From award-winning author Genevieve Valentine, a “gorgeous and bewitching” (Scott Westerfeld) re-imagining of the fairy-tale of the Twelve Dancing Princesses as flappers during the Roaring Twenties in Manhattan.
Jo, the firstborn, “The General” to her eleven sisters, is the only thing the Hamilton girls have in place of a mother. She is the one who taught them how to dance, the one who gives the signal each night, as they slip out of the confines of their father’s townhouse to await the cabs that will take them to the speakeasy. Together they elude their distant and controlling father, until the day he decides to marry them all off.
The girls, meanwhile, continue to dance, from Salon Renaud to the Swan and, finally, the Kingfisher, the club they come to call home. They dance until one night when they are caught in a raid, separated, and Jo is thrust face-to-face with someone from her past: a bootlegger named Tom whom she hasn’t seen in almost ten years. Suddenly Jo must weigh in the balance not only the demands of her father and eleven sisters, but those she must make of herself.
A retelling if the 12 Dancing Princesses fairy tale, THE GIRLS AT THE KINGFISHER CLUB is set in Manhattan during the 20s when jazz was in full swing. It’s an era that has always interested me and I think that’s what initially attracted me to the book. That, and the cover is GORGEOUS!
I enjoyed the book for the most part. Genevieve Valentine knows how to tell a great story, rich with details, that really pulls the reader in. However, where it fell short for me was in the character development of the sisters. I understand that there are twelve of them, and we only really see the story through Jo’s perspective, but I just kept wanting more. I put the book down feeling that I only really knew Jo – and Lou, in some aspect – but found that I kept mixing the other girls up or forgetting who they were in the succession of things. Other than that, the book was entertaining and I didn’t lose interest in it.
*I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review*