Read Lost Girls and Love Hotels by Catherine Hanrahan Online


Margaret is doing everything in her power to forget home. And Tokyo's exotic nightlife -- teeming with intoxicants, pornography, and three-hour love hotels -- enables her to keep her demons at bay. Working as an English specialist at Air-Pro Stewardess Training Institute by day, and losing herself in a sex- and drug-addled oblivion by night, Margaret represses memories ofMargaret is doing everything in her power to forget home. And Tokyo's exotic nightlife -- teeming with intoxicants, pornography, and three-hour love hotels -- enables her to keep her demons at bay. Working as an English specialist at Air-Pro Stewardess Training Institute by day, and losing herself in a sex- and drug-addled oblivion by night, Margaret represses memories of her painful childhood and her older brother Frank's descent into madness.But Margaret's deliberate nihilism is thrown off balance as she becomes increasingly haunted by images of a Western girl missing in Tokyo. And when she becomes enamored of Kazu, a mysterious gangster, their affair sparks a chain of events that could spell tragedy for Margaret, in a city where it's all too easy to disappear....

Title : Lost Girls and Love Hotels
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780060846848
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 240 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Lost Girls and Love Hotels Reviews

  • Petra X
    2019-05-18 11:24

    I don't like to be negative about books by Goodreads' authors, but I really can't find anything good to say about this book at all other than the cover is really attractive. Ploughing through stories written in dialogue that people would never speak is depressing and pointless. The characters seem uncaring, apathetic, nihilistic as a way of appearing cool but actually just read as dreary. Filed on 'given-up' shelf.

  • Sara Power
    2019-04-23 13:44

    good for people who liked Lost In feel like you know exactly how confused the narrator is in Japan. very cool.

  • Jamieson
    2019-04-25 06:31

    “I sell my time and kill my body…”Margaret is a woman who lives for the downward spiral. Fleeing from Canada to escape her past, Margaret settles in Tokyo to work for Air-Pro Stewardess Training Institute. There, she immerses herself in drugs and sex to forget her family and repress memories of her brother Frank: The brother who tried to kill her.Sharing an apartment with her friend Ines, another fellow Canadian, Margaret ingests illegal substances, drinks herself into stupors and tries to ignore her past and where she came from. Drugs and booze will only blind for a moment; sex gives her another outlet, another way to forget, while hands are caressing her body.Margaret? Margaret I need you to call me. There’s been an accident-Margaret trains doll-like Japanese women to be stewardesses, to fly high in the skies. “Air Pro: Putting young women in the air. Where they belong.” But her past still gnaws at her, still tries to push forth into her consciousness. More drugs and booze don’t help; the cocaine and beer concoction no longer purify her thoughts, no longer help her to forget. She is no longer able to stay lost. That all changes when Margaret meets Kazu.Kazu is a mysterious gangster; tattoos mark his muscled body and his eyes are dark and full of shadows. They engage in sex, in lust. Kazu takes Margaret to a Love Hotel. There are hundreds of Love Hotels in Tokyo, lurid places with themed rooms and no human attendants. You choose a room from a lit up display and have a rest (three hours) or a stay (all night). Which room will you choose?Immortality is not an optionMargaret becomes obsessed with the pictures, the face, of a girl reported to be dead. Abducted and killed, if rumor is to be believed. But Margaret sees her face everywhere: in alleyways, on posters, in the subway. Margaret begins to search for the lost girl, realizing that she is one herself.Despite her best intentions, Margaret finds herself falling for the tattooed Kazu, but their love comes with complications. Margaret can no longer pretend she does not love Kazu, but he has not been honest with her. He is married, and in Tokyo, it is best not to battle with the wife. Mistresses have been known to perish at the hands of knife handling wives.Don’t fight a Japanese wife…so sharp, you don’t even feel it…Kazu tells Margaret to leave, to go back to Canada. But how can Margaret leave the man she loves? She continues to pine for Kazu, who tries to keep his distance. She sees the missing girl everywhere now. She fills Margaret’s dreams, her waking hours.Before her stay in Tokyo is over, Margaret must confront her past if she is to survive. She also must confront herself, to free herself before the downward spiral claims her, or be lost forever.“Lost Girls and Love Hotels” is Christine Hanrahan’s first novel and that’s a crying shame. After I had finished the book, I scoured the Internet to find out if she had written anything else I could get my hands on, to no avail. As soon as I finished reading “Lost Girls and Love Hotels”, I started reading it again. I’m now reading it for a third time. The book is just that good. It’s the best book I’ve read in years.From the first page, the story is just so consuming, so engrossing, that you can do nothing but turn the pages and continue on it’s wild, lustful ride. She uses writing devices (like flash backs and talking in third person whenever Margaret is on a drug binge) like a pro. Hanrahan is a natural at creating mood, using words to her advantage and letting us see inside her protagonist’s head. “Lost Girls and Love Hotels” is proof of her skill and it’s one damn great book.What makes the novel so interesting is that it doesn’t hold back any secrets. We know everything (or almost everything) from the beginning; Hanrahan has set up a line of dominoes, long and curvy, and is about to flick the first one. All we have to do is watch the rest of the line fall; and be amazed.All I can say is: Read this book. It’s amazing, the ending is a shocker and it will be the best book you have read in years. I, for one, can’t wait for Hanrahans next offering.

