Paul Ableman

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Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 129

The White Hotel is a work of vast ambition and impressive achievement. It aspires to being little less than a comprehensive synthesis of the forces of life and death operating on this planet in the context of a civilisation that apparently obeys quite different laws but in which their influence...

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The White Hotel is a work of vast ambition and impressive achievement. It aspires to being little less than a comprehensive synthesis of the forces of life and death operating on this planet in the context of a civilisation that apparently obeys quite different laws but in which their influence is always present. If that sounds forbidding it should immediately be added that it is also a gripping human story. The White Hotel transcends the parochialism of most contemporary English novels and shows that fiction, when it escapes the dead convention of the 19th century and, of course, when written by a major talent, is still full of vitality.

Paul Ableman, "Major Talent," in The Spectator (© 1981 by The Spectator; reprinted by permission of The Spectator), Vol. 246, No. 7958, January 17, 1981, p. 21.

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