The seven husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid, is not a book I would customarily pick up, but I was intrigued by the compelling reviews it was receiving in the blogger community. I am glad I picked it up because it definitely exceeded my expectations!
This book is a quick read, yet has all the elements to make it an intriguing and riveting one. It does not go into depths of magnitude proportions, but is quite the page turner and had me up at all hours of the night in my desire to find out what happened next.
The story revolves around, Evelyn Hugo, one of Hollywood’s most iconic actresses. She has risen to the top with her stunning beauty, talent, and by taking advantage of some opportunities that may have been questionable at times.
She is finally ready to tell the world her true story for the first time. For this narration, she chooses, Monique, a magazine reporter who is just getting started with her career. Monique herself is quite shocked as to why the very famous Evelyn Hugo would choose her. Evelyn assures her, she will eventually find out why.
The book goes through Evelyn’s illustrious career as she narrates it to Monique.
Evelyn marries seven times through her life and has dealt with heart break, deception, scandal, romance and all the glitz and glamour that is Hollywood. There is no doubt, elements like that woven together, definitely make for an interesting read.
However, one of the the aspects that I appreciated most, was how the author brilliantly wove the subject of female empowerment and the struggles behind it during the 1960’s and 70’s alongside Evelyn’s career. The limited opportunities she had, the path that women had to take to make it to the top and how domestic violence was viewed.
There is no question that Evelyn made some questionable choices in her life. She was ruthless, cunning and used her beauty and sexuality to advance her acting career. She was unapologetic for it too. Yet her resilience, ambition and vulnerability make you like her character. In fact her character seemed so real, and so mesmerizing, that I had to look up to find out if it was based on a true story.
It definitely is a book I would suggest picking up, specially if you have been in a reading slump, like I was.
I will leave you with some of my favorite quotes from this book.
“Relationships are complex, people are messy, and love can be ugly. I’m inclined to always err on the side of compassion.”
“That’s the part I was stuck in, the part where you accept the apology because it’s easier than addressing the root of the problem’.
‘Some marriages aren’t really that great. Some loves aren’t all-encompassing. Sometimes you separate because you weren’t that good together to begin with. Sometimes divorce isn’t an earth-shattering loss. Sometimes it’s just two people waking up out of a fog ‘.
‘I miss my dad. I miss him all the time. But it’s moments like this when I’m on the precipice of finally doing work that might just expand my heart, that i wish I could at least send him a letter, telling him what I am doing. And I wish that he could send me one back”.