Vixen (The Flappers) by Jillian Larkin
Published: Delcourte Books for Young Readers (December 14, 2010)
Summary from Goodreads:
Jazz . . . Booze . . . Boys . . . It’s a dangerous combination.
Every girl wants what she can’t have. Seventeen-year-old Gloria Carmody wants the flapper lifestyle—and the bobbed hair, cigarettes, and music-filled nights that go with it. Now that she’s engaged to Sebastian Grey, scion of one of Chicago’s most powerful families, Gloria’s party days are over before they’ve even begun . . . or are they?
Clara Knowles, Gloria’s goody-two-shoes cousin, has arrived to make sure the high-society wedding comes off without a hitch—but Clara isn’t as lily-white as she appears. Seems she has some dirty little secrets of her own that she’ll do anything to keep hidden. . . .
Lorraine Dyer, Gloria’s social-climbing best friend, is tired of living in Gloria’s shadow. When Lorraine’s envy spills over into desperate spite, no one is safe. And someone’s going to be very sorry. . .
From debut author Jillian Larkin, VIXEN is the first novel in the sexy, dangerous, and ridiculously romantic new series set in the Roaring Twenties . . . when anything goes.
I was pretty excited to pick up this book, as historical fiction is one of my favorite genres. And the 20s are a time period I'm not all too knowledgeable about, so I thought this book would broaden my horizons. But truthfully, this book feel kind of flat for me. There were some good parts, and even some exciting parts, but I couldn't relate to the characters nor feel their plight. Being in touch with the characters is a key element in reading for me, and I just couldn't find a connection.
The book is told in three POV--Gloria, Clara and Lorraine. Gloria a top Chicago socialite, engaged to another socialite, and desperate to have a little fun before she becomes a Mrs. Clara, Gloria's cousin, has had her little fun in NYC and is now serving time at Gloria's home under the careful eyes of her aunt. Lorraine, Gloria's best friend, is dying to show how fabulous and flapper she really is. And Gloria provides her with a perfect chance when she falls in love with a black musician in the local speakeasy.
While Clara was my favorite, all three girls were self-absorbed and catty. Maybe that was the way of the flappers? I have no idea. Or maybe it was the high-society part that I couldn't enjoy--a bit reminiscent of when I wasted an entire summer reading the Gossip Girl series. The male characters in the story didn't do much for either, although Marcus, Gloria's other best friend, was proabably my favorite character in the entire story. If I pick up Ingenue (The Flappers) it will be to see what happens to him.
All in all, the plot wasn't bad, but the characters just couldn't get me to feel any emotions for them. Luckily this is just my opinion. I've read some great reviews on this book, so if you are interested in the 1920s or enjoyed books like The Luxe, you might enjoy this one.
Rating: 2.5 Stars--not for me, but maybe for you?