Two-time Booker Prize-winning British novelist Hilary Mantel dies at 70

Twice Booker Prize-winning British novelist Hilary Mantel is dead at 70

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LONDON | British novelist Hilary Mantel, the first writer to win the prestigious Booker Prize twice, has died aged 70, her publisher HarperCollins announced on Friday. 

“C It is with great sadness that HarperCollins announces that best-selling author Dame Hilary Mantel died peacefully, surrounded by family and close friends, yesterday (Thursday) at the age of 70,” the publishing house said in a statement. release.

Since the publication of her first book in 1985, “C'est tous les jours la fête des Mères”, the writer had published 17 books, but is best known for her trilogy “The Advisor”, dedicated to the tumultuous life of Thomas Cromwell, one of the main actors of the Reformation in England.

The first two parts of the series translated into 41 languages, “In the Shadow of the Tudors” and “Le Pouvoir”, earned him the prestigious Booker Prize twice. The last installment, “The Mirror and the Light”, published in 2020, had also been praised by critics, and caused queues in front of bookstores on the day of its release.

Born on 6 July 1952 in Derbyshire in a family of Irish descent, Hilary Mantel (née Thompson) grew up with the disadvantage of being “woman, northern and poor”, she told in her memoir “Giving Up the Ghost” , published in 2003.

She also imagined her life there with a daughter she never had, who had become infertile after an operation for endometriosis, a then little-known disease from which she suffered for a long time. .

Baptized Catriona, he is undoubtedly the most heartbreaking ghost of the many ghosts that dot her work.

After studying law at the London School of Economics, then at the University of Sheffield, she followed her geologist fiancé who later became her husband, living in Botswana for five years, then four years in Saudi Arabia, before returning to Britain in the mid-1980s.

“Hilary was the best of her generation, of the time, an important novelist, courageous, with immense empathy for her subjects. (…) His company, his wisdom, his humor will be missed by all of us, and we will cherish his incredible literary heritage”, paid tribute to him Charlie Redmayne, CEO of HarperCollins in the United Kingdom, quoted in the press release.

Each of her books was “an unforgettable web of illuminating phrases, unforgettable characters and remarkable vision,” praised her former editor Nicholas Pearson, saying the writer was still working on a new one last month. novel.

“She was a genius”, reacted on Twitter the author of the Harry Potter saga J.K. Rowling.

“Everyone at the Booker Prize is deeply saddened” by the death of Hilary Mantel, reads the Twitter account of the most famous British literary prize.