“Stay tonight. Stay forever.” That’s the tag line for this fantastic ghost story, and it tells you everything you need to know about the Hotel Ruby itself.
As it happens, I went about finding this book a little backwards. I had never heard of Suzanne Young when a friend of mine (my darling fellow #PitchWars mentee, @CourtLeighLove) invited me to a book signing here in town. She’d read Young’s earlier series, THE PROGRAM, and also was a huge fan of Young and of Nova Ren Suma, the other writer there for the signing, who leads the Djerassi Young Adult Writers Workshop and Retreat which Courtney attended and which is totally on my workshop bucket-list. Regardless, I’m always a fan of going to signings and checking out new authors and books. The back cover copy of HOTEL RUBY had seemed like the book version of “Hotel California” in a way, and as I huge fan of the Eagles, that definitely appealed to me, too.
Then we got to the readings at the signing. Young told a fantastic story about the inspiration for the book: she’d gone to a conference and when she checked into her hotel, by some strange chance, she was the only person assigned to a room on a floor that was undergoing renovation. Cue her inspiration for Audrey and her room on the mysterious thirteenth floor. Cue my desperate need to read a book inspired by that moment.
She also read from the book itself, but I’m not going to get into which part as it did contain some spoilers for sure! It did not remotely hurt my enjoyment of the book, however. I’m a fan of ghost stories anyway, so I anticipated a few of the twists and reveals, though let me tell you I NEVER saw the ending coming.
The characters of the staff and Audrey and her family were a delight, as well. There were so many nuances to all their interactions with each other and with the Hotel Ruby, itself, that it kept me engaged and rooting for them the entire time.
Honestly, the only thing else I can say is that I enjoyed this book. A whole lot. And if any of my friends are looking for a fun, spooky romp of a YA, I would definitely recommend this one!
Anyone else read HOTEL RUBY? Have another YA horror you think I’d like, too? Let me know @C_L_McCollum!