Cranmer, jostle for position among the international intrigue of Henry's martial status, reform of the Church, and rivalry between England, France, the Papacy, and the Empire. Imperceptibly, Cromwell "arranges his face" as a courtier and climbs the ladder of power as others fall into disgrace, exile, or even the fires of the executioner. Be prepared to be captivated by this window onto history, and onto the soul of the central character.

Aug 25, 2019

Part of former US President, Barack Obama's summer reading list for 2019.

Jun 27, 2019

I loved this book (and also Bring Up the Bodies). I am just puzzled that anyone found either book boring. I read both of them feeling like I WAS Thomas Cromwell. Made the time come alive for me.

Dec 20, 2018

a treasure!

It took me ages to finish it and I felt like celebrating when I did. I loved the BBC miniseries and I did appreciate the first and last third of it, but it was hard to get into the groove of this book. However, the detail, the portrayal of Cromwell and the extraordinary work that went into researching this book is astounding. Her prose is dry, often extremely subtle and witty. It is as slippery as Cromwell himself. I wish I loved it more than I did. I will still read Bring up the Bodies.

Nov 28, 2018

Wow, great title and that's about it.

Despite all the critical acclaim it's just a very boring read. The potential is amazing, and I imagine the research and work that went into it was substantial, but the writing was just missing some ingredient to make it interesting. Also, an annoying feature is that the pronoun "he" is almost exclusively reserved for Thomas Cromwell, which may seem like a neat literary device, it is a little confusing at first, and then just plain annoying. Fantastic idea for a book but the writing just does not follow through, it became more and more difficult to pick it up and about exactly half way through I stopped...well, after 350 pages enough is enough.
PS The TV series could be really good though...

Apr 05, 2017

Fun read. I am not sure I wouldn't like a good history book about the same era just as much, maybe more?

Feb 09, 2017

Easy to read, continully enthralling. A guise of history in soap opera form. Too many names to remember.

Bunny_Watson716 Dec 12, 2016

For fans of dense historical fiction who enjoy novels set in Tudor England. This is a book you can sink your teeth into and you won't be disappointed with Mantel's richly detailed writing style.

View All Comments


Add Notices
Jan 30, 2011

Violence: This title contains Violence.

Jan 30, 2011

Coarse Language: This title contains Coarse Language.

Jan 30, 2011

Sexual Content: This title contains Sexual Content.


Add Age Suitability
Jul 05, 2013

pagetraveler thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 16 and 99

Jan 30, 2011


Add a Summary
Nov 25, 2013

Very well written.
But for someone who gets to read just 30 or so minutes at bedtime, it was too long - nearly 700 pages!

Jul 05, 2013

Based on English history and the time of the Tudors. Takes the point of view of Thomas Cromwell to tell the story of Henry the VIII and his 1st and 2nd wives and his relationship with the church.


Add a Quote
Jul 17, 2012

You learn nothing about men by snubbing them and crushing their pride. You must ask them what it is they can do in this world, that they alone can do.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at APL

To Top