Hilary Mantel begins writing a Wolf Hall sequel

Hilary Mantel Mantel's Wolf Hall won numerous awards including the National Book Critics Circle award in the US

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Award-winning author Hilary Mantel has begun writing a sequel to her 2009 Booker Prize-winning novel Wolf Hall.

Bring Up the Bodies, which will continue the story of King Henry VIII's chief minister, Thomas Cromwell, will be published in May 2012.

Fourth Estate publishing director, Nicholas Pearson, said: "It will certainly delight her many fans all over the world."

He said the novel would focus on the downfall of Anne Boleyn.

"Like its predecessor... it is hard to think of anything in contemporary fiction quite like it," he added.

Ink in the Blood

He described it as "a story at the heart of Tudor history, and in Mantel's hands, every bit as illuminating, terrifying and utterly compelling as one might expect".

The 2009 Booker judges described Wolf Hall as "an extraordinary piece of story-telling". The book was also awarded the Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction.

Mantel spent months recovering from an operation last year and wrote a hospital diary, Ink in the Blood, which was published in the London Review of Books.

The Derbyshire-born novelist was made CBE in 2006. Her first novel, Every Day is Mother's Day, was published in 1985.

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