A sweet story set during a turbulent period of recent history we could all stand to learn more about. 3.5/5 stars.
The (short) blurb: Set during one of the most conflicted and volatile times in American history, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is an extraordinary story of commitment and enduring hope. In Henry and Keiko, Jamie Ford has created an unforgettable duo whose story teaches us of the power of forgiveness and the human heart.
I read this book after seeing recommendations from several bloggers, all of whom used the word “cute” to describe it. They were right. There is a great deal of cuteness in this book, perhaps surprising given the serious events and issues which form the background and part of Henry and Keiko’s story.
I enjoyed the story and the ending is absolutely pitch perfect. However, I couldn’t rate the book any higher as I had some issues with the writing style. For me, there was too much unnecessary “telling” where some more “showing” or saying nothing would have done the trick. In some places the flow was also a bit “off”, although I would find it hard to explain why I felt this way.
As a Brit, unsurprisingly, my education about WWII focused mainly on Britain and the rest of Europe. Consequently, I thought the description of what happened to Japanese Americans after Pearl Harbor was fascinating. The book was also refreshingly non-preachy, reporting the events and leaving the reader to make their own moral judgements.
A sweet story taking place amid interesting events, I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction and/or cute romance.