Hilary Mantel Q&A
The two-time Booker Prize winner sat down with us on being longlisted for The Mirror & the Light.
At 20, when his reign began, Alexander the Great was already a seasoned soldier and a complex man. Mary Renault explores the years that shaped him.
Resolute, fearless and the inheritor of a striking beauty, Alexander still needed much to make him ‘Great’. He must survive - though with lifelong scars - the dark furies of his Dionysiac mother, who kept him uncertain even of his own paternity; he must respect his father’s talent for war and kingcraft, despite disgust for his sexual proclivities; and he must come to terms with his heritage from both.
Mary Renaul’s 1970 novel was one of the six books shortlisted for the Lost Man Booker, in 2010.