Entertainment & Arts

Hilary Mantel's next book will not feature Cromwell

Hilary Mantel Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Mantel's last Cromwell novel, Bring Up the Bodies, won the Man Booker Prize and the Costa Book of the Year

Hilary Mantel's next book will not feature Thomas Cromwell - the subject of her Man Booker Prize-winning novels Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies.

The collection of 10 short stories will be published in September, called The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher.

Publishers have confirmed the former prime minister, who died last year, features as a character in the book.

Mantel's previous best-sellers focused on King Henry VIII's 16th Century court and his adviser Cromwell.

She is one of the UK's best known authors thanks to Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies winning the Booker Prize in 2009 and 2012 and topping best-seller lists.

Both novels have recently been adapted into stage productions by the Royal Shakespeare Company, and are running until the end of March.

Her publishers have said the stories in The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher will all take place in "contemporary settings".

"Where her last two novels explore how modern England was forged, The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher shows us the country we have become," said Nicholas Pearson, publishing director at 4th Estate.

"These stories are Mantel at her observant best," he added.

'Be patient'

Fans are already eagerly awaiting a third instalment in her Cromwell series, but Mantel has warned it could take decades to write.

The author told the BBC's Arts Editor Will Gompertz in October last year that readers must "be patient" as she was "not rushing" the end of the trilogy.

Mantel, who won The David Cohen Prize for Literature 2013, has written 13 books including A Place of Greater Safety, Giving Up the Ghost and Beyond Black, which was nominated for the Orange Prize For Fiction in 2006.

Wolf Hall also won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and the Walter Scott Prize, while her most recent novel Bring Up The Bodies won the 2012 Costa Book of the Year and was shortlisted for The Women's Prize for Literature 2013.

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