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The Last Chance Matinee

(The Hudson Sisters #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  1,401 ratings  ·  279 reviews
From New York Times bestselling author Mariah Stewart comes the first novel in her all new series, The Hudson Sisters, following a trio of reluctant sisters as they set out to fulfill their father’s dying wish. In the process, they find not only themselves, but the father they only thought they knew.

When celebrated and respected agent Fritz Hudson passes away, he leaves a
Paperback, 432 pages
Published March 21st 2017 by Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster, Inc.
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Suzanne Leopold (Suzy Approved Book Reviews)
Fritz Hudson was a very wealthy businessman living a double life with two sets of families living on opposite coasts. Neither family was aware of the other, but that all changed when Fritz dies of cancer and his will is disclosed. At the reading of his will, his families find out that he was married to two women at the same time and he has three daughters. The two daughters raised in California , Allie and Des, meet their half sister Cara from New Jersey for the first time. They also learn that ...more
Jacob Proffitt
Jun 09, 2018 rated it did not like it
I thought the biggest problem with this story was the character of Allie. She's a horrible person so wrapped in jealousy and self-pity that I cringed every scene she was in. But she's not really the biggest problem. The problem that tanked this from a begrudging round-up-to-three stars is that it isn't an actual story at all. Nothing resolves by the end and Stewart doesn't even bother with a cliffhanger. This ends with a long, meandering monologue by Kara but even that doesn't end with a new res ...more
Originally posted on The Book Nympho

Cara, Allie and Des Hudson adored their father Fritz but when he died, all of them questioned whether they really ever knew him. Allie and Des were his children from his marriage to late film star Honora Hudson but Cara was from his secret relationship with Susa Pratt who he married without divorcing his wife. Now their inheritance hinges on the restoration of Fritz's hometown movie theater. The sisters have a year to pull it off and all of them must participa
Kris - My Novelesque Life
March 21, 2017; Gallery Books/ Simon & Schuster

Fritz Hudson, a respected agent in Hollywood, quietly passes away leaving behind many family secrets. The biggest one being that he was living a double life. In California, he is the agent and husband to Nora, and father to their daughters, Allie and Des. He later meets Susa in New Jersey. They marry and have a daughter, Cara. Fritz goes the cowardly route and never confesses to his daughter. Instead he leaves it to his best friend a
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
The death of a parent is devastating and often we discover things we never knew about them, but the secrets Fritz Hudson unveiled from beyond the veil would shock three young woman and send them into a reluctant journey of discovery of self, family and a chance at new lives that will forever change them to their very cores.

It seems that Fritz led two lives, had two wives, two families and never did they have an inkling that the other existed. Cara grew up in a loving environment, an only child w
DJ Sakata
Favorite Quotes:

What could he have said?” Cara lowered her voice. “‘Oh, Susa, by the way, did I mention that I was married to someone else when I married you? But she passed away, so we don’t have to worry about those pesky bigamy laws.’

“I don’t know a whole lot about men, but I do know that none of them come with guarantees.” “Well, they should. They should come with grades or little caution cards. ‘Lies without conscience.’ ‘Will cheat every chance he gets.’ ‘Really does think that dress makes
I really enjoyed this story and most certainly look forward to the next one which will continue the story of the sisters and their challenge. Joy Osmanski did an excellent job of narrating the story, so much so that this is the way I'd go for #2 as well. Perfect pacing, distinct voices for characters and great expression. ...more
May 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
After Hollywood agent, Fritz Hudson dies from cancer, his three daughters are brought together for the reading of his will. The problem is Allie and Des didn't know Cara even existed and vice versa. They are all stunned to learn that their father had been living two separate lives.

Allie and Desdemona Hudson are the product of his first marriage to a Hollywood star, while Cara McMann is from his second marriage to Susa, a free spirit hippie. Fritz never divorced his first wife and never bothered
Mar 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
All of my reviews can be found on

The inspiration behind this novel fascinated me, so I thought I would share the preface of the book before my thoughts.

Everyone is familiar with the adage “write what you know”; it’s a saying that has dictated much of my decades-long career in publishing. But this time, it was what I (or rather, my mother) didn’t know that formed the basis for this first book in my new Hudson Sisters series.

