The remains of the day Tells the story of Mr Stevens, a ‘true English butler’ as he embarks on a rare holiday driving through the English countryside. Whilst on this trip he reflects back on the events of the past years in particular his relationship with Miss Kenton the former housekeeper at the grand country house.
Stevens is largely preoccupied with two things – what makes a great butler (dignity) and ‘banterings’ – for which he considers his inability to hold informal conversation with anyone. The fact that Stevens is trying to learn how to banter with people goes against the impromptu nature of making a jokey ‘bantering’ comment. Yet it is in line with his formal way of approaching the changing world in which he works – having previously served a British Lord to now working for an American business man being recruited as park of the package in the sale of the house. The book was easy to listen to (another library loaned audio book for my commute) and definitely one of the more easy to read and enjoy of the Booker list that I’ve read.
I’ve not read any of Ishiguros other novels – having heard mixed reviews of them before this one so will be interested to read them now having enjoyed ‘the remains of the day’.
“One is not struck by the truth until prompted quite accidentally by some external event.”
“The evening’s the best part of the day. You’ve done your day’s work. Now you can put your feet up and enjoy it.”