Stars Over Sunset Boulevard
About the Book:
Los Angeles, Present Day. When an iconic hat worn by Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With the Wind ends up in Christine McAllister’s vintage clothing boutique by mistake, her efforts to return it to its owner take her on a journey more enchanting than any classic movie…
Los Angeles, 1938. Violet Mayfield sets out to reinvent herself in Hollywood after her dream of becoming a wife and mother falls apart, and lands a job on the film-set of Gone With the Wind. There, she meets enigmatic Audrey Duvall, a once-rising film star who is now a fellow secretary. Audrey’s zest for life and their adventures together among Hollywood’s glitterati enthrall Violet…until each woman’s deepest desires collide. What Audrey and Violet are willing to risk, for themselves and for each other, to ensure their own happy endings will shape their friendship, and their lives, far into the future.
Those of you who are familiar with Susan Meissner's books know that her "thing" is to take an artifact from a by-gone era and use it to connect a woman of today with a woman from the past. While often the books tell two stories, the modern day story in this book is brief, and with the relatively short time between the two story threads, there are two women who appear in both stories.
The story begins in 2012 in a second-hand shop in Los Angeles, but quickly moves to Hollywood in the 1930's. The stories about the filming of Gone with the Wind were fascinating and showed that Meissner had done her homework. Still, this isn't a story about filming a movie; it is the story of two young women, their dreams for the future and their relationship with one another and with other people in their lives. Both Audrey and Violet have felt rejected and are afraid of being rejected again, so they make decisons to protect their hearts, decisions which end up bringing them pain. Still, they are constants in each others lives over decades.
While many of Meissner's early books were published by Waterbrook, a Christian imprint, and contained mild religious content, this one is published by NAL and is not at all religous.
I enjoyed Audrey and Violet's story but I found the modern-day sections rather forced and hard to believe.
I'd like to thank the publisher for providing a review copy via NetGalley. Grade: B+