Series: Standalone Novel
Published by Washington Square Press on 7/13/17
Genres: Women's Fiction
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In this entrancing novel “that speaks to the Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor in us all” (Kirkus Reviews), a legendary film actress reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the loves she lost, and the long-held secrets the public could never imagine.
Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo 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 is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?
Monique is not exactly on top of the world. Her husband has left her, and her professional life is going nowhere. Regardless of why Evelyn has selected her to write her biography, Monique is determined to use this opportunity to jumpstart her career.
Summoned to Evelyn’s luxurious apartment, Monique listens in fascination as the actress tells her story. From making her way to Los Angeles in the 1950s to her decision to leave show business in the ‘80s, and, of course, the seven husbands along the way, Evelyn unspools a tale of ruthless ambition, unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love. Monique begins to feel a very real connection to the legendary star, but as Evelyn’s story near its conclusion, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.
“Heartbreaking, yet beautiful” (Jamie Blynn, Us Weekly), The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is “Tinseltown drama at its finest” (Redbook): a mesmerizing journey through the splendor of old Hollywood into the harsh realities of the present day as two women struggle with what it means—and what it costs—to face the truth.
Reid’s writing in this book is nothing short of superb. Every word, I swear, was perfection. The storytelling, the complexity of Evelyn Hugo, the meticulous crafting of this remarkable life, the absolutely SHOCKING twists and turns, everything about the cultivation of this book is OUTSTANDING.
5 “This was Everything” Stars.
I could tell within just a few pages upon starting to read this book that it would be special. Taylor Jenkins Reid’s writing has always felt like a breath of fresh air but she somehow upped her game with this story. I immediately wanted to know Evelyn Hugo. I wanted her secrets, I wanted her truths. I wanted her life story and I wanted to know why she chose Monique Grant to tell it. This wholly immersive storyline with its breathtaking prose and lush imagery swept me away. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a devastating, beautiful ode to an iconic Hollywood legend and it’s a breathtaking demonstration of the unparalleled mastery of Taylor Jenkins Reid.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is rife with profound messages about embracing all the sides of ourselves. It’s an evocative look at what women have endured over the course of time to be successful, to be seen; a raw demonstration of what women have faced and continue to face, dimming their own lights to appease men, using unconventional means to further themselves, hiding their truths because there’d be no one there to catch them if they fell. This story is fun to read, it’s entertaining, sure. It’s also profoundly heavy at times, devastating in ways that will probably haunt me for days to come. The story of Evelyn Hugo is sometimes joyful, often tragic, always captivating. But the historical accuracy, the real world issues woven through this book are what stood out most for me. Evelyn Hugo’s story is not just a chronicle of her life as she made her way through old Hollywood, it’s truly a timepiece, plotting out the adversity that faced all women, all people, over the last century in America.
I love what Taylor Jenkins Reid has done here with The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. I can’t say that enough. I loved it. It’s breathtaking and brilliant and all. the. things. To say this story consumed me would be an understatement. I’m still wiping away tears as I write these words. This is a book that will stand out as one of the most unforgettable stories I’ve read. Ever. Reid’s writing in this book is nothing short of superb. Every word, I swear, was perfection. The storytelling, the complexity of Evelyn Hugo, the meticulous crafting of this remarkable life, the absolutely SHOCKING twists and turns, everything about the cultivation of this book is OUTSTANDING. As I said before, I knew as soon as I began reading this book that it would be special. I could feel it. But I had no idea just how special it would be, how monumental and important this book truly is.
The life of Evelyn Hugo is an amazing story, the things she went through, her loves, her lies, her pain, her loss, her joy, her truths all culminate into this riveting, unbelievably fascinating story that I couldn’t put down. But as swept away as I was by Evelyn Hugo, I was just as blown away by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I’ve read and loved all of her books and I’ve always come away impressed, moved, heartbroken, fulfilled. But with The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Taylor Jenkins Reid has BLOWN ME AWAY. She’s a force to be reckoned with, a phenomenal writer, and a brilliant storyteller. This story is the embodiment of literary perfection and I will be screaming about it from the rooftops to all who will listen.
About the Author
Taylor Jenkins Reid lives in Los Angeles and is the acclaimed author of One True Loves, Maybe in Another Life, After I Do, and Forever, Interrupted. Her books have been named a “Best Book of Summer” by People, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, InStyle, Good Housekeeping, USA TODAY, Redbook, Us Weekly, Parade, PopSugar, Buzzfeed, Bustle, Brit+Co, Goodreads, and others.