"What in the world did I just read" - sums up this book very well. At least for me. Aside from giving it a low rating I actually do not think that this is a bad book, I think that this is a brilliant book - for the right audience.
The closest thing I can compare it to is The ocean at the end of the lane by Neil Gaiman, so if you enjoyed that one you will probably love The Third Hotel. Myself? Not so much. I didn't enjoy Gaiman's book and I didn't much care for this one, although it was still very readable and I wanted to get to the end to see how it plays out. Which it didn't, not really.
I like a little ambiguity here and there, but The Third Hotel is ambiguous on top of ambiguous - and at that point what is the story even? When the author leaves too much to reader's interpretation the story telling ceases to be, it looses its direction and it loses its own voice.
Everything would be made okay if the ending at least gave us something, but it doesn't. I finished the book, but I feel like I haven't, I still have so many questions and absolutely no answers. Sure, that is the point of this type of writing, but to be honest I'd rather have hard, but set in stone truths than delirious musings that go nowhere.
I had the same problem with The ocean at the end of the lane, if only the ending made it worthwhile, if only some things were confirmed. But nothing was, and I just end up wondering about the book that wasn't probably even a book, just a figment of feverish imagination, on author's part that they wanted to share with the world. A brilliant figment nonetheless, but you have to be in a state of mind for it. And I just wasn't, because those types of books are just not my cup of tea.
The writing itself was absolutely gorgeous - that was the main reason I kept going, I absolutely loved it. It was simple, but yet complex. It gave away nothing, but at the same time it told so much.
I cannot tell much about the story without having to explain the whole thing, but I did enjoy the side exploration of Agatha Alonso, I also felt like her story was the only one that got some sort of finish. Mostly I was just left with questions about Clare:
"Did she do what I think she did?" "What is she?" "What is wrong with her?" "Why? Why? Why?"
Big thanks to Farrar, Straus and Giroux as well as NetGalley for a digital copy provided for a review. All opinions are my own, and come from the heart. The Third Hotel will be published on August 7,2018.
Freelance BETA reader.