Review: The Beautiful Strangers by Camille Di Maio

When cosmic forces bring together everything you love in a story … a seaside hotel, a legendary ghost, a love triangle, a curious mystery, old hollywood glamour and even Miss Marilyn Monroe! This book is an ethereal mix of all of those things scented with ocean air and the warm hug of family, I adored every minute and may have a had a mini panic attack when I saw I was almost finished…

It’s the late 50’s and movie lover Kate Morgan is stuck. Working at her family’s restaurant in San Francisco is not what she had in mind for her life, and she craves working in the pictures, on movies sets, in a Hollywood environment.

Her biggest supporter of her dream is her ailing grandfather who urges her to follow her dreams. Dreams which may just be found by answering an ad he finds in the paper.

She courageously makes her way to the seaside Hotel del Coronado where the filming of the movie Some Like it Hot is in progress. She’s told no one but her sister, and her grandfather – who urges her to go with a request… to find the “beautiful stranger.”

The Hotel is more than she could have imagined – the glitz and glamour a bit overwhelming, the rumors of a ghost who wanders the halls is chilling – but she jumps right into the hustle and bustle of hotel life, tending to celebrities, and working alongside a man who welcomes her to the Coronado and helps her follow her dreams.

We follow both Kate and another interesting hotel guest from years ago, and their lives slowly begin to intertwine in the most deliciously pleasing way.

The characters are dreamy and delightful, the writing is elegant and charming and although I ached over some heartbreaking moments, I became transported to a time equally haunting and glamourous, and could feel the sand between my toes and salt air in my soul. I’m enamored with this book, and I think you will be too.

Thank you @getredpr @lorijill321 @camilledimaio__author for the opportunity to read this magical story!

Available now! Get it here.


  • Paperback: 319 pages
  • Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (March 5, 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1542040442
  • ISBN-13: 978-1542040440

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From Amazon:

A legendary hotel on the Pacific becomes a haven where dreams, love, and a beguiling mystery come alive.

1958. Kate Morgan, tethered to her family’s failing San Francisco restaurant, is looking for an escape. She gets her chance by honoring a cryptic plea from her grandfather: find the beautiful stranger. The search takes her to Hotel del Coronado, the beachfront landmark on the Southern California coast where filming is underway on the movie Some Like It Hot.

For a movie lover like Kate, it’s a fantasy come true. So is the offer of a position at the glamorous hotel. And a new romance is making her heart beat just as fast. But as sure as she is that Coronado is her future, Kate discovers it’s also where the ghosts of the past have come to stay. Sixty years ago a guest died tragically, and she still haunts the hotel’s halls.

As the lives of two women—generations apart—intertwine, Kate’s courageous journey could change more than she ever imagined. And with Coronado wending its way through her soul, she must follow her dreams…wherever they may lead.



About Camille:

Screen Shot 2019-03-12 at 5.17.05 PMCamille recently left an award-winning real estate career in San Antonio to become a full-time writer. Along with her husband of twenty-one years, she enjoys raising their four children. She has a bucket list that is never-ending, and uses her adventures to inspire her writing. She’s lived in Texas, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and California, and spends enough time in Hawai’i to feel like a local. She’s traveled to four continents (so far), and met Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II. She just about fainted when she had a chance to meet her musical idol, Paul McCartney, too. Camille studied political science in college, but found working on actual campaigns much more fun. She overdoses on goodies at farmers markets (justifying them by her support for local bakeries) and belts out Broadway tunes whenever the moment strikes. There’s almost nothing she wouldn’t try, so long as it doesn’t involve heights, roller skates, or anything illegal.



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