The story of Warren the 13th and his family's hotel is full of secrets and danger. The Warren Hotel has always been owned and operated by a Warren, and it has now fallen to Warren the 13th. But Warren is underage and his uncle is running the hotel, although not really - because he is too lazy to do much of anything. The building has fallen into disrepair, there are never any guests, all the staff has left or been run off by Warren's frightening Aunt Anaconda, and all the work is left to Warren. (I picture Aunt Anaconda as one of the sinister figure s from Roald Dahl's The Witches.) Warren has no playmates, or pets, and his aunt will only allow the cook to feed him gruel. It isn't a very fun-filled life. But then guests begin arriving, more than there have been in years. It seems that there may be a magical object hidden in the hotel and everyone wants to find it. They are pulling up the floorboards, cracking open the bathtubs, tearing family portraits off the walls. There may not be a hotel left standing when they are done.
In the midst of all this, Warren does make a new acquaintance or two. There is his rather odd friend Sketchy and the girl named Petula, who says she is staying at the hotel with her mother (although Warren doesn't remember them checking in). Unfortunately, he also meets Anaconda's two sisters, who are just as awful as their sibling. How in the world will Warren keep the hotel running, repair all the damage done by the fortune-hunting guests, and convince his Uncle Rupert that his wife is not the wonderful woman he believes her to be?
Readers who enjoy Roald Dahl or "The Addams Family" will find Warren quite suited to their tastes. This is a story for mystery lovers, treasure hunters, and those who enjoy a taste of Victorian melodrama in their books. I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley.
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