May 10, 2016

A Kiss From Mr Fitzgerald. Natasha Lester

book cover
Published: Hachette NZ
Date: 26th April 2016
Format: Paperback ARC
Pages:
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Thanks to Hachette NZ
Rating:
5 stars           Add to Goodreads
It’s 1922 in the Manhattan of gin, jazz and prosperity. Women wear makeup and hitched hemlines – and enjoy a new freedom to vote and work. Not so Evelyn Lockhart, forbidden from pursuing her passion: to become one of the first female doctors.

Chasing her dream will mean turning her back on the only life she knows: her competitive sister, Viola; her conservative parents; and the childhood best friend she is expected to marry, Charlie.

And if Evie does fight Columbia University’s medical school for acceptance, how will she support herself? So when there’s a casting call for the infamous late-night Ziegfeld Follies on Broadway, will Evie find the nerve to audition? And if she does, what will it mean for her fledgling relationship with Upper East Side banker Thomas Whitman, a man Evie thinks she could fall in love with, if only she lived a life less scandalous?

My thoughts banner
From the time I opened and started reading A Kiss From Mr Fitgerald, I was enchanted and found myself returning to the book every moment I could. I loved it.

It is set in the 1920's when to be a woman was a matter of making a good marriage and then raising children, attending the right parties and embroidering at home. Imagine! However Evie dreams bigger than that. An incident close to home, a very sad one, leads her to her chosen path. She decides she wants to be an obstetrician. A very unusual choice for a young woman in that era and place. Today it would be applauded, back then it was something society frowned upon.

As her parents don't support her she joins the Ziegfeld Follies and by night earns the money she needs to study and learn. It is a long hard day and night for her, yet she perseveres in the face of male opposition and prejudice. Not only that, estranged from her family and a past friend making life very difficult for her, everything seems against her. Yet there a friends who support her and see her through.

There is a mystery child that Evie becomes attached to, a man - Thomas Whitman, that she comes to love. Evie is both highly intelligent and full of love and compassion. When it comes to making choices she unselfishly puts others first. It costs.

I loved the whole historical background and what it was like for women in those days. It was rather horrifying to read of some of the childbirth practices and attitudes prevalent in that time. A woman's touch was certainly needed. I cheered Evie along all the way. 

Natasha Lester has penned an absorbing, clever book, with characters that came alive off the page. I enjoyed the drama, the humour, the sadness, the romance and the time period. Fantastic read. And totally adore the cover.

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16 comments:

  1. This sounds fantastic! I love the setting and Evie sounds like such an interesting character. I'll definitely be looking for this one.

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    1. Definitely worth chasing down Katherine.

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  2. This sounds Fab Kathryn, thanks for the great review!

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    1. It was and I so love the colours of the cover.

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  3. Replies
    1. It was Mary, just that slight difference that made it memorable.

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  4. This cover is gorgeous. I love her make up and want to try pin curls. Added it; you sold me on it, Kathryn.

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    1. Great, yes I'd hang a picture of this cover on my wall if I had it!

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  5. This one sounds wonderful! I love historical fiction with strong women characters. It's no surprise that you loved it. The premise caught my attention immediately. Glad the book lived up to it.

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    1. While I am not a big historical reader - although I do read a few I loved this one with the strong female lead.

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  6. This must be fantastic since you read so many books and gave it five stars. I usually enjoy historical fiction and will add this to my 'ToRead' list. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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    1. I think this one will be near the top of my 2016 reads at the end of the eyar!

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  7. Sounds nice, and even if there are many of the trappings of 1920s set stories (the exciting nights, the opposition to women's dreams, the flapper's life) it also sounds liek the author has tried to find her own way of telling the story. More than many other authors I've read had done.

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    1. I loved this one, should have been on my list of tops for 2016 but the list got too long. Definitely worth reading.

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