When my mother was in her mid-forties, she received
Chatting About
I thought this story was awesome and I’m reading book 2 now. The Hudson Sisters find out about their father’s secret past when he passes away and leaves a strange request in his will. Allie, Des, and Cara must stay together with their Aunt Barney in the beautiful Pocono Mountains and renovate an old movie theatre in order to inherit. Each woman is at a turning point in their life, and as the story unfolds, each sister must make sacrifices or they all miss the opportunity of a lifetime. Allie’s d ...more
Jun 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. It was interesting from beginning to end. The characters were genuine and fun and it felt like you knew them. I can't wait for book number 2 to come out next year. ...more
Mar 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recipe review of The Last Chance Matinee

Hot Chocolate Marshmallow Coffee - 1 cup of brewed coffee, 3/4 ounce of cocoa (single serving envelope) 1 tablespoon of marshmallow whip or cream, a dash of cinnamon. Stir coffee and cocoa together until well mixed. Top with marshmallow and cinnamon. Serve hot and pair with a good book.

The Coffee- THE LAST CHANCE MATINEE is about three sisters with the same father. Fritz Hudson married Honora and had two daughters, Allie and Des. The marriage was a rocky
Janet Friesner
Mar 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
The beginning of a new series by Mariah Stewart. The Last Chance Matinee has truly been one of the most enjoyable stories I have read in a really long time. Since the second in the series will not be coming out for a year I will probably read this one a couple more times before the new one comes out next spring. It is the story of three sisters who did not know their father had two families. One in California with the two older girls and a second family in New Jersey with the youngest girl Cara. ...more
CD {Boulder Blvd}
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
Very fast read especially if you get bored and start to skim. The setup was good with the three sisters and typically each sister is featured in each of the three books. However, I was expecting more from the first sister's book. It was cliche and weak. Her reactions to the situation with the ex felt like she was just yeah he cheated, yeah it hurt but a cute guy looks at me and I'm past that. When the book abruptly ended I felt like it was a cliffhanger without a cliff.

I'll read the next one as
Linda Zagon
Feb 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I would like to thank NetGalley and Gallery Books for the ARC of "The Last Chance Matinee" by Mariah Stewart in exchange for my honest review. The genre of this book is Women's fiction.
I find that the author describes a dysfunctional family, with characters that are flawed.
After Fritz Hudson's death, his family is called by his laywer/friend to discuss the terms of the will. What is intriguing, is that we find out that Fritz Hudson had two families, on other sides of the country. With one wif
Lisa-Books Smiles
May 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars rounded up for goodreads. This book hit the spot for the mood I was in and I enjoyed every page. I adore all the characters and can't wait for the 2nd and 3rd books. ...more
Kris Mauna
I really enjoyed this book - it was charming, heartwarming, and I wish I would have read it back when my own father passed away.

"She'd tell Cara there would still be love and happiness and joy to be found. That it might not look like the love and joy she used to know, but it would still be love and joy, all the same."

The book begins by introducing readers to our 3 main characters - Cara, Des, and Allie. We get a short look into where each of them are currently at in their lives before they f
I mostly really liked this, though some of the rah rah small towns and rah rah family forever stuff was not my favorite. And I struggle with actually calling this a romance, though I'm not actually sure what I would call it. A couple of dates doesn't feel like the resolution of a romance to me, if that's what it was supposed to be for Cara and Josh. I suspect we'll see more of it in later books, since this one rotated POVs, as we'll see romances for Des and Allie develop as well.

