Historical Fiction

Stars Over Sunset Boulevard by @SusanMeissner

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In this new novel from the acclaimed author of Secrets of a Charmed Life, two women working in Hollywood during its Golden Age discover the joy and heartbreak of true friendship.

Los Angeles, Present Day. When an iconic hat worn by Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With the Wind  ends up in Christine McAllister’s vintage clothing boutique by mistake, her efforts to return it to its owner take her on a journey more enchanting than any classic movie…

Los Angeles, 1938.  Violet Mayfield sets out to reinvent herself in Hollywood after her  dream of becoming a wife and mother falls apart, and lands a job on the film-set of Gone With the Wind. There, she meets enigmatic Audrey Duvall, a once-rising film star who is now a fellow secretary. Audrey’s zest for life and their adventures together among Hollywood’s glitterati enthrall Violet…until each woman’s deepest desires collide.  What Audrey and Violet are willing to risk, for themselves and for each other, to ensure their own happy endings will shape their friendship, and their lives, far into the future.

My Thoughts

Susan Meissner captures Old Hollywood — the good, the bad, and the glamourous — in her new novel Stars Over Sunset Boulevard.

Moving from her Alabama home, 22 year old Violet Mayfield seeks a fresh start in California. While searching for a roommate, Violet meets Audrey Duvall. Despite there differences, which are varied and numerous, Audrey takes Violet under her wings and the two quickly form an unusual friendship. Throughout the book, I often found their personal choices and treatment of one other peculiar — this created intrigue.

Usually, I settle into a story, grow comfortable with the characters, and begin to anticipate their next move. Yet Meissner kept me guessing, especially with the curious friendship between Violet, Audrey, and Bert. Even as time passes the interaction among the three was unexpected.

With every book I read, I earnestly seek to find a Christian message. Both women suffered from emotional wounds they either masked or attempted to heal on their own. The fact that neither character express faith in God, could explain why at times their lives seemed to blow them hither and yon. My perceptions upon completing this book are that Audrey and Violet had voids in their lives which neither a man nor success could fill.

In summary, Stars Over Sunset Boulevard possesses rich historical details, intrigue, and a bit of the unexpected. Meissner’s beautiful prose rang through for me just as it did in A Fall of Marigolds and Secrets of a Charmed Life. As far as a notable Christian message — I’d love to know your thoughts. Overall, it was an enjoyable read that left me pondering “would things have turned out differently if…”.

4Apples

I received this book free from the author in exchange for my review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. 

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♦♦ My 2016 To-Read List including 12 Must Read Christian Fiction Books of 2015 ♦♦

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