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Reviews of Hotel Magnifique by Emily Taylor

Hotel Magnifique

by Emily J. Taylor

Hotel Magnifique by Emily J. Taylor X
Hotel Magnifique by Emily J. Taylor
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Apr 2022, 400 pages

    Paperback:
    Aug 2023, 400 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Michelle Anya Anjirbag
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About this Book

Book Summary

Decadent and darkly enchanting, this lavish YA fantasy debut follows seventeen-year-old Jani as she uncovers the deeply disturbing secrets of the legendary Hotel Magnifique.

All her life, Jani has dreamed of Elsewhere. Just barely scraping by with her job at a tannery, she's resigned to a dreary life in the port town of Durc, caring for her younger sister Zosa. That is, until the Hotel Magnifique comes to town.

The hotel is legendary not only for its whimsical enchantments, but also for its ability to travel—appearing in a different destination every morning. While Jani and Zosa can't afford the exorbitant costs of a guest's stay, they can interview to join the staff, and are soon whisked away on the greatest adventure of their lives. But once inside, Jani quickly discovers their contracts are unbreakable and that beneath the marvelous glamour, the hotel is hiding dangerous secrets.

With the vexingly handsome doorman Bel as her only ally, Jani embarks on a mission to unravel the mystery of the magic at the heart of the hotel and free Zosa—and the other staff—from the cruelty of the ruthless maître d'hôtel. To succeed, she'll have to risk everything she loves, but failure would mean a fate far worse than never returning home.

Excerpt
Hotel Magnifique

I often heard my sister before I saw her, and tonight was no exception. Zosa's supple voice spilled through the open window of Bézier Residence, sounding so like our mother's—at least until she began a raunchier ditty comparing a man's more delicate anatomy to a certain fruit.

I crept inside, unnoticed in the crowd of boarders. Two of the younger girls pretended to dance with invisible partners, but every other eye was fixed on my sister, the most talented girl in the room.

A special kind of girl rented rooms at Bézier Residence. Almost all worked jobs fitting of their foul mouths: second shifts as house grunts, factory workers, grease cooks, or any number of ill-paying positions in the vieux quais—old docks of Durc. I worked at Tannerie Fréllac, where women huddled over crusted alum pots and wells of dye. But Zosa was different.

"Happy birthday," I shouted when her song ended.

"Jani!" She bounded over. Her huge brown eyes ...

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Reviews

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Emily J. Taylor's debut young adult novel is a breathtaking fantasy with a dark edge that will tantalize the imaginations of people new to the genre as well as those who have already read widely within it. Though it suffers at times from pacing issues — too fast in some areas and dwelling a little too long on descriptive moments in others — strong worldbuilding, a fascinating narrative and emotionally engaging characters will keep readers interested to see if Jani makes it home with Zosa, and where that home actually proves to be...continued

Full Review (523 words)

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(Reviewed by Michelle Anya Anjirbag).

Media Reviews

Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Taylor eloquently builds an immersive, believable world of magic, heavily influenced by French culture and brimming with interesting characters readers will grow to love...The complex characters who evolve throughout the story are diverse in skin color, body type, sexual orientation, and financial means. Even those well read in the genre will enjoy some genuine surprises. A wondrous read for anyone searching for a bit of magic.

Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Clear and creative worldbuilding, exquisite set pieces, and emotionally complex, intersectionally diverse characters complement the twist-riddled plot of Taylor's spellbinding debut. The stakes mount in tandem with Jani and Bel's romantic tension, captivating readers and catapulting the tale to a spectacular, cathartic close.

Booklist
This impressive debut novel is set in a fictional, magical version of France. The level of detail is engrossing, and the sinister touches of the hotel's secrets will keep readers hooked.

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
The poetic descriptions of fantastic new locations, whimsical hotel rooms, a dizzying number of magical terms and concepts create a fantastical setting.

School Library Journal
Taylor has built an enchanting world. Even those who are not drawn to fantasy will enjoy this fast-paced, magical adventure.

Author Blurb Adalyn Grace, New York Times bestseller of All the Stars and Teeth
Dazzling, enchanting, and expertly crafted, with the perfect amount of gritty secrets that kept me flying through the pages. Emily J. Taylor is my new auto-buy author. The debut was impossible to put down and had me positively spellbound from start to finish.

Author Blurb Erin A. Craig, New York Times bestselling author of House of Salt and Sorrows
Hotel Magnifique opened the door to a sumptuous and glittering world of magic and mysteries and left me enchanted. Perfect for fans of Caraval and The Night Circus

Author Blurb Katy Rose Pool, author of The Age of Darkness series
Like the hotel contained in its pages, Hotel Magnifique will sweep you away to an enchanting world filled with mystery and spectacle.

Author Blurb Laura Sebastian, New York Times bestselling author of the Ash Princess trilogy
In Hotel Magnifique, Emily J. Taylor creates a world both dazzling and dark. Readers won't want to turn the final page.

Reader Reviews

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Beyond the Book

Captivating Fantasy Worlds to Explore Next

A trip to Elsewhere in the young adult debut Hotel Magnifique is enough to give anyone the itch to travel. The question is, where to next? Here are some suggestions of fantasy worlds to explore once you've checked out of Emily J. Taylor's wondrous hotel.

Fantasy novel jackets

Battle Magic (2013): Tamora Pierce's worldbuilding is famed, with fans returning to her two popular series Tortall and Circle of Magic for decades. Battle Magic is the third installment in The Circle Reforged, a trilogy that follows four young mage characters through their childhood, adolescence and adulthood. Battle Magic sees many of Pierce's beloved characters return as they engage with a different area of the Circle of Magic universe. Pierce's worlds are well-known for their...

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Read-Alikes

Read-Alikes Full readalike results are for members only

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