Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Blog Tour/Review: Hotel Moscow by Talia Carner

Hotel Moscow, by Talia Carner
2015, 448p, Historical Fiction
My Rating=4 Stars
Source: Received a copy from the publisher through TLC Book Tours for an honest review

From the author of Jerusalem Maiden comes a mesmerizing, thought-provoking novel that tells the riveting story of an American woman--the daughter of Holocaust survivors--who travels to Russia shortly after the fall of communism, and finds herself embroiled in a perilous mafia conspiracy that could irrevocably destroy her life.

Brooke Fielding, a thirty-eight year old New York investment manager and daughter of Jewish Holocaust survivors, finds her life suddenly upended in late September 1993 when her job is unexpectedly put in jeopardy. Brooke accepts an invitation to join a friend on a mission to Moscow to teach entrepreneurial skills to Russian business women, which will also give her a chance to gain expertise in the new, vast emerging Russian market. Though excited by the opportunity to save her job and be one of the first Americans to visit Russia after the fall of communism, she also wonders what awaits her in the country that persecuted her mother just a generation ago.

Inspired by the women she meets, Brooke becomes committed to helping them investigate the crime that threatens their businesses. But as the uprising of the Russian parliament against President Boris Yeltsin turns Moscow into a volatile war zone, Brooke will find that her involvement comes at a high cost. For in a city where "capitalism" is still a dirty word, where neighbors spy on neighbors and the new economy is in the hands of a few dangerous men, nothing Brooke does goes unnoticed--and a mistake in her past may now compromise her future.

A moving, poignant, and rich novel, Hotel Moscow is an eye-opening portrait of post-communist Russia and a profound exploration of faith, family, and heritage.

In 1993, Brooke Fielding heads to Russia, with a group of other women, to teach entrepreneurial skills to Russian business women. It's nothing like she had envisioned it would be. She quickly learns that the women over there live under difficult circumstances and the mafia is in control.

This was such an interesting book! I was feeling sorry for Brooke and all she was dealing with. Then we meet two Russian business women, Svetlana and Olga. They put up a front for the Americans but their personal lives are hard. Food is hard to come by and their living conditions are less than ideal. Svetlana also has a young daughter to care for so some of her decisions are made to keep her safe and fed.

Brooke was a likable character. She wanted to help the women the best she could but also found the entire situation too difficult to deal with. She was wary of some of the men "helping" them and, with the help of Svetlana and Olga, was able to uncover some corruption. Her parents are Russian Jews and Holocaust survivors who barely escaped from Russia years earlier and she heard their stories growing up. Through her experiences, she was able to better understand her parents and came to appreciate her Jewish heritage.

This book takes place within a week. There were times that it seemed a bit disjointed but it was fascinating! It was hard to read at times and I would need to put it down but found myself drawn back to it to see what would happen next. This book will interest anyone looking for a thought-provoking novel set during this time period.

There is some content to note: There is some violence and swearing, including two uses of the "f" word. There is also a short, descriptive rape scene and a short, descriptive sex scene.

Purchase Links

About Talia Carner

Talia Carner is the former publisher of Savvy Woman magazine and a lecturer at international women's economic forums. This is her fourth novel.

Visit Talia at her website, taliacarner.com. You can also connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Talia's Tour Stops:
Tuesday, June 2nd: Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Wednesday, June 3rd: Dwell in Possibility
Thursday, June 4th: Raven Haired Girl
Friday, June 5th: Charmingly Modern
Monday, June 8th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Tuesday, June 9th: A Utah Mom’s Life
Wednesday, June 10th: As I turn the pages
Monday, June 15th: Lavish Bookshelf
Wednesday, June 17th: Sharon’s Garden of Book Reviews
Monday, June 22nd: Bibliotica
Tuesday, June 23rd: Mel’s Shelves
Wednesday, June 24th: A Book Geek
Thursday, June 25th: Good Girl Gone Redneck
Thursday, June 25th: Doing Dewey
Friday, June 26th: Kritters Ramblings
Monday, June 29th: Book Dilettante
TBD: Luxury Reading
TBD: 2 Kids and Tired Book Reviews


Anonymous said...

I'm fascinated by this time and place so this novel is definitely on my TBR list.

Thanks for being a part of the tour!

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