  • Eveline Chao
    2019-05-17 09:47

    this book is TERRIBLE from a writerly standpoint and yet i LOVE it. biggest flaws: the characters are barely sketched out & not developed at ALL, and the big dark background thing that is supposed to be the protagonist's psychological motivation for acting the way she does is totally lame & not fleshed out. actually, beyond not being fleshed out, it's barely even mentioned. so we're basically asked to go with the idea that this thing that only gets a few lines in the book (okay that's an exaggeration, but it's so sketchy that it FEELS like it's only a few lines) is the crux of the character's personality. and the cover art is terrible.why i love this book: really good, descriptive, vivid, and unique details. the author describes things in a way that's just a little different from how i feel like most people would describe them, and in a way that was just somehow super engaging. in particular i love this one little detail where the main character's co-worker at the japanese airline stewardess school, while i think comforting the main character (i think - it's been awhile) holds her elbow with her fingertips "like a doorknob."basically i just really like tales of crazy girls spiraling out of control. for whatever reason, alcoholism and drug use and general self-destruction = instant lovability, in my book. (hmm now i'm trying to remember what rating i gave to elizabeth wurtzel.)overall i would say the author is good at *writing* but not *crafting.* that is, good at describing and good at details and being plain old interesting to read, but not good at the big picture stuff like plot and storyline and motivation.

  • Val
    2019-05-21 11:24

    Totally forgot (until now) that I read this book in high school. Maybe it would've been better to not remember it at all.

  • Myfanwy
    2019-05-10 06:44

    Catherine Hanrahan's debut novel Lost Girls and Love Hotels is the story of a stranger in a strange land. The stranger is Margaret, a young woman who teaches English (or English pronounciation) in a stewardess school and the strange land is Japan. On surface this could be the story of any 20-something searching for identity, salving old wounds with sex and drugs. Dig a little deeper, however, and you see that there is much more than meets the eye. Like most young women who have absent fathers, distracted mothers, and emotionally disturbed siblings, Margaret thinks she is running away, but what she really is doing is finding a way to save herself, looking for love (albeit in all the wrong places), and soothing herself with drugs and sex. She is, after all, still trapped in childhood; an adult who still sucks her thumb in order to fall asleep. When Margaret's lover, Kazu, asks her why she came to Japan, Margaret responds, "To be alone." Of course, he finds this response odd, and so she follows up with, "It's an easy place to be alone." Is this book specifically about life in Japan? Could it not have been set anywhere? I would argue the latter, as it seems to me the message is universal. Anyone who has ever felt as though she were running away, will see herself in this book. Anyone who has lived on an edge waiting for death, will also. And those who have been lost and found--those who have lived despite all of the odds against them (instead of being the unfortunates whose remains are later found), will find the ending triumphant. In a way, life in Japan destroys Margaret (and almost kills her) and as such, it allows her to be reborn: "I stand like a planet, the constellation of seeds radiating from me, spilling from my pockets. I see, as if for the first time, the quality of the air. Bluish light filtered through it. The sun, like a yolk hanging languorously behind the trees. The air with its giddy bite of anticipation. I breathe it in like anesthesia, but it doesn't put me to sleep. It wakes me up."

