Title: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Genre: Historical Romance, LGBT
Publish Date: June 13, 2017
# of Pages: 391
(Goodreads) Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life.
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 her 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—revealing a ruthless ambition, an unexpected friendship, and a great forbidden love—Monique begins to feel a very a real connection to the actress. But as Evelyn’s story catches up with the present, it becomes clear that her life intersects with Monique’s own in tragic and irreversible ways.
There is no way a review can do justice to this glorious and beautifully raw book, but I will try my best.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo was undoubtedly a highly anticipated read for me. Almost everyone who read it had loved it, and after reading and (quite unexpectedly) loving Daisy Jones and the Six by the same author earlier this year, I had high expectations from this one. And boy, it delivered!
The plot revolves around the enigmatic and seductive actress Evelyn Hugo, who equally popular for her long and extremely successful career in Hollywood as for her seven marriages. Having outlived all of her seven husbands, Hugo’s personal life is a matter of mystery and controversy for everyone. So when Monique Grant, a biracial (white and African-American) woman who is almost unknown in the world of journalism is sought by Hugo for an exclusive feature, everyone, including Monique, are surprised beyond measure.
What follows is the stunning tale of Evelyn Hugo’s life, which is not black and white by any measure and certainly not what people know or expect of her, but rather, is crammed full of experiences and struggles transcending the glitz and glamour people know about. Hugo is ambitious, calculating, strong and confident beyond measure. While she faced abuse as a child , sexism and racism in her career and even domestic violence, her media presence remains impeccable, thanks to her cunning in the constant battle of wits with the press.
..do yourself a favor and learn to grab life by the balls, dear. Don’t be so tied up in trying to do the right thing when the smart thing is so painfully clear.
The beauty of the book lies in the complexity of Evelyn’s character. Each of her actions are undoubtedly of questionable nature, though the motives vary. Sometimes it is for love, at others, for ambition. While she operates in the gray space of morality, her unflinching honesty and strength of character makes you love her immensely.
It’s always been fascinating to me how things can be simultaneously true and false, how people can be good and bad all in one, how someone can love you in a way that is beautifully selfless while serving themselves ruthlessly
Evelyn’s story is intensely emotional, raw and hard-hitting. I flew though this book in a day and could not put it down. Similar to her previous work, Reid explores the darker side of a glamorous industry while crafting beautiful characters that seem extremely real. The fast moving plot kept me on my toes with the constant air of mystery. This book is totally worth all the hype!
A raw, emotional and hard-hitting tale of an extra-ordinary woman, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is every bit worth the hype!
Do you like morally grey characters?
Have you read The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo? Is it on your TBR?