The Subway Girls
From the author of The Balance Project comes a dual-timeline narrative featuring a 1949 Miss Subways contestant and a modern-day advertising executive whose careers and lives intersect.
"Schnall has written a book that is smart and timely...Feels perfect for fans of Beatriz Williams and Liza Klaussmann." —Taylor Jenkins Reid, acclaimed author of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
"A fast-paced, clever novel filled with romantic possibilities, high-stakes decisions, and harsh realities. Perfect for fans of Fiona Davis’s The Dollhouse, this engrossing tale highlights the role that ambition, sexism, and true love will forever play in women’s lives." —Amy Poeppel, author of Small Admissions
In 1949, dutiful and ambitious Charlotte's dream of a career in advertising is shattered when her father demands she help out with the family business. Meanwhile, Charlotte is swept into the glamorous world of the Miss Subways beauty contest, which promises irresistible opportunities with its Park Avenue luster and local fame status. But when her new friend—the intriguing and gorgeous fellow-participant Rose—does something unforgivable, Charlotte must make a heart-wrenching decision that will change the lives of those around her forever.
Nearly 70 years later, outspoken advertising executive Olivia is pitching the NYC subways account in a last ditch effort to save her job at an advertising agency. When the charismatic boss she’s secretly in love with pits her against her misogynistic nemesis, Olivia’s urgent search for the winning strategy leads her to the historic Miss Subways campaign. As the pitch date closes in on her, Olivia finds herself dealing with a broken heart, an unlikely new love interest, and an unexpected personal connection to Miss Subways that could save her job—and her future.
The Subway Girls is the charming story of two strong women, a generation apart, who find themselves up against the same eternal struggle to find an impossible balance between love, happiness, and ambition.
The Subway Girls is an enjoyable read. The book is about empowerment, and what women have had to do, to be successful, in a male-dominated corporate world. The story alternates between1949 and 2018. And, although, things have changed for women, for the better, there are still men who are unwilling to let go of their chauvinistic beliefs and behaviors.
It was 1949, and although Charlotte was college educated, her chances of being successful in the advertising world were slim. She was determined to change that, even if it meant disappointing the people closest to her.
Olivia loved her job in NYC. Advertising was what she was good at. And, even though it was 2018, she was being played and held back, because of her gender. She secretly loved her boss, and he used that powerful tidbit of information to his advantage.
Although I liked the premise of this novel, and several characters, especially, Ben, Olivia and Charlotte, the book did not keep my attention as I had hoped. I think if the characters were developed more, I would have been more emotionally invested. All and all, though, I enjoyed it.
Thank you, St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy.