Review: Hotel Moscow

June 25, 2015 Fiction, Historical Fiction, Review, Thriller 11 ★★★★

Review: Hotel MoscowTitle: Hotel Moscow
Author: Talia Carner
Source: TLC Book Tours
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads

Summary: This book was more thriller than I expected, but both the thriller and historical fiction elements were very well executed.

When Brooke Fielding volunteers her business knowledge to help Russian female entrepreneurs after the fall of communism, she knows her visit will be complicated by the fact that her parents are Russian Jewish holocaust survivors. What she doesn’t know is how dangerous the trip will turn out to be. Despite her parents’ past, Brooke becomes deeply involved with the women she’s trying to help. Mafia members and corrupt officials employ brutal tactics in their attempt to acquire the newly privatized businesses owned by the women Brooke hopes to help. And only Brooke has the financial knowledge and connections needed to discover who is behind the violent takeovers.

This book wasn’t at all what I expected from the description on the jacket. Typically when that happens, it doesn’t end well, but in this case, I thought the jacket description really undersold the story! To begin with, the book was awesome in all the ways I expected from the description. It takes place during a fascinating time period in Russian history and I learned a lot from reading the book. It was about impressive female entrepreneurs, both Brooke and the women she was working with. The parts from the perspectives of the Russian women gave even more insight into life in Russia. And the descriptions of the time period and location in general were very vivid.

Beyond these mostly expected things, I was surprised by the spy thriller elements of the story. The book included a lot of action and almost constant tension. I particularly liked how the author worked little details about people and places into her descriptions of events. It was a great way for the fast pace and well-written descriptions to coexist. There was also more violence than I expected, sexual and otherwise, which was even more shocking because it was so unexpected. Despite the horrific events in the story, the descriptions weren’t so graphic they decreased my enjoyment of the book. The last surprising bit of awesome was the author note at the end, explaining that much of the book was based on the author’s own experience in Russia. As someone who loves learning factual information from historical fiction, this was a cherry on top of a great reading experience.

For some other perspectives, be sure to check out the other stops on the tour.

11 Responses to “Review: Hotel Moscow”

    • DoingDewey

      Great! I don’t think I’ve read any books set in Russia before, so I enjoyed learning something about the Russia’s history. It also made me want to read something more contemporary set in Russia, because I very much hope that conditions have improved from what they were in this book! And if they have, I think it’s completely unfair to Russia for my impression of the country to be shaped by this book.

    • DoingDewey

      Me too! I think this one worked for me because it did do the things I expected and then did even more. Thanks for including me!

  1. Jennine G.

    Definitely a setting I could learn more about. I’ll keep it in mind.

    • DoingDewey

      When I think about it, I’m overwhelmed by the countries and time periods I currently know nothing about! I’m glad historical fiction helps me fill in some of the gaps 🙂

  2. Charlene @ Bookish Whimsy

    Wow this sounds like a great, exciting read. And learning about different countries and cultures through fiction is always a plus. I’m glad this was such a wonderful surprise for you!

    • DoingDewey

      It’s true! I love historical fiction because it’s such a great genre for that kind of learning. This was definitely even better than I expected 🙂

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