1 Following

Words of a Bibliophile

"It's only words, and words are all I have, to take your heart away." —Bee Gees

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo - Taylor Jenkins Reid

For a novel that's supposed to be about movie stars in old Hollywood, I came away with little about actually making the movies. We get more about publicity stunts, behind-the-scenes lobbying, and award shows rather than about film-making itself. Even entering the industry seems like only a matter of moving to California and being pretty and hanging around studios; voila, you get cast as an extra. The writing is simpler than I expected and felt very condensed (perhaps due to the story spanning several decades, but I've seen it done better) and there's a lot more telling than showing.


Evelyn is not a faultless character. She uses any means including her body and other people to achieve her goals, and she openly admits she's not a good person. But as an anti-heroine, at least she comes across to me as a sympathetic one. Celia on the other hand sounds like a difficult, if not toxic, person to be with.

(show spoiler)


What I liked was the themes running through the novel, including identity and female sexuality. The connection between Evelyn and her biographer Monique is unexpected and more complicated than I thought it would be.