Ellen Sussman – The Paradise Guest House.


The Paradise Guest House – Ellen Sussman (2013, Ballantine Books, New York)

Looking for a good beach read? Ellen Sussman’s The Paradise Guest House can offer you the sparkling white sands of Bali, and a romance to delight you while you’re dipping your toes in the pool.
If you’ve been following The Door is Ajar for awhile, you’ll know that I don’t often read romance novels; I average about one a year, I think. I’m the kind of reader that will usually choose the zombie story over the love story, but I have to say, The Paradise Guest House was thoroughly entertaining. Sure, it had the requisite sweet, ooey-gooey centre, but it was the dark outer shell that kept me flipping pages.
A vacation for American travel guide Jamie goes horribly wrong when she is caught up in the nightclub bombings that rocked the country and shocked the world in 2002. Badly injured, Jamie is rescued by a stranger, Gabe, another American living in Bali (who is, of course, running from past demons). Returning home to heal, Jamie nevertheless cannot forget the man who helped her, and she returns to Bali a year later to face her fears and possibly resurrect her connection with her mysterious saviour. I was pleasantly surprised by the well-crafted story and delighted in the exotic locale, while Sussman’s careful research of the attacks and her sympathetic and sensitive portrayal of the survivors remain the biggest reasons why I loved the book.


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2 thoughts on “Ellen Sussman – The Paradise Guest House.

  1. thebooktrailer August 14, 2013 at 8:11 am Reply

    Ooh I haven’t read any books set in Bali so will be getting this one! Do you have any favourite books you could recommend? I like your mix preferring zombies but also reading romance and feel I could gain an insight into new reading genres from you.

    • Sheryl @ Flowery Prose August 16, 2013 at 10:53 am Reply

      Thanks so much for your comment; I do hope you enjoy “The Paradise Guest House.” 🙂 I don’t stick to one genre when I read…I guess my very favourite authors are Michael Ondaatje, Guy Gavriel Kay, Alastair Reynolds, and Stephen King…but I’ll read everything from Sophie Kinsella to the classics and I’m a huge fan of nonfiction, including travelogues and biographies. I’m hoping to put up a few more posts in the next couple of weeks – I’ve read quite a few good books lately but I just haven’t had time to write about them. Maybe there will be something there that you might like! 🙂

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