Paris, a hotel room, the middle of the afternoon . . .
So begins the story of Annabelle, a young escort in Paris who has accepted her final proposition before marrying the powerful and generous man of her dreams, media mogul David Barlet. But the mysterious handwritten notes she has been receiving—notes that detail personal fantasies no one could possibly know—don't prepare her for the fact that her new client is her fiancé's brother, Louie. Through visits to the Hotel des Charmes, where each chamber is dedicated to one of French history's great seductresses, Louie awakens Annabelle's body and her psyche, delivering her to heights of ecstasy and fits of passion.He pushes her beyond her limitations to tap into her deep seductive power—and she discovers that true freedom comes only when you fully surrender to desire.
Funny, sensual, candid, and revealing, Hotelles is a titillating novel of mysteries and surprises by a radiant new voice.
|Product dimensions:||7.90(w) x 5.20(h) x 1.20(d)|
About the Author
Emma Mars is the pseudonym of an author who lives in France.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
'Hotelles' is the first book in a new romance/erotica trilogy that features not only steamy sex scenes, but a story full of intrigue and mystery as well. The story follows our heroine, Annabelle "Elle," who is about to marry the incredibly handsome and wealthy David Barlet. Elle has been working as an escort to help pay the bills and takes on one final client before her wedding. Things begin to take on a mysterious air when handwritten notes and small gifts begin appearing for Elle - telling her to go to a specific room in the Hotel des Charmes, a place known for it's historic replications of the great seductresses of French history. During these visits, Elle begins to uncover her secret desires and finds that both her mind and her body are being awakened in a way she never thought possible. When Elle finds out that her fiance's brother, Louie, is her client and is responsible for the notes and the hotel experiences, she starts to question what is really happening and why. What she finds will be nothing she ever could have suspected along with the one thing she never thought she'd find. This was a well written novel whose plot had lots of twists and surprises that kept the reader guessing almost the entire book. The story was intricate and the small details that the author left as clues only heightened the intrigue and accentuated the mystery of the novel. Elle was a great heroine for the novel - she's smart and determined to have a good life, but she's also not easily fooled and has a strong will that she didn't know existed until she was provoked. The brothers in the book, David and Louie, were interesting characters with distinct personalities and fascinating personal histories. All of the characters were well rounded and easy to connect with, which allows the reader to really immerse themselves into the story. The setting of the book was in Paris and the author included lots of French words and landmarks that not all readers would be familiar with. I myself am not familiar with any of the landmarks and I found myself struggling to pronounce the various streets and places - which only served to pull me out of the experience of the novel. This is a personal issue and one that not all readers will encounter when reading the book. I felt that because I had to work to understand the French, which I ended up skipping over most of the street names and other landmarks, I wasn't able to fully immerse myself into the story. Again, this is only because I myself am not familiar with the French language or history and other readers may not have this issue. All the twists and surprises in the story kept me eagerly reading to find out what was really going on and how things would end. The author created a fantastic mystery that caused Elle and the reader to question what was real and who they could trust. Along with the well crafted story were steamy erotic scenes that helped to punctuate the plot. It seemed that the book was more of a mystery/intrigue novel with some erotic scenes mixed in rather than an erotica novel with a bit of a suspense plot. Overall, the book was well written and fans of the genre should definitely pick up a copy for themselves. Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Hotelles grabs you right from the start, with Elle explaining that hotel rooms aren’t as faceless and similar to one another as you may believe. What might such a woman be doing in hotel rooms, you ask? Probably the obvious, in an erotic novel: performing illicit acts for money. Of course, Elle isn’t your typical prostitute. She’s French, for one thing. (And yes, I assure you that makes a difference, mon amour!) More importantly, she’s doing this for a noble cause: her mother has cancer, and she wants to send her for treatment in the States – something only rich celebrities can afford. A working-class heroine, Elle is already getting flack about this plan from her loser boyfriend, but she’s got an ace up her sleeve: on one of her “dates” she meets David Barlet, the head of one of France’s largest news outlets. Coincidentally, she’s a journalism student, looking for her big break. And it seems she’s just gotten the biggest break of all. Or has she? As readers get to know Elle, they’ll discover that she’s far more multifaceted than the typical erotic romance heroine. Smart, articulate, cultured — the high end call girl at her best, despite a humble background. She needs those journalism skills to start unraveling the mystery that surrounds her as she plunges into a new life as the fiancée of a media mogul. Not only is her humble lifestyle changing, but she’s been receiving mysterious notes describing her erotic fantasies in great detail. Who is writing them, and what do they mean? Why is this person seemingly able to read her thoughts, and to articulate her deepest secret lusts and longings? The story unfolds slowly, like a new lover learning one’s body, then builds to a climax as Elle discovers herself through sexual encounters. Though she promises herself that she is ending her time as an escort once she and David are married, she takes “one last meeting” after they are engaged in order to have enough money to buy him a wedding present. Naturally, once her sexual awakening begins, there is no turning back… The writing style of Hotelles is almost dreamlike, musing about love and lust, pondering the set decorations as much as it probes Elle’s psyche, French society, and philosophical ideas. In this way, I would say it’s a very stereotypically French novel, yet Mars has also created a unique world in which sexuality can be explored without the same puritanical hangups many Americans experience. While Elle keeps her escorting a secret, she is not so much ashamed of the work as she is eager to cloak her own thirst for self-discovery and growth. Some compare the book to Fifty Shades of Grey, but for me there is no comparison whatsoever. Unlike the nearly illiterate scribblings of E.L. James, Emma Mars’ prose is lucid, romantic, beautifully done. If one believes in literary erotica — and, as the former editor of a magazine of exactly such work, I certainly do — then Hotelles is surely a fine example of the genre. Frankly, I would even go so far as to say that I wish I had written this book! It is, to my mind, a must-read for anyone who claims to love erotic fiction. As with one of the early passages in the book, this one is illustrative of Mars’ style: No, a year ago I did not know that every room is a breeding ground for love, where every woman incubates and eventually learns to become herself. I was not tied up like I am right now, and yet I was more imprisoned than I shall ever be again. Don’t be fooled, today I am the mistress, and not just to the man trembling behind the door. I have abandoned myself entirely, but I have never had this much control. Gender politics are as discreetly tucked into the book as easily as a silk sheet is turned back against a bed. Elle is a modern woman in every sense of the word, struggling with her dreams and desires, looking to make the best choices she can, yet torn by her allegiances. Isn’t there a bit of Elle in all of us?
