Running their own hotel consulting firm, Sandeep Sanghavi and his mother live an offbeat lifestyle, travelling around the country, occasionally receiving calls from Sandeep’s father, Van Ray, a once-famous astronomer who usually needs money. But Sandeep’s predictably nomadic existence is disrupted when Van Ray reveals that he’s found something that will change how humans view the cosmos. Soon afterwards, unexplainable things start happening. Texts that only Sandeep can see. Misplaced items miraculously reappearing and repeated requests from a someone, or something, asking to be introduced to Van Ray. When his cousins, mother, father, and father’s pregnant ex-wife all cross paths at a condemned hotel on the outskirts of Atlanta, Sandeep finds himself in the middle of not just the biggest scientific find of the century, but caught up in the equally explosive cross-currents of family.
Cosmic Hotel is a pretty good combination of family drama, mystery, and science fact/fiction, with characters that feel real, and, in a very believable way, damaged. What I found disappointing was discovering that the aliens were nothing more than a backdrop in a diorama of family drama, receiving neither elaboration nor expansion beyond what’s needed to highlight the struggles between family members.