What a place to stay! Hotel Portofino by J.R. O’Connell

#HotelPortofinoBook #NetGalley

Readers who are fans of Upstairs, Downstairs or Downton Abbey are almost certain to enjoy this sprawling, involving historical novel. It is already set to become a TV series on Masterpiece Theater in the U.S. and on other international networks as well.

The book has a wonderful setting in the town of Portofino on the Italian Riviera. The hotel that Bella runs is exquisitely described. (I am ready to book my room). The time period is pre-WWII and Mussolini is becoming someone with whom to reckon.

There are many characters in the story. Some are family of Bella, some are guests and some are those who work for the hotel. Readers will eagerly read all of their stories and watch to see how the characters interact with one another.

There are too many people to list here. Below are some:

Bella is the daughter of a wealthy industrialist and the owner and proprietor of the hotel. Her husband, Cedric, is from the aristocracy and does not really respect her although he enjoys her money. Bella has a connection with Henry. How will this play out?

Bella and Cedric have a daughter and granddaughter. They also have a son, Lucien. Lucien, to his father’s dismay, is a striving artist who may not want the “family pile.” Lucien has been scarred both literally and figuratively by events in WWI. A close friend of Lucien’s is Nish, a medic in the war.

Lucien’s father hopes that he will marry Rose. Rose is the daughter of a former love of Cedric. Will he? What will be the repercussions of his decision?

Some of the many guests are Rose and her mother, a querulous older woman and her niece, and an Italian count and his son.

Staff include the cook, Betty and her daughter. There is also Paola, who unlike some of the other staff, is Italian. Readers also meet Constance who arrives as a nanny.

How will all of these characters evolve over the course of the story? How will they be impacted by life at the hotel and, also, by what is happening in the world? Read this enthralling saga to find out.

I experienced a real treat with Hotel Portofino. I alternated between reading the book and listening to it when I was out and about. The audio book narration was so well done. All of the characters came to life and, as I did chores, I escaped to a fascinating place. Whether the choice is made to listen, read, or do both, give this one a place in the TBR.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Author: joycesmysteryandfictionbookreviews

I love to read, recommend books and open the world of reading to others. I tutor to ensure that the next generation of readers will know the joys of a good book because their reading skills have improved. I am an avid reader, especially of mysteries and fiction. I believe that two of the world's greatest inventions were the public library and eyeglasses!

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