Alan Hollinghurst, The Swimming-Pool Library

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With his first novel, The Swimming-Pool Library (1988), the English fiction writer Alan Hollinghurst made his instant, international breakthrough. His American colleague Edmund White hailed the work as “surely the best book about gay life yet written by an English author” (G4) and John Lanchester admired what he considered a “triumph” of “tonal control” allowing the author to write “graphically and explicitly about homosexual sex while never seeming flustered or prurient, and never wavering in the amused, ironic control of the narrating voice” (11). The novel was translated into seven languages and went on to receive a Somerset Maugham Award as well as an E M Forster Award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters; a few years later it also led to Hollinghurst’s…

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Citation: Eeckhout, Bart. "The Swimming-Pool Library". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 October 2008 [, accessed 10 December 2023.]

7874 The Swimming-Pool Library 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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