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In the Spotlight: Alan Hollinghurst

The Book: Set in the United Kingdom in the early to mid-1980s, the story surrounds the post-Oxford life of the young protagonist, Nick Guest.

As the novel begins, Nick moves into the household of the Fedden family, comprising his friend, crush, and fellow Oxford graduate Toby; Toby's eccentric sister Catherine; their wealthy and aristocratic mother, Rachel; and their Thatcher-obsessed father, Gerald, a newly-elected MP for the Conservative Party. Nick remains a guest in the Fedden home until he is expelled at the end of the novel. Nick has his first romance with a black council worker, Leo, but a later relationship with Wani, the son of a rich Lebanese businessman, illuminates the ruthlessness of 1980s Thatcherite Britain.

The book explores the tension between Nick's intimate relationship with the Feddens, in whose parties and holidays he participates, and the realities of his sexuality and gay life, which the Feddens accept only to the extent of never mentioning it. It explores themes of hypocrisy, homosexuality, madness and wealth, with the emerging AIDS crisis forming a backdrop to the book's conclusion. 

Amazon: The Line of Beauty: A Novel

The Author: Alan Hollinghurst is an English novelist, and winner of the 2004 Booker Prize for The Line of Beauty.

He was born on 26 May 1954 in Stroud, Gloucestershire, the only child of James Kenneth Holinghurst (a bank manager) and his wife Lilian. He went to Canford School in Dorset.

He read English at Magdalen College, Oxford graduating in 1975; and subsequently took the further degree of Master of Literature (1979). While at Oxford he shared a house with Andrew Motion, and was awarded the Newdigate Prize for poetry in 1974, the year before Motion.

In the late 1970s he became a lecturer at Magdalen, and then at Somerville College and Corpus Christi College, Oxford. In 1981 he moved on to lecture at University College London. In 1997, he went on an Asia book tour in Singapore.

In 1981 he joined The Times Literary Supplement and was the paper's deputy editor from 1982 to 1995.

Hollinghurst is openly gay and lives in London. (From Wikipedia)

Top 100 Gay Novels List (*)

External Link to the Top 100 Gay Novels List (simple - without photos)

External Link to the Top 100 Gay Novels List (wanted - with photos)

*only one title per author, only print books released after January 1, 2000.

Other titles not in the top 100 list:

http://www.librarything.com/catalog/top50MM
Tags: author: alan hollinghurst, in the spotlight
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