Not Our Kind by Kitty Zeldis
- Source: William Morrow Publishing – Advanced Reader copy
- Publication date: 9/4/2018
One a rainy day, two years after WW2, Eleanor Moskowitz’s world is turned around after being rear-ended by the taxi cab of Patricia Bellamy. The two come from two completely different worlds. Eleanor, the Jewish daughter of a widowed hatmaker, and Patricia, a wealthy wife living in Park Avenue. The two are brought together due to Patricia’s daughter Margeaux and her special need of a tutor. Once taken into this world, Eleanor’s life quickly turns upside down, even changing her last name to Moss, to better fit in with Mrs. Bellamy’s crowd. A summer retreat at the Bellamy’s countryside reveals that things aren’t always as they appear.
I loved the setting of the book. The immediate post-WW2 era is one that is usually overlooked. It was an incredible look back at this time in history when emotions ran so many generations are still still recovering from the after-effects of the war. It seemed too simple that life just flowed from day to day for Eleanor and Patricia. Sometimes, the viewpoints, particularly of Tom, felt way ahead its time. In the book, it seemed like Patricia’s life was falling apart, while Eleanor remained calm and collected all the way through, always saying or having the viewpoint to make all the difference. I wish Eleanor had some more depth to her character. I’ve never been a fan of the can’t-do-any-wrong type of characters. Everyone has a fault. Although, Eleanor’s saintlike quality was counter-balanced by Wynn Bellamy’s devilish behavior towards any woman he came across. This book is an interesting character study, and it does have my interested piqued in learning more about the post World War 2 era of American social history.
Fall is almost here! That means more cups of warm coffee, more cozy sweaters and more and more books to fill up my non-work hours.
These are the titles I’m most looking forward to digging into this fall.
The Dinner List by Rebecca Serle (9/11/2018) Flatiron Books
In her junior year at USC, Sabrina’s best friend and roommate, Jessica, challenged her to come up with a list of five people, living or dead, with whom she would like to share a meal. Years later, Sabrina, now living in New York and working in publishing, walks into a restaurant and finds her five ideal dinner guests seated at a table.
Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren (9/4/2018) Gallery Books
Hazel Bradford knows that she’s awkward, tends to take her shirt off when she drinks too much, and has zero tact. Case in point: she first meets Josh Im at a college party when she vomits on his shoes. In college, Hazel worshiped him from afar, even sending him an embarrassing email while drugged up on painkillers after dental surgery. Ten years later, they meet at her best friend Emily’s dinner party, where Hazel learns that Josh and Emily are brother and sister.
The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy
A group of new mothers plan a fun night out, only to end the night with their worst nightmare come to life. On a 4th of July meant to be about freedom from motherhood, freedom to have fun, Winnie receives a call that her newborn daughter has been abducted.
This book is really more of a look at new motherhood than it is about the missing baby. Although the mystery and conspiracy around the missing baby does drive the story, the characters reveal so much more about the stereotypes and pressures put upon new parents in virtually every aspect of their lives from the personal at home to the not-so-personal in the workplace. I switched back and forth between the book and the audiobook. Both were highly enjoyable and gripping reads. The ending was fairly formulaic and the big reveal felt so cluttered with action and rushed. Otherwise, I liked this book a lot.
The Stylist by Rosie Nixon
ARC – via William Morrow
Pub Date: 9/4/2018
Despite working at a fashion boutique in London, high-end fashion is not exactly Amber Green’s passion. During a break filming a pilot show following around famed stylist to the stars Mona Armstrong, Amber finds herself mistaken for a stylist’s assistant. Within 24-hours, Amber is whisked away to Los Angeles to act as Mona’s assistant, finding the perfect looks for the red carpet runways during Awards season. Once in LA, Amber finds out that all that glitters is not gold, and the life of a stylist isn’t as well put-together and polished as she had imagined.
This books i catching a lot of comparisons to The Devil Wears Prada. What do they have in common? A girl with the job a million girls would kill for, working in fashion, bumping elbows with celebrities, working for a boss with impossible demands and unpredictable mood swings. Amber is the girl who doesn’t fit into the fashion world, yet somehow makes all the right decisions (even by accident).
Although there are a number of faults with the characters and major plot-holes throughout the book, I still found it to be a fairly enjoyable read. The romantic storylines were so baseless and hardly added anything to the plot. The book could have used more depth and exploration of specific characters. So many of the characters were caricatures and stereotypes we’ve seen before. I would have liked it more if Nixon explored Amber’s relationship with her roommate and that whole subplot of her room’s alcoholism, or even Mona’s deteriorating reputation within the celebrity circle.
If anything came from this book, its my renewed interest in watching the pre-show interviews during awards season next January!