2015 rl challenge headera book with more than 500 pages
Hilary Mantel – Wolf Hall
rating: 4/5 | thoughts

  • Some of these things are true and some of them lies. But they are all good stories.
  • It is the absence of facts that frightens people: the gap you open, into which they pour their fears, fantasies, desires.
  • “You … person,” he says; and again, “you nobody from Hell, you whore-spawn, you cluster of evil, you lawyer.”
  • It is all very well planning what you will do in six months, what you will do in a year, but it’s no good at all if you don’t have a plan for tomorrow.
  • He thinks, I remembered you, Thomas More, but you didn’t remember me. You never even saw me coming.
  • Some said the world would end in 1533. Last year had its adherents too. Why not this year? There is always somebody ready to claim that these are the end times, and nominate his neighbor as the Antichrist.
  • Some said the world would end in 1533. Last year had its adherents too. Why not this year? There is always somebody ready to claim that these are the end times, and nominate his neighbor as the Antichrist.
  • But it is no use to justify yourself. It is no good to explain. It is weak to be anecdotal. It is wise to conceal the past even if there is nothing to conceal. A man’s power is in the half-light, in the half-seen movements of his hand and the unguessed-at expression of his face. It is the absence of facts that frightens people: the gap you open, into which they pour their fears, fantasies, desires.
  • Suppose within each book there is another book, and within every letter on every page another volume constantly unfolding; but these volumes take no space on the desk. Suppose knowledge could be reduced to a quintessence, held within a picture, a sign, held within a place which is no place. Suppose the human skull were to become capacious, spaces opening inside it, humming chambers like beehives.
  • No ruler in the history of the world has ever been able to afford a war. They’re not affordable things. No prince ever says, ‘This is my budget, so this is the kind of war I can have.
  • The world is not run from where he thinks. Not from border fortresses, not even from Whitehall. The world is run from Antwerp, from Florence, from places he has never imagined; from Lisbon, from where the ships with sails of silk drift west and are burned up in the sun. Not from the castle walls, but from counting houses, not be the call of the bugle, but by the click of the abacus, not by the grate and click of the mechanism of the gun but by the scrape of the pen on the page of the promissory note that pays for the gun and the gunsmith and the powder and shot.
  • But my sins are my strength, he thinks; the sins I have done, that others have not even found the opportunity of committing. I hug them close; they’re mine.
  • “I was always desired. But now i am valued.”
  • He wonders again if the dead need translators; perhaps in a moment, in a simple twist of unbecoming, they know everything they need to know.
  • “I have written books and I cannot unwrite them. I cannot unbelieve what I believe. I cannot unlive my life”
  • You don’t get on by being original. You don’t get on by being bright. You don’t get on by being strong. You get on by being a subtle crook
  • It is a sure sign of troubled minds, the habit of quotation.
  • Possibly it’s something women do: spend time imagining what it’s like to be each other. One can learn from that, he thinks.
  • Have you ever observed that when a man gets a son he takes all the credit, and when he gets a daughter he blames his wife? And if they do not breed at all, we say it is because her womb is barren. We do not say it is because his seed is bad.
  • He never lives in a single reality, but in a shifting shadow-mesh of diplomatic possibilities.
  • Look at my face: I am not afraid of any man alive.
  • Why are we so attached to the severities of the past? Why are we so proud of ourselves for having endured our fathers and our mothers, the fireless days and the meatless days, the cold winters and the sharp tongues? It’s not as if we had a choice.
  • “I think, if you’re going to kill a man, do it. Don’t write him a letter about it. Don’t bluster and threaten and put him on his guard.”
  • Beneath every history, another history.

    BUCHDETAILS

    Verlag: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd
    ISBN: 9780007230204
    Erscheinungsdatum: 2010

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