Hotel Silence: Book summary and reviews of Hotel Silence by Audur Ava Olafsdottir

Hotel Silence

by Audur Ava Olafsdottir

Hotel Silence by Audur Ava Olafsdottir X
Hotel Silence by Audur Ava Olafsdottir
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  • Published in USA  Feb 2018
    288 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Told with grace, insight, and humor, this is the story of one man's surprising mid-life adventure of self-discovery that leads him to find a new reason for being.

Jónas Ebeneser is a handy DIY kind of man with a compulsion to fix things, but he can't seem to fix his own life. On the cusp of turning fifty, divorced, adrift, he's recently discovered he is not the biological father of his daughter, Gudrun Waterlily, and he has sunk into an existential crisis, losing all will to live. As he visits his senile mother in a nursing home, he secretly muses on how, when, and where to put himself out of his misery.

To prevent his only daughter from discovering his body, Jónas decides it's best to die abroad. Armed with little more than his toolbox and a change of clothes, he flies to an unnamed country where the fumes of war still hover in the air. He books a room at the sparsely occupied Hotel Silence, and there he comes to understand the depths of other people's scars while beginning to see his wounds in a new light.

A celebration of life's infinite possibilities, of transformations and second chances, Hotel Silence is a rousing story of a man, a community, and a path toward regeneration from the depths of despair.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. The story moves at a consistently engaging pace, and Olafsdottir's blend of sly humor and bleak realities makes for a life-affirming tale without any treacle. " - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Witty, soulful, lighthearted, and tender, this charming and immersive new work from the award-winning author of Butterflies in November is a great choice for book discussion groups." - Library Journal

"Hotel Silence is a beautifully spare and insightful tale of redemption." - Booklist

"Told in surreal, almost Kafkaesque prose, Ólafsdóttir's stunning story is about one man's unexpected reawakening. An engaging and surprising tale of transformation." - Kirkus

"Hotel Silence is one of the most human books I've read in a while. It reminds me of The Clown by Heinrich Boll. I loved it." - Daniel Wallace, author of Extraordinary Adventures and Big Fish

"Jónas Ebeneser leaves his home in Iceland for a city thousands of miles away pummeled by war and violence, now at tentative peace. He brings with him only his toolbox, scars, and grief. While he plans his suicide, the people of the town draw him out with their endless list of broken items to be fixed. With humor and simple, heart-piercing prose, Hotel Silence tells the story of a man and his past, and the community where he finds himself. Ólafsdóttir's world is full of surprise, sadness, love, and transformation. I didn't want it to end." - Bethany Ball, author of What To Do About The Solomons

The information about Hotel Silence shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Audur Ava Olafsdottir

Audur Ava Olafsdottir (Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir) was born in Iceland in 1958, studied art history in Paris and has lectured in the history of art. She has published a poetry collection and several novels, including Butterflies in November, which was longlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, and The Greenhouse, which was translated into twenty-two languages, won the DV Culture Award for Literature, and was a finalist for the Nordic Council Literature Award. She currently lives and works in Reykjavik as the director of the University of Iceland's Art Museum.

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