Laura Floyd's Reviews > The Hotel New Hampshire

The Hotel New Hampshire by John Irving
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's review
Jul 28, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: real-world-fiction

I'm just not sure what to make of this book. John Irving is one of my favorite authors. His ability to craft interesting and believable characters is one of his strongest talents, and in that regard, this book is no disappointment. Even the setting is intriguing: who hasn't wanted to live in a hotel at some point in their lives?

Perhaps the thing I found most unsettling about the story was how casually the subject matter is treated. Death, sex, and more death: it's all treated in a nearly off-hand fashion. On the final page, I feel pleased that the main character has ended up in the situation he's in, but I feel like he's exactly the same person he was when he started. The use of the dog, Sorrow, as a running metaphor throughout the tale was interesting but felt forced. I just didn't come away from this novel with the same sense of satisfaction that I've found in his other works.
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