Beautiful Days by Anna Godbersen
I enjoyed this book much more than I did the first book, Bright Young Things. The story was better developed and more exciting than the first, and I'm glad that I kept with the series. Book three - The Lucky Ones - doesn't come out until September, and I am excited to see where the story goes.
In Beautiful Days Cordelia, Letty, and Astrid seem to move closer to their individual destinies, as predicted in the first book - "one would be famous, one would be married, and one would be dead" - or so it would appear.
Stop reading now if you don't want to know what happens!
At the end of Bright Young Things, Astrid was on cloud nine when Charlie proposes to her. Soon after her engagement, Astrid moves into Dogwood and finds that life with Charlie is not all that she thought it would be. She spends most of the book angry at Charlie for not paying enough attention to her, and for being more focused on the family business which he is now in charge of running. As Charlie and the Hales engage in a battle of retribution, Astrid becomes a target. Charlie, often with little tack, tries to keep her safe, but Astrid, acting like a spoiled child defies his orders, and finds herself kidnapped by the Hales. Charlie comes to her rescue, and the couple reconcile and rush to the alter. So it would appear, that Astrid is the one to get married!
Letty, after reuniting with Cordelia at the end of Bright Young Things, settles in the luxurious life at Dogwood, but quickly realizes that she is not satisfied to be just your ordinary socialite. Letty thinks she is going to get her big break when Cordelia and Charlie decide to open a speakeasy, and want Letty to be the singer in their club. Everything seems to be going Letty's way - she's got a gig singing in a club and her romance with Grady is blossoming. However, Letty's good fortune doesn't last. Cordelia, deciding that her opening night needs an established star, tells Letty that she will not be able to be the opening act at her club. To make matters worse, Letty forgets that she is supposed to have dinner with Grady and his parents and shows up and makes a very poor impression, which effectively ends her relationship. Things start to turn around for Letty in the end though. She lands a gig as a chorus girl in a revue, and when Cordelia's star gets too drunk to perform, she steps in and her star begins to rise. She catches the eye of Valentine O'Dell, a famous actor, who volunteers to become her mentor and help her become a star. Could she turn out to be the one who's destiny is to be famous? We shall see!
Cordelia is still reeling from the death of her father at the hands of her lover, Thom Hale, and wants nothing more than to prove that she is worthy of her father's legacy. Charlie decides that the Grey's need their own speakeasy and recruits Cordelia to run it. In the midst of opening her club, Cordelia finds herself in an off again, on again romance with Max Darby, the pilot she rescued at the end of the last book. Darby is very different from Cordelia - he doesn't drink and he is not impressed by the care-free, luxurious life of the Grey family. It appears that he is rather indifferent to Cordelia, but it turns out that he is just protecting a secret that has the power to ruin everything he has achieved.
The Hale family continues to be a nuisance to the Greys as both families are engaged in a war of revenge.Thom Hale appears several times in the book and appears to still care for Cordelia. I hope that there is more closure to this story before the end of the series. Although Cordelia is convinced that Thom had something to do with her father's death, I'm not so sure. Although I like Max Darby, I really hope that there is more to Thom and Cordelia's story. Of course, if Astrid is the married one, and Letty is the famous one, does this mean that Cordelia will be the one who ends up dead? Although, Cordelia has certainly has earned her own form of fame...so many she wouldn't be the one to met an untimely end? Can't wait to see how it all plays out in the next book!