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Publisher Description


From the # 1 New York Times bestselling author of Eat Pray Love and The Signature of All Things, a delicious novel of glamour, sex, and adventure, about a young woman discovering that you don't have to be a good girl to be a good person.

"A spellbinding novel about love, freedom, and finding your own happiness." - PopSugar

"Intimate and richly sensual, razzle-dazzle with a hint of danger." -USA Today

"Pairs well with a cocktail...or two." -TheSkimm

"Life is both fleeting and dangerous, and there is no point in denying yourself pleasure, or being anything other than what you are."

Beloved author Elizabeth Gilbert returns to fiction with a unique love story set in the New York City theater world during the 1940s. Told from the perspective of an older woman as she looks back on her youth with both pleasure and regret (but mostly pleasure), City of Girls explores themes of female sexuality and promiscuity, as well as the idiosyncrasies of true love.

In 1940, nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris has just been kicked out of Vassar College, owing to her lackluster freshman-year performance. Her affluent parents send her to Manhattan to live with her Aunt Peg, who owns a flamboyant, crumbling midtown theater called the Lily Playhouse. There Vivian is introduced to an entire cosmos of unconventional and charismatic characters, from the fun-chasing showgirls to a sexy male actor, a grand-dame actress, a lady-killer writer, and no-nonsense stage manager. But when Vivian makes a personal mistake that results in professional scandal, it turns her new world upside down in ways that it will take her years to fully understand. Ultimately, though, it leads her to a new understanding of the kind of life she craves - and the kind of freedom it takes to pursue it. It will also lead to the love of her life, a love that stands out from all the rest.

Now eighty-nine years old and telling her story at last, Vivian recalls how the events of those years altered the course of her life - and the gusto and autonomy with which she approached it. "At some point in a woman's life, she just gets tired of being ashamed all the time," she muses. "After that, she is free to become whoever she truly is." Written with a powerful wisdom about human desire and connection, City of Girls is a love story like no other.

Blair Brown
hr min
June 4
Penguin Audio

Customer Reviews

Pekay4031 ,


I’d been it a book drought with nothing fun and exciting but City of Girls fit the bill. It was entertaining with rich characters. Great narration too.

S. F. Gal ,

Very entertaining story

I thoroughly enjoyed the story brought to life by the superb narration of Blair B
rown. What an actress!

She breathed life into all the characters: young women, older women, men, young men, English people and native New Yorkers.

It’s an entertaining look at life in Manhattan from the 1940s through the 70s with interesting characters that will keep you Engaged.

Elizabeth Gilbert is a fine fiction writer to complement her splendid nonfiction work.

It would be fun to see this book translate to a film.

teen_reader ,

Eye opening

As a teen, the novel City of Girl gave me a lot of insights about growing up. About the beauty and betrayal one must live through. Along with the weighted choices made that creates ones life. The novel was exceptional and made me want to tell all friends- except boys. Even the risky parts fooled me like a jokester on Halloween. For anyone who is considering this read- go for it. But don’t stop. Continue till the end, for then one will receive the most satisfaction.

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