A chilling fable about a family marooned in a snowbound town whose grievous history intrudes on the dreamlike present.
The Addisons - Julia and Tonio, 10-year-old Dewey, and derelict Uncle Robbie - are driving home, cross-country, after collecting Robbie from yet another trip to rehab. When a terrifying blizzard strikes outside the town of Good Night, Idaho, they seek refuge in the town at the Travelers Rest, a formerly opulent but now crumbling and eerie hotel where the physical laws of the universe are bent.
Once inside the hotel, the family is separated. As Julia and Tonio drift through the maze of the hotel's spectral interiors, struggling to make sense of the building's alluring powers, Dewey ventures outward to a secret-filled diner across the street. Meanwhile, a desperate Robbie quickly succumbs to his old vices, drifting ever further from the ones who love him most.
With each passing hour, dreams and memories blur, tearing a hole in the fabric of our perceived reality and leaving the Addisons in a ceaseless search for one another. At each turn a mysterious force prevents them from reuniting until at last Julia is faced with an impossible choice. Can this mother save her family from the fate of becoming Souvenirs - those citizens trapped forever in magnetic Good Night - or, worse, from disappearing entirely?
With the fearsome intensity of a ghost story, the magical spark of a fairy tale, and the emotional depth of the finest family sagas, Keith Lee Morris takes us on a journey beyond the realm of the known. Featuring prose as dizzyingly beautiful as the mystical world Morris creates, Travelers Rest is both a mind-altering meditation on the nature of consciousness and a heartbreaking story of a family on the brink of survival.
"Echoing the fantastic work of Shirley Jackson and Stephen King, Travelers Rest is both fiercely gripping and deeply unsettling, a perfect mixture of horror and fairy tale held together by Keith Lee Morris' unique ability to look beyond the imposing hotel and take us inside the hearts and minds of this trapped family, a feat that makes this story all the more frightening and moving. This is a novel that pulls you in immediately and refuses to let you go." (Kevin Wilson, author of the New York Times best seller The Family Fang)
"Keith Lee Morris knows what fiction is made for: in Travelers Rest he creates an intriguing world, poses big questions, and gives us sentences that by themselves are worth the read. What happens, he asks, when the person who goes missing is yourself? And you're lost not only in space, but also in time. And the people you love most are counting on you to save them because they are missing, too. Morris invites us to lose ourselves in his stunning new novel and find out." (Charlotte Rogan, author of the New York Times best seller The Lifeboat)
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This really could have been edited down. It seemed to go on and on and on. It almost feels like the characters themselves that the author got pulled into the circular story and couldn't get out of it. The book had the feel of the movie 1408 but less interesting. Lots and lots of self reflection to the point of boredom. I was really hoping this would get scary but it never did. I do think the author is talented but this effort left me disappointed.
Without Peter's performance, I don't think I could have gotten through this. Great with giving characters their own voice. Well done.
I wanted to love this book and it started well but too quickly got into endless pages of self reflection. I was hoping this would be in the vein of the Shining but it never got there.
A cool surprise
- Katherine Peterson