  • Jason Pym
    2019-05-09 10:28

    Pace way too slow, occasionally uses second person (for no clear reason) and hackneyed expressions ("eyes like pissholes in the snow" etc). But... This would have made a great short story, or a great opening to a novel that went somewhere. The missing girl, the Yakuza boyfriend, felt like a story waiting to happen.

  • Jacqueline
    2019-05-11 07:46

    This book came highly recommened to me and I had to admit that with my taste for anime and manga, it seemed like a safe bet. When I picked it up I was imediatelly fascinated by Margaret, her strange apathtic nature that clashed with a strange sense of vivaciousness. The language is straight-forward and empathic and I found myself loving Margaret, even her faults, with a sudden intensity. I honestly couldn't put the book down, her dark humor, intense desire for anonminity, and strange passion had me captivated. For a while I had to content myself with strange snippets of the book, tantalizing four to eight page bits that only made me want to crawl deeper into Margaret's story. After page sixteen I couldn't stand it and a few hours later I find myself writing this review. The story left me with the most perfectly restless feeling, but a certain amount of cotentment. As it has been recommeneded to me, so do I recommend it to others. To the Japanophile who wants a great deal of insight to the culture, especially through the eyes of a foreigner, to the fan of anime and manga because certain elements seem like they came waltzing straight out of their pages, particularlly Kazu. And I especially recommend it to anyone who has ever wanted to leave for whatever reason. Pack up and go to get lost in someplace foreign, different, and most importantly not where-ever they are. Because running away makes for adventures, not happy endings.

  • Booklover Butterfly
    2019-04-23 06:38

    Lost Girls and Love Hotels is about a young woman who flees to Tokyo to escape a troubled childhood in Canada. Soon enough, the young woman, Margaret, becomes riveted by and immersed in the nightlife of Tokyo, which leads to her getting involved with a dangerous gangster.Lost Girls and Love Hotels is an enthralling novel. It had such a gritty, authentic vibe to it that I wonder how much of the story came from the author’s personal experience on one level or another. I’m impressed that Lost Girls and Love Hotels was a first novel for the author because the writing had a simplicity and flow to it that I found very enjoyable to read. I sincerely felt for the protagonist in this novel because she seemed so lonely, confused, and isolated. She truly seemed like her own worst enemy at times. I highly recommend this novel for anyone who is interested in the nightlife in Japan, specifically Tokyo, or anyone who enjoys a well written story about inner struggle and loneliness.

  • Paul
    2019-05-17 12:38

    I was a sucker for "Lost in Tokyo" stories long before Sofia C. & Bill Murray got "Lost in Translation"; and a "Lost in Tokyo" story is exactly what this book is. This book, however, adds a layer of suspense and paranoia by tossing a serial killer tale into the mix of the usual frothy Sex, Neon and Booze soaked ambience that tends to pervade any "Gaijin in the Capital City" story. Perfect reading for the bus or a lazy afternoon involving cake. Or Sour Patch Kids. Anyway, you get the point: A guilty pleasure but one with some guts. Literally.

  • Alayna
    2019-05-23 10:24

    My younger sister reccomended this to me....or rather told me i had to read it. I really liked it, different, i like how when talking about sex it was mostly descrite, in other words the authour was basically saying in those parts "use you imagination". Reading this i felt like i was transported to Japan tho i've never been there. I can't wait for more by this author.

  • Anne
    2019-05-10 09:29

    This could have been so good. The blurb on the cover promised the story of a missing girl setting off a chain of events. But she's barely mentioned twice in the book.The plot is minimal and it doesn't flow. Sorry, great idea, great promise but sadly doesn't deliver.

  • Sabine
    2019-05-04 11:25

    I enjoyed the book very much. For me it was different to the stuff I usually read (mysteries). But I loved to read about the strange life she lived in a for me "alien" country. It is one of the books I will never forget.

  • Missmle
    2019-04-29 08:18

    I just loved this book! Catherine was a co-worker of mine and we mostly talked about books and how much we hated where we worked;) Isn't that normal though?

  • Marie
    2019-05-24 11:42

    This is my version of a beach read, pure fun.

