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Bloomsbury Girls

Bloomsbury Girls, May 2022
by Natalie Jenner

St. Martins Press
Featuring: Vivien Lowry; Grace Perkins; Evie Stone
304 pages
ISBN: 1250276691
EAN: 9781250276698
Kindle: B09CNDV5GJ
Hardcover / e-Book
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"Welcome to the world of book selling in London 1950"

Fresh Fiction Review

Bloomsbury Girls
Natalie Jenner

Reviewed by Evie Harris
Posted August 4, 2022

Women's Fiction Family Life | Women's Fiction Historical | Historical

Bloomsbury Books has been in business for one hundred years when the story opens in London in 1950.  The world is changing, but things at the store are pretty much the same as always.  It is run by men, one of whom has set up fifty-one governing rules which must be adhered to.  Employed at the store are three women who want to bring about change.  Can they do it?

The narrative is so well told that the bookstore comes to represent a community of sorts.  Vividly depicted characters and their often complex relationships help to create a lively atmosphere.  The reasons the women have for working at the shop vary, but there is one thing they share and that is to take charge of their destiny.

The author expertly handles the large and varied cast of characters and their place in London of 1950 is brought alive. Filled with witty and often profound dialogue, romance and  drama, BLOOMSBURY GIRLS is well worth reading. Highly recommended.

Learn more about Bloomsbury Girls

SUMMARY

Natalie Jenner, the internationally bestselling author of The Jane Austen Society, returns with a compelling and heartwarming story of post-war London, a century-old bookstore, and three women determined to find their way in a fast-changing world in Bloomsbury Girls.

Bloomsbury Books is an old-fashioned new and rare book store that has persisted and resisted change for a hundred years, run by men and guided by the general manager's unbreakable fifty-one rules. But in 1950, the world is changing, especially the world of books and publishing, and at Bloomsbury Books, the girls in the shop have plans:

Vivien Lowry: Single since her aristocratic fiance was killed in action during World War II, the brilliant and stylish Vivien has a long list of grievances--most of them well justified and the biggest of which is Alec McDonough, the Head of Fiction.

Grace Perkins: Married with two sons, she's been working to support the family following her husband's breakdown in the aftermath of the war. Torn between duty to her family and dreams of her own.

Evie Stone: In the first class of female students from Cambridge permitted to earn a degree, Evie was denied an academic position in favor of her less accomplished male rival. Now she's working at Bloomsbury Books while she plans to remake her own future.

As they interact with various literary figures of the time--Daphne Du Maurier, Ellen Doubleday, Sonia Blair (widow of George Orwell), Samuel Beckett, Peggy Guggenheim, and others--these three women with their complex web of relationships, goals and dreams are all working to plot out a future that is richer and more rewarding than anything society will allow.


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