Review of The Last Hotel

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Laura Ungureanu
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Review of The Last Hotel

Post by Laura Ungureanu »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "The Last Hotel" by Joni Scott.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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We all went through this pandemic together and gathered all sorts of stories about it. Authors are the ones who decide to share their experiences, thus giving us precious books like The Last Hotel by Joni Scott. Set on the beautiful French Riviera, the novel tells of the first wave of the covid-19 pandemic and how a group of people found peace during such a chaotic time.

The Last Hotel brings together people from all over the world. Whether it’s a ballet dancer who comes for a new job in Nice, an ill woman who seeks a cure in northern Italy, or just people who need to get away from their lives, they will all find themselves both in danger and in absolute peace together.

I was especially touched by Maggie’s story, an Australian woman who flies to Italy with her husband in search of a miraculous cure for her rare pain disease. Maggie was well until her wrist pain turned into “the most painful disease known to humankind,” making her feel ill and old. The promise of a cure gives her hope, but that changes when Italy is hit by the virus. Every hotel starts to close on her and her husband. It seems like they will be forced to go home, spending lots of money and not solving anything. But due to some very kind bakery owners, miracles do happen. The way Joni Scott described Maggie’s fear of the pain made everything so real and helped me empathize with her character. This vivid depicture of life makes a powerful impression on the reader. The way the author paints the warm colors of the French Riviera inspires me to want to visit it immediately, as the pandemic could never take away the beauty of this piece of heaven.

The beginnings of the chapters are sprinkled with concerning news about the pandemic. The events accurately match the restrictions and lockdowns that were in place at that time, making everything feel real. Even though the subject is heavy, the author delivers it in a light manner, emphasizing the great things that were born out of this unique experience, like some life-long friendships and romances. Actually, after reading the whole book, it seems that the characters needed the virus in order to rediscover themselves.

Since this book will have the characters stuck in lockdown for some time, it’s only natural to be focused on their development. The Last Hotel has a large cast of characters, all with different stories that lead them to the same place at the same time. What’s heart-warming is how they all end up as a ‘pandemic family.’ Small romances are bound to happen, teaching us that it’s never too late to find love. The characters are full of life and personality. I loved that the author paid close attention to how characters speak, like adding accents to French people speaking English. Other characters have speaking impairments, like stuttering. Also, all characters have a backstory and are constantly growing, culminating in a beautiful artistic moment.

I wish I could’ve given this book a perfect rating, as it is absolutely amazing in every aspect. However, after finding a little more than ten sloppy errors, I felt conditioned to take a star away. The errors consisted mostly of misplaced punctuation marks, so they could easily be fixed with another round of editing. Thus, my rating for The Last Hotel is 3 out of 4 stars. This book is perfect for a relaxed weekend at home. I recommend it to people who enjoy simple but powerful stories of friendship, family, and love. It could also be enjoyed by people who want to read a book about the covid-19 pandemic, which is still a hot topic. My personal conclusion is that this book was one of the best ones I’ve read this year.

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The Last Hotel
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Novela book
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Post by Novela book »

This made me want to go on a vacation. A fun relaxing kind of book with certain values highlighted. Great review.
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Maliha Naveed
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Post by Maliha Naveed »

The current pandemic has affected so many lives in different ways. Some grew well while some went into depression after losing their loved ones. Either way, they have been transformed. I loved the phrase used by the author 'pandemic family' as undoubtedly we all have become one.
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Amy Luman
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Post by Amy Luman »

Everyone deals with the pandemic and it’s effects in a different way. I’d like to see how others did it. Thanks for the review.
IamJc_Bembo12
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Post by IamJc_Bembo12 »

As we’re still grappling with this unending pandemic. I feel happy that there are a lot of authors who are now starting to formulate a story base on the current tragedy we are experiencing. For sure, after a long time, this occurrence will be merely a memory to all of us. Thanks for this explicit and honest review!
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Post by markodim721 »

Personally, I don't like it when a novel has a large cast of characters, but in this book it doesn't seem to be a problem because they are all well developed. Thanks for the good review.
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Dzejn_Crvena
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Post by Dzejn_Crvena »

I am currently reading a book about a boy who's distressed during the pandemic, and this one is also very relatable to everyone. Sounds like a relaxing slice-of-life story for readers. Thanks for your thorough review.
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Adelle v
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Post by Adelle v »

Sounds like a wonderful book to read. The story sounds well thought through, I like the fact that it is never to late to find love again even in an pandemic.
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