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Grand Hotel Europa

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  5,991 ratings  ·  720 reviews
Pfeijffer diagnosticeert de tijdgeest in een kolossale roman met Europa als speelveld

‘De toekomst van Europa is het Europa dat nu al een realiteit is. Europa is het recreatiegebied voor de rest van de wereld,’ zegt een van de personages in Grand Hotel Europa. Het is – overdrachtelijk – ook een zelfdiagnose. Alle personages in deze roman zitten immers op verschillende manie
Hardcover, 552 pages
Published December 13th 2018 by Arbeiderspers
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Average rating 4.11  · 
Rating details
 ·  5,991 ratings  ·  720 reviews

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Merel Scheltema
Jul 02, 2019 rated it did not like it
Clichematig, pretentieus, and telling by telling (ipv telling by showing).
"It must be grand, and lavish, an overwhelming orgy of fantasy with the technical perfection of commercial kitsch."
The burden of the past in Europe, the scourge of tourism, the future-oriented view of the migrant… these are the central themes of this novel. Anyone who has read La Superba, the novel with which Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer became famous, will immediately recognize his favourite themes again. In that celebrated novel the Italian city of Genoa was the framework ànd the main character of t
Aug 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Good book...well written....but the book is like a Chinese meal. Good when you eat it and once outside the restaurant you realize you are hungry.
Not a lot remains of the book.....a noodle soup kind of reading.
Sep 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fun
Intresting view on future, now and past in the light of innovation and change.
A story with multiple layers and great metaphores.
Dries Messely
Jan 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019
Tourism is bad, we get it. Should have been one hundred pages shorter.
Feb 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
6 stars!
Diederik Van Epperzeel
Dec 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Ruben Vermeeren
Mar 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dutch-literature
Highly enjoyable, well-written, allegorical novel set mostly in Italy, about mass tourism, the past glory of European art and culture and the decline of Europe as a global power at the expense of Asia.

Did I learn a lot? No.

Did I have fun reading? A lot!

Is the book sexist or anti-feminist as many Dutch reviewers claim? I honestly don't think so. First, it is a novel and characters can think what they want. Sure, the author is also the main character in this 'autobiographical fiction' and I als
May 04, 2020 rated it it was ok
I found it a tough read. Long, drawn-out descriptions and sentences. Lots of history, which was interesting. I found the ending very disappointing and it changed my whole opinion of the writer and the book.
Kayo Fawaz
May 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
lit lit
Diane van Steekelenburg
Jun 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
It’s a long read although it’s worth the hours I spent on it. It’s an interesting story about Europe, tourism and love. I must admit that some parts are a bit repetitive and the character Ilja in the book did irritate me sometimes but on the whole it’s a good book.
Aug 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Great and actual topic excellent written. Should be added to the must read list of the highschool curriculum these days. Perfect to open discussions about the impact of tourism. Forces Europeans to reflect on their continent and its privileges from a non European point of view.
Andrew Spink
Jul 19, 2020 rated it liked it
There are some long books which you reach the end and wish they would continue for ever, and there are some which it is just a struggle to get to the end. Unfortunately this book, at least for me, fell into the latter category. Especially in the first half, there is little in the way of plot to help the readers along, just a lot of conversations, which are actually mostly rather unnatural monologues by various characters, sometimes going on and on for many pages. A bit more 'show not tell' would ...more
Roland Hack
Sep 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Jan 27, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: history
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Hilde Pijnenburg
Aug 23, 2020 rated it liked it
In the Netherlands this book was a BIG hit. I get it, but it is to gimmick-y for me. The end is really awfully cliche. And it really constantly disturbed me how snobbish Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer and his girlfriend are. For example judging people visiting museums, while not knowing a lot about art.
A couple of things are great about this book though. First of all the (fun) facts about mass tourism. And also the serious stuff about it - it really made me worry (still does) so he has done a good job
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Europe as an old lady, Europe as the recreational garden of the new world order, in the story line in the book as a quest for old European art, a documentary on mass tourism in Venice/ Giethoorn and Chinese investors and managers taking over an old hotel, reshapes it so that attracts these Asian tourists. His very lifely style is fascinating and breathtaking. There is a convincing truth in his view how Europe has already lost his leading position in the world.
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Even when it took me a long time to read (too busy with work), and it took some while to get into the story ... once launched (and with the help of sickness) ... the book was too early finished. I could have continued for a second time for months!
The wonderful story (art, romance (or the lack of), love, actual tourism, ...), the fantastic sentences (of which some are of such a beauty that I could read them over and over again), the setting, the plot, the construction ... amazing!
Piet Hein
Jul 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A wonderfully novel - a frame narrative - written in great style which has to tell a lot about Europe, Europeans, the rest of the world, tourism, refugees, art and much, much more. An extraordinary achievement of international allure.
Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it

semi autobiographically, Pfeiffer weaves several story lines together, so that the end is no surprise and yet it turns out to be a surprise. The question is to what extent this is autobiographical, which has made me curious about other books by him.
Koen Maegherman
Feb 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Marvelous novel, reflection, eulogy, love story, ... Hotel as metaphor for the changing balance in the world, ... All written in a very poetic and at some point even funny style. At other parts you will encounter more economic description but even those are nice to read!
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A monolith. This novel bursts with well articulated views on history, tourism and migration, from a European perspective.

Read it.

Also, Clio is a pain in the ass.
Apr 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Judith Jegers Boekel
May 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
Didn't finish it, it could not capture me.
Jul 17, 2019 rated it liked it
The book is written like the subject, beautiful constructed sentences but what's the relevance of it all.
Marielle Rebel
Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow! Just wow!
Elsbeth Kwant
Read but did not finish - good story, but somehow it still seemed a relief not to go on reading. Might try again though.
Ellen van Manen-de Boer
underwhelming end ...
Karen De
Jan 26, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ebooks, bib, gave-up-on
not my cup of tea..
F.J. Commelin
Mar 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novel
Well written novel.
Only the last discussion between Ilja and his learned friend at the Grand Hotel I thought too long.
Otherwise I enjoyed the worlds he vividly showes us.
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Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer schrijft romans, verhalen, gedichten, columns, essays, kritieken, theaterstukken en songteksten. Hij woont en werkt in Genua. Pfeijffer was tot 2004 werkzaam als classicus aan de Universiteit Leiden. Hij is gespecialiseerd in het werk van de klassieke dichter Pindarus. In 1998 won hij de C. Buddingh’-prijs voor zijn dichtbundel Van de vierkante man. Voor de Boekenweek 2000 s ...more

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