due for publication 27 May 2021
EXCERPT: The Malibu fire of 1983 started not in the dry hills but on the coastline.
It began at 28150 Cliffside Drive on Saturday, August 27 – at the home of Nina Riva – during one of the most notorious parties in Los Angeles history.
The annual party grew wildly out of control sometime around midnight.
By 7:00 a.m., the coastline of Malibu was engulfed in flames.
Because, just as it is in Malibu’s nature to burn, so it was in one particular person’s nature to set the fire and walk away.
ABOUT ‘MALIBU RISING’: Malibu: August 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over–especially as the offspring of the legendary singer Mick Riva.
The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud–because it is long past time for him to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth.
Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there.
And Kit has a couple secrets of her own–including a guest she invited without consulting anyone.
By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.
MY THOUGHTS: Oh, this was fun! What’s not to love about a dysfunctional family story set in the 1980’s, an era of excess, including big hair and shoulder pads.
TJR is a natural story teller. I could feel the California sunshine, the sand between my toes, and smell the clams cooking. Her characters came alive for me as I became totally immersed in the Riva family saga.
And it is a saga! Told in the lead up to the party with flashbacks to the start, and then the duration of June and Mick’s relationship, Nina, Jay, Hud and Kit growing up,
and culminating in the party itself, this is a story set in a cauldron. I watched with bated breath as it bubbled and surged, simmered, and bubbled and surged some more until finally it boiled over. And I reveled in every moment.
I: @tjenkinsreid @randomhouse
T: @tjenkinsreid @randomhouse
THE AUTHOR: Taylor Jenkins Reid is the author of Malibu Rising, Daisy Jones & The Six, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, One True Loves, and three other novels. She lives in Los Angeles.
DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Random House UK, Cornerstone via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
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