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
"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)
I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this book! Narrated by the author (always a plus!), this book discloses the ins and outs of the hotel business (really great tips if you're a frequent traveler) in an interesting and entertaining way, and with dashes of philosophy here and there. The author does have a degree in philosophy, after all!
The author, "Tommy" (who also narrates this audiobook). I loved hearing about all the escapades of an accidental hotel employee.
Author of "Turned Wrong at Ding Dong."
Yes! The author gave a gritty and truthful look at the hotel industry, peppered with advice for customers. It was comically honest and equally tragic. I loved this book. I highly recommend it. I gave it all the stars!
I liked that the author was the narrator. It was the kind of story that was best told by the person who lived it.
Tomsky was good with the voices. He was engaging and funny, even when the subject matter was negative. He was honest about his own negative experiences. I have a problem with other writers like Sheryl Sandberg (Lean In) and Tal Birdsey (A Room for Learning: The Making of a School in Vermont) who are coy about what screw ups they are. We are all screw ups and being honest about that, like Tomsky, is real.
I would recommend this to any friend who travels. There is useful information about do's and don'ts.
This book was very entertaining and witty. The author does a fantastic job at altering his recording to match the mood of the book which is a skill many audio book readers do not have. Since the author read his own book the emotions conveyed seemed very genuine. The language is very open involving sex and cussing which doesn't bother me at all but a fair warning to those easily offended.
I very much enjoyed the humor and pace of this book. The little bit of fun after the credits was a treat. It's not life changing, and I didn't really learn anything new; just confirmed that hospitality staff are sneaky, cocky, and money-hungry. Ahhh...but that's OK with me!
The narrator did a great job with the accents and the author did a good job conveying NY vernacular.
Near the end when the guy from New York(jokingly) said he'd break his legs. And the Author makes the point if you don't get the joke, then you missed the point of the story.
No I haven't.
I busted out laughing a few times and had some eye openings to the BOH processes. As a road warrior we only see the front desk and fail to realize, their position in the grand scheme of things. Having worked retail in my youth, I understand the cavalier attitude of virtually any employee described.
Great book, quite funny, educational even for an experienced traveler, for someone new to the world of travelling, a wealth of information. This would make a fantastic gift for the road warrior family member or friend to read on their trips.
The language in this book was so offensive that I could not finish the book as much as I would have liked to hear the story. Maybe if I was reading it I could have skipped over the foul words, but impossilbe to avoid in an audio book.
I wish audio books came with ratings for language because I've been disappointed in a few books. I know some people really swear profusely, but if the story can't be told without the over use of profanity then I do not want to 'read' the book.
The book started off a little slow. But that did not last long....written very well. I like the fact it was narrated by the author. He brought real life to all the characters he played. As the book continued I felt like I was going on this journey with the author. I literally laughed out loud and was saddened at how the author's life was playing out. Perfectly narrated! I wish it didn't finish! Great book!
If you want to hear the shady side of the hotel business this is a good insight
change the narrator ...I never finished this book 1st time in all my 50 Audible Titles . It was so irritating listening to someone who sounded like Sylvester the Cat.
As a hotelier who rose from page boy to GM. hope the listeners know not all hoteliers are shady , hustling or drug dependent. But hospitality professional who enjoys being a gracious host.
Here's where the audio version of a book can really make a difference.
I'd read some print reviews and comments that characterized the narration as arrogant at best, and flat-out insulting toward hotel guests at worst. And I can see how, without the winking wryness of Tomsky's voice narration to smooth things over, this could definitely come off as more of a whiny rant than the ironic-but-human tone the author (I think) intended.
And I can totally see why some people took offense--Tomsky makes no bones about hotel service being all about the bones--or bricks, or bennies, or all those other nicknames they have for tip denominations.
If the staff's not making fun of us behind our backs (literally--and with hand motions--I wish I could cite the chapter but you'll just have to get the book...), they're key-bombing us, or peeing into our cologne bottles. (Okay the peeing in the bottle story is apocryphal at best and only involved a celeb athlete, but still...)
But don't despair; Tomsky gives back by telling us what to do--and what not to do when we check in. If nothing else, you'll have fun figuring out the celebrity blind items. (Spoiler/answer key: Tim Burton, John Cusack, Dustin Hoffman, Michael Jordan)
Tomsky can write, and he has a few good anecdotes, but not as many as you'd think given all his years in the biz. He sounds like a genuinely good guy whose writing has been snarked-up by too many readings at the Knitting Factory--I heard the Brooklyn-hipster-style in his voice before I even confirmed that's where he lived.
But he arguably makes up for it with some awesome NYC and Nawlin's accents.
Frequent travelers probably won't find anything new here, and I'm not sure there's enough "inside dirt" for this to be a truly explosive read, but I was thoroughly entertained nonetheless.
A great audio book that accompanied me in a long train journey. It was easy to follow and very well read by the author. For frequent travelers, this book is indeed a sneak peak behind the scenes of the many hotels we visit. I would recommend this one as one of the best audio books I have purchased.
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