My Rating: 5/5 stars
Verdict: Buy Borrow Bypass
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Evelyn is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one in the journalism community is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now? Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband, David, has left her, and her career has stagnated. Regardless of why Evelyn has chosen to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career. Summoned to Evelyn’s Upper East Side apartment, Monique listens as Evelyn unfurls her story: from making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the late 80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way. As Evelyn’s life unfolds through the decades—revealing a ruthless ambition, an unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love—Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the actress. But as Evelyn’s story catches up with the present, it becomes clear that her life interests with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.
This book is fantastic! It contains romance, intrigue, memorable quirky characters, and drama. Oh, the drama! I think I especially enjoyed this book because of all the references to Old Hollywood, but a reader less familiar with that era would still greatly enjoy this book.
You’ll love learning more about Evelyn Hugo’s life, just as much as I did. Yes, she did marry seven husbands and this novel uses the husbands as a framing device to progress through Hugo’s life. But don’t get it twisted: this book is very much about the conscious choices Hugo made to become a star and to survive in her Hollywood lifestyle. And I have to say, she makes some astonishing choices. As far as Monique goes, for the majority of the book I found her to be alright. I was far more interested in Hugo’s life story than I was about anything happening with Monique. But, there is a big plot twist at the end explaining why Evelyn chose Monique for this project and it will delight you as a reader.
I found the characters in this book to be incredibly engaging. Hugo is a dynamic, charismatic, and sympathetic character and you’ll feel like you’re having a drink with her as she shares her story. And you’ll definitely have a favorite husband, but I won’t tell you which one! Unsurprisingly, author Taylor Jenkins Reid does a wonderful job of writing female characters. I found the relationships between the women to be honest and realistic.
Obviously, I highly recommend this book! I’ve yet to encounter a single person who read this book and did not fall head over heels for it. I even have plans to read some of this author’s backlist! I would recommend this book to fans of Old Hollywood, women-led dramas such as Big Little Lies, and The Nightingale.
This book is…
a quick read
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: historical fiction
Page Count: 391
Available here from Book Depository.
Have you read The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo? What’s your favorite historical fiction read?