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All the Beautiful Girls

Narrated by: Katherine Fenton
Length: 12 hrs and 4 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical
4 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Summary

The dazzling, powerful story of a gutsy showgirl who tries to conquer her past amongst the glamour of 1960s Las Vegas - finding unexpected fortune, friendship and love.

In the summer of 1968, Ruby Wilde is the toast of Las Vegas. Showgirl of the Year, in her feathers and rhinestones, five-inch heels and sky-high headdresses, she mesmerises audiences from the Tropicana to the Stardust. Ratpackers and movie stars, gamblers and astronauts vie for her attention and shower her with gifts.

But not so long ago Ruby Wilde was Lily Decker from Kansas: an orphaned girl determined to dance her way out of her troubled past. When she was eight years old, Lily survived the car crash that killed her parents and sister. Raised by an aunt who took too little interest in her and an uncle who took too much, dancing was her solace and her escape. When a mysterious benefactor paid for her to attend a local dance academy, Lily's talent became her ticket to a new life.

Now, as Ruby Wilde, the ultimate Sin City success story, she discovers that the glare of the spotlight cannot banish the shadows that haunt her. As the years pass and Ruby continues to search for freedom, for love and, most importantly, for herself, she must learn the difference between what glitters and what is truly gold.

©2018 Elizabeth J. Church (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic reviews

"A gorgeously written novel with the bite of a gin martini, All the Beautiful Girls goes beyond the splashy, gaudy dazzle of Las Vegas in the 60s to reveal the beating heart beneath the glamorous façade of the showgirl with big ambitions. Our protagonist Lily's grit, determination, and grace as she discovers the heady possibilities and dark perils of the American dream make Elizabeth Church's second novel unforgettable." (Sara Gruen, New York Times best-selling author of At the Water's Edge)
"A brave and powerful novel...With heart-wrenching immediacy and gorgeous prose, author Elizabeth Church examines the often desperate choices women must confront, and the secrets they must protect." (Lauren Belfer, New York Times best-selling author of And After the Fire)
"A riveting novel, at once raw and tender, of a woman's struggle to heal the wounds of a devastating childhood...Elizabeth J. Church makes us feel Ruby Wilde's pain and root for her to survive. This is a heartbreaking story, passionately told." (Ellen Feldman, author of Next to Love)

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Disappointing and unbelievable

I loved Elizabeth J Church’s novel “Tha Atomic Weight of Love” so was really looking forward to this as a treat. It was terrible. The heroine is vacuous, unbelievable and completely self-engrossed and is surrounded by one dimensional unbelievable characters. The plot goes on and on and on with a series of new starts and locations. The focus on the physical beauty of the heroine becomes irritating and reductive and the dialogue is cliched and inauthentic. The reader did the best she could with poor material but my teeth were gritted as I finally, thank God, got to the end of it.