Monday, July 27, 2009

Hotel World - Ali Smith

Rating : 3.5/5
Number of Pages : 238
Format : Fiction
Reason for Reading : GLBT Challenge, because I really like Ali Smith

Hotel World tells the story of a young woman who starts working at a hotel chain and dies. She climbs into a dumb waiter, but it is old and snaps and she falls down the shaft being killed on impact. There was one witness, a boy who she worked with and got along well with. The girl had recently fallen in love for the first time and was shocked to find it was with another girl.

The tale is split into sections told by different people with connections to the hotel and the dead girl. The first narrator is the ghost of the girl herself. I loved the way she is portrayed as not really remembering who she was and being able to appear to her family. The second character is Else, a homeless lady who asks for change outside the hotel. She is offered a free night in the hotel by a receptionist (the third narrator). The fourth character is a guest at the hotel, a journalist who reviews the hotel. The next story is that of the dead girls sister and how it has affected her. The final story is the girl in the watch shop who had been the object of the dead girls love.

I loved this short novel. It read like a series of short stories that were interconnected. Somehow Ali is able to change her writing style so it really does feel like you are reading the thoughts of different people. I also warmed to all the characters, even the journalist and loved how little comments from one persons story had an affect on another characters.


Amanda said...

What a strange and fascinating book! I've never read anything by Ali Smith - are most of them like this?

Ana S. said...

I'm glad to hear this is good! But of course it would be, being Ali Smith and all :P Must read more by her.

Melody said...

I've yet to read a book by Ali Smith. I need to check out her books!

Rhinoa said...

Amanda - She certainly has a style. I have read three of her novels and a book of her short stories and they always flip the perspective of who tells the story.

Nymeth - Yes you must :p

Melody - The Accidental has had the most critical acclaim I think and was the first one I read. I do recommend Girl Meets Boy though.

soleil said...

this sounds very intriguing.

Kailana said...

I have only read one Ali Smith so far, but I really liked it. I wish my library carried her books!

Susan said...

This sounds so fun to read! On my list it goes. I really enjoyed how you reviewed without giving anything away, and letting us know about the characters too.