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Vixen (The Flappers)

A book by Jillian Larkin

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effervescent

  • Dec 16, 2010
Rating:
+5
Gloria Carmody thought she had everything she could want: the big diamond, the handsome fiance, the promise of a secure, respectable life among Chicago's high society. But as her wedding looms ever nearer all Gloria can think of is a notorious speakeasy and the piano player who intrigues her more than her fiance ever has. Or will.

Lorraine Dyer doesn't understand the sudden change in her best friend, but if Gloria wants to release her inner flapper, why not? After all Lorraine is known for innovating the flapper style among their circle of friends. She's also known for some less flattering attributes like being brash. And perhaps being a bit indiscreet with her flask. But isn't that what the Roaring Twenties are all about? Maybe Gloria's dive into the world of flappers and speakeasies will mean Lorraine can finally shine on her own.

Gloria's cousin, Clara Knowles, knows more than her share about being a flapper. A lot more. But with the threat of reform school and her reputation in tatters, Clara is sent to Chicago to help plan Gloria's wedding. It isn't glamorous or particularly fun. But maybe starting over in a new city is just what she needs to leave her sordid past far behind for once and for all.

It's 1923. Prohibition has driven drinking underground, women are cutting their hair and raising their hemlines, life is a party and everyone is ready to have some fun. For three young women in Chicago the world is full of possibilities if they're ready to take a chance in Vixen (2010) by Jillian Larkin.

Vixen is the first book in Larkin's series The Flappers.

Published in December 2010, it will inevitably be compared to Anna Godbersen's widely anticipated Bright Young Things released in October 2010. Don't let the similarities fool you, Vixen stands on its own two feet.

The story is told in chapters alternating viewpoints between Gloria, Lorraine and Clara. The narratives shift and twist with each character's experiences but ultimately come together to create a poignant, exciting story. The combined perspectives add depth to the story, especially for Lorraine and Clara who spend most of the story tragically misunderstood by a lot of the other characters, not to mention by each other.

Here is an effervescent story that captures essence of the 1920s in book form. Larkin blends fashion, historical detail and vivid writing to create an original story that evokes not only the exuberance of life in the 1920s but also the confusion felt by women, particularly her three heroines, as they struggle with what it means to be a free-spirited flapper after growing up in the straitlaced world of the 1910s.

Vixen is strikingly authentic with fun slang, engaging characters and an exciting story that will leave readers guessing until the sensational conclusion. This book also has a stunning cover by Zhang Jingna.

Gloria, Lorraine and Clara's story continues in Ingenue.

Possible Pairings: What I Saw and How I Lied by Judy Blundell, Flappers and Philosophers by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ten Cents a Dance by Christine Fletcher, Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen, The Luxe by Anna Godbersen, The Sheik by Edith Hull, Bowery Girl by Kim Taylor, The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton, Heroes and Thieves by Vanessa Carlton (CD)

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December 16, 2010
Oooh....I LOVE this era but, I've been hesitant to read books on it because I never knew where to start. I really enjoyed your review as well as your incredibly helpful "Possible Pairings", so now not only do I know where to start but, I also know where to go from there. Thanks so much for sharing! I'm definitely adding this to the TBR list as well as some of your other suggestions. Which is your fave out of all of those?
December 17, 2010
Thanks! Some of the books in the pairings are actually from different eras but capture the same elements that worked in this story. Vixen is a great place to start for 1920s reading and Flappers and Philosophers features a fun story about a woman named Bernice bobbing her hair. What I Saw and How I Lied & Ten Cents a Dance are 1930s/40s Bowery Girl and The Luxe and 1880s. Bright Young Things is 1920s and the other titles listed are ones characters were actually reading in Vixen.
December 17, 2010
Awesome! So, I'll start here and may just work my way down the list ;p
 
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Reader, writer, blogger.      I have a master's in library science and information systems and am currently searching for a librarian position.      You can … more
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Wiki

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.
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Details

ISBN-10: 0385740344
ISBN-13: 978-0385740340
Author: Jillian Larkin
Genre: Children's Books, Teens
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
First to Review

"effervescent"
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