Goodreads Monday: The Mirror and the Light

Goodreads Monday is a weekly meme where we randomly select a book from our Goodreads To Be Read list and share it with the world. It’s hosted by Lauren’s Page Turners, so be sure to link back to her site so that we can all see what everyone plans to read!



The Mirror and the Light (Thomas Cromwell trilogy #3)
by Hilary Mantel
Historical Fiction
784 pages
Expected publication March 10, 2020

From Goodreads:

If you cannot speak truth at a beheading, when can you speak it?

England, May 1536. Anne Boleyn is dead, decapitated in the space of a heartbeat by a hired French executioner. As her remains are bundled into oblivion, Thomas Cromwell breakfasts with the victors. The blacksmith’s son from Putney emerges from the spring’s bloodbath to continue his climb to power and wealth, while his formidable master, Henry VIII, settles to short-lived happiness with his third queen before Jane dies giving birth to the male heir he most craves.

Cromwell is a man with only his wits to rely on; he has no great family to back him, no private army. Despite rebellion at home, traitors plotting abroad and the threat of invasion testing Henry’s regime to the breaking point, Cromwell’s robust imagination sees a new country in the mirror of the future. But can a nation, or a person, shed the past like a skin? Do the dead continually unbury themselves? What will you do, the Spanish ambassador asks Cromwell, when the king turns on you, as sooner or later he turns on everyone close to him?

With The Mirror & the Light, Hilary Mantel brings to a triumphant close the trilogy she began with Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies. She traces the final years of Thomas Cromwell, the boy from nowhere who climbs to the heights of power, offering a defining portrait of predator and prey, of a ferocious contest between present and past, between royal will and a common man’s vision: of a modern nation making itself through conflict, passion, and courage.


I read the first two books in this trilogy, Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies, in 2019 and they quickly became some of my favorite books. The Mirror and the Light is the final book, and I’m kind of glad I waited so long to read the first two since it’s been several years since Bring up the Bodies was published. I didn’t have to wait as long for the final volume. It comes out a little after my birthday, so it’s like the publishing industry conspired to give me a fantastic birthday present.

6 thoughts on “Goodreads Monday: The Mirror and the Light

  1. I pre-ordered a copy back in January, so it will be arriving on my doorstep soon!

    I am glaring at the publishing industry for releasing a Sarah J Maas book the week of my birthday, so I will either have to give up bookish social media or put up with most of the people I follow fangirling over that book………….

  2. Hahaha. True. True. It helps that I don’t particularly care about social media, so when my favorite authors release new books I manage to avoid most of the spoilers. Mwahaha.

    Are you someone who reads Maas’s works? For some reason, I didn’t imagine that. Or do you mean that you just don’t want to listen to all the fangirling? 😉

  3. I won’t have any trouble with spoilers on the book I am getting, The Mirror and the Light. It’s a fictional account of Thomas Cromwell’s life in the court or Henry VIII, so everything is a foregone conclusion. The fact that I know everything that is going to happen in now way detracts from the anazingness that is Hilary Mantel’s writing.

    I definitely do not like Maas’s books, so I am dreading the fangirling….

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