Details

ISBN-10: 081121687X
ISBN-13: 9780811216876
Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publish Date: 05/31/2007
Dimensions: 7.96" L, 6.58" W, 0.65" H

I Served the King of England

Translator: Paul Wilson

Paperback

Price: $15.95

Overview

First published in 1971 in a typewritten edition, then finally printed in book form in 1989, I Served the King of England is an extraordinary and subtly tragicomic novel (The New York Times), telling the tale of Ditie, a hugely ambitious but simple waiter in a deluxe Prague hotel in the years before World War II. Ditie is called upon to serve not the King of England, but Haile Selassie. It is one of the great moments in his life. Eventually, he falls in love with a Nazi woman athlete as the Germans are invading Czechoslovakia. After the war, through the sale of valuable stamps confiscated from the Jews, he reaches the heights of his ambition, building a hotel. He becomes a millionaire, but with the institution of communism, he loses everything and is sent to inspect mountain roads. Living in dreary circumstances, Ditie comes to terms with the inevitability of his death, and with his place in history.

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Reviews
This is one of Central Europe's great hotel novels, witty and deep, set in Prague, and the city's provincial clones. The pomp of hotel lobbies and restaurants serves as a backdrop to portray the smallness of a person caught up in the maelstrom of history, forced to scramble, bear losses, make bad judgement calls, and strike Faustian bargains.– "Calvert Journal"
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Details

ISBN-10: 081121687X
ISBN-13: 9780811216876
Publisher: New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publish Date: 05/31/2007
Dimensions: 7.96" L, 6.58" W, 0.65" H
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