  • Mary Lynn
    2019-04-28 11:34

    "Lost" Canadian girl escapes to Tokyo, teaches English to flight attendant wannabes by day, explores the darker side of the Tokyo "Love Hotel" by night. Good, fast read. Really liked it.

  • Bill Boswell
    2019-05-18 13:38

    Good but found ending a bit of a let down

  • Ape
    2019-05-05 12:31

    For some silly reason, when I was looking to get hold of a copy of this book, I thought it was a factual book about the love hotel industry and lost girls in Japan. It's actual fiction. But it was a good read, I quite enjoyed it. I've read some reviews complaining about how all the characters are stereotypes/ two dimensional. I think in some ways this is how Margaret is, in that in her drink, drugs and sex binge in Japan, she herself is trying to forget who she is, so she's hardly going to open up to us in the duration of this story. And the portrayal of the Japanese as cartoonish at times, is also a reflection on how the world can often look at their culure - because we don't look beyond the surface as to what's going on; and also because, as one of the characters mentions to Margaret at one point, it's all about harmony rather than happiness. There is more of a collective consciousness there. I actually liked one of the bit characters and the things he says to Margaret throughout their whole brief meeting, as I think he was bang on - he never even gets a name though, he just refers to himself as 'Used'.So this is about Margaret, a Canadian girl somewhere in her 20s (I suspect early 20s) who has run away from her life and her problems, to Japan, where she believes she can start over, create a new her etc etc. And she's running around having sex with strangers, drinking a lot and doing drugs when she can. She goes to a lot of these love hotels - one of many aspects of Japanese culture I never tried when I was over there! - and the lost girl is referring to Margaret in some ways, and also this actual lost girl that features in the papers etc during the story - although that part of it isn't developed as much as you might expect. She starts having an affair with this guy who may or may not be a gangster - all we really find out is that he owns a love hotel himself. And her involvement with him leads to trouble.Ok, this is fiction, and for fiction to work you've sometimes got to suspend your disbelief. And this is a blinkered look at Japan - if you're wanting an indepth discussion of all aspects of Japanese culture you're not going to get it here. But it's an interesting story, written by someone who obviously knows Japan, and is wanting to set a bit of a mystery - coming of age - self-discovery story in Japan. And it is a good read. If you liked this, you might want to invesitgate the British writer Emily Barr.

  • PurplyCookie
    2019-05-16 12:23

    Margaret, a 20-something Canadian, has fled to Tokyo to escape her past and now instructs aspiring stewardesses in "cabin-crew and airline interview English." By night, she numbs herself with drink and dangerous sex. Her story, as readers learn in alternating chapters, features an imploding family and a dangerously schizophrenic brother. Though Margaret is less than convincing as a narrator, her surreal Tokyo encounters propel the book: a barkeep who communicates with lines from Beatles songs, speakers in public bathrooms that broadcast flushing sounds, a rent-a-dog park, a Western slacker who gigs as a fake wedding minister. And, of course, the automated love hotels that Margaret frequents with a Japanese gangster. On surface this could be the story of any 20-something searching for identity, salving old wounds with sex and drugs. Dig a little deeper, however, and you see that there is much more than meets the eye. Like most young women who have absent fathers, distracted mothers, and emotionally disturbed siblings, Margaret thinks she is running away, but what she really is doing is finding a way to save herself, looking for love (albeit in all the wrong places), and soothing herself with drugs and sex. She is, after all, still trapped in childhood; an adult who still sucks her thumb in order to fall asleep. When Margaret's lover, Kazu, asks her why she came to Japan, Margaret responds, "To be alone." Of course, he finds this response odd, and so she follows up with, "It's an easy place to be alone." The plot lurches forward—Margaret becomes fixated on a missing Western girl, gets fired and hooks up with a man whose name she never learns before her roommate flees. There's redemption to be gained, but the fractured narrative feels like a string of bizarre moments.Book Details: Title Lost Girls and Love HotelsAuthor Catherine HanrahanReviewed By Purplycookie

