In 2005, Hilary Mantel received her first recognition from the Booker Prize when Beyond Black, her funniest and most personal book, was longlisted

Although best known for her historical fiction, Hilary Mantel’s first Booker Prize nomination came with this comically sinister tale of wicked spirits and suburban mediums in a masterpiece of dark humour. Alison Hart, a medium, tours the outskirts of London with her cynical sidekick, Colette, passing on messages from beloved dead relatives to a paying audience. But behind her plump, smiling persona hides a desperate woman: she knows the terrors the afterlife holds, but must conceal them from her wide-eyed clients. At the same time, she is plagued by spirits from her own past, who become nastier the more she resists…

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Beyond Black in Hilary Mantel's own words

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