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Fludd: A Novel by Hilary Mantel
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Fludd: A Novel (original 1989; edition 2000)

by Hilary Mantel (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
7662520,671 (3.44)134
From the double Man Booker prize-winning author of 'Wolf Hall', this is a dark fable of lost faith and awakening love amidst the moors. Fetherhoughton is a drab, dreary town somewhere in a magical, half-real 1950s north England, a preserve of ignorance and superstition protected against the advance of reason by its impenetrable moor-fogs. Father Angwin, the town's cynical priest, has lost his faith, and wants nothing more than to be left alone. Sister Philomena strains against the monotony of convent life and the pettiness of her fellow nuns. The rest of the town goes about their lives in a haze, a never-ending procession of grim, grey days stretching ahead of them. Yet all of that is about to change. A strange visitor appears one stormy night, bringing with him the hint, the taste of something entirely new, something unknown. But who is Fludd? An angel come to shake the Fetherhoughtonians from their stupor, to reawaken Father Angwin's faith, to show Philomena the nature of love? Or is he the devil himself, a shadowy wanderer of the darkest places in the human heart? Full of dry wit, compassionate characterisations and cutting insight, Fludd is a brilliant gem of a book, and one of Hilary Mantel's most original works.… (more)
Member:Luciana43
Title:Fludd: A Novel
Authors:Hilary Mantel (Author)
Info:Henry Holt & Co (2000), Edition: First, 181 pages
Collections:2020
Rating:**
Tags:Fiction*

Work details

Fludd by Hilary Mantel (1989)

  1. 00
    The Ballad of Peckham Rye by Muriel Spark (isabelx)
    isabelx: A stranger comes to town who may not be what we seems to be.
  2. 00
    Under the Glacier by Halldór Laxness (deb80)
    deb80: Similar plot and characters. The bishop is not amused. He sends an emissary to investigate a malfunctioning pastor, church and congregation, with wacky and wonderful results.
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» See also 134 mentions

English (24)  Italian (1)  All languages (25)
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
Having recently found a note in an old diary that shows I read this in the 90s I was expecting it to ring some bells as I read it again, but it really didn't. But I enjoyed it - an oddity of a book set in a cold, grim village on the moors. I'm not sure quite what is going on in it, but it's funny and dark and grimly magical. The questioning of the basics of communion by 7 year olds is very funny, and the madness of nuns, unable to travel alone, going back and forth between nunneries. I didn't know what to make of it in the end, but it's brilliantly written. ( )
  AlisonSakai | Feb 1, 2019 |
a fantasia on a eucharistic theme: the disjoints between appearance (nature, as some translations would put it) and essence. this simple theme spirals toward a magical realist novel set in the midst of the vatican ii reforms (which attempted to alter the appearance of the church while preserving its essence) into a world where holy men have no faith and rarely wear their true faces. a highly philosophical investigation into the way these two elements can disconnect and interconnect through the lens of catholicism and character study
the only reason this isn't a 5* review is because there was a chunk in the middle which really dragged; the rest of it, however, was an absolute pageturner, as much as it doesn't sound like one. ( )
  livingtoast | Jan 23, 2019 |
skillful indictment of hypocrisy in the C of E - executed w Mantel's darkly wry humor ( )
  Overgaard | Feb 13, 2018 |
Excellent story. Very enjoyable. ( )
  wildredword | Jul 28, 2017 |
Delightful ( )
  christinedux | May 23, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
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Dedication
For Anne Ostrowska
First words
On Wednesday the bishop came in person.
Quotations
Out of her black drapings and her rolls of petticoats, standing shivering in the fireless parlour in her long linen drawers, she looked a pitiful beanpole ... she stood with her arms crossed over her breasts in a pose at once picturesque and gauche: going to God knows what.
"Twilfit or Excelsior?" Sister Anthony asked.
"Oh, I couldn't. I couldn't put on corsets. I've never worn corsets in my life."
Sister Anthony was taken aback. "Don't you have them in Ireland these days?"
"I shouldn't know how to manage. What if I wanted to go to the lavatory?"
"You'll have to have something, you know." Sister Anthony felt around in the chest. "Try this bust-bodice. Come on now, look lively. ... Either you may have my silk combinations," she said, "or you'll have to go in your drawers, please yourself.""
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Wikipedia in English (1)

From the double Man Booker prize-winning author of 'Wolf Hall', this is a dark fable of lost faith and awakening love amidst the moors. Fetherhoughton is a drab, dreary town somewhere in a magical, half-real 1950s north England, a preserve of ignorance and superstition protected against the advance of reason by its impenetrable moor-fogs. Father Angwin, the town's cynical priest, has lost his faith, and wants nothing more than to be left alone. Sister Philomena strains against the monotony of convent life and the pettiness of her fellow nuns. The rest of the town goes about their lives in a haze, a never-ending procession of grim, grey days stretching ahead of them. Yet all of that is about to change. A strange visitor appears one stormy night, bringing with him the hint, the taste of something entirely new, something unknown. But who is Fludd? An angel come to shake the Fetherhoughtonians from their stupor, to reawaken Father Angwin's faith, to show Philomena the nature of love? Or is he the devil himself, a shadowy wanderer of the darkest places in the human heart? Full of dry wit, compassionate characterisations and cutting insight, Fludd is a brilliant gem of a book, and one of Hilary Mantel's most original works.

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