Malibu Rising

Finished Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I received a copy for review.

Summary (from Goodreads):

“Four famous siblings throw an epic party to celebrate the end of the summer. But over the course of twenty-four hours, their lives will change forever.

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.

Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them . . . and what they will leave behind.”

I absolutely adored this book. Like everything she’s written, it can be boiled down to one sentence but it also absolutely defies that easy categorization. Her books are both intelligent and fun, the kind of stories that make you sit down to read a chapter or two and end up stopping only when you turn the last page and you realize the house has gotten dark or that you’re really, REALLY hungry.

I love the Riva children (and their mom; their dad is another story). Seeing their story playing out, juxtaposed with their parents June and Mick, was one of the most interesting things about the book. If you’ve ever wondered how much of your personality is due to the parents you have, this is a book for you, because that’s one of the central themes.

But it’s also just an absolute joy to read. This is one of the most fun books I’ve read in ages, and that’s not at all surprising. Highly recommended.

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