For years, I’ve been getting eager emails from readers that ask the same question: When is the final installment of Hilary Mantel’s “Wolf Hall” trilogy coming? Any word? Now there are many words (757 pages’ worth), with “The Mirror and the Light” finally here. The novelist and critic Thomas Mallon reviews it on our cover. And with coronavirus keeping many of us reading folk inside, there’s no better time to catch up on the full series. Here’s our review of the first book, 2009’s “Wolf Hall,” and the second, “Bring Up the Bodies.”
Now’s also a good time for some escape reading. For those who prefer to read on the dark side, you’ll be happy to know that Marilyn Stasio has some great recommendations in Crime. And for the many readers who have been writing and asking about our cherished crime columnist, you will be glad to know that the hardened New York City taxi that tried to mow her down found its match in Marilyn. She has fully recovered from the accident and is back to her biweekly habit of reviewing. We also have some global noir for you in this week’s Shortlist.
Lastly, if you want to read about another era under duress, you could do far worse than “The Splendid and the Vile,” Erik Larson’s latest best-selling work of narrative nonfiction, which looks at Winston Churchill’s leadership of Britain under the Blitz. Candice Millard, another writer of excellent narrative nonfiction (start with the gripping “Destiny of the Republic”), reviews.
Please stay safe, stay healthy, stay reading. It’s one of the few pleasures we can hold onto under these trying conditions. Sending well wishes to all our readers.
And, as usual, feel free to let us know what you think — whether it’s about this newsletter, our reviews, our podcast, our literary calendar, our Instagram or what you’re reading. We read and ponder all of it. I even write back, albeit belatedly. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor of The New York Times Book Review
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