Hotel Du Lac
By Anita Brookner
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780679759324, 192pp.)
Publication Date: October 3, 1995
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In the novel that won her the Booker Prize and established her international reputation, Anita Brookner finds a new vocabulary for framing the eternal question "Why love?" It tells the story of Edith Hope, who writes romance novels under a psudonym. When her life begins to resemble the plots of her own novels, however, Edith flees to Switzerland, where the quiet luxury of the Hotel du Lac promises to resore her to her senses.
But instead of peace and rest, Edith finds herself sequestered at the hotel with an assortment of love's casualties and exiles. She also attracts the attention of a worldly man determined to release her unused capacity for mischief and pleasure. Beautifully observed, witheringly funny, Hotel du Lac is Brookner at her most stylish and potently subversive.
Anita Brookner was born in London in 1928. She received a B.A. from King's College, University of London, and a Ph.D. in the history of art from the Courtauld Institute. Brookner taught at the University of Reading from 1959 to 1964, and since 1967 has been a Lecturer in Art History at the Courtauld. From 1967 to 1968 she was Slade Professor at Cambridge, the first woman to hold that position.
Since her first novel was published in 1981, Brookner has had a dual career as an art historian and a novelist. She has been remarkably successful in both fields and has published fourteen novels in as many years.
"Brookner's most absorbing novel...wryly realistic...graceful and attractive." ?Anne Tyler, The New York Times Book Review
"Impeccably written and suffused with pleasing wit." ?Newsweek
"Distinctive, spellbinding...elegant but passionate, funny but oddly earnest.... Novels like hers are why we read novels." ?Christian Science Monitor
"A remarkable novel...Anita Brookner's best." ?Victoria Glendinning, The Sunday Times (London)