LITERATURE: The Unconsoled– Theme

As the narrator, Mr. Ryder, settles into his surroundings at the hotel, we see a recurring theme of a near adulation from the hotel employees. Yet each finds a way to spend enough time with him in order to seek a favor. While on the surface there is emphasis on making his stay as comfortable as possible, his schedule is also supposedly a busy one, and it seems strange that they would add to that by taking up his time.

It seems odd to me that they would impose on any guest. The porter has even suggested that Ryder take a walk to Old Town, then intimates that since he’s there, he might meet the porter’s daughter and find out what’s troubling her.

I suspect that this slow pace and the building of hotel employee characters has a purpose in Ishiguro’s novel, but it is an unusual manner of laying story around an unsuspecting first person protagonist.

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