Review: Hotel Magnifique by Emily J. Taylor

Author: Emily J. Taylor
Publisher: Razorbill
Released: April 5, 2022
Received: Own (OwlCrate)
Warnings: Imprisonment, memory loss, loss of limb, torture, strangulation, death in the family

4 kitties

I’m a little bit behind on my OwlCrate reading, but I’m finally sitting down to read Hotel Magnifique! I love the covers for this book. Both the one I got from OC and the original is stunning. So no matter which one you grab, I promise it’ll look stunning on your shelf.

Before I dive into my review, I want to talk about the two main reasons I wanted to read Hotel Magnifique (outside of it being in a subscription box, that is). It was positively compared to two books I adored: Caraval and The Night Circus. Um, yes, please! Having now read all three, I can see the comparisons. They have very similar vibes, though ultimately, all three have very different takes on magical wonders of entertainment.

Jani has been responsible for her little sister, Zosa since their mother passed away. Sometimes it feels like she can’t keep up with the world, with their hopes. Other times, it feels like things are suddenly going right.

Through a series of wonderful events and one display of exceptional stubbornness, Jani has managed to land her and her sister the opportunity of a lifetime: work within Hotel Magnifique. It’s a magical place – literally. And now she and her sister get to be part of it. But will it be as she had always dreamed, or will it be a nightmare?

“Produce an invitation and I’ll eat that ruffled atrocity of a hat.”
Then get a fork and give me five minutes.”

If you’re looking for a fun and magical read, Hotel Magnifique is here for you. I will always joyfully embrace a novel that transports me to another world – especially one that combines magic with the splendor of carnivals and the circus. It’s something that seems to go hand in hand, no?

If you got into Hotel Magnifique intending to compare it to Caraval or The Night Circus, you might be disappointed. I meant it when I said it has similar vibes, but it is otherwise a very different story. Smaller elements feel the same, but otherwise, Emily J. Taylor isn’t afraid to do things her way. Personally, I enjoyed the outcome. It was fun and original while providing nostalgic feelings.

There is a romantic subplot within Hotel Magnifique, which I’ll confess I did enjoy. It is far from the main plot, though it does help to support it. I wouldn’t have minded them indulging in that a bit more. For that matter, I wouldn’t have minded seeing more of the magic within this world.

You see, it sounds like everyone with magic has a different potential, which certain objects can help bring out. We get to see a few (several, really) of these abilities. But I’m greedy, and I would have loved seeing a dozen more. If not a hundred more. It just feels like there’s so much more to explore, you know?

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that I enjoyed Hotel Magnifique. Jani makes for a strong leading lady, and the world is as wondrous and magical as I had hoped.

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About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, reader, and much more. While my photography blog is feeling a bit neglected at the moment, the other sites I'm involved in are going strong. ✧I review books, comics, and basically anything else in the literary world over at Quirky Cat's Fat Stacks (of Books). ✧I review comics and books, as well as write content for Word of the Nerd. ✧I review comics for Monkeys Fighting Robots. ✧I write content for Screen Rant and CBR. ✧I write book reviews for The Review Crew.
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