Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Fifth Avenue Artists Society by Joy Callaway

The Fifth Avenue Artists Society  is part of the SheReads Summer book selections.     SheReads is a community of bloggers that as a group help promote specific books.   We share reviews, thoughts, and our feelings after reading books suggested to us by the wonderful people who run
the SheReadsOrganization.  
Paperback, 384 pages
Published May 31st 2016 by Harper Paperbacks
An enthralling Edith Wharton-meets-Little Women debut about a family of four artistic sisters on the outskirts of Gilded Age New York high society that centers on the boldest—an aspiring writer caught between the boy next door and a mysterious novelist who inducts her into Manhattan’s most elite artistic salon.

The Bronx, 1891. Virginia Loftin knows what she wants most: to become a celebrated novelist despite her gender, and to marry Charlie, her best friend, neighbor and first love. Yet when Charlie proposes to another woman, Ginny is devastated; shutting out her family, she holes up and obsessively rewrites how their story should have gone.

Though Ginny works with newfound intensity, success eludes her—until she attends a salon hosted in her brother’s handsome author friend John’s Fifth Avenue mansion. Amongst painters, musicians, actors, and writers, Ginny returns to herself, even blooming under John’s increasingly romantic attentions. Just as she has begun to forget Charlie, however, he throws himself back into her path, and Ginny finds herself torn between a lifetime’s worth of complicated feelings and a budding relationship with a man who seems almost too good to be true.

The brightest lights cast the darkest shadows, and as Ginny tentatively navigates the Society’s world, she begins to suspect all is not as it seems in New York’s dazzling “Gay Nineties” scene. When a close friend is found dead in John’s mansion, Ginny must delve into her beloved salon’s secrets to discover her true feelings about art, family, and love.

My Thoughts…

Have you ever read a book and thought YES!  This is it.   This is the book that I will absolutely love forever and can’t wait to share my thoughts with everyone.       That is exactly my thoughts about The Fifth Avenue Artists Society.    I started Joy Callaways’s book and could not put it down.   

Ginny pulled at my heart.    The love of her life marries someone else leaving her heartbroken.    She decides to write her story in a novel.     In the 1890’s it is unheard of for a woman to have anything published.   Yet, her determination never wavers and she keeps working on it.    When she goes with Franklin, her brother, to The Fifth Avenue Artists Society she is introduced to an entire world on artists, musicians, writers, and so many others.     Most importantly she meets John.   John manages to shake her world up, introduce her to a new world, and make her feel again.      I found it interesting that in a time when women stayed home, kept house, and took care of their families Ginny was living life.   With her heart broke she was sure she would never marry, especially when she was worried about losing the time and ability to write.

I am struggling in writing this review only because I don’t want to give up any spoilers.     There is so much in this book that I love and can’t wait to share.     My only small issue is how stuck Ginny was on Charlie.    Over and over and over again she whined about him marrying someone else.  
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