Book Review: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

This is the second book this month that took me completely by surprise. In this case, I smugly believed I had guessed at the ending from early in the book. I was right, to a certain extent, but totally wrong in thinking that my prediction would be treated like some big twist or reveal. I never even considered the actual surprise that came at the end until I read the lines in which it was revealed. Actually, until I reread them. I honestly just did not see that coming. And I mean that as a great big compliment to the book.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a story about the very thing the title suggests. Evelyn Hugo is an aging Hollywood starlet with a bevy of ex-husbands, and before she fades into obscurity, she’s determined to tell her side of the story. It’s the sort of juicy, honest tell-all that I wish I could read about a real-life woman with Evelyn’s busy love life. Marilyn Monroe, or Elizabeth Taylor, say. At first, I was pretty certain that this story was probably inspired by Liz Taylor, but that was before I really got into it. Of course, the question in everyone’s mind, after all those marriages, is who was the great love of Evelyn’s life? She arguably had lots of love going on, with all those marriages, but did any one of those husbands really claim her heart? The simple answer is yes, but simple answers do no justice to Evelyn’s complicated love life, especially if you don’t take a liberal view of what it means to love and be loved.

I get a little bit giddy when I read a book I like, and this is the second in a row that I thoroughly enjoyed reading. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is not particularly deep or even very well written. It’s a beachy read that is just a little bit less fluffy than other beachy reads. I have read one of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s novels in the past (Maybe in Another Life — liked it) and have now put more of her titles on hold at the library — perhaps she’ll be my next Author Crush?

Rating: 4/5

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

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