Lynne Truss

Antichrist or Angel?

Fludd

By Hilary Mantel

Viking 186pp £11.95 order from our bookshop

If novels are going to be as rich in reference as Hilary Mantel’s Fludd, I do think the publishers should be encouraged to add optional reading lists at the end. Fludd is a funny, exquisitely written story of priests and nuns in Fifties England, but it is also a questioning, intellectual book that applies a profound thoughtfulness to various abstruse areas of religious (or supernatural) belief. It left me longing to know more about all sorts of things: miracles, angels, Aquinas’s doctrine of form and matter. I buzzed around Dillon’s with more animation than I’ve summoned up for years.

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