Malibu Rising, a review by Tanya

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Malibu Rising
Taylor Jenkins Reid
Narrator Julia Whelan

11 Hours
Published May 2021 by Penguin Random Audio

Amazon | Goodreads

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About the Book:
Four famous siblings throw an epic party to celebrate the end of the summer. But over the course of twenty-four hours, their lives will change forever.

Malibu: August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together, the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over—especially as the offspring of the legendary singer, Mick Riva.

The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud—because it is long past time to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth.

Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there.

And Kit has a couple secrets of her own—including a guest she invited without consulting anyone.

By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.

Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them… and what they will leave behind.

My Review:

This is my 3rd read for Taylor Jenkins Reid and while I liked this book, I didn’t love it like some of her earlier books.

The characters were interesting and developed enough that I wanted to know what would happen to them but I never quite fully connected with any of them.

During the party scene, the story kept focusing on random people for some unknown reason. They had no direct connection to the main characters and it made the story very choppy. Was the author trying to reach a word count? These inserts didn’t make any sense to me.

The story line was ok.  Easy to follow but not terribly imaginative. Dual timeline focusing on two generations – the parents and the children. To me, this read like any regular story by any regular author.  I didn’t really feel Reid’s mark on this one. Not a bad read but not a great one either.

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