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Heads in Beds: A Reckless Memoir of Hotels, Hustles, and So-Called Hospitality | [Jacob Tomsky]

Heads in Beds: A Reckless Memoir of Hotels, Hustles, and So-Called Hospitality

Jacob Tomsky has worked in hotels for more than a decade, doing everything from valet parking to manning the front desk. He's checked you in, checked you out, separated your white panties from the white bed sheets, parked your car, tasted your room service, cleaned your toilet, denied you a late check out, given you a wake-up call, eaten M&Ms out of your mini-bar, laughed at your jokes, and taken your money. And in Heads in Beds, he pulls back the curtain on the hospitality business.
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Publisher's Summary

In the tradition of Kitchen Confidential and Waiter Rant, a rollicking, eye-opening, fantastically indiscreet memoir of a life spent (and misspent) in the hotel industry.

Jacob Tomsky has worked in hotels for more than a decade, doing everything from valet parking to manning the front desk. He's checked you in, checked you out, separated your white panties from the white bed sheets, parked your car, tasted your room service, cleaned your toilet, denied you a late check out, given you a wake-up call, eaten M&Ms out of your mini-bar, laughed at your jokes, and taken your money. And in Heads in Beds, he pulls back the curtain on the hospitality business, revealing the crazy yet compelling reality of an industry we think we know. It is an incredibly funny, authentic, and irreverent chronicle of the highs and lows of hotel life and boy, is there a market for it: in 2010, the American lodging industry generated $127.7 billion in revenue. Prepare to be amused, shocked, and amazed as he spills the unwritten code of the bellhops, the antics that go on the valet parking garage, and the housekeeping department's dirty little secrets.

Prepare to be moved, too, by his insightful honesty about the profession; employees are often poorly paid and frequently abused. However, Heads in Beds is more than just a memoir. Jake explains the secrets of the industry, offering easy and legal ways to get what you need from your hotel without any hassle - from scoring late check-ins and upgrades to getting that pay-per-view charge knocked off your bill. This book will give you the knowledge you need to get the very best service from any hotel or property, from any business that makes its money from putting heads in beds. Or, at the very least, it will keep the bellhops from taking your luggage into the camera-free back office and stomping the crap out of it.

©2012 Jacob Tomsky (P)2012 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Jacob Tomsky is a star. The kid writes like a dream. Heads in Beds is hilarious, literate, canny, indignant and kind - revealing an author who manages somehow to be both a total hustler and a complete humanitarian. I love this book. Keep an eye on this writer. I'm telling you, he's a star." (Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (416 )
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4.2 (388 )
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  •  
    kris Garden Grove, CA, United States 04-20-13
    kris Garden Grove, CA, United States 04-20-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Traveler's MUST READ"
    Would you listen to Heads in Beds again? Why?

    Yes - it is funny and informative


    What other book might you compare Heads in Beds to and why?

    None - it's in a class by itself!


    What does Jacob Tomsky bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His tone and his sarcasm which makes it even better.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    If you've ever stayed in a hotel, you MUST see this.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book. Not only is it funny and entertaining, it is informative and educational. A must read for travelers.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Wanaque, NJ, USA 02-12-13
    Karen Wanaque, NJ, USA 02-12-13 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Bit Juvenile, But Some Good Info"
    What disappointed you about Heads in Beds?

    The writer gave some useable, laughable tips for regular hotel users, although I can't see how I'll ever use ghetto names for hundred dollar bills, either at home or in my travels. Generally, this is just so much juvenile macho "grooming" by a very young man. Everybody at some point thinks the world will be fascinated by their tales at work. This is no different. Nobody over a certain age wants to read about drinking, drugging and general mayhem in a twenty-something's life as a hotel staffer. I hope the writer's next book appeals to a wider, more mature (by that I mean over 18) audience. Also, the writer read the book, himself, in a not very appealing way. Maybe somebody else could have made this work.


    What could Jacob Tomsky have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Maybe if he'd approached his subject matter with a bit more maturity and allowed someone else, a professional reader, do the narrative, it might have been more enjoyable


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Adams 01-29-13
    J. Adams 01-29-13 Member Since 2009

    MrBizzleTex

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    "A worthwhile use of a credit - easy & entertaining"

    This book was a fun listen and a worthwhile use of a credit. The stories are entertaining - if not always told with a cohesive narrative - and for someone like me who generally sticks to nonfiction/history it was a great easy listen/distraction. I liked that Mr. Tomsky narrated the book himself as the flourishes he adds to his own stories greatly improve the listen. Don't buy it if you're expecting Dave Eggers or David Sedaris type essays - also don't buy it if you're looking for honest to goodness travel tips. I thought the publishers pushing the book as having travel/hotel upgrade tips was disingenuous - Mr. Tomsky does use 'tips' as gateways to tell a story the 'insider tip' he offers is almost always give a big tip.

