Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

January 9, 2024

About:

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid is a novel about a former Hollywood icon telling her life story to a hand-chosen biographer. Ms. Reid is an NYT best-selling author who lives in Los Angeles.

  • 400 pages
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Atria Books
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1501139231

Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
My rat­ing for The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo — 3
Buy The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo from Amazon.com*
More Books by Taylor Jenkins Reid*

Thoughts:

As a fan of everything that has to do with movies and movie-making, I love to read about the process, fiction and non-fiction alike. To be honest, I spent much of the time reading The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid trying to figure out who was the inspiration for the titled character. The obvious actress was, of course, Elizabeth Taylor, but it couldn’t be that easy. At some point, I figured out that it was, as I expected, an amalgam of several Hollywood icons, but mainly Taylor and Rita Hayworth.

This book’s marketing seems to hang on social media, I’ve seen it all over the place promoted mostly by book bloggers. It worked, and the book became a best-seller due to the enthusiastic word of mouth. Kudos to the marketing team and my fellow book bloggers.

I, however, cannot join the enthusiastic 5-star reviews, even though the book is certainly entertaining. The narrative is readable, and the plot would make a regaling soap opera mini-series to distract you from everyday life.

The “interview”, and I use that term loosely because Monique Grant doesn’t ask any perceptive questions, is mostly Evelyn Hugo talking about her life. From someone supposedly as astute as the Hollywood icon, her life consists of gossip magazine headlines, but no self-reflection.
For that, however, the book will likely need to be several hundred pages longer.

The book is enjoyable, and I can see why people like it. For me though it was more like a beach read, pleasing and agreeable but neither challenging nor introspective. The main themes of sexuality and one’s true identity are forced and written to appeal to a loud section of Western society. Hollywood’s history with bigotry, as well as physical, mental, and sexual abuse, is just starting to get the spotlight. I thought this book superficially addressed those issues.

Synopsis:

Evelyn Hugo lived a life many can only dream of, filled with perceived glamour, fame, and fortune. At the end of her life, she’s ready to confront rumors, innuendos, and hidden secrets that have followed her for decades.

Evelyn chooses Monique Grant to write her biography. No one knows why Evelyn chose Monique, but the young writer is not about to give up a job that practically guarantees a best-seller. The two meet in Evelyn’s luxury apartment, to write the book and uncover scandals and secrets.

Buy The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo from Amazon.com*
More Books by Taylor Jenkins Reid*

Zohar — Man of la Book
Dis­claimer:I bought this book
*Ama­zon links point to an affil­i­ate account, the money is usually spent on books

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
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Wrap Up

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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