Chair: Julian North
Alan Hollinghurst was born in 1954. He is the author of the novels The Swimming-Pool Library, The Folding Star, The Spell and The Line of Beauty (which won the 2004 Man Booker Prize, and was adapted for BBC2 by Andrew Davies). His most recent book, The Stranger’s Child, has been warmly received by readers and critics alike:
An intricate, witty, playful meditation on what is now beginning to emerge as one of Hollinghurst’s chief concerns: Englishness. Comedy of manners, investigation of class, changing political and social landscape – all the reliable pleasures that his fiction offers – are here in their dense, detailed richness... It is woven with stupendous deftness, its internal assonances making a complex, comprehensive harmony... A magnificent coherence.
Masterful... There is a huge cleverness to the book at a structural and, as it were, managerial level. Characters are named with an aptness which is light-footed and unswervingly accurate... Hollinghurst, as ever, is quietly brilliant about architecture, both in the specific sense of a cultural discourse about buildings, and the broader sense of how people behave in different kinds of place... there is something symphonic about [the novel’s] wholeness. There is also something filmic in the book’s enveloping embrace; not the heritage cinema of Merchant Ivory et al, but the more experimental, argumentative efforts of the Sixties and Seventies. I often found myself recalling Joseph Losey’s version of The Go-Between, and occasionally the anguished exquisites of Michelangelo Antonioni... there’s also a lot that is purely and simply very funny.
This is a ticketed event. For free tickets, please contact Embrace Arts (see box top right).
Followed by a book signing.