The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Taylor Jenkins Reid gives us stellar books with unforgettable characters and story lines that stick with us, like her Malibu Rising. I admit, I’m behind in my book reviews – so many books are staring me down, waiting for me to dive into them.
But eventually, my curiosity got the best of me when I watched Reid’s The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo situate itself month after month after month on “best books” lists. I finally caved in and purchased a copy. Now I know why this is still staying on the top sellers list.
This is a story meshing Hollywood glamour and scandals of the past with Hollywood in current times. It’s the story of Evelyn Hugo – how she grew up in a struggling family in Hell’s Kitchen and how she reinvented herself, becoming a rising starlet in the 50’s, then a sexy blond bombshell “it” girl of the 60’s.
It’s a story of being kicked when you’re down and dragging yourself up again. It’s a story of a woman who did whatever it took to keep her shining star status throughout the decades. Now at 79, she’s retired and looking back at her life – which of course, includes her 7 very different husbands.
Seven husbands. She married them all for various reasons: true love, career advancement, complicity, facades for the eager public. Those reasons make for a compelling and mesmerizing book. In the 50’s and 60’s folks couldn’t get enough of all that glitz and scandal Hollywood had to offer. Tabloids and reporters would stop at nothing to get a story.
Yes, it’s somewhat like that even now – but those decades were very different – people were different – morals and acceptability were different. Blackballing for assorted reasons was something every actor and actress feared – thus they kept their “taboo” secrets hidden from the public at all costs.
Evelyn Hugo has seen it all. Now in her sunset years, she’s ready to “tell all” – exposing every dirty little secret and every trial and tribulation that not only made her, but almost destroyed her.
But most of all, Evelyn is looking for satisfaction, redemption and closure. A hard book to put down once you start following Evelyn and each of her husbands: an electrician, a famed actor, producer, financier and others.
We are constantly teased until the very end as to who was her real true love – and what is her real motive for finally wanting to “tell it all” – leaving no stone unturned. When the decades of the past catch up to current times, Taylor Jenkins Reid gives us a twist and hidden agenda that will make you take a deep breath – it’s heavy!
The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is simply fabulous! Tense, tawdry and irresistible. You can bet this will be on Wonder Women Sixty’s “best beach reads” list along with her other book, Malibu Rising. Summer may be hot and humid, but The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo will make it steamy!
See my review for Taylor Jenkins Reid’s Malibu Rising on this site under the General Books category.
The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: Washington Square Press/Atria: trademarks of Simon & Schuster. Find it online or at your favorite retailers.