Addicted to books, both print and audio-.
I read the book a few years back and loved it. It is beautifully written, very absorbing, and heartbreaking. This is a great way to re-read the book, or to read it for the first time. Simon Vance is one of the best narrators I've heard, and he does a marvelous job here. A fabulous listen!
I hesitated on this purchase because of its popularity (often I don't go for what everyone else raves about); also some of the negative reviews made me wonder. I was afraid it would be a hit-you-over-the-head-with-a-hammer tearjerker. I'm really picky: picky about good writing and extraordinarily picky about narration. I simply loved this book, and the reader was superb. Jim Broadbent strikes the perfect tone with the narration and his characterization of Harold. It is a beautiful story, read so tenderly, and I'm so glad I took a chance on it. I certainly hope Jim Broadbent does more audiobooks.
I have read Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies in their print editions and have now listened to them. I highly recommend doing both, and don't think it would matter whether you listened or read first. Both Simon Slater (Wolf Hall narrator) and Simon Vance (Bodies) are excellent, and their readings add much to what is already sublime writing. I almost hesitate to say that Hilary Mantel writes in a poetical manner, because it might turn some people off, but she does, with a style that is so immediate and accessible that you feel as though you are part of Thomas Cromwell. The history is fascinating and leaves you wanting more. Thankfully, she is working on the third volume of the trilogy. Even though I'm very motivated to read more on this period and these people, I think I'll wait until after I've read the third volume. I want to hear it from Hilary first!