Online Reading Challenge Wrap-Up

Hello Readers! How was your June reading about the movies? Did you find a hidden jewel (reading-wise)? Please let us know.

I read The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid and enjoyed it immensely. I was actually pretty skeptical about this one; the reviews were good, but it’s a subject (the glitz and glamour of Hollywood) that doesn’t really interest me. Boy am I glad I gave it a chance!

Starting during the last days of the Golden era of the Hollywood movie industry when the studios still controlled everything up to and including how each movie star would look and behave, Evelyn is determined to get out of New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen and make it big in the movies. She will – and does – do anything to make her dream come true. Blessed with good looks and grim determination, Evelyn schemes and manipulates her way to the top. She’s not always likable, but she is honest and forthright about what she wants and most of the people she uses know exactly what they’re getting (they often benefit too). Evelyn is also talented, a bombshell that can act, and she works very hard.

Of course, there is a price to be paid for this somewhat brutal approach to life. She has, at most, two or three friends, the public make assumptions about her based on scandal sheets and she is unable to be with the one person she does love. Despite the veneer of glamour and money, she does not escape pain or heartbreak – a husband that beats her, another that cheats on her, a difficult relationship with her daughter.

The book devotes a section to each husband. It’s fascinating to see her reasoning for marrying each – some she truly loves, some she marries to further her career, some she marries for convenience. Each marriage reflects a stage of her career, another step in the cultivation of her image. The writing is sharp and snappy and just a bit hard-edged, very fitting for a woman that won’t back down from her dreams despite the odds.

Now it’s your turn – what did you read this month?

4 thoughts on “Online Reading Challenge Wrap-Up

  1. I also read (and enjoyed) the Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo! I couldn’t decide on just one book this month, so I’m also listening to Beautiful Ruins on Audible. I am SO glad I’m listening to that one! Part of it takes place in Italy during 1962 when a beautiful film star arrives in a tiny, secluded port town. It’s so helpful to hear the narrator pronounce the many Italian names! He also does a great job with Irish, Welsh (a terribly funny Richard Burton) and “classy” (Lawrence Olivier) British accents. I’m sort of a Henry Higgins when it comes to accent stuff!

    If I had to choose a favorite between these two right now, I would say Beautiful Ruins. It’s got this gently humorous tone, and the characters are very likeable. I was a little annoyed with Monique – she could be very OBTUSE, for lack of a better word, at times! Both were good reads, though, and I truly enjoyed the Movie Theme this month.

  2. Beautiful Ruins has been on my “to be read” list for a long time – looks like I’m going to have to move it to the top of the list!

    I’m so happy to hear that you enjoyed the theme this month! Thanks for reading along with us!


  3. It was a great month for Evelyn Hugo as I too read the book. I liked how each of the husbands had their own section. It was not what I expected at all but I did enjoy the book.

  4. Taylor Jenkins Reid’s newest book, Daisy Jones and the Six is also excellent. Highly recommended! Thanks for reading along with the Challenge! Ann

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