1300 36 33 32
Buy The Little Hotel by Christina Stead from Australia's Online Independent Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
Book DetailsISBN: 9781925355734
» Have you read this book? We'd like to know what you think about it - write a review about Little Hotel book by Christina Stead and you'll earn 50c in Boomerang Bucks loyalty dollars (you must be a Boomerang Books Account Holder - it's free to sign up and there are great benefits!)
Book Review: Little Hotel by Christina Stead - Reviewed by CloggieA (06 Nov 2016)
3.5 stars The Little Hotel is the tenth novel published by Australian author, Christina Stead. This edition is published under the Text Classics banner and sports a gorgeous colourful cover by the talented W H Chong, as well as an introduction by poet and author, Lisa Gorton. While it was not published until 1973, Stead began writing it, or some version of it, in the early 1950s, based on her diaries of her time in Europe with her partner, communist sympathiser, William Blake, in the fifties.
Mme Selda Bonnard runs Hotel Swiss-Touring with her husband, Roger and their multi-cultural staff. Their guests are equally diverse, and Selda’s observations about them and of their interactions form the bulk of this novel. It’s just a few years after the end of World War Two, and Swiss-Touring is a cheap lake-shore hotel that caters to tourists as well as longer-term residents.
Against a backdrop of paranoia about the possible Russian invasion and the difficulties of retrieving funds from their native lands, the hotel’s guests, past and present, are described in potted histories and anecdotes; their petty crises and domestic dramas are filled with snobbery, racism, jealousy and insecurity. Many of the guests are eccentric; one turns out to be crazy; others may even be dangerous.
Stead evokes post-war Europe with consummate ease, firmly establishing the era with both her characters’ ideas, opinions and dilemmas, and the political and financial situation. This neat little volume will appeal to readers who enjoy historical fiction with a good dose of satire. Classic fiction from an award-winning Australian author.
Christina Stead was born in 1902 in Sydney's south. After graduating from high school in 1917, she attended Sydney Teachers' College on a scholarship. She subsequently took a series of teaching and secretarial positions before travelling to London, aged twenty-six. There she met Wilhelm Blech (later William Blake), a married American writer and a broker at the firm where she worked: they soon became lovers. They spent many years travelling and working in Europe and the United States, and eventually married in 1952. Stead's first books, The Salzburg Tales and Seven Poor Men of Sydney, were published in 1934 to positive reviews in England and the United States. Her fourth work, The Man Who Loved Children, has been hailed as a `masterpiece' by Jonathan Franzen, among others. In total, Stead wrote almost twenty novels and short-story collections. Stead returned to Australia in 1969 after forty years abroad for a fellowship at the Australian National University. She resettled permanently in Australia in 1974 and was the first recipient of the Patrick White Award that year. Christina Stead died in Sydney in 1983, aged eighty. She is widely considered to be one of the most influential Australian authors of the twentieth century.
© 2003-2020. All Rights Reserved. Eclipse Commerce Pty Ltd - ACN: 122 110 687 - ABN: 49 122 110 687