American Lola Laforet seems to have it all, a whirlwind romance that turned into “to have and to hold,” a charmed life on the Cote d’Azur, and ownership of the magnificent Hotel Riviera. Tragically the dream ends as abruptly as it begins when her beloved husband mysteriously disappears. Heartsick, confused, and lonely, her life is thrown into further turmoil when a handsome stranger, Jack Ferrar, an American ex-patriot living on his boat, drops anchor in Lola’s harbor and teaches her the meaning of instant attraction.
Grand Hotel / Vicki Baum
Among the guests of the grand hotel in the center of 1920s Berlin is Dr. Otternschlag, a World War I veteran whose face has been sliced in half by a shell. Day after day he emerges to read the paper in the lobby, discreetly inquiring at the desk if the letter he’s been awaiting for years has arrived. Then there is Grusinskaya, a great ballerina now fighting a losing battle not so much against age as against her fear of it, and Gaigern, a sleek professional thief, who may or may not be made for each other. Herr Preysing also checks in, the director of a family firm that isn’t as flourishing as it appears, who would never imagine that Kringelein, his underling, a timorous petty clerk he’s bullied for years, has also come to Berlin, determined to live at last now that he’s received a medical death sentence. All these characters and more, with their secret fears and hopes, come together and come alive in the pages of Baum’s delicious and disturbing masterpiece.
At an opulent resort in Montego Bay, Margot hustles to send her younger sister, Thandi, to school. Taught as a girl to trade her sexuality for survival, Margot is ruthlessly determined to shield Thandi from the same fate. When plans for a new hotel threaten their village, Margot sees not only an opportunity for her own financial independence but also perhaps a chance to admit a shocking secret: her forbidden love for another woman. As they face the impending destruction of their community, each woman–fighting to balance the burdens she shoulders with the freedom she craves–must confront long-hidden scars.
Into the rarified atmosphere of the Hotel du Lac timidly walks Edith Hope, romantic novelist and holder of modest dreams. Edith has been exiled from home after embarrassing herself and her friends. She has refused to sacrifice her ideals and remains stubbornly single. But among the pampered women and minor nobility Edith finds Mr. Neville, and her chance to escape from a life of humiliating spinsterhood is renewed.
A spy known as Thomas, working for British intelligence, attempts to infiltrate the entourage of Roper, an Englishman fitting together the pieces for monumental arms-for-cocaine deal.
Signing up for a writer’s retreat in order to avoid another lonely holiday, Kimberly Rossetti befriends aspiring author Zeke, who offers her advice on making her writing more inspired while gradually revealing secrets about his past.
Lucy Honeychurch falls in love while on a visit to Florence and must choose between fulfilling her social role and following her heart.
1926: Violet Armstrong is one of the few remaining members of staff working at the grand Evergreen Spa Hotel as it closes down over winter. Only a handful of guests are left, including the heir to a rich grazing family, his sister and her suave suitor. When a snowstorm moves in, the hotel is cut off and they are all trapped. No one could have predicted what would unfold. When the storm clears they must all keep the devastating secrets hidden. 2014: After years of putting her sick brother’s needs before her own, Lauren Beck leaves her home and takes a job at a Blue Mountains cafe, the first stage of the Evergreen Spa Hotel’s renovations. There she meets Tomas, the Danish architect who is overseeing the project, and an attraction begins to grow. In a wing of the old hotel, Lauren finds a series of passionate love letters dated back to 1926, alluding to an affair – and a shocking secret. If she can unravel this long-ago mystery, will it make Lauren brave enough to take a risk and change everything in her own life?
Winter Stroll: a novel / Elin Hilderbrand
While preparing for Christmas at the Winter Street Inn, Kelley Quinn and his family find the holiday season thrown into chaos when three of their exes show up.
Nestled in a picturesque corner of southern Australia, the Valley View Motel has been run by the Quinlans for years– and nobody adores the place more than Lola, the family’s lovable and mischievous Irish-born matriarch. So when she insists that her relatives spend their Christmas elsewhere, the close-knit bunch can’t help but be a bit curious. Plotting in secret and online, Lola thinks it would be fun to invite a select group of strangers to stay at the motel for Christmas, but her own family dramas threaten to upend her best-laid plans.
