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Alan Hollinghurst: The Swimming pool library - inspiration is the key.. [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Visits to imaginary worlds and beyond

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Alan Hollinghurst: The Swimming pool library [Apr. 6th, 2013|12:10 pm]
Visits to imaginary worlds and beyond

heather_house

[tindomerel]


This book was lavishly praised as one of the best classics of gay literature. It is a about a posh young man in the 80's London and how he makes friends with an elderly gentleman whose memoirs he sort of agrees to write.

Even if Alan Hollinghurst is a masterful writer and I really like his style, this book was really disappointing to me. It is all about sex obsessed gays who search for casual sex relationships. That's pretty much it. I don't think there was any depth in this book, nothing much to be learned or an epiphany to get. It made me feel alienated and sick at heart. It could have been a great book but it wasn't.

I couldn't help comparing this book to another gay book I recently read. It was a book called A portrait of a friend by Finnish author Pentti Holappa. Even if I had difficult time liking the main character of the story the book was really interesting and beautifully written and had much more depth.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: norton_gale
2013-04-06 11:43 am (UTC)
Try reading The Stranger's Child sometime, or The Line of Beauty. I think you will like them much more.
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[User Picture]From: tindomerel
2013-04-06 12:49 pm (UTC)
I actually read The Stranger's child a couple of months ago and did like it much better. It's not perfect either because somehow the fast passing decades & changing characters made it feel a bit restless and I would have wanted to know more about the characters I liked but it had a point why it was written like that. I think Hollinghurst is a great writer but I just can't relate to the sleeping around gay stereotype at all so The Swimming Pool Library was not easy to read.
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