A lifetime holding it together.
One party will bring it crashing down.
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.
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.
There’s something about Taylor Jenkins Reid’s books that are so utterly addictive. This is only my second book from her, and also my first non-audiobook, but it still had the same effect on me as Daisy Jones & The Six did. Now, I didn’t enjoy Malibu Rising as much as Daisy Jones & The Six but my god was it amazing.
I kept expecting myself to get bored with the constant back and forth between the past and present, but I actually didn’t. Well, that’s not completely honest as I did spend most of the book thinking ‘when the hell is this party starting’ but I found June and Mick’s relationship so interesting. They were toxic as hell but it was such an interesting dynamic.
June in particular was a fascinating character. She started out so self-assured and headstrong and she really developed over time. June was definitely a strong character and she knew who she was, it was such a shame to see where her story led.
Speaking of side characters, you get a few appearances from characters from Taylor Jenkins Reid’s other books. It made the world feel more realistic and I loved getting small peaks at what they are up to outside of their own stories.
I loved that there were so many side characters and short stories to go alongside the Riva’s. The party felt so immersive and the world of it so big, this wouldn’t have happened without the inclusion of smaller characters. What I will say though is that personally, it felt a little all over the place and too chaotic. Obviously, this was intentional, but it wasn’t great when you are finishing the book at 2 am. My own fault really.
Malibu Rising was a real page-turner and it gave me serious summer vibes. Taylor Jenkins Reid is such a beautiful writer and I find her stories utterly addictive (as I said in the first paragraph). I really cannot recommend her books enough.
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