    In short - well narrated, funny, easy listening....would be great for a long plane flight.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Carlsbad, CA, United States 01-14-13
    Julie Carlsbad, CA, United States 01-14-13 Member Since 2005
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    "Hilarious, Informative: May Make You Laugh & Tip"

    This is a must read if you stay at hotels for two or more nights, certainly if you stay a week or more. But a sense of humor is required.

    This hilarious book provides an insider’s view of the hotel industry, its services, guests, and employees. Ethical and unethical advice for how to make the most of your next hotel stay are provided. But this is not a dry how-to book or pompous tell-all. It is a genuinely funny memoir about a young guy working in the hotel industry, making his living by moving up—and down—the hospitality ladder, and the people he meets.

    The stories are well written and narrated—okay, the stories are laugh out loud funny. For example, do you ever wonder what happens to your car once in the valet's hands?

    The narration throughout the book is just like the Audible Sample—conversational with cuss words and all—so if you like the sample and don't mind some cussing then my guess is you’ll like the book.

    The book starts slowly, a bit bogged down in detail, but hang on because it speeds up. The beginning info is necessary. We learn how the author moves from being an out-of-work philosophy major graduate to valet driver to in-house hotel employee. By the end we are left with colorful laughable events full of honest, sharp-edged and keen observations of human behavior (good and the bad), useful tips to improve our next hotel stay, and an understanding of hotels including the history, the people who run them, who change our sheets, and clean our drinking glasses with Pledge--yes I said Pledge. And much more.

    This is a hilarious book. I hope you enjoy it. And remember the next time you want a room up-grade just tip the…. Oh read the book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Torrance, CA, United States 01-07-13
    Matthew Torrance, CA, United States 01-07-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Great book, great narration - couldn't get better"
    If you could sum up Heads in Beds in three words, what would they be?

    Was fantastic, interesting, engaging and really worth the liste.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Tommy (main character). Was extremely funny and interesting.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The whole book!


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Just the plain honesty was really moving.


    Any additional comments?

    Fantastic, couldn't have asked for a better book!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julian MERRITT ISLAND, FL, United States 01-03-13
    Julian MERRITT ISLAND, FL, United States 01-03-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Wow - Nailed it on the head"

    A Hotello myself I found myself laughing out loud and tearing in other moments. Thank you for your book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim 01-02-13
    Jim 01-02-13 Member Since 2011
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    "great insight into the hospitality industry"

    Dont pick it up if you are put off by adult language. Otherwise, it is great and it works in the context.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angel Hempstead, NY, United States 12-24-12
    Angel Hempstead, NY, United States 12-24-12 Member Since 2008
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    "My best listen of the year."
    Would you consider the audio edition of Heads in Beds to be better than the print version?

    I loved the audible version because you get the spirit and personality of the memoir through the author's own voice.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Heads in Beds?

    At the end of the book their are things not to say when checking into a hotel. Some of these are so obvious its hard to believe that some guest's still use them.


    Which character – as performed by Jacob Tomsky – was your favorite?

    The author plays himself but under a different name which is hilarious on its own. I won't tell you though, you have to get the book.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Never have your luggage kicked again?


    Any additional comments?

    I haven't ever reviewed anything on Audible. I started with the book and then wanted to listen to it at work and in the car. Tomsky is going to make you laugh, but he is going to make you laugh at yourself. Once you listen to this book you can plan on having much better hotel experiences.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    V. Sullivan 09-09-14
    V. Sullivan 09-09-14 Member Since 2013
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    "This was great!"
    If you could sum up Heads in Beds in three words, what would they be?

    Funny, insightful, informative, and very impressed with the author's narration.


    What did you like best about this story?

    As a frequent traveler, I loved the inside scoop. I will never Valey park my car again. Also - really pleasantly surprised by narration.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stacey Lawrenceville, GA, United States 08-31-14
    Stacey Lawrenceville, GA, United States 08-31-14 Member Since 2003
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    "Probable one of the best books I've listened to"

    I don't do reviews. Just takes up to much time, but for this book, I just had to. This has got to be the best book I've listened to on audible. It was one of those rare situations where I just couldn't stop listening until it was over. Granted, I'm big into a book that has good stories, and if it has some extremely useful information scattered in there to then it's a real winner for me. This book was all that, plus it was just so well read, by a great story teller. The book had me constantly laughing and totally into the story line, but more than that, I can't WAIT to try out the many hints, tips, and "inside scoop" ideas that the author presents. As he says, it's just a hustle, but this hustle can get you great stays at America's hotels because, for once, it will be you that knows how to make the machine work. Super great job. Loved every minute of it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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