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Hilary Mantel: Failure to win third Booker Prize ‘would be seen as a disaster’

The author has won the prize for the first two installments of her Thomas Cromwell trilogy.

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The writer said it would be seen as a snub if she did not win (Yui Mok/PA)

The writer said it would be seen as a snub if she did not win (Yui Mok/PA)

The writer said it would be seen as a snub if she did not win (Yui Mok/PA)

Hilary Mantel has said that if she fails to win the Booker Prize for a third time “it will be cast in terms of a disaster”.

The author’s new book The Mirror And The Light, which is being released this month, concludes her Thomas Cromwell trilogy after the first two instalments won the Booker Prize in previous years.

Mantel said that while she does “care” about the award, she won’t take it personally if she does not win.

I do care, but I won't perceive it as a snubHilary Mantel

Speaking to the Radio Times, Mantel said: “It will be cast in terms of a disaster if I don’t win it again.

“I do care, but I won’t perceive it as a snub.”

Mantel also said that she would like the final book in the series to be well received.

She said: “While I was writing, the Booker question was never present, but, when you’re publishing, you can’t get away from it – some people are already acting as if I wrote the third book specifically to have a shot at the hat-trick!

The full interview is in the Radio Times (Radio Times/PA)

“But this is the central project of my writing life – in fact, of my life – so I would like people to think I brought it home in style.

“And, whatever happens with prizes, I’ll be happy if people think that.”

Mantel  won the Booker Prize in 2009 and 2012 with Wolf Hall and Bring Up The Bodies respectively.

The winner of the £50,000 2020 Booker Prize will be announced in October.

The full interview is in this week’s Radio Times magazine.

PA