  • James
    2019-04-26 10:39

    Margaret, an English specialist at an air stewardess training centre in Tokyo, is doing everything she can to forget the traumatic events of her past and her home. Repressing memories and feelings in nightly drug-fuelled binges and sex-filled days, she and her friends begins a steady spiral out of control. On meeting a Japanese man, Kazu, and beginning an affair with him, Margaret finds herself increasingly out of balance; she is falling for him but he has a wife - a possessive and angry wife - and so, Margaret soon becomes alone again. Meanwhile, she is haunted by a missing white girl, whose face seemingly follows her across the sprawling city, casting sorrowful eyes over Margaret's life. In a love hotel with Kazu, Margaret is asked why she came to Japan: she replies to be alone. The city, regardless of location, is a place in which one is easily lost, to oneself and to others. Margaret is alone - painfully so - as she tries to escape the past, a family fallen apart and a brother suffering from mental illness. Harahan has captured the true sense of encompassing loneliness that both being in a city and being in a foreign country can have; the portrayal of this is the novel's strongest asset. There are also weaknesses to the novel: characters that remain poorly defined and developed, many only brief ideas of an archetype; and the missing white girl (one of the lost girls of the title) whose narrative impact is diminished by the plot's lack of focus. Nevertheless, Harahan's first novel is deeply personal, stemming from perhaps personal experience, and portrays a fascinating city and a life on edge in arresting detail.

  • Laura
    2019-04-23 11:25

    Margaret is desperately trying to escape her past. She finds the distractions of Tokyo help her do that, but it’s a big city and she’s only one girl. When she becomes infatuated with a dangerous man, she realizes how easy it would be disappear, whether she wants to or not.I received this book from a friend about a year ago. I forgot what it was even about before I opened it, and it was sp much more tragic than I originally expected. Margaret has had to watch her brother go crazy. but instead of being there for her family, she abandons them. Needless to say, I did not start out liking Margaret very much.Margaret is broken and self-destructive. Every decision she makes seems to get her into more and more trouble. She never seems to learn from her mistakes and she’s undeniably selfish. I’ll admit that sometimes I can hate a character and still enjoy a book, but this is not one of those times. I just couldn’t find a single redeemable think about Margaret, so it kind of ruined the whole book for me. I just wanted to smack her and tell her to get her shit together.With that in mind, the plot was pretty thrilling. If there’s anything that kept me reading to the end it was wondering what what going to happen. I wasn’t very connected to Margaret, but I was very connected to what might happen to her. Lost Girls and Love Hotels is basically a story about a broken girl who repeatedly makes tragic and dangerous decisions. If you can handle that, go for it.Read this review at Owl Tell You About It

  • Nancyc
    2019-05-04 10:48

    When I met Catherine Hanrahan at a book signing, I asked her if her book was Chick Lit. The cover of the book is screaming pink with an anima style drawing of a woman wrapped in sheets, gazing at me with paint-on-velvet eyes. Upon hearing this question, Hanrahan’s eyes registered hurt with a sliver of anger, then turned to defense. I think her companion actually gasped. No, she said. Her book was anything but Chick Lit. She didn’t see why I would have thought such a thing.Well, she was right. Lost Girls and Love Hotels is not Chick Lit. Lost Girls is about a Canadian girl who went to Japan for some privacy. Anyone who has ever used a crowd as a blanket will understand that. The backdrop of Tokyo makes this a fun read for western women. The cultural disparity between east and west makes for an atmosphere akin to Hello Kitty in a porn flick.The story is solid, has depth and deserves attention. However, this debut novel is just that. I expect to see some good things from Hanrahan in the future. Lost Girls combines the banality of youth, the disorientation of living in a foreign country, and the angst of an adolescence not left behind. But, stylistically, it is distracting. The book jerked me from one perspective to another, going from a barrage of sentence fragments to run-ons. The story shifted from first to second person and then back again. I’m sure that these shifts were an intentional move on behalf of literary license, but I just found myself wanting to reach for a red pen.

