Hotel Dare takes the familiar trope of a trio of siblings going to live with an eccentric relative, their abuela in this case, in a large, mysterious house (or hotel). And, full disclosure, even though the set up is familiar and well-trodden, I still love that premise, so I’m all for it. When they inevitably get to the exploratory portion of the story, the kids discover doors to different dimensions, and the story takes a hard right into sci-fi/fantasy with spaceships and aliens and unicorns and wizards. And yet somehow, despite what should be an awesome ride is bogged down by tweenage angst and family drama that doesn’t have enough space to develop into something interesting.
As a set up to longer storyline, this volume gets tripped up in wanting to establish and develop a wide cast of characters, explore the dynamics of their relationships, and then discover alternate-dimension portals and go on three separate adventures in brand new, unfamiliar worlds with their own rules and inhabitants–that all then need to be developed. In other words, this volume is so ambitious, so weighted with the responsibilities of quadruple world-building, of introducing and developing sixish main characters, and then, you know, try to fit some kind of story in edgewise. A valiant effort with a pretty decent result, Hotel Dare is still a fun twist on an old trope and has a lot of promise–enough to make me want to pick up the next volume to see what happens when the author has some breathing room.
|Page Count||144 pages|
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