Suite Scarlett by Maureen Johnson has family values. Rather, it values family: The Hopewell has been passed down through the Martin family for generations. The current owners are struggling to keep it going, and their children readily pitch in to help. Well, "readily" is relative - no pun intended. There's Spencer, the oldest at nineteen, an actor skilled at comedy and pratfalls; Lola, a recent high school graduate whose rich boyfriend can give her everything she wants - except that which matters most; Scarlett, the Suite's sweet protagonist; and Marlene, the youngest, who has no problem saying what she likes and what she doesn't. On his or her fifteenth birthday, each Martin gets a suite to care for. The book begins with Scarlett turning fifteen, getting assigned the Empire Suite, and finding out just how tight things are getting in the hotel. "We'll get by," her father says. "We always do."
And they do. I really enjoyed the family dynamic in this book. Spencer and Scarlett are close, as are Marlene and Lola. They all get along, but Scarlett's bond with her brother is stronger than that with either of her sisters. Thus, a large part of Scarlett's story also belongs to Spencer. He put a culinary scholarship on hold to pursue his acting, and his parents gave him a year to become a working actor or buckle down for school. With that year almost up, Spencer is anxious for something to come his way that pays him (to make his parents happy) and challenges him (to make him happy), so he's thrilled to when he gets the opportunity to be in a production of Hamlet. Spencer has such a good heart. You'll want him to succeed, and you'll wish he was your older brother too.
Meanwhile, while all of Scarlett's friends are off having summer adventures, Scarlett works at home. The Empire Suite is occupied by an aging actress named Mrs. Amberson who has money to spare and opinions to share. This woman is a true character. You never know what she's going to do next. Instead of bossing her new assistant around with barking commands and snapping fingers, she becomes an odd sort of confidante for the girl, and her eccentric ways become endearing.
Before long, Scarlett finds her summer schedule pretty full. In addition to dealing with Mrs. Amberson's antics and helping out with Spencer's show, she's also crushing on Spencer's scene partner Eric. She tries to re-connect with each of her sisters. Marlene's coddled for a reason - something I won't reveal here - and sophisticated Lola's apparent happiness may be more of an act than her family knows.
Maureen Johnson's sixth novel - and Scholastic debut - is not to be missed. Johnson's trademark wit is here ("Before, liking Eric was like a mirror - it was just a shiny thing, and it only went one way") as is her ability to capture simple truths. There are many truths to be told here about families, first loves, careers, living in New York City, and simply growing up.
It's refreshing to read a story with a well-adjusted leading character who actually acts her age and likes her family. Watching Scarlett takes in everything around her is a real treat. She's content to be in the middle of her family, in the middle of her teen years, but she's also realizing how many wonderful possibilities are out there for her and for the ones she loves. You know that whatever she does now or when she grows up, she'll do it well.
Check into the Hopewell today. I hope - I know - you'll enjoy your stay.
This book has a good sense of teenager perspective. One thing I did not like about this book was that love came and then it went away as quick as it came. I think that the love should of came quicker and stayed longer.
If you love reading about normal teenagers living thier lives, then this a great book for you!
I found this book while looking for a good summer read in my book order. I wanted humor and romance and that's what I got. I didnt really like the start of this book but it got a lot better and I became very interested in it. It had a lot of twists and turns and many surprises. Scarlett was an awesome character along with her brother and older sister who were both very different but the very the same too. This book had a very amazing ending that left you wanting more. I cannot wait to read the next book in this series and find out what happens to Scarlett next.
One of the books I have recently read is Suite Scarlett by the hilarious and lovely Maureen Johnson. Suite Scarlett is the story of a fifteen year old aspiring writer who lives in and maintains a hotel in New York City. I thought that this was quite an original story, I mean there have of course been stories with people living in hotels, but it was still all it's own. It had the most loveable characters, and even some you could relate to whether it be Scarlett's situation with her crush, or her brother's desperation to make something of himself. I really did enjoy the book, and could barely stop and put it down to do something else. I just love Maureen Johnson's style of writing, it is definitely one of those that make you want to keep reading, and know more.
Scarlett is a member of a hotel-owning family in New York City. the hotel is not doing very well and the family has just let go the last paid employee. Scarlett has 3 brothers and sisters and whenever one of them turns 15, he/she becomes responsible for caring for a suite in the hotel. Scarlett is in charge of the Empire Suite. Mrs. Amberson is the person who occupies this suite and keeps Scarlett on her toes for the summer. This book is definitely one that is unique! the reader can's predict what was going to happen next which made me want to keep reading. The plot was good unlike some pointless books. A good book--recommended to teen girls. :)
Scarlett is a fifthten year old dreading her summer. All of her friends are gone for the summer leaving scarlett behind to work at her familys small hotel. Scarlett gets assighned to a guest Mrs. Amberson who saves her brother, Spencers acting carrer whe she dirrects a production of Hamlet after get kicked out of were trhey were rehersing. Then she falls for Iric who may break her heart. this a great book for anyone who has big dreams.
Fifteen-year-old Scarlett Martins life ought to be exciting and glamorous, but living in a New York City hotel isnt all its cracked up to be. For one thing, shes expected to work in the hotel for no pay. That should be a violation of some sort of child labor law, but apparently since her family owns the Hopewell, turning down beds and working the front desk are just considered chores.
Scarlett is doomed to have the most boring summer imaginable, while all of her friends are off gallivanting around the world. Already stuck with her spoiled younger sister and sharing a hotel room with her uptight older sister, it doesnt come as any surprise to Scarlett that shes also expected to play personal assistant to the hotels newest, high-maintenance guest.
The pampered guest turns out to be a drama queen bent on making Scarletts life exciting by any means necessary. Throw a cute, southern actor into the mix, and the summer just got a whole lot more interesting.
Maureen Johnson, author of 13 LITTLE BLUE ENVELOPES, DEVILISH, GIRL AT SEA, and several other popular books, has brought quirky characters to life and peppered this book with fantastic wit that keeps readers on their toes.
Non-stop humor is this books biggest charm, especially the bantering dialogue between Scarlett and her brother, Spencer. A unique view of the city, highlighted by the books native New Yorker protagonist, provides a back drop that plays nearly as much role in the story as its cast of characters.
An entertaining read that made me want to pick up the book at inappropriate times, like at stop lights, just to see what would happen next. Ill be mailing my traffic tickets to Maureen Johnson. Shell sell more than enough copies of this book to cover the cost. Trust me!
Off to turn another page&.