Hotel of Secrets
By Diana Biller
Rating: 5/5 Genre: Historical Romance Steam: Explicit Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin Pub Date: 28 March, 2023 Thank you so much St. Martin's Griffin for allowing me to read an ARC! All opinions are my own. Available: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookShop
Hotel of Secrets Synopsis:
It’s ball season in Vienna, and Maria Wallner only wants one thing: to restore her family’s hotel, the Hotel Wallner, to its former glory. She’s not going to let anything get in her way – not her parents’ three-decade-long affair; not seemingly-random attacks by masked assassins; and especially not the broad-shouldered American foreign agent who’s saved her life two times already. No matter how luscious his mouth is.
Eli Whittaker also only wants one thing: to find out who is selling American secret codes across Europe, arrest them, and go home to his sensible life in Washington, DC. He has one lead – a letter the culprit sent from a Viennese hotel. But when he arrives in Vienna, he is immediately swept up into a chaotic whirlwind of balls, spies, waltzes, and beautiful hotelkeepers who seem to constantly find themselves in danger. He disapproves of all of it! But his disapproval is tested as he slowly falls deeper into the chaos – and as his attraction to said hotelkeeper grows.
Hotel of Secrets Review:
Where do I even start with this book? It was everything. This was my first Diana Biller book but since reading it I’ve gotten my hands on all of her other novels. Yes, it was good enough for me to abandon all reason and get everything else she’s written. Let me get into why this book caused me to create sentences of absolute chaos:
All of the characters in this book are multifaceted and complex. Each one is written like they are the protagonists, which is so hard to find in books done in this beautiful of a manner. Eli and Maria are easily some of the best main characters I have read. Both are so perfectly flawed and wow did they feel like real humans. The story arcs for the characters too?!? I am FLOORED. I am AMAZED. This book isn’t real.
The plot was everything I love: part romance part mystery with political undercurrents. This is my catnip, especially when it’s based on real events with serious issues. Add in international politics? Perfection.
I’m going to be quite honest with you, Eli Whittaker may be in my top two fictional men ranking. He’s smart and his competency is an ongoing bit in the book. And for good reason. The man goes and reads literature to learn how to make sure Maria is pleasured… like omg. Seriously, Eli could take me to a linen closet any day. And Maria needs to be my friend. She is my fictional bestie.
The writing itself is compelling with surprising lyricism. There are enough descriptions to make you feel like you’re apart of the scene in the book, but not bogged down in all of the details. It moves quickly enough through the plot. It’s a perfect balance.
Long Story Short
Do I recommend this book? YES!!! I’m probably missing a million things that make this romance a must read novel. But it truly is. While I got the ARC I also pre-ordered a signed copy because it is a NEED. I want to reread it already and this is with me having reread a few times already. It has become a comfort read book. This is an absolute stunner of a historical romance novel and I highly recommend it.
If You Liked This One…
I would highly recommend checking out any book by Emily Sullivan. Her three books are: A Rogue to Remember, The Rebel and the Rake, and The Hellion and the Hero. I have linked each of my reviews of the books! Additionally, I would recommend picking up a Meredith Duran novel. I have read Duke of Shadows and it is so good.