Book Review – Hotel Magnifique by Emily Taylor

Picture of Adeeba Jafri

Adeeba Jafri

Adeeba is the author of several books including The Baby Garden, A Zoom with a View and Show Yourself.

A magical tale full of dark magic, adventure and mystery

In Hotel Magnifique, Taylor takes some of the timeless tropes that truly make a novel and weaves them into a magical tale of forbidden magic, betrayal, inner strength and sisterly love. 

Orphaned sisters Jani (17) and Zosa (13) find themselves suddenly employed by the Hotel Magnifique after most of their childhood was spent barely scraping by. In the hotel, magicians, called suminaires, perform unimaginable wonders that are uniquely different for the dazzlingly wealthy guests. They also use their magic to move the hotel to a new location, anywhere in the world, every midnight. 

When Zosa is hired as a singer and goes missing, Jani is convinced that something is terribly wrong. Over the course of the book, through her interactions with the staff and the guests themselves, she discovers that the contracts they signed to gain access to the hotel were cursed. To complicate matters, the rules that apply to the other guests and staff of the hotel don’t seem to apply to her. (The reason for this is explained later in the book). Now, Jani is on a mission to track down the whereabouts of her sister as well as discover what dark secrets the Maitre Alastair, is keeping. 

The books moves seamlessly as the reader learns, from Jani’s point of view, the goal of the Maitre, Alastair, and what lengths he would go to achieve that goal. What impressed me most was the development of each of the side characters in this novel. The slow burn between Jani and Bel, the handsome doorman with a mysterious past, was a treat for the reader, but the most gratifying was to see Jani truly come into her own inner strength. 

This is a book I would recommend to fans of fantasy, but especially for readers who enjoyed the Caraval trilogy.