Book Review: "Hotel No Tell" by Daphne Uviller

Summary from Now working as a junior detective with the New York City Special Investigations Commission, Zephyr’s gone incognito as a concierge to find out who laundered a hundred grand off the hotel books—and why. But the discovery of a prone, flush-faced guest gasping for air in room 502 only hints at the sinister goings-on inside this funky establishment. While the rapid response of the fire department leads to a sweaty date with a smooth-talking, rock-climbing rescue worker, Zephyr finds herself even more hot and bothered by an attempted murder on her watch. Could the smart-mouthed Japanese yenta across the hall know more than she’s telling? How are cryptic phone calls from a mysterious corporation linked to the victim in 502?

Under pressure and overwhelmed, Zephyr soon finds that a concierge cover is no protection in a place where crime, like the city itself, never sleeps.

Since I am a stickler for reading books in order, I went out and read the first book to feature Zephyr, SUPER IN THE CITY. After finishing it and then reading Hotel No Tell right after, I came away feeling that Uviller's writing had improved and Zephyr herself had matured greatly. Even though this book is classified as a mystery and there are plenty of mystery elements in the book, it just didn't really feel like it fit the genre to me. I mean I did find Zephyr being a detective and figuring out clues and suspects to be interesting. However, it never felt like a traditional mystery to me and there were times I felt very disjointed by the flow of the book.

I felt the more interesting bits of the story to be the descriptions of the characters. I really liked the section on Macy, Zephyr's new friend who has the worst luck ever. I didn't feel like her character was ultimately crucial to the central plot of the story but I enjoyed reading about her and all the misadventures that have happened because of her presence. Zephyr's relationship with her ex-boyfriend Gregory is also of interest especially since he has a huge presence in the first book. It was actually a bit jarring for him not to be present in the beginning of the book after the way SUPER ended.

Overall, this was an interesting read. I did like it better than the first book, so I would recommend to new readers to go ahead and try this one on its own. I would say that it does fit the chick lit mystery genre (which is sadly underpopulated) so fans of that genre will enjoy it very much.

Hotel No Tell by Daphne Uviller is published by Bantam (2011)

This review copy was provided for a blog tour with Booksparks PR


  1. Chick lit mystery genre - I don't think I've read anything that could be described that way. This sounds interesting!


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