Why didn’t I review Wolf Hall here? Was I still too excited? Bring Up The Bodies is just as good, I think, although it wasn’t able to give me quite the same eerie feeling I had in the first half of Wolf Hall: that the jealousies and quarrels of the Tudors were the shiftings of a prism casting its light and shadows down the centuries, a shadowplay we still inhabit.
I’ve read more than one reviewer describe Bring Up The Bodies as “austere”, which only makes sense if language and character don’t count as luxuries.
Both books gave me so much pleasure that all I want to do is gesture in a way which somehow combines magnanimity with envy and which says “go read them now, you lucky bastards”. (I wish I could read both novels again for the first time.)