4.5 Intriguing and Addicting Stars Favorite Quotes: “Family. Engagement. Marriage? My mind went blank. I could only think in keywords, and they were doing some kind of bumper car version of ballet in my head.” “I was as devastated as a defeated boxer. But I didn’t wait around for the bell or the next round.” “He is open like the blank pages of a new notebook that we will write together.” My Review: This book was not at all what I was expecting… it was actually much better. Hotelles is a unique and gripping story that is richly and effusively detailed. Each room she enters is described from the baseboards to the ceiling, and while that sounds like it would be boring, I can assure you – it is not. I have a feeling that this author could make a weekly chore list sound enthralling. I was entranced with the story, which is actually more romantic suspense than erotic, although those erotic elements are there, but not as much as you would expect in a story about an escort. Hotelles is elegantly written and full of subterfuge, intrigue, niggling clues, and blind turns. I was fascinated and couldn’t put it down, and since the book is nearly 600 pages long – my addiction to the story caused book hangovers, red eyes, and a few added wrinkles. After reaching the end, I immediately turned back to the beginning and read the first few pages again, aha! Now I must read book two Elle, without delay!
This is a romance unlike anything I have ever imagined. Hotelles starts at the end, and then takes us to the beginning. This romance is full of ghosts and deceit and takes us through the Hotel des Charmes, where each room is dedicated to an infamous French seductress. Elle is fresh out of school and trying to figure out a way to save her mother. A miracle treatment might be the cure and money is all she needs. Elle is desperate to make enough money to help her mother. She takes a job as an escort and there she meets the man of her dreams. David is everything she thinks she wanted. Anonymous letters start showing up and Elle is intrigued. She collects and catalogs these letters, feeling that they reveal the truth of her heart. Elle decides to do one more job and her new client is none other than her future brother-in-law, Louie who ignites something in Elle that David never could. Elle’s whole future is at stake if David finds out. Louie introduces Elle to the desires of her heart and reveals secrets of her betroted. Elle starts to pen her own desires as she discovers herself between brothers and in the midst of a sick game. David is hiding a big secret, and Louie wants Elle for himself. Elle must decide if she wants to play the game by there rules. Will she get her prince charming? I really enjoyed this story. The author sprinkles enough culture into this book that France begins to feel like home. We walk through the streets of Paris and marvel at it’s beauty. The author is obviously in love with the city and the culture and that carries over into this story. Elle is such a complex woman. She is only 22 at the start of this story and very inexperienced. Her mother is dying, her best friend is a bit promiscuous, her ex lover won’t let her go. Elle dreams of becoming a journalist and is smitten by a man a bit out of her league. Being an escort is not something a girl like Elle would do, but for her mother she takes the risk. The anonymous letters make this story so delicious. Elle keeps finding these letters in her mailbox and she decides to keep them all and catalog them. She doesn’t know how, but these letters describe events in her life and the desires of her heart. In short prose, the anonymous author pens her secrets. The more you let him touch you, the more you prepare yourself to invite him other laces in you. I think it was my inner arm, yes, that soft, sensitive skin in the hollow of the elbow, that whispered the phrase in my ear. I wonder if such an innocuous erogenous zone could make me come. It is unfortunate that Elle finds herself needing money so badly. Her wanting to be independent gets her into a bit of trouble. Elle is on the brink of really discovering what makes her melt, but she needs a little help. Elle finds herself visiting the Hotel des Charmes over and over, learning more about herself with each visit. The sex in this book is very steamy with voyeurism and exhibitionism in the forefront. Elle is a girl trying to make it in Paris. She almost becomes a bad statistic when she is picked up by David. David is the man of her dreams, and has the means to make all of her dreams come true, all but one. David is not everything he seems. She becomes a pawn in the sibling rivalry between David and Louie. This story will appeal to those that want a great mystery in their erotica. I enjoyed the writing style, but I was very aware I was reading the translated version of this story. It seems that this books skips through parts, all of a sudden I thought, how did we get here? The story was still very good and kept me turning pages. It was a good start to a trilogy. The end of this story left me needing to find out what happens next.
I've tried twice to get into this book and ended up putting it down and going to a different book. The synopsis sounded like I would enjoy this story and I'll probably try again but it's a slow start.