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review 2018-06-14 03:13
All the Beautiful Girls
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church

A heart wrenching premise and a strong character should make All the Beautiful Girls by Elizabeth J Church a moving, emotional read. It is that to an extent. Lily aka Ruby is a sympathetic character, and I want things to work out for her. However, the book corrals the topic into too neat a package. Life, as we know, is not that simple, and I am left wanting something more. 

 

Reviewed for NetGalley

Source: www.memoriesfrombooks.com/2018/06/all-beautiful-girls.html
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review 2018-03-12 15:45
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church

 

When I first started reading this book, I thought it was more historical fiction, like Ruby Wilde was real. Especially what with all the name dropping, the mention of timely events and what Ruby was doing during them and all the Vegas hotspots.

It took a while into it before I realized it was just "true fiction". That word "just" in no way is meant to take away from this story.

I followed Ruby's (Lily's) journey through her highs and lows and had a great time! Well, I still want to kick that Spaniard's A double S though. What an A$$hole!! I think I just seethed up again at the mention of him. Grrr!

This was true entertainment that had me mesmerized.

Thanks to Random House Ballantine and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
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text 2018-03-12 07:53
Review: All the Beautiful Girls
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church

We meet Lily, an 8-year-old girl who lost her family.  She moves in with her Aunt Tate and Uncle Miles.  Lily reveals that Uncle Miles is molesting her.  She tries to run away at 9 but her uncle says not to do it again because it will kill her aunt Tate. Lily’s classmates give her a hamster but Aunt Tate doesn’t like rodents so Uncle Miles breaks the hamster's neck. Lily spends the night with her best friend, Beverly Ann and is ready to spill the beans on what her uncle is doing to her but she’s afraid of losing her best friend.

 

  Lily loves to dance so when she graduates high school, she leaves Kansas for the bright lights of Vegas.  She also had become friends with The Aviator...   Lily also found out the accident that killed her family was caused by her father driving the wrong way on a highway and the Aviator took the blame for it.  Lily became a showgirl and was loving so she changed her name to Ruby Wilde.  Ruby was also doing drugs... like speed.  She couldn't work the night that MLK was shot and killed.

   

I loved all the characters especially, Lily, The Aviator, his boyfriend Jack and especially Lily’s daughter, Sloane. Highly recommend this book

 

    

    

 

 

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review 2018-01-14 00:00
All the Beautiful Girls
All the Beautiful Girls - Elizabeth J. Church Elizabeth Church is without a doubt a writer of feminist stories. She writes stories about women for women that tackle issues experienced by many of us. Her first book, The Atomic Weight of Love followed one woman's awakening of her sense of self and her personal power. This book tackles domestic violence and the objectification of women according to their looks.

Church follows the story of Lily Decker, aka Ruby Wilde, as she experiences exploitation of one sort or another at every age. Some of this exploitation Lily/Ruby accepted and in the short term benefited from. But her story shows the trajectory of such manipulation in a woman's life and how it scars us in the long run. Using the world of a showgirl was a fantastic tool with which to illustrate this.

I didn't have quite the same emotional response to some parts of this book as I did with Church's first book, partly because the life of a showgirl is so removed from my everyday experience. But other parts of Lily/Ruby's experience from both her childhood and her life of a showgirl resonated with me painfully. The experience of exploitation and manipulation is universal and socioeconomic status is no barrier to its experience.

Church's writing hinted at the darkness under the bright, shiny, facade of a showgirl's life, so that while I was enamoured with this life to a certain degree, I never really coveted it.

Church shows how the initial exploitation and abuse experienced by Lily/Ruby as a child primed her to accept her objectification, even if as a showgirl on the stage she felt in control. This control was clearly short-lived, as at some stage a showgirl has to leave the stage and the casino, and this was where Lily/Ruby felt the long-term effects of her manipulation, despite her strong and spirited nature. Lily/Ruby was primed for the grooming that occurs in an abusive relationship.

While the ending was a bit too neat in some respects, it contrasted with the tragedy at the beginning of her life. I think the story would have been a bit too dark if terrible tragedy book-ended her life, considering the challenges she faced throughout her life.

I did enjoy the book very much and would heartily recommend it. Some of her writing is heartbreakingly beautiful, especially those passages relating to Lily/Ruby's early childhood. But without the same emotional response that I had to The Atomic Weight of Love, it just misses out on being exquisite.
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review 2017-10-03 00:00
The Woman in Cabin 10
The Woman in Cabin 10 - Helen Ruth Elizabeth Ware,Imogen Church imageAudibleheadphones_icon_1

DNF at 40%

One of the most annoying female protagonists I EVER read. She is either in a "I'm sooo tired" or too drunk or too panicked or too stupid condition.

One of the most unpleasant female narrator's voice I listened to. Maybe because I COULDN'T stand the main protagonist any longer. But these two made a perfect couple. Meh.

All in all - I can't recommend it as an audio book. Actually I can't recommend this book at all.
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