The revolving door turns, and what happens between arrival and departure is not an integral whole….

Baum, Vicky | 1929 | Grand Hotel [orig.: Menschen im Hotel] | Amsterdam, Querido, 2018 | 309p.

Published in 1929. Five years later Hitler became Führer. Ten years later the world was at war. What happened with the people who went through the revolving doors of the Grand Hotel ? Read why Grand Hotel and the interbellum years are worth rediscovering in the reviews of jacquiwine, thebookbindersdaughter or Deutsche Welle


If after having reread this novel you are also bent on (re)discovering the 1932 movie starring Greta Garbo, John Barrymore, Joan Crawford, … read first what Alternate Ending has to say about it:

It is, all told, a tremendously sturdy, thoroughly unimaginative, and massively entrancing sample of the early-’30s Hollywood machine doing everything exactly right in the creation of gratifying entertainment. It’s too sober-minded to qualify as escapism, and infinitely too proud of its foregrounded desire to seduce the audience to be mistaken for high art. I cannot call it a perfect studio film; a perfect studio film would have a mechanically flawless screenplay, not a tossed-off basketful of scenarios that it cares about even less than we do. But it is the perfect Grand Hotel, one of classic Hollywood’s most elegant truffles. Sure, it’s still empty calories, but every gram of it reveals great, methodical craftsmanship.

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