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The Sparsholt affair / Alan Hollinghurst.

By: Hollinghurst, Alan [author.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookDescription: 453 pages ; 24 cm.ISBN: 9781509844937.Subject(s): University of Oxford -- Fiction | Male friendship -- Fiction | Homosexuality -- Fiction | Interpersonal relations -- Fiction | Social classes -- England -- Fiction | England -- History -- 20th century -- FictionGenre/Form: Historical fiction.DDC classification: 823.92 Summary: In 1940, Evert Dax and David Sparsholt, two young men from very different backgrounds, meet at Oxford University. Dax is a second year student reading English, coming from a rackety upper middle class background; Sparsholt is from a humbler Midlands community and is reading engineering, a young man whose good looks and fine figure have proved highly attractive to his peers. This time is a unique one in the history of the university: with military call-up at twenty, soon brought forward to nineteen, almost all students come up to Oxford knowing that they will only have a year or so of study. A sense of futility is mixed with one of recklessness. All life after dusk is lived under black-out, encouraging and covering what would normally be impossible liaisons. What happens to these two men in this year will affect many lives and will set in motion the mystery at the heart of The Sparsholt Affair.
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Item type Current location Collection Call number Status Date due Barcode Item holds
Fiction Stratford
Fiction
Fiction HOL (Browse shelf) Available A00800616
Total holds: 0

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

The long-awaited sixth novel from the supreme stylist of British fiction and previous winner of the Man Booker Prize."Perhaps Hollinghurst's most beautiful novel yet - a book full of glorious sentences by the greatest prose stylist writing in English today." ObserverIn 1940, Evert Dax and David Sparsholt, two young men from very different backgrounds, meet at Oxford University. Dax is a second year student reading English, coming from a rackety upper middle class background; Sparsholt is from a humbler Midlands community and is reading engineering, a young man whose good looks and fine figure have proved highly attractive to his peers. This time is a unique one in the history of the university: with military call-up at twenty, soon brought forward to nineteen, almost all students come up to Oxford knowing that they will only have a year or so of study. A sense of futility is mixed with one of recklessness. All life after dusk is lived under black-out, encouraging and covering what would normally be impossible liaisons. What happens to these two men in this year will affect many lives and will set in motion the mystery at the heart of The Sparsholt Affair. Alan Hollinghurst's masterly novel takes us through several generations and across key periods of uncertainty and change in British society. From the darkest days of the Second World War, it moves to the changing world of the a socially and sexually liberated London of the 1960s, before landing in the mid-1970s, with the three-day week, fuel shortages and power cuts. The reverberations continue through the next generation in the 1990s before reaching a conclusion in the present decade, a world of new media and new ideas.PRAISE FOR HOLLINGHURST"Hollinghurst has a strong, perhaps unassailable claim to be the best English novelist working today." Guardian"Few writers' prose can throw a party as easily as retire to the library as Hollinghurst's." Spectator"Hollinghurst can make language do what he wants . . . It makes a lot of contemporary fiction seem thin and underachieving." Evening Standard

In 1940, Evert Dax and David Sparsholt, two young men from very different backgrounds, meet at Oxford University. Dax is a second year student reading English, coming from a rackety upper middle class background; Sparsholt is from a humbler Midlands community and is reading engineering, a young man whose good looks and fine figure have proved highly attractive to his peers. This time is a unique one in the history of the university: with military call-up at twenty, soon brought forward to nineteen, almost all students come up to Oxford knowing that they will only have a year or so of study. A sense of futility is mixed with one of recklessness. All life after dusk is lived under black-out, encouraging and covering what would normally be impossible liaisons. What happens to these two men in this year will affect many lives and will set in motion the mystery at the heart of The Sparsholt Affair.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

A glimpse of a nearly naked man in a window across an Oxford quad sets in motion a furtive affair between two young male students. The man in the window, the handsome and athletic David Sparsholt, is engaged to be married and about to enlist as a fighter pilot in World War II. His admirer is the arty son of a famous novelist. Their affair is brief, but repercussions linger. Although David returns from the war a hero and establishes a successful engineering company, the rest of the novel belongs to his son, Johnny, whose own homosexuality is only a little less difficult in the slightly more tolerant Seventies. Johnny's first flirtation with a cocky French exchange student is an exercise in teenage angst, and his later attempts at more satisfying relationships are hardly more successful. More troubling to Johnny is the long-lasting notoriety attached to his unusual surname from a sex scandal involving his father and two other men. VERDICT -Hollinghurst's (The Stranger's Child) sprawling novel, suffused with lust and longing, movingly portrays the generational shift in gay experience and acceptance. Warmly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, 9/11/17.]-Barbara Love, formerly with Kingston Frontenac P.L., Ont. © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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