British author wins 2nd Booker Prize for Tudor saga



LONDON // British writer Hilary Mantel won the prestigious Booker literary prize for a second time yesteday with her blood-soaked Tudor saga "Bring Up the Bodies," which the head of the judging panel said had "rewritten the book" on historical fiction.

Mantel, who took the £50,000 award in 2009 for "Wolf Hall," is the first British author, and the first woman, to achieve a Booker double.

"You wait 20 years for a Booker Prize, and two come along at once," Mantel said as she accepted the award at London's medieval Guildhall. "I regard this as an act of faith and a vote of confidence."

Mantel, who quipped in 2009 that she planned to spend her prize money on sex and drugs and rock `n' roll, said "I'm afraid the answer will be much duller this year."

"Rehab," she joked, before adding: "My pension, probably."

"Bring Up the Bodies" is the first sequel to win the prize. It and "Wolf Hall" are parts of a planned trilogy about Thomas Cromwell, the powerful and ambiguous chief minister to King Henry VIII.

Alternately thoughtful and thuggish, trying to keep his head in a treacherous world, Mantel's Cromwell has drawn comparisons to the Mafia don at the center of the "Godfather" saga, and Mantel's novel combines finely wrought prose with thriller touches.

"You can see as much Don Corleone in this book as D.H. Lawrence," said Times Literary Supplement editor Peter Stothard, who chaired the Booker judging panel.

"This is a bloody story," he said. "But Hilary Mantel is a writer who thinks through the blood. She uses her art, her power of prose, to create moral ambiguity."

"Bring Up the Bodies" traces the intertwined fates of Cromwell and the monarch's second wife, Anne Boleyn, who fell from favor when she failed to produce a male heir.

Stothard said the new book "utterly surpassed" the earlier novel, breathing new life into a well-known story. Henry VIII's reign has inspired many fictional treatments, from the acclaimed play and film "A Man for All Seasons" to the soapy TV series "The Tudors."

Stothard said "Bring Up the Bodies" showed "the greatest modern English prose writer reviving possibly one of the best-known pieces of English history."

"This is all well-trodden territory with an inevitable outcome, and yet she is able to bring it to life as though for the first time," he said.

"She has rewritten the book on writing historical fiction."

The judging panel, which included "Downton Abbey" actor Dan Stevens, met for just over two hours Tuesday to pick its winner.

The Booker, established in 1969, usually brings a huge sales and publicity boost for the winner.

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  • Phase one of the Financial Infrastructure Transformation (FiT) completed
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Main card
Middleweight:

Robert Whittaker defeated Ikram Aliskerov via knockout (Round 1)
Heavyweight:
Alexander Volkov def Sergei Pavlovich via unanimous decision
Middleweight:
Kelvin Gastelum def Daniel Rodriguez via unanimous decision
Middleweight:
Shara Magomedov def Antonio Trocoli via knockout (Round 3)
Light heavyweight:
Volkan Oezdemir def Johnny Walker via knockout (Round 1)
Preliminary Card
Lightweight:

Nasrat Haqparast def Jared Gordon via split decision
Featherweight:
Felipe Lima def Muhammad Naimov via submission (Round 3)
Welterweight:
Rinat Fakhretdinov defeats Nicolas Dalby via split decision
Bantamweight:
Muin Gafurov def Kang Kyung-ho via unanimous decision
Light heavyweight:
Magomed Gadzhiyasulov def Brendson Ribeiro via majority decision
Bantamweight:
Chang Ho Lee def Xiao Long via split decision

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2. Limit the number of products you borrow on: the more loans and credit cards you have, the more it will affect your credit score;

3. Don't max out all your debts: how much you maximise those credit facilities will have an impact. If you have five credit cards and utilise 90 per cent of that credit, it will negatively affect your score.

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Southampton 0
Manchester City 1
(Sterling 16')

Man of the match: Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City)

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Man of the match: Cheikhou Kouyate (Crystal Palace)

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Starring: Timothee Chalamet, Olivia Colman, Hugh Grant

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Macron’s Ensemble group won 245 seats.

The second-largest group in parliament is Nupes, a leftist coalition led by Jean-Luc Melenchon, which gets 131 lawmakers.

The far-right National Rally fared much better than expected with 89 seats.

The centre-right Republicans and their allies took 61.

Notable salonnières of the Middle East through history

Al Khasan (Okaz, Saudi Arabia)

Tamadir bint Amr Al Harith, known simply as Al Khasan, was a poet from Najd famed for elegies, earning great renown for the eulogy of her brothers Mu’awiyah and Sakhr, both killed in tribal wars. Although not a salonnière, this prestigious 7th century poet fostered a culture of literary criticism and could be found standing in the souq of Okaz and reciting her poetry, publicly pronouncing her views and inviting others to join in the debate on scholarship. She later converted to Islam.

Maryana Marrash (Aleppo)

A poet and writer, Marrash helped revive the tradition of the salon and was an active part of the Nadha movement, or Arab Renaissance. Born to an established family in Aleppo in Ottoman Syria in 1848, Marrash was educated at missionary schools in Aleppo and Beirut at a time when many women did not receive an education. After touring Europe, she began to host salons where writers played chess and cards, competed in the art of poetry, and discussed literature and politics. An accomplished singer and canon player, music and dancing were a part of these evenings.

Princess Nazil Fadil (Cairo)

Princess Nazil Fadil gathered religious, literary and political elite together at her Cairo palace, although she stopped short of inviting women. The princess, a niece of Khedive Ismail, believed that Egypt’s situation could only be solved through education and she donated her own property to help fund the first modern Egyptian University in Cairo.

Mayy Ziyadah (Cairo)

Ziyadah was the first to entertain both men and women at her Cairo salon, founded in 1913. The writer, poet, public speaker and critic, her writing explored language, religious identity, language, nationalism and hierarchy. Born in Nazareth, Palestine, to a Lebanese father and Palestinian mother, her salon was open to different social classes and earned comparisons with souq of where Al Khansa herself once recited.

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Favourite book: ‘Purpose Driven Life’ by Rick Warren

Favourite travel destination: Switzerland

Hobbies: Travelling and following motivational speeches and speakers

Favourite place in UAE: Dubai Museum

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Manchester United 2 (Martial 30', Lingard 69')
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