Title: Hotel Ruby
Author: Suzanne Young
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Paranormal, Fantasy
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Publication date: November 3rd, 2015
When Audrey Casella arrives for an unplanned stay at the grand Hotel Ruby, she’s grateful for the detour. Just months after their mother’s death, Audrey and her brother, Daniel, are on their way to live with their grandmother, dumped on the doorstep of a DNA-matched stranger because their father is drowning in his grief.
Audrey and her family only plan to stay the night, but life in the Ruby can be intoxicating, extending their stay as it provides endless distractions—including handsome guest Elias Lange, who sends Audrey’s pulse racing. However, the hotel proves to be as strange as it is beautiful. Nightly fancy affairs in the ballroom are invitation only, and Audrey seems to be the one guest who doesn’t have an invite. Instead, she joins the hotel staff on the rooftop, catching whispers about the hotel’s dark past.
The more Audrey learns about the new people she’s met, the more her curiosity grows. She’s torn in different directions—the pull of her past with its overwhelming loss, the promise of a future that holds little joy, and an in-between life in a place that is so much more than it seems…
Welcome to the Ruby.
“Here are your keycards and maps. Again, I’d like to welcome you to the Hotel Ruby. I hope you enjoy your stay.”
Oh, man, that was a disappointment. When I first heard about this book I immetiately thought “this is going to be the perfect creepy read for Halloween“, so now that it’s October and fall is already here, I knew I had to pick it up and read it. And I went with pretty high expectations, because the premise sounded really good and frankly, quite scary, but boy, it wasn’t like that. At all.
I would say there were parts that had a lot of potential, and were a bit creepy and gave that haunted place vibe I was looking for, but the majority of the book wasn’t really making a lot of sense to me, and I feel it wasn’t really happening anything apart from a romance, and let me tell you, not a worthy one.
“I understand grief better than you can imagine,” he whispers, resting his chin on the top of my head. “Sometimes the beautiful memories are the saddest ones of all.”
I would start by saying that the characters weren’t very remarkable to me. Yes, they all have that potential to be great and strong and the type of characters I love reading about, but in my opinion most of them were a bit underdeveloped and clique, and I didn’t connect with them as much as I would have like to.
Our main character was quite the same. I liked how she was trying to figure what was going on in the hotel, and there were parts where she was brave enough for me to say “you go, girl!“, but in the majority of the book she was swoonihg over the love interest, and that bored me a bit, because well, I was expecting creepy things to happen and they didn’t!
And now the mayor focus of the book: that romance. Ugh, really, lately I’ve been feeling quite estrict when it comes to romances in books, so maybe this was my fault and I went expecting something entirely different, but I’m still salty about it. The whole entire book was focused on that. Literally. It was quite insta love-ish and it came out of nowhere, and a lot of the conversations between our main character, Audrey and Elias didn’t make sense to me. They didn’t add a lot of content to the story, and I felt as if the author didn’t have a lot of things to say and she decided to add odd and unnecesary interactions between them just so you could see that they were attracted to each other. Well, let me tell you: that only made me dislike this book even more.
“In the movies there are always these poignant moments when people work out their misunderstandings, their miscommunications. But that’s not real life. In real life it’s hard to tell someone you don’t love them anymore.”
The whole relationship-thing stroke me as odd. Audrey’s interactions with her family, for example, were quite weird, and I still don’t know if they were done on purpose or not, but I didn’t like them. There was a general distance between the characters and the reader that made me not enjoy the story that much, and well, me being me and expecting so much of this book.
I still decided to give this book two and a half stars, because the whole concept of the Hotel Ruby and some things that happened in the course of the book were enjoyable, and it still had that eery atmosphere I was desperately looking for in the story. There were a few things that surprised me (in a good way) and didn’t see coming, but I had mayor issues with the plot itself and the characters.
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