The Pink Hotel

Anna Stothard. Picador, $15 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-02680-4
In Stothard's gritty but elegant U.S. debut, an English teenager travels alone to Los Angeles after the death of her estranged mother, Lily. Expelled from school and struggling with her father and stepmother, the unnamed girl sets off to learn more about the enchanting woman she barely knew. Lily turns out to have been a glamorous disaster, leaving a run-down party hotel and string of broken hearts in her wake. Clad in her dead mother's clothing, the girl blazes her own trail from the clues she finds in a suitcase stolen from Lily's apartment, hitting up old acquaintances and having sex with men from Lily's past. Keeping her identity a secret, the girl develops a relationship with a paparazzo Lily once modeled for, playing a dangerous game of subterfuge. The girl's self-destructive nature, along with other characteristics and motivations, remains unexplained, creating an unpredictable ride. Although these wanderings and discoveries about Lily never quite crystallize, Stothard's vivid descriptions of L.A.'s seedy underbelly make for an engaging read. Agent: Charlie Campbell, the Ed Victor Literary Agency (U.K.). (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/25/2013
Release date: 04/23/2013
Paperback - 280 pages - 978-1-84688-175-6
Paperback - 280 pages - 978-1-84688-131-2
Ebook - 288 pages - 978-1-250-02681-1
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