City of Girls

City of Girls

Large Print - 2019
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"In 1940, nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris has just been kicked out of Vassar College, owing to her lackluster freshman-year performance. Her affluent parents send her to Manhattan to live with her Aunt Peg, who owns a flamboyant, crumbling midtown theater called the Lily Playhouse. There Vivian is introduced to an entire cosmos of unconventional and charismatic characters, from the fun-chasing showgirls to a sexy male actor, a grand-dame actress, a lady-killer writer, and no-nonsense stage manager. But when Vivian makes a personal mistake that results in professional scandal, it turns her new world upside down in ways that it will take her years to fully understand. Ultimately, though, it leads her to a new understanding of the kind of life she craves--and the kind of freedom it takes to pursue it. It will also lead to the love of her life, a love that stands out from all the rest. Now eighty-nine years old and telling her story at last, Vivian recalls how the events of those years altered the course of her life--and the gusto and autonomy with which she approached it."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Random House Large Print, [2019]
Edition: First large print edition., Large print edition.
ISBN: 9780593104361
Characteristics: 677 pages (large print) ; 24 cm
large print


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Feb 09, 2021

I fell in love with Vivian, the narrator of the story. Part of the reason is the narrator, Blair Brown. Brown’s wonderful expressive voice gave substance to this breezy, fun story of a young girl who moved to New York City just before World War II. Vivian’s unconventional life including a highly active love life, her contribution to her aunt’s playhouse by designing costumes and her single life for her entire life leant detail to her story. And, boy, did Vivian live her life with passion, something few of us can attain.

Dec 26, 2020

Extraordinary book! One of the best I have read.

Nov 03, 2020

Very racey and risqué! Great book about growing up in a theatre in NYC!

Oct 29, 2020

Already read this book. ellen carol barnett

Oct 15, 2020

Enjoyed her style of writing - liked the book even though not a fan of the main character's behavior!

Oct 14, 2020

Vivian never changes. She's still the same naive teenager who allows the power of suggestion from others to influence how she lives her life. Edna was right to tell Vivian that her life will never amount to anything for betraying her. She's the same at 79 as she was at 19. She could care less about anyone except satisfying her own sexual need. How dare she ask the reader to be her friend? How dare she presume to believe that she knows more about Angela's dad than Angela!

This book had so much potential to go beyond a Sex & the City wanta be but comes up short. The main character lacks growth. She accepts her lack of direction and feeds only on sex and is ok with that.

Oct 02, 2020

The city of girls is one of the greatest books I have ever read. It is definitely unexpected and kept me literally at the edge of my seat. I think the topics and time period this book covers are super important and told in a very unique way. Additionally, the topics aren’t talked about for women a lot which is why this book is even better! The perspective of it and how it goes through the individual’s life is crazy and would recommend to anyone who is in for a very interesting roller-coaster read.

Sep 25, 2020

If you need a strong plot, this isn't for you. I don't, and I adored it! What a fabulous main character - I could have read another few hundred pages about her fascinating life and perceptions of the world.

Sep 21, 2020

I really enjoyed reading about Vivian and the different seasons of her life. Basically this book is a steamier (and probably more literary) version of “Valley of the Dolls.” I can’t get enough of stories about women who are libertines and reject the marriage & baby trajectory assigned to them.

Also enjoyable: The detailed descriptions of clothing and showgirl costumes, as well as the false idea of Vivian being a harlot coming full circle. Glad you could get over that, Viv.

IndyPL_LindsayH Sep 17, 2020

I thoroughly enjoyed this fascinating novel! it is written in the form of a letter to a woman that is not identified until the last pages of the novel, which is very interesting to me because it kept me guessing.

This historical novel takes place in a New York City that is long gone. I wish I could have visited that city and met the amazing cast of characters that are depicted in the pages by Gilbert. The glitz , glamour, and personalities will leave the reader wanting more.

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Kristen MERKE
Oct 07, 2019

Kristen MERKE thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over


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Dec 30, 2019

Vivian, looking back on her life, describes her experiences moving to New York as a wide-eyed nineteen-year-old in the 1940’s. City of Girls is about her adventures there as she becomes a costume director at her Aunt Peg’s theater, the Lily Plahouse.

Vivian is drawn into the glamour and excitement of stage life, but finds herself caught up in its excesses as well. When Vivian finds herself in a sticky situation, she’s forced to grow up and gain some perspective on her life.


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