Ioannis Pappos’s Hotel Living is a portrait of privilege, aspiration, and international finance during the wayward course of the American economy between 9/11 and the 2008 Financial collapse, and is filled with surprisingly tender observations about identity, loneliness, and human connection. Its main character is a smart Greek immigrant named Stathis Rakis, a rising star in the business world, who longs for intimacy: “I’m homeless, but in First Class.”
Stathis Rakis, like many of his contemporaries, leaves a simple life behind in Greece for one of international finance, unique hotels, multi-million-dollar deals and fast sex. Born and raised in a Greek fishing village, Stathis escapes to the U.S. and joins a high-octane white-collar firm. When he falls for an emotionally unavailable mug-humanitarian from New England, his work and personal choices clash. Rejected and rootless – too educated to be a Greek fisherman, too Greek to be a typical executive – Stathis works around the world and lives in hotels. Promotions are followed by longings, intoxication, and numbness while he drifts between corporate and bohemian parlors with other fleeting people such as war correspondents, hyper-reality media founders, and daughters of movie stars. A misinterpretation of the American dream, Hotel Living is a fast-paced fictional account of the absurd ‘00’s that led to the financial and moral confusion we are still dealing with.
“Ioannis Pappos’s Hotel Living could be The Great Gatsby, reincarnated in a contemporary hell beyond even F. Scott Fitzgerald’s imagination. It’s harrowing. It’s smart and sexy; it’s funny and tragic. It is, in short, a great and terrible beauty of a book.” – Michael Cunningham, Pulitzer Prize-winner
“I would gladly be Stathis, hang around Stathis, sleep with Stathis – after all, reading his story, I feel I’ve lived with him through thick and thin, and known him as intimately as if he truly exists.” – Auguste Corteau
Ioannis Pappos is a management consultant and writer from Pelio, Greece. He is a graduate of Stanford University and INSEAD Business School, and has worked in both the U.S. and Europe. Ioannis contributes to blogs and magazines. Hotel Living (finalist for Lambda and Edmund White Debut Fiction awards) is his first novel. He lives in New York City.
Reviews & Interviews: Addicted to Hotel Living: An Interview With Novelist Ioannis Pappos; BookCulture: Q&A with Ioannis Pappos; Hotel Living by Ioannis Pappos: A Review by Auguste Corteau; The Greek House Goes Hotel Living; Stooping with ‘Hotel Living’ Author Ioannis Pappos; It’s Either Sadness or Euphoria…