When her husband dies suddenly, Jane Bell becomes the reluctant landlady of The Bell, an inn in the village of Ivy Hill. Jane has no idea how to manage a business, but with the town’s livelihood at stake and a large loan due, she must quickly find a way to save the inn. Despite their strained relationship, Jane turns to her mother-in-law, Thora, for help.
Jo Marie Rose first arrives in Cedar Cove seeking a sense of peace and a fresh start. Coping with the death of her husband, she purchases a local bed-and-breakfast–the newly christened Rose Harbor Inn–ready to begin her life anew. Yet the inn holds more surprises than Jo Marie can imagine. Her first guest is Joshua Weaver, who has come home to care for his ailing stepfather. The two have never seen eye to eye, and Joshua has little hope that they can reconcile their differences. But a long-lost acquaintance from Joshua’s high school days proves to him that forgiveness is never out of reach and love can bloom even where it’s least expected.
A Wedding in Maine: a McCullagh Inn story / Jen McLaughlin
Jeremy Holland is exactly what Chelsea O’Kane wants in a man. She is excited to host their wedding at the McCullagh Inn but secrets from her past may hold up the process.
When Olivia Rawlings, Boston pastry chef extraordinaire, sets not only her flambé dessert but the entire building alight, she escapes to Vermont to stay with her best friend, Hannah, who lives in a town famous for Bag Balm and contra dancing. Since her previous post at the exclusive Boston club has probably also gone up in smoke, Olivia gratefully accepts a job at the Sugar Maple Inn, not realizing at first that she’s been hired to help the cantankerous owner reclaim the inn’s blue ribbon status at the annual county fair apple pie contest.
A darkly comic portrait of a man who comes to life in the most unexpected of ways: through his online reviews. Reginald Edward Morse is one of the top reviewers on RateYourLodging.com, where his many reviews reveal more than just details of hotels around the globe – they tell his life story.
When John Duckworth and his sister, Faith, leave New York to build a new life on Cape Cod, the cynical former crime reporter and his family fall prey to Jasmine Jones, a villainous temptress who destroys their lives.
Against the Mediterranean landscapes of Mallorca’s sea views and lush olive groves, “The Rocks” opens with a dramatic argument. It is 2005, and Lulu and Gerald, octogenarians who haven’t spoken for more than fifty years despite having been married and still living within a few miles of each other, finally confront the secret of their past. Whatever catastrophic event drove them apart so suddenly and absolutely as honeymooners back in 1948 has cast a long shadow over their lives.
Bringing together a series of brief reflections and musings on bits of hotel stationery and postcards, an editor assembles a mysterious manuscript that describes the protagonist’s encounters with a series of hotel rooms in cities around the globe, as well as his involvement with international networks comprised of unsavory thugs and female spies in distress.
The hotel was old, run-down. But to Swiss-born Hugues Martin, a young, ambitious hotelier trained in the most illustrious European traditions, it is a rough diamond, tucked away on a quiet, perfectly situated Manhattan street. After begging and borrowing every penny he can scrape together, Hugues purchases the building—and transforms it into one of the world’s finest luxury hotels. Under Hugues’s tireless, exacting supervision, the Hotel Vendôme is soon renowned for its elegance, its efficiency, its unparalleled service and discretion—the ideal New York refuge for the rich and famous, as well as a perfect home for Hugues’s beautiful young wife and their daughter. But when his wife runs off with a notorious rock star, Hugues is suddenly a single parent to four-year-old Heloise—who will grow up happily regardless, amid a fascinating milieu of celebrities, socialites, politicians, world travelers, and the countless hotel employees who all adore her.
A Gentleman in Moscow: a novel / Amor Towles
Deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal in 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is sentenced to house arrest in a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin, where he endures life in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history unfold.
When Cody, a troubled fourteen-year-old, witnesses a murder, she tells no one. But it begins a spiral for her from which she cannot escape. Her worried mother Skye thinks a change of scene is just what her introverted, withdrawn daughter needs and since her dream has always been to own an inn, she jumps at the chance to buy a dilapidated bed & breakfast in the Berkshires.
Follows a young Italian innkeeper and his almost-love affair with a beautiful American starlet, which draws him into a glittering world filled with unforgettable characters.