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The It Girls

A Novel
Narrated by: Saskia Maarleveld
Length: 9 hrs and 36 mins
Categories: Fiction, Historical

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From New York Times best-selling author Karen Harper comes a novel based on the lives of two amazing sisters...

One sailed the Titanic and started a fashion empire....

The other overtook Hollywood and scandalized the world....

Together, they were unstoppable.

They rose from genteel poverty, two beautiful sisters, ambitious, witty, seductive. Elinor and Lucy Sutherland are at once each other's fiercest supporters and most vicious critics.

Lucy transformed herself into Lucile, the daring fashion designer who revolutionized the industry with her flirtatious gowns and brazen self-promotion. And when she married Sir Cosmo Duff-Gordon her life seemed to be a fairytale. But success came at many costs - to her marriage and to her children...and then came the fateful night of April 14, 1912 and the scandal that followed.

Elinor's novels titillate readers, and it's even asked in polite drawing rooms if you would like to "sin with Elinor Glyn". Her work pushes the boundaries of what's acceptable; her foray into the glittering new world of Hollywood turns her into a world-wide phenomenon. But although she writes of passion, the true love she longs for eludes her.

But despite quarrels and misunderstandings, distance and destiny, there is no bond stronger than that of the two sisters - confidants, friends, rivals and the two "it girls" of their day.

©2017 Karen Harper (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

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  • The Louligan
  • 28-10-17


Unfortunately, I am the first person to review this book for Audible. I really wish some - ANYONE - had given me a heads up. This audiobook is in my TOP 5 WORST BOOKS OF ALL TIME. If it was just a bad story, I could understand. But the synopsis sets it up as being much more than it is. The main characters are one-dimensional. Best described as “Kardashianesque”. The two sisters, Lucille had Eleanor, are gold diggers who go after men whom, on first sight, are rich, gentle, and compassionate. Then, either during after or during the honeymoon, the guys turn out to be....ummm. Lamar Odom, Scott Disick, and/or Kanye - very flawed. One minute these women are married and suddenly “married in name only” but we aren’t privy as to what really happened. They keep referring themselves as “The Two Girls From Just Jersey”. No, not as the one next to The Big Apple. The Channel Islands Jersey. But WHY?!

The author never develops any story lines or explains how the plot got from here to there. She will suddenly write “Then two (or six, or 12) months later” and we are there - but very confused. It’s not even as well-written as a fluffy romance novel with Fabio on the corner. There’s something missing on every level. Lucille is supposed to a fashion designer while Eleanor is a writer or something. The Victorian historical aspects such as local color, fashion, food, customs, etc. are so lacking that Eleanor could just as well be an internet blogger. All they do is drop names like the Prince of Wales, Lillie Langtry, designer Norman Hartnell Duchess Of York, Duke This And Lady That”. Neither of them has any prior training or education or life experience to advance as far as the do. It’s kinda like “Kourtney and Kim Take Miami”. They get there but don’t really do anything of substance. In the next chapter, it’s suddenly “Kourtney and Kim Take New York”, “ Dash Dolls”. Try to keep in mind that this during Queen Victoria’s time when “gentlewomen” didn’t do anything except go to balls.

The narrator adds nothing. She reads way too fast. Just about every character sounds the same, especially Eleanor and Lucille. It becomes hard to stay engaged with her boring delivery. But she doesn’t have much to work with here.

This book is more like “The WHAT Girls”. As in “WHAT IS THIS ALL ABOUT”!

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  • Fiona
  • 25-11-17

Oh dear, don't bother.

I love audio books in general so much that there have only been a couple I have not enjoyed on some level. This is one of them. I kept waiting for some sort of story. The pacing would have been suited to reading out a shopping list.

2 people found this helpful