THE ASSASSINATION OF MARGARET THATCHER AND OTHER STORIES BY HILARY MANTEL
4TH ESTATE (HARDBACK), 2015
This book is part of my Popsugar Reading Challenge 2015. The category for this book is ‘a book of short stories’.
BLURB FROM THE COVER
A brilliant – and rather transgressive – collection of short stories from the double Man Booker Prize-winning author of ‘Wolf Hall’ and ‘Bring Up the Bodies’.
Hilary Mantel is one of Britain’s most accomplished and acclaimed writers. In these ten bracingly subversive tales, all her gifts of characterisation and observation are fully engaged, summoning forth the horrors so often concealed behind everyday façades. Childhood cruelty is played out behind the bushes in ‘Comma’; nurses clash in ‘Harley Street’ over something more than professional differences; and in the title story, staying in for the plumber turns into an ambiguous and potentially deadly waiting game.
Whether set in a claustrophobic Saudi Arabian flat or on a precarious mountain road in Greece, these stories share an insight into the darkest recesses of the spirit. Displaying all of Mantel’s unmistakable style and wit, they reveal a great writer at the peak of her powers.
In those days, the doorbell didn’t ring often, and if it did I would draw back into the body of the house. (SORRY TO DISTURB)
Mantel is one of my favourite writers thanks to Wolf Hall, Bring up the Bodies and A Place of Greater Safety. This is the first time I’ve read her short fiction.
The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher is a strong collection of stories. I thoroughly enjoyed every one. I did have my favourites. Sorry to Disturb reminds me of her novel Eight Months on Ghazzah Street. Comma was a brilliant story about the cruelty of children and how friendship can sometimes be twisted. Winter Break gave me chills with its rather sinister ending suggesting the couple’s driver knocked down and killed a child en-route and hid the body in the trunk. The Heart Fails without Warning is the saddest story I’ve ever read about eating disorders. The title story was also pretty great. I’d highly recommend this collection of stories. I hope Mantel’s next release is the final book in her trilogy about Thomas Cromwell.