City of Girls

Front Cover
Penguin, 2019 - 480 pages
AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

From the # 1 New York Times bestselling author of Eat Pray Love and The Signature of All Things, a delicious novel of glamour, sex, and adventure, about a young woman discovering that you don't have to be a good girl to be a good person.

"A spellbinding novel about love, freedom, and finding your own happiness." - PopSugar

"Intimate and richly sensual, razzle-dazzle with a hint of danger." -USA Today

"Pairs well with a cocktail...or two." -TheSkimm

"Life is both fleeting and dangerous, and there is no point in denying yourself pleasure, or being anything other than what you are."

Beloved author Elizabeth Gilbert returns to fiction with a unique love story set in the New York City theater world during the 1940s. Told from the perspective of an older woman as she looks back on her youth with both pleasure and regret (but mostly pleasure), City of Girls explores themes of female sexuality and promiscuity, as well as the idiosyncrasies of true love.

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. "At some point in a woman's life, she just gets tired of being ashamed all the time," she muses. "After that, she is free to become whoever she truly is." Written with a powerful wisdom about human desire and connection, City of Girls is a love story like no other.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bogopea - www.librarything.com

Overall, I enjoyed this book immensely mostly due to the story line. I've read and loved most of Elizabeth Gilbert's work, enjoy her style and and admire the fact that each book is different in subject, time period, plots, etc. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - EllenH - www.librarything.com

New York in the 1940's around the theater district is the setting for this steamy, somewhat historic novel. The theme (sort of) is that you don't have to be a good girl to be a good person was ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
3
Section 3
13
Section 4
21
Section 5
44
Section 6
59
Section 7
75
Section 8
90
Section 19
240
Section 20
256
Section 21
287
Section 22
294
Section 23
314
Section 24
330
Section 25
343
Section 26
352

Section 9
102
Section 10
106
Section 11
129
Section 12
145
Section 13
161
Section 14
174
Section 15
179
Section 16
197
Section 17
211
Section 18
229
Section 27
367
Section 28
378
Section 29
392
Section 30
416
Section 31
431
Section 32
447
Section 33
460
Section 34
467
Copyright

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About the author (2019)

Elizabeth Gilbert is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Big Magic, Eat Pray Love, and several other internationally bestselling books of fiction and nonfiction. Gilbert began her career writing for Harper's Bazaar, Spin, the New York Times Magazine, and GQ, and was a three-time finalist for the National Magazine Award. Her story collection Pilgrims was a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award; The Last American Man was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. The follow-up memoir Committed became an instant #1 New York Times bestseller. Her novel, The Signature of All Things, was named a Best Book of 2013 by the New York Times, O Magazine, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, and the New Yorker. Gilbert's short fiction has appeared in Esquire, Story, One Story, and the Paris Review. Her new novel, City of Girls, will be released June 2019.

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