Thursday, August 4, 2011

The Swimming-Pool Library by Alan Hollinghurst

The Swimming-Pool Library is a wonderful novel about a self-indulgent, gay young member of the aristocracy in London whose life is altered forever when he saves the life of Lord Nantwich. His new friend asks him to write his memoirs he cannot find a good enough excuse to say no and from the moment Will starts reading the journals of Lord Nantwich, new facts and viewpoints are opened up to him. The people he thought he knew he now sees in a different light as histories are revealed.

The intertwining of Will's London and Charles's experiences as a young man, at university, as a soldier abroad, and into middle age, works beautifully and doesn't confuse the reader and at the same time the novel covers the issues around class, sexuality and race over the decades. I loved it and I picked up another book by the author.

5 Stars

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