Welcome to my stop for an historical fiction / family discovery novel from Talia Carner. Please read on for the excerpt, be sure to check the tour stops to see what other readers thought about the title and don’t forget to enter the tour-wide giveaway where you could win one of Three Print Copies of JERUSALEM MAIDEN
An interesting mix of historic elements, a mystery and self-discovery are highlights of this story that flashes back to the fall of the Soviet State formerly known as the USSR. Brooke is traveling to Moscow with a group of Americans, intending to share their business acumen and help establish some level of capitalist-style businesses run by Russian women. The daughter of Russian Jews that are also Holocaust survivors, the history and stories about ‘mother Russia” were a constant companion in her childhood, and the whispers of those stories are omnipresent. Brooke’s uneasy relationship with her Russian family roots and her determination to provide the women she is working with the best possible advantages, she’s an interesting character to learn about.
With the political and social climate in upheaval as power brokers scramble for new advantageous positions, the seemingly open opportunities: Carter uses those multiple elements to fuel the story’s emotional texture layering it with caution, optimism and fear. Changes are scary, and particularly so for those who hold power, and it is just that fear and greed that motivates the mystery / suspense portion of the story, bringing Brooke into danger.
I’ve got several friends and acquaintances who had left Russia just before and during this era, and many shared the stories of life and attitudes. Hotel Moscow brought some of those stories forward again, even as I was intrigued with the freshness and perspective of the book. Several secondary characters bring depth and background as the search to answer the mystery build the setting and add to Brooke’s curiosity in her own family history. It was an interesting journey as all the elements combined, clashed and sometimes ignored one another as the story came to an end. A huge twist and some interesting revelations for Brooke that brought her unexpected answers to questions she didn’t know existed.
While not a ‘couldn’t put it down’ book for me, I kept wanting to get back and see more: do the women succeed with their businesses, will the culprits behind the sabotage ever be found, and where will all of the new experiences lead Brooke are all answered for me, and done with a sense of rightness. As a political junkie, I loved seeing a foreign insider’s point of view of the time that was simplified and sanitized in much of the media of the day.
Title: Hotel Moscow
Genre: Historical Fiction, Family Saga
Published by: William Morrow
Published on: 2 June, 2015
Source: Publisher Via Edelweiss
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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.
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher Via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.