Katie's Reviews > Bright Young Things

Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen
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's review
Dec 29, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: historical, cover-love, mobsters-and-gangs, harper-collins
Read from October 29 to December 19, 2010

I fell in love with The Luxe series last year, and I devoured them. I had high expectations for this new series, and although it took me a little while to get into it, I ended up loving it even more than The Luxe. Godbersen has this amazing ability to capture the many different types of relationships women have with each other: between sisters, friends, mothers and daughters, etc. She is the master of writing the "frienenemy" relationship.

Instantly, I connected with Letty; she's sweet and innocent, always taking the subordinate role to Cordelia. She reminded me a lot of Elizabeth from The Luxe, only more in the shadows. Cordelia was like a nicer version of Penelope: strong and scheming, with a lack of ability to look ahead for consequences. Astrid, on the other hand, was unlike any other Godbersen character, and I really loved the mixture of her apathy and tumultous relationships with her mother and boyfriend Charlie.

Oh, Charlie. I still don't know how I feel about him. He was domineering at times but then sweet others. I actually really enjoyed his bipolar personality, and I especially enjoyed seeing how he related to his new sister, Cordelia. The other boys in the book weren't all that interesting, I thought. Like in The Luxe, where Freddy was really the only boy who got face time, Charlie was the main male character.

Godbersen has an amazing knack for including fashion in her books, and Bright Young Things was no exception. She detailed the flamorous getups of the MCs in a way that wasn't distracting or too much but that gave us a clear picture of this important aspect of female life in the 20s. Similarly, there were a lot of great historical details. I loved that the story was set during Prohibition and Cordelia's father was a bootlegger - an interesting angle, I felt.

This is a great read and definitely one of my favorites of 2010. Like I said, it took me a little while to get into the book. I actually read about 100 pages and put it down for a while before picking it up again, but I'm sure glad I did. Once it hit the halfway mark, I was totally sucked in and couldn't put it down. A must-read for any fan of historical!
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