The House is crumbling. It is in England of the future, years after the devasting “”Mishap” has wrought destruction on the earth. The master and his household of indentured servants each scramble to hold up the pretence of a “normal” life, but nothing can ever be the same again.
While the rest of the household prepares for the annual day trip to the sea, thirteen-year old Tots embarks on a personal quest. Told that she was found as a newborn on the doorstep, she is now searching to find the missing half of her indenture contract–and her freedom. Each room hides its own secret–including the Master’s plan to destroy the House.
Pauline Holdstock counterpoises the spectre of a grim society with a dark and bizarre humour. A novel of metaphors, House explores the deterioration of social and moral structures, as well as their rebuilding.
“a delightfully funny look at our eternal search for belonging….Holdstock is a captivating and wryly humorous writer….[she] has created a complex world in House. Her characters are vivid and engaging, their relationships intriguing and humorous. This is a highly entertaining novel, whose richness of theme and language make it worth a second read.” The Malahat Review
“black humour, sparse but striking metaphors, and dead-on characterization ….The cumulative effect is similar to that of a poem sequence; images recur, scenes echo one another and coalesce into psychological truth.” Books In Canada
“As an allegory of the present, as a bitter satire of the extended family under triumphant capitalism, House is graphically intense and too disturbingly familiar… It is not a book that a reader will easily forget.”
University of Toronto Quarterly
“Such is the new order of the universe in the house of the future, where nothing is ever the same except for the familiar and inescapable resonances of history. A complicated and unique novel, pulled off brilliantly…”
The Glebe Report
• 149 pages
• Publisher: Beach Holme Publishers;
• 1st Canadian ed edition (1994)
• Language: English
• ISBN-10: 0888783531
• ISBN-13: 978-0888783530