The Colonial Hotel: A Novel

Bennett, Jonathan

  • This devastating tale of love and war is “in Graham Greene territory . . . A solid novel on morality in our not-quite-postcolonial world.” (Globe and Mail)

    “An exploration of love and grief, the power of storytelling, the pains of parenthood and uncomfortable truths . . . Bennett has cleverly and sensitively described the many types of love tested by war . . . Rewarding and intensely moving . . . Devastatingly beautiful.” — National Post

    A lyrical, heartbreaking story of ardour and devastation

    A doctor and a nurse, Paris and Helen, are doing humanitarian work in a nation on the brink of civil war. They have also fallen in love with each other — and Helen is pregnant with their child.

    Then, a confrontation breaks out and they are swept up by rebel forces and separated. One is imprisoned while the other escapes. In The Colonial Hotel — which recasts a classic story of ancient Greece into a modern setting — we learn of their fates, in a brutally powerful story of family, forgiveness, and identity.

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  • Jonathan Bennett is the author of six books, including the critically acclaimed novels Entitlement and After Battersea Park, and is a winner of the K.M. Hunter Artists’ Award in Literature. His collection of short stories, Verandah People, was runner-up for the Danuta Gleed Award. Bennett’s prose and poetry has appeared in many periodicals and journals including the Globe and Mail, The Walrus, Quill & Quire, This Magazine, Southerly, and Descant. Born in Vancouver and raised in Sydney, Australia, Jonathan lives in the village of Keene, near Peterborough, Ontario.

  • Published: May 2014

    ISBN: 9781770411784

    Dimensions: 4.5 x 7.5 in.

    Pages: 232


“Jonathan Bennett has cleverly and sensitively described the many types of love tested by war. The result is a rewarding and intensely moving read: deceptively gruelling, given its slim dimensions, but also — like its heroine — devastatingly beautiful.” — National Post

“This short novel is at once lyrical and brutal, alluring in its spare, elegant prose and shocking in its honest portrayal of the realities of political corruption and duplicitous leadership. Bennett is able to demonstrate the timelessness of the themes of the original classic story in this contemporary setting, offering both emotional depth and universal truths about the human condition.” — Waterloo Region Record

“A solid novel on morality in our not-quite-postcolonial world.” — Globe and Mail

“Bennett has presented a compelling, lyrical novel of love, suffering and reconciliation.” — Winnipeg Free Press

“These characters and their journey are utterly compelling.” — Ardor