I flagged this book as “mystery” though it really pulls quite heavily from horror in ways that I don’t have enough appreciation of the genre to fully recognize or explain. The Third Hotel also reminded me a bit of Tangerine, largely in its unsatisfying plot and refusal to use quotation marks when writing dialogue, which I find to be incredibly infuriating. Overall, this was a book I read to finish, not to enjoy. So now to figure out how to draw 250 words out of that.
Our protagonist, Clare, is in Havana attending a film festival for the island. The only movie she appears to really attend is a zombie flick and she leaves before its over. This isn’t really her bag, they aren’t even her tickets – her husband was a scholar of horror film but he unexpectedly died in a hit-and-run, a pedestrian on a busy street at night. So there’s Clare in Havana, meeting people, behaving strangely as a grieving person would, when she suddenly spots said husband, alive and well, on the street. It all kind of spirals from there. There are a couple of weird elements, she’s dealing with a heavy load of stuff, it’s all a little weird and hard to follow. See my note about the lack of quotation marks.
Maybe this just wasn’t my kind of book. I was down to the wire on getting it back to the library so I probably did it some disservice. I did appreciate a moment towards the end when an oft-mentioned actress gets her revenge!