Book review: Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel by Ruth Hogan

As a child, Tilly was always playing with ghosts, sipping fizzy drinks and had a fascination for matches. When Tilly is whisked away to live with her mother at Queenie Malone’s beautiful Paradise Hotel, she finally found a place where she fits in. To her dismay, Tilly is sent away to boarding school with no explanation and a broken heart.

Years fly by and a grown-up adult Tilda heads back to Brighton after her mother passes away to sort out her flat. She comes across her mums’ old diaries and with some help from friends like Queenie, Tilly is on a mission to find out why she was sent away and she wants to find out what happened to her father Stevie.

This story is so heartfelt and looks at the bond between mother and daughter. I couldn’t put it down, I just wanted to find out more. It talks about family values and the idea of having strict religious parents, the importance of friendship and the complexities of a single mother struggling with mental illness, depression and a dependency on alcohol. The book covers so much but it does it in such an effortless way.

The subject of supernatural does occur throughout this book which I think is such a great magical touch to the story. Tilda has a friend called Eli who is a dog and a ghost, Eli is her guardian angel and comforts her in the past and present. Tilda’s ability to see ghosts is so unique and the stories that thread off from the ghosts that she encounters are so heart-warming.

The description within the story was so crystal clear I felt as if I was there at the Paradise Hotel with it’s beautiful and quirky surroundings. The dual narrative of past and present Tilda added depth to the story, the story flows perfectly with this narrative. The story has so many twists and turns, you just won’t be able to put it down.

This is definitely a feel-good read that tugs at the heartstrings. Ruth Hogan can weave a story so well and leave the reader wanting more. This book will remain in my mind for some time, that’s for sure, with the poignant and unforgettable characters.  

About the Author: Chloe Lamb is a Fashion Communication & Promotion student and writer who focuses on fashion, lifestyle, books and mental health awareness. If she’s not writing for her blog then you can find her with her nose in a book!