Review: Hotel Ruby by Suzanne Young


Title:  Hotel Ruby
Author: Suzanne Young
Publisher/Year: Simon Pulse 11/03/15
Length:  199 pages


From the New York Times bestselling author of The Program comes a brand-new haunting, romantic, and suspenseful story about one girl’s search for healing in a grand and mysterious hotel full of secrets.

Stay tonight. Stay forever.

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 in a place that is so much more than it seems…

And the 13th chapter will only add to the mystery behind the 13th floor of Hotel Ruby…and ultimately, what it means for Audrey.

Welcome to the Ruby.

My Thoughts

coming from the author of The Program, i was certain that we’d get a great story – and while this was really good (ergo the reading it in less than 24 hours), it’s NOTHING like i expected.  Ms. Young had done a great job in her past series writing a compelling dystopian story, and here what we get, is a YA story for sure, with bits of fantasy and sci-fi (i.e. the ghosts???)

We learn that we’re about 3 months post the death of Audrey and Daniel’s mom and it’s been a really tough time for the family.  Their dad hadn’t been able to control his grief, and the kids had acted out – resulting in this move of the kids to their grandmothers for the summer (or forever).  While the kids plot their next move on the drive to grandmas, their lives change forever.

Dad decides to make a side trip overnight to stay as a family at Hotel Ruby since it’s late, and once they enter, everything that they knew, thought or felt was up in the air.  We know that Audrey meets Elias the first night when she sneaks into a party that’s invitation only only to get kicked out, resulting in his attention as he shows her around the hotel.  Daniel and their dad though, they find themselves in a different space.  Daniel of course gets the attention of women there and their dad seems to get grounded some how and comes out of his grief a bit.

The story from there goes through their stay being extended so that they can enjoy things a bit more as a family, Audrey continues to question what’s really going on in this supposed haunted hotel, decipher between the lives of the guests and the staff, all while trying to figure out what it is that draws her to Elias.

The ending, while surprising, isn’t that surprising at all.  i think that we all want a happy ending, wake up from a dream, find out that everyone’s in on a joke etc.  Ms Young doesn’t disappoint.  I feel like there were hopes for some things to happen and others to not.  For their dad to realize that he’s been neglecting them and go be all happy family again, but who knows if that’s even possible.

All wrapped up in a little bow, this one installment story has just the right level of intrigue, mystery, romance and character relationship depth/dynamic to make it a great read.  On that note – Happy Saturday everyone and i’ll be back soon.