All the Beautiful Girls
|Author:||Elizabeth J. Church|
The dazzling, powerful story of a gutsy showgirl who tries to conquer her past amongst the glamour of 1960s Las Vegas - finding unexpected fortune, friendship and love. In the summer of 1968, Ruby Wilde is the toast of Las Vegas. Showgirl of the Year, in her feathers and rhinestones, five-inch heels and sky-high headdresses, she mesmerises audiences from the Tropicana to the Stardust. Ratpackers and movie stars, gamblers and astronauts vie for her attention and shower her with gifts. But not so long ago Ruby Wilde was Lily Decker from Kansas: an orphaned girl determined to dance her way out of her troubled past. When she was eight years old, Lily survived the car crash that killed her parents and sister. Raised by an aunt who took too little interest in her and an uncle who took too much, dancing was her solace, and her escape. When a mysterious benefactor pays for her to attend a local dance academy, Lily's talent becomes her ticket to a new life. Now, as Ruby Wilde, the ultimate Sin City success story, she discovers that the glare of the spotlight cannot banish the shadows that haunt her. As the years pass and Ruby continues to search for freedom, for love and, most importantly, herself, she must learn the difference between what glitters and what is truly gold.
Praise for All the Beautiful Girls: `A gorgeously written novel with the bite of a gin martini, All the Beautiful Girls goes beyond the splashy, gaudy dazzle of Las Vegas in the 60s to reveal the beating heart beneath the glamorous facade of the showgirl with big ambitions. Our protagonist Lily's grit, determination, and grace as she discovers the heady possibilities and dark perils of the American dream make Elizabeth Church's second novel unforgettable' Sara Gruen, NYT best selling author of At the Water's Edge `A riveting novel, at once raw and tender, of a woman's struggle to heal the wounds of a devastating childhood . . . Elizabeth J. Church makes us feel Ruby Wilde's pain and root for her to survive. This is a heartbreaking story, passionately told' Ellen Feldman, author of Next to Love `A brave and powerful novel that captures the very soul of a young woman coming of age in tragic circumstances and struggling to find both independence and love. With heart-wrenching immediacy and gorgeous prose, author Elizabeth Church examines the often desperate choices women must confront, and the secrets they must protect'-Lauren Belfer, New York Times bestselling author of And After the Fire `All the Beautiful Girls is beautifully written. No one takes you into women's lives like Elizabeth Church' Martha Hall Kelly, New York Times bestselling author of The Lilac Girls `On the run from misery, 18-year-old Lily Decker transforms herself into Ruby Wilde, devouring Las Vegas in glittering bites, richly flavored with the culture and politics of the 1960s. The show girl's life is fascinating but so, too, is the interior struggle of a young woman battling demons that dog her every step. Church has given us a true heroine, both flawed and beautiful, who rises even as she falls' Juliette Fay, USA Today bestselling author of The Tumbling Turner Sisters
Elizabeth J. Church was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico. Her father, a research chemist, was drafted out of Carnegie Mellon University, where he was pursuing his graduate studies, and was sent to join other scientists working in secret on the Manhattan Project. Church's mother, a biologist, eventually joined her husband in Los Alamos. Church practiced law for over thirty years, focusing on mental health and constitutional law issues. She is the author of The Atomic Weight of Love. All the Beautiful Girls is her second novel. She lives in Northern New Mexico.