Hotel Andromeda by Gabriel Josipovici - review by Lucian Robinson

Lucian Robinson

Boxing Clever

Hotel Andromeda

By

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For over forty years, Gabriel Josipovici has maintained a stubborn rearguard action for modernism and the stylistic claims of the nouveau roman, against the philistinism he perceives in the English literary scene. Through his incisive criticism and a steady stream of short, dialogue-driven novels (Hotel Andromeda is his 18th), he’s continued to uphold a banner that most interested parties had given up for lost around 1980. When they’re good, Josipovici’s novels possess a cool tonal singularity; when they’re bad, they’re dull to the point of parody. A typical exchange of the second type occurs, for example, in his 1971 novel Words

Louis pushed his plate away. ‘It’s funny,’ he said, ‘but you know I was often tempted to look you up. When I was in Rome. But I didn’t.’

‘No,’ she said.

‘There didn’t seem to be much point, somehow.’

‘No.’

The inevitable response to such passages is to tacitly agree with Louis that, no,

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