Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen Series Review

Bright Young Things, Beautiful Days, The Lucky Ones by Anna Godbersen (The Bright Young Things trilogy)

Published HarperTeen 2010, 2011, 2012

Genre: Young Adult Historical Fiction

Format: Hardback

b38bc-coollogo_com-221351400The year is 1929. New York is ruled by the Bright Young Things: Flappers and socialites seeking thrills and chasing dreams in the anything-goes era of the Roaring Twenties.

Letty Larkspur and Cordelia Grey escaped their small Midwestern town for New York’s glittering metropolis. All Letty wants is to see her name in lights, but she quickly discovers Manhattan is filled with pretty girls who will do anything to be a star….

Cordelia is searching for the father she’s never known, a man as infamous for his wild parties as he is for his shadowy schemes. Overnight, she enters a world more thrilling and glamorous than she ever could have imagined — and more dangerous. It’s a life anyone would kill for…and someone will.

The only person Cordelia can trust is ­Astrid Donal, a flapper who seems to have it all: money, looks, and the love of Cordelia’s brother, Charlie. But Astrid’s perfect veneer hides a score of family secrets.

Across the vast lawns of Long Island, in the ­illicit speakeasies of Manhattan, and on the blindingly lit stages of Broadway, the three girls’ fortunes will rise and fall — together and apart. From the New York Times bestselling author of THE LUXE comes an epic new series set in the dizzying last summer of the Jazz Age.

029c6-coollogo_com-9181998I really love this series. Everything you love about 1920s – from bootlegging to flappers to the glamour of New York – is here! It’s very much in the style of The Great Gatsby and I would suggest this series to fans of historical fiction and this time period.

Cordelia, Astrid, and Letty are such fun characters! I can never pick a favorite, which is good because I liked them all equally. Cordelia is much more down to earth than the other two girls. She has some cute romances along the way and some interactions with her father. I think that she was my least favorite overall though. Astrid was the huge party girl and she reminds me a lot of the famous Daisy quote in Gatsby (“I hope she’ll be a fool. That’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful, little fool”). She’s the girly-girl of the group who is into parties and flirting. Because of her high class life, I love reading about her. Over time, she grows into her own and by the end of the series, she has gone through an amazing character development. Letty is also really fun to watch grow up in New York as she peruses her dreams of becoming a star. She has so many ups and downs over her career, which I enjoyed, and I also liked seeing the world of 1920s film and media.

The plot of these books are very slow moving and more poetic, but by the end, something really crazy will happen and everything will pick up. I found the last book to be the most engaging as all the plots were tying up and all the girls had a lot of drama to deal with at the climax of their story. But I was surprised to see how much I cared about these characters when I had to close the last book (and cried a lot at the epilogue). They were really well developed.

If you like historical fiction, I think you would love this series. It’s not my favorite, overall, but it’s great fun. I loved connecting with these characters and I’m sad to see them go, but I’m glad for the time I got to read about them.

Bright Young Things

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Beautiful Days

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The Lucky Ones

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4 thoughts on “Bright Young Things by Anna Godbersen Series Review

  1. I’m so glad you liked these! I actually have the first two books, but I’ve never gotten around to reading them. I read the author’s LUXE series, and really loved it, so I have no idea why this one has sat unread on my shelf for so long.

    But I’m super glad you reviewed them, because now they are in my mind again. I love reading of times gone by, and it sounds like this series does a really lovely job of showing the 20s. I’m especially interested in your mention of the film industry! I would love to read that.

    I’m reading The Diviners at the moment, which is set in the same time, so I’ll probably have a little bit of a break before I read this series, just so I don’t compare the different representations of the same time.

    Lovely review ^.^

    • I haven’t read Luxe yet, but I’ll be reading that soon because I liked this. The Diviners is another historical one that I’m excited for 🙂 I haven’t seen too much about this, but i’m excited for you to read them. Thanks!

  2. Awesome series review! I actually bought the Kindle version of Bright Young Things when it was on sale for $1.99. I still haven’t gotten to read it yet, but I’m really looking forward to it even more now that I’ve read your review! It definitely sounds exciting!

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