Synopses & Reviews
A New York Times Book ReviewNotable Book of the Year
A Los Angeles Times Best Book of the Year
London, 1782: center of science and commerce, home to the newly rich and the desperately poor. In the midst of it all is the Giant, O'Brien, a freak of nature, a man of song and story who trusts in myths, fairies, miracles, and little people. He has come from Ireland to exhibit his size for money. O'Brien's opposite is a man of science, the famed anatomist John Hunter, who lusts after the Giant's corpse as a medical curiosity, a boon to the advancement of scientific knowledge.
In her acclaimed novel, Hilary Mantel tells of the fated convergence of Ireland and England. As belief wrestles knowledge and science wrestles song, so The Giant, O'Brien calls to us from a fork in the road as a tale of time, and a timeless tale.
A new novel based on the true story of the 18th century Irish giant, Charles O'Brien, who was exhibited in London and eventually dissected by the surgeon Charles Hunter. His bones still hang in the Hunterian Museum in Lincoln's Inn Fields.