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Summary

For four young immigrant women living in Boston's North End in the early 1900s, escaping tradition doesn't come easy. But at least they have one another and the Saturday Evening Girls Club, a social pottery-making group offering respite from their hectic home lives - and hope for a better future.

Ambitious Caprice dreams of opening her own hat shop, which clashes with the expectations of her Sicilian-born parents. Brilliant Ada secretly takes college classes despite the disapproval of her Russian Jewish father. Stunning Maria could marry anyone yet guards her heart to avoid the fate of her Italian Catholic mother, broken down by an alcoholic husband. And shy Thea is torn between asserting herself and embracing an antiquated Jewish tradition.

The friends face family clashes and romantic entanglements, career struggles and cultural prejudice. But through their unfailing bond, forged through their weekly gathering, they'll draw strength - and the courage to transform their immigrant stories into the American lives of their dreams.

©2017 Jane Healey (P)2016 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Sara
  • 10-01-18

A Sweet Story

I enjoyed this gently told story about young women growing up as first generation immigrants in early 1900s Boston. The focus of the story was centered on hope and changing the old and familiar ways of living. With the support of the club and a collection of generous society ladies the girls lives were transformed.

The story was very positive, for me almost a bit too positive. At times, I thought it was a little too rose colored glasses and overly smooth and easy in the way things worked out. In reality, life for young women at the time was difficult and no matter how hard they worked not everyone had such success.

That said, this book was an upbeat story which nicely captured the historic feeling of the time.

13 of 18 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Angela Dieckman
  • 25-05-18

Interesting and sweet story

3.5/5: This was a sweet, simple story that held my interest for the most part. It gives a glimpse of life in the early 1900's for four young, immigrant women. They each walk a line of adapting American ways while holding onto traditions of their families. Each of the four women's characters were developed fairly well. You also get a glimpse into how important the Saturday Evening Girls Club (SEG) was to each of them. I also liked that each chapter began with an Italian or Jewish proverb (the two main people groups represented in the main characters). Worth reading.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kim Cano
  • 04-10-17

A Happy Historical Read

I was disappointed when The Saturday Evening Girls Club came to an end. I didn't want to leave Caprice and friends, women who lived in a time where people socialized in person instead of via the technology of today's world. Their lives seemed richer and fuller than women of this century who have so much more. Plus they wore hats. I don't know why everyone stopped wearing hats and wish they'd make a comeback soon.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Donna Smith McG
  • 25-06-17

Could NOT finish!

I tried I really tried listening and trying to get into "The Saturday Evening Girls Club" but it was NOT a novel from the year 1908! Okay I'm petty, but if an author is using a certain year they better do some research and this author didn't! She didn't research pay scale for a woman in 1908. She didn't research when the 1st car was invented, and last, which bothered me so much..look at this cover..the cover of the book...does it say 1908!!!

It was good in the beginning until I also realized the POV was coming from one of the girls? There are 4 girls and 1 was the POV..this author needs to re write this again..especially when a girls is getting married and says "I heard (with tears in her voice...my words) about the marriage night...boohoo...WHERE DOES IT GO? WHERE DOES IT COME OUT?" Obviously trying to ask about sex, but it just didn't read right...

I do not like this book, I couldn't even finish it and I hate when I can't recommend a book audible or not...not worth it.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Ellen B.
  • 17-04-18

If you’re looking for an easy read

This is a sweet story set in the early 1900’s. Predictable storyline, average writing but the performance was excellent. I got very sick of every female constantly having “flushed cheeks”. Mix up your descriptors for a more interesting listening experience.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-04-18

Great, amusing book, easy to listen to

Loved it, finished it in two days non stop! Interesting characters, lively, romantic but also carried interesting messages, especially for women!

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  • NMwritergal
  • 10-06-17

All surface, no depth

1. Part of the problem is the POV: first person past tense. It’s supposed to be the story of 4 girls but without the use of the third person, we are only in Caprice’s head so anything about the other 3 girls is either seen through Caprice’s eyes or dialogue. It’s not enough.

2. It seems somewhat unlikely that 2 Jewish girls and 2 Italian girls in this era would be best friends (the explanation is the Saturday evening club), but I would have gone with it if there were more presented in a deeper way about each culture and the obstacles they would have faced even being friends.

3. Each woman faces a large impediment to getting what she wants in life, but their struggles feel remarkably shallow.

4. The names drove me nuts, either the name itself or the pronunciation—the audio narrator tries to pronounce “Maria” with an Italian accent, but fails--otherwise the narrator was good. And Caprice? Pronounced correctly—(cah-preech-ay), but I’ve never heard this name. I lived in Italy for 8 months. Maybe it’s a Sicilian name (didn’t get to Sicily), but why? Don’t get me started on the Jewish names, either.

5. The writing is fine but I never emotionally connected with any of the characters. There was nothing wrong with them, but none of them were very interesting, and I really didn’t care what happened to any of them.

6. Sense of place and era: Very weak. It could have been anywhere and at one point I found myself thinking, I’ve listened to ¾ of this book…now when and where is this happening?

2 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • noladel
  • 19-02-18

I Would Rather Watch Paint Dry

I was unable to finish listening to this book. I couldn't care less about these young woman or their boring lives.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • katherine
  • 01-02-18

Great performance!!

Fabulous story line and excellent performance! The story line was great and so relatable, although this story took place a century ago there are still some parallels between then and now especially the whole old ways and the American way.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Trisha
  • 26-01-18

awesome

enjoyed the story of the 4 girls and their challenges and their success in life. The narrator was fabulous.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful