When I read The Housekeeper and the Professor by Ogawa I fell completely in love with the book. It was gentle, and beautifully written. Hotel Iris is very, very different and really ought to have a warning label on the cover for those who simply recognise the author’s name and pick it up hoping for more! This is the story of a seventeen year old girl who is seduced by an old man in a sadistic, distressing manner.
Mari first encounters The Translator (we never learn his name) at her family’s hotel. There is a rumpus in one of the rooms where an elderly gentleman (The Translator) has a prostitute and both of them are ejected from the hotel. Mari is bewitched by his voice and finds herself compelled to try to find out more about him until she ends up tangled in a strange relationship that’s part love affair, part rape.
Read the rest of my review for The Bookbag.