Copyright © Louise Bostock 2007-2013. Please give credit where credit is due.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Book Notes No. 34 : Fludd, Hilary Mantel

Auberon Waugh called Hilary Mantel's Fludd "A faultless comic masterpiece". But it jumped off my yet-to-read pile and into my arms not because of his illustrious recommendation, but because of what seemed to be its relevance to recent weather. I was wrong ... no Noah in sight...


In the northern mill town of Fetherhoughton, remote and backward, Father Angwin the parish priest presides over the souls of the brutish tea-swilling inhabitants. He has lost his faith and replaced it with a strong desire to be left alone, especially by the new-broom bishop. In the nearby convent, a young Irish nun yearns for freedom and a good meal, while the demonic Mother Perpetua plots her downfall.


Into this setting comes an unexpected visitor. He is wrapped somewhat unconventionally in a cloak and carries a black bag. His conversation is learned and his table manners mysterious. Fludd has come to introduce the demonic art of coffee-making, to stir up buried passions, to force confrontations. "I have come to transform you," he says. "Transformation is my business."


But who - exactly - is Fludd, and where will it all lead?


Mantel's short novel is a joy. With great skill, she brings together the mysterious and the miraculous, the commonplace and the extraordinary. The fluffy-slippered townswomen who gossip, arms crossed, on the streetside doorsteps and the bishop who likes to tear around the diocese in his big black car. The bullies in authority and the worms who eventually turn. 


Funny. Imaginative. Striking. 


And first rate.



3 comments:

LadyFi said...

Wonderful review. Sounds like a great read. Have to read Wolf Hall first though.

Letherton said...

I stumbled across your blog and wanted to say hi.
Take a minute an check my blog out if you haven't already.
I have lots of great giveaways going on.
Thanks :)

ethertonphotography.blogspot.com

Bossy Betty said...

Thanks for this review! I am looking for some good books for summer!

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Book Notes No. 34 : Fludd, Hilary Mantel

Auberon Waugh called Hilary Mantel's Fludd "A faultless comic masterpiece". But it jumped off my yet-to-read pile and into my arms not because of his illustrious recommendation, but because of what seemed to be its relevance to recent weather. I was wrong ... no Noah in sight...


In the northern mill town of Fetherhoughton, remote and backward, Father Angwin the parish priest presides over the souls of the brutish tea-swilling inhabitants. He has lost his faith and replaced it with a strong desire to be left alone, especially by the new-broom bishop. In the nearby convent, a young Irish nun yearns for freedom and a good meal, while the demonic Mother Perpetua plots her downfall.


Into this setting comes an unexpected visitor. He is wrapped somewhat unconventionally in a cloak and carries a black bag. His conversation is learned and his table manners mysterious. Fludd has come to introduce the demonic art of coffee-making, to stir up buried passions, to force confrontations. "I have come to transform you," he says. "Transformation is my business."


But who - exactly - is Fludd, and where will it all lead?


Mantel's short novel is a joy. With great skill, she brings together the mysterious and the miraculous, the commonplace and the extraordinary. The fluffy-slippered townswomen who gossip, arms crossed, on the streetside doorsteps and the bishop who likes to tear around the diocese in his big black car. The bullies in authority and the worms who eventually turn. 


Funny. Imaginative. Striking. 


And first rate.



3 comments:

LadyFi said...

Wonderful review. Sounds like a great read. Have to read Wolf Hall first though.

Letherton said...

I stumbled across your blog and wanted to say hi.
Take a minute an check my blog out if you haven't already.
I have lots of great giveaways going on.
Thanks :)

ethertonphotography.blogspot.com

Bossy Betty said...

Thanks for this review! I am looking for some good books for summer!