Glad this final
Enter my giveaway! Sisters and secrets - an irresistible combination! When Hollywood agent Fritz Hudson dies, his daughters find out there was a lot they didn't know about their father, including that he had a wife in California and one in New Jersey, and daughters in both places. His will brings the three sisters together to learn about their father's past. Here is a link to my review and giveaway: ...more
Mar 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
How about a sweet soft breeze on a spring night? If you like that, you will most probably enjoy The Last Chance Matinee.
The Last Chance Matinee is the beginning of a new series, The Hudson Sisters series by the lovely Mariah Stewart. With the promises of new beginnings and revealed long time hidden secrets, Mariah Stewart brings us her first book in this very promising series.
The Last Chance Matinee comes like Women’s Fiction at its best. Cara Hudson receives a call from her father’s be
mindful.librarian ☀️
Jun 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult-reads
A delightful and cozy story of sisters coming together to refurbish an old theater in their father's hometown in the Poconos. Bonus points for there being a rescue dog subplot ;-)
I was completely drawn in and can't wait to read the next in the series!
Amy Hayes
I loved this book and I’m really looking forward to getting to the rest of the books. The characters were realistic and their flaws were real. I loved how they were turning an uncomfortable situation into a positive experience. I especially loved the carefree and easy attitude of Allie’s daughter.
Apr 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
If you read and enjoyed the books in the Chesapeake Diaries series, you'll definitely enjoy this one. This is the first book in a new series featuring the Hudson Sisters. While there is a touch of romance in the story, it is not the main focus. Instead it is more about three sisters coming together to fulfill the terms of their father's will. Even if it is the first that they even knew the third sister existed. I can't wait to read the next one and fortunately I don't have to wait long as it's a ...more
One of the things I noticed as I wished this story hadn't ended was that it has a series name: The Hudson Sisters #1. Yay! I don't have to leave my new friends forever! And while I am talking about the ending, relax, it isn't a cliff-hanger. Everyone is safe. I just miss them.

You can look up the blurb to see what the book is about. I try to concentrate on my feelings about the story. What I noticed most of all, was the lack of conflict and yet I kept wanting to read more. I suppose the conflict
Kristi Elizabeth
Feb 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, fiction
Visit my blog and read my other reviews at:

What a great start to a series. I cannot wait to read more about the Hudson sisters as this book was just so completely sincere and heartwarming that I’m craving the next installation. Think Hallmark or Lifetime movie kind of setting and characters. I really liked how the author dove into the plot without a whole lot of backstory and long, drawn out descriptions of the characters before they meet. I felt this book was ma
Feb 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this first book in a brand new series of the Hudson Sisters. The premise is pretty good. A man. Fritz, has a wife on the west coast who is a Hollywood star. However, she's somewhat the type to only think of herself. If something comes up she's the first one to think "what will this do for me?". He also has two daughters, Des and Allie, with this woman (Nora).

A few years after marrying this woman, he meets and marries another woman (Suza) who lives on the east coast. He has one daughter w
THE LAST CHANCE MATINEE: Where there’s a Will,…

This story used the old-fashioned will-with-conditions-attached trope. I thought about it and wondered if something like this could actually happen: could a parent force his/her children to do something onerous to get their behest? The answer is, that if it does not violate public policy, he and/or she can.

Having learned that, I still wondered about a parent who a. had two families and b. the same day they lea
Apr 20, 2017 rated it liked it
There really wasn't anything "new" and original about these sisters and their story. I've read a variation of this a hundred times before. I think Nora Roberts was first to write about siblings unknown to each other and that trope has gone "gangbusters" from that moment.
I liked all the characters, except the mean sarcastic drunk one and the setting is in the Poconos which is new for me, but the whole story is meh. There's a little mystery the "Mary Sue" sister is looking into, so maybe the next
Lady Heather

Publication Date: March 21, 2017

" A copy of this book has been provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review"
Mar 23, 2017 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book until the ending, but I hated the abruptness of the final few pages. I suppose it is a to-be-continued conclusion, but I wanted more closure.
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Mariah Stewart is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of forty-one novels and three novellas and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal. She is a RITA finalist in romantic suspense and the recipient of the Award of Excellence for contemporary romance, a RIO Award for excellence in women's fiction, and a Reviewers Choice Award from Romantic Times Magazine. A three-time winner ...more

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The Hudson Sisters (3 books)
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55 likes · 27 comments
“Oh, here. Here’s the record player.” Barney lifted a light-blue and white case from one of the eaves. She set it on a trunk and unlatched the lid. “Ever see one of these?” She held up a small plastic disklike thing. Cara and Allie both shook their heads. “This is an insert that you’d put inside one of the forty-five singles so they’d play.” 0 likes
“Dad really was an Elvis fan.” Cara held up a half dozen records. “Well, actually, the Elvis records were mine,” Barney admitted. “I was a huge fan.” She chuckled. “Mother was appalled, so we told her the records were Fritz’s. Somehow it didn’t offend her quite as much if her son bought them. Totally unacceptable for her daughter.” “Why? What was the big deal?” Des asked. “Oh, you know, in the early days, rock and roll was considered the devil’s music.” When the girls laughed, Barney told them, “Seriously.” 0 likes
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