Cover of Queenie Malone's Paradise Hotel Ruth Hogan
Fiction Book Reviews

Contemporary Fiction | Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel | Ruth Hogan

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I couldn’t wait to dive in to Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel having enjoyed Ruth Hogan’s previous novel, The Wisdom of Sally Red Shoes. You’re in for such a treat!

Cover of Queenie Malone's Paradise Hotel Ruth Hogan

Tilly was a bright, outgoing little girl who liked playing with ghosts and matches. She loved fizzy drinks, swear words, fish fingers and Catholic churches, but most of all she loved living in Brighton in Queenie Malone’s magnificent Paradise Hotel with its endearing and loving family of misfits – staff and guests alike. But Tilly’s childhood was shattered when her mother sent her away from the only home she’d ever loved to boarding school with little explanation and no warning.

Many years later, Tilda has grown into an independent woman still damaged by her mother’s unaccountable cruelty. Wary of people, her only friend is her dog, Eli. But when her mother dies, Tilda goes back to Brighton and with the help of her beloved Queenie sets about unravelling the mystery of her exile from The Paradise Hotel, only to discover that her mother was not the woman she thought she knew at all …

Mothers and daughters … their story can be complicated … but it can also turn out to have a happy ending.

Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel is published by Two Roads 7th February 2019 in digital, hardcover and audiobook formats.  The paperback releases 11th July 2019.


What a first line! to hook the reader in.  It made me sit up straighter and pay attention. 🙂

Sometimes it’s easy to lose your concentration when a story moves between the past and present but in Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel it was seamless.  There’s no jarring or losing the flow as an item that has impact in both timelines moves us between them both.

As much as I enjoyed Tilda’s narration as a 46 year old, it was Tilly narrating as a child that captured my heart (possibly because I saw myself in her – a lot).  The black and white reasoning and logic of a child is captured perfectly leading to some humorous moments.  I must admit I probably spent as much time smiling and laughing (sometimes belly laughs) as with tears welling.   It’s difficult to get that perfect balance of laughter and tears in a story that is heart-wrenching but Ruth Hogan does just that in this story.   

In both narrations there are some wonderfully quirky characters.  If you like your characters unique, you’ll love this author’s writing.  I loved how one character in the present also has connections from the past.  And yes, I was shocked at what was revealed on page 284!  Only because of my own perceptions though.

I enjoyed the pace although at times I was impatient …

The suspense of finding out what happened at that key point in Tilly’s life to make her mother send her away is brilliant. As an adult it’s easy to identify with her mother and understand. But as a child …

I know you will identify with Tilly/Tilda and feel that emotional punch. There’s so much for you to discover in Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel.

It’s a story of the best intentions but with wide reaching repercussions; confirmation of what we feel in our hearts is often true … and those complex relationships between adults (both familial and intimate) that lead us to make changes, for better or worse.

Highly recommended.

Author photo of Ruth Hogan

Ruth Hogan is the author of The Keeper of Lost Things and The Wisdom of Sally Red Shoes. A #1 word-of-mouth hit and Sunday Times bestseller with more than 800,000 copies sold, The Keeper of Lost Things was a Richard & Judy Book Club pick and a WHSmith Travel ‘Fresh Talent’ selection and is currently being published in over 30 countries around the world. Queenie Malone’s Paradise Hotel is her third novel. She lives in a chaotic Victorian house with an assortment of rescue dogs and her long-suffering husband.

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Read all posts in the contemporary fiction genre on Jera’s Jamboree.

Family comes first! I'm married with two son's in their 20's and have a little more time now to follow my passions. I love my role as an Inclusion Lead in KS2 and I'm passionate about early help. I'm a member of Bournemouth's Early Help Operational Board working alongside others to instigate change and growth. I'm also passionate about my love of reading, being out in nature and creating with crochet. I've been blogging for eight years at Jera's Jamboree.

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