  • Alpha
    2019-04-27 09:40

    "From what I know, this is the only novel ever written by Hanrahan and I have to say it is a good novel for what it is. I love how the story is set in Japan and how it is about an American girl getting by living in Japan and adapting to the culture, the style, and changing to the many differences from Western culture. However, what I do like is it is based mostly around the more seedy and dangerous side of the Japanese culture.In Japan, sex is such a major taboo despite how open they are. Something that is rated X here in the United States is rated G over there. Yet it is such a touchy subject for them all thus why there is a lot of censoring especially with private parts. Even sex between people is a touch subject thus the Love Hotels - which is a place where couples go for love making in a special themed room. However you throw in that the American girl is having a relationship with a Japanese man named Kazu who is also a member of the Yakuza, then you get problems.This is one of the most entertaining reads I have read from a simple point of view. It is a little jumpy and thus you can lose interest in some parts of the novel but it is still a decent novel for what it is. I have to admit that it could have been a bit more flowing for me but it is still a good novel nevertheless. It is a good topic to use and gives an insight on the Japanese culture through the eyes of a Westerner. Worth the rental at your local library or a borrowing from a friend."

  • angie
    2019-05-04 09:30

    Lost Girls is so quirky and funny and dark and mysterious plus (this is shallow!) the cover is very eye-catching!:)As you may be able to tell from the cover Margaret is not the best role model in the world, but she's been through a lot and is trying to escape her painful past (and less than thrilling job at Air-Pro Stewardess Training Institute) by losing herself in drugs and sex in Tokyo's exotic night life.Those scenes can be pretty explicit, but the sadness and genuine pain she's in when she's trying to forget is unbelievably barren and almost strangely familiar to anyone hoping for a little oblivion.Lost Girls is unlike anything I've read in a while;I have a feeling I'm going to be staying up late tonight reading this all the way through...having putting zombies aside....temporarily, of course!:)p.s.I just found out that the book is being made into a movie:

  • Maria (Ri)
    2019-05-08 06:23

    After finally getting around to reading this one, I finished it in an afternoon. The pace is fast and furious, much as was my experience while visiting Tokyo! It was a surprise and delight to recognize both the sights and sounds of Tokyo and Toronto, where I lived for several years, and Bali where I studied for a semester abroad in university. I feel like Margaret is my alter ego. If I had a miserable and tragic childhood, perhaps I would end up in a similar fate. Reading this novel was both compelling and repelling. It made me wonder how many Margarets are out there wandering around trying to escape themselves. How can I connect with people who are trying desperately to disconnect from the themselves and the world? I found the ending a bit flat, as if by part 3 of the book, the author just gave up and ran out of steam. Overall, a decent read, but not earth shattering.

  • Sandra
    2019-05-24 07:21

    Margaret is a young American woman who is living and working in Japan so she can try and forget about her life back home where here brother is a schizophrenic and her mum has found some kind of comfort in the same sex.After work Margaret goes out and parties hard by drinking,doing drugs and spending time in the Love Hotel by doing this she represses her memories of a painful life.Margaret does find a love interest who is some kind of mysterious gangster. I find him a bit lame and don't think much to his character at all.Anyway reading this book wasn't a waste of time I just wouldn't rush out to but it.

  • Karmen
    2019-05-09 07:48

    Author managed to communicate the disconnect b/w foreigners and Japanese. Not to mention the regard that Japanese and most Asian cultures have for "face". An overwhelming concern for the facade demonstrated in that replicas are everywhere - architecture, clothing, industry - to the exclusion of being able to grow and develop.Yes, I've first hand knowledge of this phenomena. The people are overwhelmingly kind and yet very private.

  • Rachelle Yatchotay
    2019-04-25 09:40

    (I am still currently reading this book.) This book is about a woman named Margaret who now lives in Tokyo having to escape from her crazy brother Frank who has tried to kill her. Going down a terrible path, she slowly kills her body with illegal drugs and alcohol . Sex is also another way that temperately helps her forget about her horrid past. The book is basically from her perspective, as she also reveals her twisted flashbacks from her childhood every now and then.

  • Alyson
    2019-05-03 14:40

    I thought this was really well done. It was reminiscent of my younger, self destructive years. Longer review to follow, but I think anyone who can relate to the emotional state of the narrator will enjoy this... at least I did. I bet that some will not recognize the particular emotional defects and be horrified by the book.

  • Mandy Tanksley
    2019-05-19 10:26

    Margaret is lost in her Tokyo life. She teaches English to soon-to-be flight attendants during the day and explores Tokyo's nightlife of an evening. She finds her life spiraling out of control in this strange yet fascinating world. The premise is interesting enough to warrant this as a good read, but it's written in a way that almost makes you want to put it down and walk away.