Monday, April 19, 2021

Hot Stew: A Novel by Fiona Mozley

(Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book!)

about book: (summary from NetGalley)

In the middle of the bustle of London's Soho, among the theaters and sex shops and pubs, sits a building. It isn’t particularly assuming. But it’s a prime piece of real estate, and a young millionaire, Agatha Howard, wants to convert it into luxury condos as soon as she can kick out all the tenants.

The problem is, the building in question houses a brothel, and Precious and Tabitha, two of the women who live and work there, are not going to go quietly. And another problem is, just where did Agatha’s fortune come from? The fight over this piece of property also draws in the men who visit, including Robert, a one-time member of a far-right group and enforcer for Agatha’s father; Jackie, a policewoman intent on making London a safer place for all women; Bastian, a rich and dissatisfied party boy who pines for an ex-girlfriend; and a collection of vagabonds and strays who occupy the basement. In this much-anticipated follow-up to Fiona Mozley's brilliant debut, Elmet, as these characters—with surprising hidden connections and shadowy pasts—converge, the fight over the property boils over into a hot stew.

Entertaining, sharply funny, and dazzlingly accomplished, Hot Stew confronts questions about wealth and inheritance, gender and power, and the things women must do to survive in an unjust world.

my thoughts:

Out April 20th, Hot Stew by Fiona Mozley is an addictive and fascinating story.  Set in London's Soho area, this book introduces us to Precious and Tabitha, two women working in an old brothel.  They are not happy when they find out that millionaire Agatha Howard wants to convert their brothel, a place they consider home, into a luxury condos. Yep, Agatha wants to gentrify the neighborhood and looks like this building is her ticket.  Except, the people who reside in Soho are not keen on losing their workplace, their home, their bit of history.  So, they set out to make things difficult for Agatha.  Yep, a class war erupts and it makes for quite the story. 

Mozley has written an engaging and interesting story about gentrification, class, ownership, and identity. She's created an unforgettable cast of characters that will intrigue you.  Her vivid and realistic portrayal of London is spot on and makes you feel as if you are visiting the city.  And the story she's written showcases her storytelling prowess. Hot Stew is unputdownable.  It's a story that will captivate you from start to finish. I would definitely recommend this book to fans of Mozley and anyone looking for their next great read - you will LOVE this book!

Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book!

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