Dame Hilary Mantel, who was best known for her epic Wolf Hall trilogy, has died at the age of 70, her publisher has confirmed.
Her publisher HarperCollins said in a statement: "We are heartbroken at the death of our beloved author, Dame Hilary Mantel.
"Our thoughts are with her friends and family, especially her husband, Gerald. This is a devastating loss and we can only be grateful she left us with such a magnificent body of work."
The final instalment in the trilogy, The Mirror and the Light, was published in 2020 to huge critical acclaim, becoming an instant Sunday Times bestseller and being long-listed for The Booker Prize 2020.
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The book also won the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, which she first received for Wolf Hall.
At the time of writing, her ground-breaking Wolf Hall trilogy has been translated into 41 languages with sales of over 5 million worldwide.
In 2015, the BBC aired an adaptation of Wolf Hall starring Damian Lewis (Homeland) as Henry VIII, Mark Rylance (Jerusalem) as Thomas Cromwell and Claire Foy (The Crown) as Anne Boleyn.
The period drama received three Golden Globe nominations – Best TV Mini Series or Movie, Best Actor in a Mini Series or TV Movie (Mark Rylance), and Best Supporting Actor in a Series, Mini Series or TV Movie (Damian Lewis).
Paying tribute to Mantel after today's sad news, BBC Chief Content Officer Charlotte Moore said: "The remarkable talent of Dame Hilary Mantel, and the incredible impact she had on literature and the arts, will never be forgotten.
"Whether for television with Wolf Hall, or on radio with her novels and The Reith Lectures, it was always a privilege to work with her. Our thoughts are with her loved ones at this incredibly sad time."
The 2020 documentary Hilary Mantel: Return to Wolf Hall will be repeated on BBC Two tomorrow night (Saturday, 24th September) at 6:35pm in tribute.
In 2019, the BBC confirmed that a second season of Wolf Hall would be adapted from Mantel's novel The Mirror and the Light.
In March 2022, actor Rylance confirmed he is set to reprise his role as Cromwell in the upcoming sequel, adding that he hopes production will kick off in 2023.
Appearing on BBC Radio 2, he said: “They are working on it. They have got the drafts of the six scripts.
“I haven’t seen them yet but they are all in draft form and the wonderful Peter Kosminsky is developing it with the producers.
“They are just in the stage of starting to share it with me. So that is hopefully something next year we will make.”