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Vieraan lapsi by Alan Hollinghurst
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Vieraan lapsi (original 2011; edition 2012)

by Alan Hollinghurst, Markku Päkkilä (KÄÄnt.)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
985558,714 (3.51)1 / 152
Member:humppabeibi
Title:Vieraan lapsi
Authors:Alan Hollinghurst
Other authors:Markku Päkkilä (KÄÄnt.)
Info:Helsingissä : Otava, 2012
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:2013 luettu, kaunokirjallisuus, englanti, homoseksuaalisuus, kirjailijat, runoilijat, elämäkerturit

Work details

The Stranger's Child by Alan Hollinghurst (2011)

  1. 00
    Atonement by Ian McEwan (rrmmff2000)
  2. 00
    Possession by A. S. Byatt (kylenapoli)
    kylenapoli: Gives the reader a similar backstage view of 'what really happened' and how it is misremembered, misrepresented, and otherwise lost to time.
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English (50)  Dutch (4)  Swedish (1)  All languages (55)
Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
I have had this novel around for some time, and, as I had recently enjoyed a recent Graham Swift book so much, it was a good time to stay in the British mode. Hollinghurst's book lays out a grand story, one that plays out over several generations, and it was a fascinating look at the changing culture and economy in England. It's almost like Downton Abbey, if you didn't focus as much on the downstairs/upstairs split as much. Having said that, there are some characters who are of the servant class that reveal major parts of the story, but most of the book revolves around the rich, the pretty women and the handsome men that dominate this novel's pages.

As I have mentioned in many of my reviews, I tend to grind my teeth and despair at all the books and films that concentrate on the lives of the privileged and beautiful. Many of them seem prime material for elimination, or least incarceration—but that's just me.

Much of the beginning of the story is centered on the flashy Cecil Valance and loyal George Sawle. Their relationship, Cecil's poetry, and Cecil's relationship with George's sister Daphne, carry through to the plot's end. It touching and a strong part of the cultural changes involved in the story—the the gay relationships, and how open and talked about they become in time. I really warmed to the characters as the story progressed.

The whole historical quandary of how so many of the landed families coped with the dismal economics of this period brings forward a profound sadness in me. All these families trying to maintain these enormous estates and homes always gets to me, even if they are such dinosaurs of the times. Having lost the only home I ever owned to foreclosure, it makes me much more sympathetic to these somewhat pointy-headed rich types.

So much of the book is about people's histories and a number of powerful love stories that play out around and through these people's lives. There's a lot going on, involving deceptions and the mysteries of life that made this a most touching book. ( )
  jphamilton | Jul 27, 2014 |
Mentioned in an insiders article about WW1. Available Prahran
  decore | Jul 24, 2014 |
Hollinghurst is fifty and he's still writing about boys and their capacity for stratospheric ejaculation. Snoresville. ( )
  William345 | Jun 11, 2014 |
A very clever, entertaining novel, taking us on a lightning tour of twentieth century British literary history in a series of elegant pastiches linked by the changing reputation of a poet killed in the First World War. Possibly just a little bit too full of itself to be really satisfying as a novel - I was left with a sneaking suspicion that it does for the Georgian poets what Possession did for the mid-Victorians - but in between all the textual playfulness it does raise a few serious questions about the nature of memory, evidence and reputation, and about the dubious role of the biographer. ( )
  thorold | Jan 7, 2014 |
This book was disappointing. It really leaves you unsatisfied. It never stays in one place long enough for many of the characters to develop. Instead it circles around suppositions about a dead English poet. Even characters it follows for 60 years remain simple shells of people going about their existences with little more than thoughts of a charismatic poet Lothario. By the end all you want to know is who was right. And you don't find out. It remains a book of people's suppositions and assumptions and really I can read any biography of a real person and get the same but end up with knowledge of a real individual. ( )
  sarahzilkastarke | Nov 20, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
In The Stranger’s Child he weaves a number of stories around the idea of Brooke and his posthumous fortunes, detailing the lives caught up in the reputational arc of a Brooke-like poet called Cecil Valance between 1913 and 2008. Both world wars, fought offstage, have effects that ramify throughout the novel, as do changing attitudes to gay people and to biographical disclosure. Hollinghurst writes with amused tenderness about Rupert Trunk-type phenomena, investing them with dignity and pathos, but he also puts both hands on opportunities for irony, arch humour and, intermittently, an un-Jamesian directness.
 
In many ways, The Stranger's Child has the same qualities as his previous novels. It is elegant, seductive and extremely enjoyable to read, and peppered with astute, apparently casual noticings. (Of a man stumbling around in a shed at a party: "He was drunk, it was one of the hilarious uncorrectable disasters of being drunk." Of a grand literary wife: "A hard, good-looking face, thoroughly made up, and a manner he knew at once, from its tight smiles and frowns, of getting people to do things.") It treads much of the same ground as its predecessors: class and money, buried histories of gay life in this country, the dreary provinces and the exciting metropolis, with forays into architecture and Victoriana. As ever, Hollinghurst's set-piece parties are stunning.
added by peterbrown | editThe Guardian, Theo Tait (Jun 18, 2011)
 
Hollinghurst’s fine new book, “The Stranger’s Child” — the closest thing he has written to an old-fashioned chronicle novel — contains a whole hidden literary curriculum, out of which he has fashioned something fresh and vital. Underpinned with a range of styles that run from Iris Murdoch to William Trevor and back to Forster, the novel is divided into five parts that play out over five different decades.
 
added by lucyknows | editscis (pay site)
 

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Alan Hollinghurstprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Granato, GiovannaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Heuvelmans, TonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Krol, EdzardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lacruz, JavierTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pawlikowska-Gannon, HannaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Päkkilä, MarkkuTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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IM Mick Imlah 1956-2009
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She'd been lying in the hammock reading poetry for over an hour.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0307272761, Hardcover)

From the Man Booker Prize–winning author of The Line of Beauty: a magnificent, century-spanning saga about a love triangle that spawns a myth, and a family mystery, across generations.

In the late summer of 1913, George Sawle brings his Cambridge schoolmate—a handsome, aristocratic young poet named Cecil Valance—to his family’s modest home outside London for the weekend. George is enthralled by Cecil, and soon his sixteen-year-old sister, Daphne, is equally besotted by him and the stories he tells about Corley Court, the country estate he is heir to. But what Cecil writes in Daphne’s autograph album will change their and their families’ lives forever: a poem that, after Cecil is killed in the Great War and his reputation burnished, will become a touchstone for a generation, a work recited by every schoolchild in England. Over time, a tragic love story is spun, even as other secrets lie buried—until, decades later, an ambitious biographer threatens to unearth them.

Rich with Hollinghurst’s signature gifts—haunting sensuality, delicious wit and exquisite lyricism—The Stranger’s Child is a tour de force: a masterly novel about the lingering power of desire, how the heart creates its own history, and how legends are made.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:59:54 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

In the late summer of 1913, George Sawle brings his Cambridge schoolmate--a handsome, aristocratic young poet named Cecil Valance--to his family's modest home outside London for the weekend. George is enthralled by Cecil, and soon his sixteen-year-old sister, Daphne, is equally besotted by him and the stories he tells about Corley Court, the country estate he is heir to. But what Cecil writes in Daphne's autograph album will change their and their families' lives forever: a poem that, after Cecil is killed in the Great War and his reputation burnished, will become a touchstone for a generation, a work recited by every schoolchild in England. Over time, a tragic love story is spun, even as other secrets lie buried--until, decades later, an ambitious biographer threatens to unearth them.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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