My recent reading has me pondering a couple of questions, so who better to turn to for answers than my fellow book bloggers and reading friends?  So, here’s what I was wondering…

All during my reading of  Wolf Hall, I wondered why Mantel titled the book after Jane Seymour’s ancestral estate.  Seymour herself doesn’t figure prominently in the story, and while I know she was Henry VIII’s next victim wife,  I wasn’t clear on the reason for making Wolf Hall the title of a book which was mainly about Thomas Cromwell.  Was there a connection between Cromwell and Seymour that I missed? 

After finishing Wolf Hall, I read In the Woods, Tana French’s first novel, and my first read by this author.  I enjoyed the book, although I never felt quite as interested in the characters as I’d hoped I would.  My main disappointment with it lay in the ending…I felt it was rather anti-climactic, and was really hoping for some resolution to the  murders of Peter and Jamie.  Instead, that story line was left completely unsolved, and Rob Ryan shuffled off into no-man’s land.   I know French’s books have lots of fans out there –  what did you all think about the ending of this book?

That’s it…I was just wondering…


6 thoughts on “Wondering

  1. “Rather anti-climatic” is such a polite way of saying what I felt when I finished it. I had a few swear words running through my mind, due to my severe disappointment. I think I know better than to expect every book to tie up neatly, I don’t even always like it when they do, but I surely expected a murder mystery to leave me with a bit more closure than Tana did! Goodness sakes, the whole reason I finished the book was to find out what happened to him and his childhood friends, and to not know was disappointing to say the least. A few people who loved it said that they were all wrapped up in the writing, but to me, that wasn’t enough in this case. Also, a few people said they liked the second book, The Likeness, better. I wouldn’t know, it’ll be a long time before I pick up a book by Ms. French again. 😉

    As to the blogging template question I’ve been fussing over, I think I may very well switch back to Misty Look such as you have here (it’s one I started with way back when in April when I switched from Blogger). It seems to have the best of both worlds: clarity for ease of reading and navigation from the sidebars.

    • I suspected you had the same feelings as I regarding the ending of that one. Maybe she’ll tie that loose end up in another book down the line somewhere.

      My favorite mystery/suspense writer is still Elizabeth George, particularly her early books.

  2. In terms of Wolf Hall. I believe it alludes to an old saying that basically says that “man is man’s wolf” or as Cromwell says at some point, “man is wolf to man”.

    Human are predators. Especially men in Tudor times. It was the only way to attain, and stay on top of, the political heap as it were.

    In the story of Cromwell, and even of Henry and his wives, there are many cases such as this; “wolves” preying upon the weak in order to better themselves to the King and curry favor(s).

    Even the women were not immune as they attempted to maneuver themselves, and their families, into advantageous positions at court.

    I think the only person who can clarify this is the author herself, and I couldn’t find a quote or anything to reference in order to support my supposition.

    But I think this is what it means and I hope it helps you to understand better about the book and its theme.

    This book is definitely on my radar. After doing some research based on your question, I am eager to get my hands on a copy.

    Thank you!

    • Thank YOU, J.C., for doing the research I was too lazy to do! My friend suggested the same conclusion, noting Cromwell’s phrase about “man being wolf to man.”

      It was a mercenary, violent time in history, wasn’t it?

  3. Oh good, I’m glad it wasn’t just me feeling a bit short-changed at the end of In The Woods!
    I put it down to being a former court and crime reporter and wanting things to be tied up, but I was still rather disappointed as I would have liked at least a hint!
    I did enjoy The Likeness though – at least there weren’t any loose ends (or if there were I missed them).

    Am still to tackle Wolf Hall for the second time – I was enjoying it back in April but it had to go back to the library when I was still only about a quarter the way through.

  4. I haven’t read Wolf Hall but I did read In the Woods and had the same reaction you did. While I thought the writing was brilliant, I was hugely disappointed in the ending. A lot of bloggers said it was daring of her to leave what I considered the “main” mystery unsolved – but I just felt cheated.

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