Reviews for Malibu Rising, by Taylor Jenkins Reid

jenetkay's review against another edition

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5.0

Paradise doesn’t exist

Malibu Rising is about the infamous Riva party that is thrown once a year and the events before, during, and after. It is set over 24 hours with glimpses into the past as you learn about each of the Rivas and their history. This party is the definition of not everything that glitters is gold.

I knew after reading the introduction that this book was going to be fantastic. I absolutely loved it. The writing is beautiful, and the characters were so well developed you could tell whose perspective it switched too almost instantly. I do not tend to get very emotional when reading books, but I cried at more than one point in this book. I also really appreciated the subtle nods to her other novels, like Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo - I think they elevated my experience with the book. Malibu Rising is a book I could see myself reading over and over again.

angela_literally's review

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emotional medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.0

dyannareads's review

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emotional lighthearted mysterious fast-paced
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

the_afterword's review against another edition

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5.0

A Taylor Jenkins Reid (TJR) book set in the 80's? I am so there!
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I could not get enough of this book. From the first chapter, I was hooked. TJR is a brilliant author and knows how to immerse her readers into all of her stories.
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These four siblings and their journeys were real and raw. I can genuinely say I loved them all (although my girl Kitty def needs her own spin-off). Told from multiple points of views and dual timelines, TJR does a beautiful job bringing clarification on the jumpy journey.
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This book touches on nostalgia, family dynamics, alcoholism, siblings, love, music, and the ocean. There were sudden turns, twisting plots, hidden secrets.
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I laughed, I gasped, I cried.
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I have read a lot of TJR and I honestly think this one might be my new favorite

thebookadvocate's review

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adventurous emotional reflective tense fast-paced

4.75

annikasheck's review

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challenging dark emotional hopeful inspiring reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

outsidestar's review against another edition

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emotional hopeful reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25

"Malibu catches fire. It is simply what Malibu does from time to time."

I loved this book, but I don't think it fully made it to 5 stars for me.

Before I get into what it's about, let me say that I am now hopelessly in love with TJR's writing. That's how I want to write someday. The whole book is written flawlessly, but that beginning? She had me at the prologue. I knew I was going to love it right then and there.

Now, back to the topic at hand. Malibu Rising tells the story of the four Riva children, the story of their parents, the story of family bonds and, in some way, the story of fire. The book takes place over one single day of August 1983 but, as the day unfolds, we get flashback chapters on everything that came before, starting in 1956 when June Costas met Mick Riva.

 "Our family histories are simply stories. They are myths we create about the people who came before us, in order to make sense of ourselves." 

This is a story of childhood and growing up, sometimes faster than you should; a story about the struggles of being a single parent, especially when the money is tight; a story about realizing you don't owe anything to people who hurt you or betray your trust, whoever that may be; a story about healthy relationships and toxic ones; and ultimately it's a story about Nina Riva, a strong as hell female character who will do whatever it takes because that's just how fiercely loyal she is.

I don't want to say much more because this is one of those books you're better off reading without knowing much about it to begin with. Just know that you will love Nina, Jay, Hud and Kit in every possible way and that I cried.

"I love you just for being, whoever that is."

A massive thank you to NetGalley and Cornerstone (Random House UK) for the e-ARC in exchange of an honest and voluntary review.

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goodbyerachel's review

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emotional reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.25

sarahreads0_0's review against another edition

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4.0

*I received an advance copy from NetGalley. However, this does not influence my opinion. *

This is a beautiful story about family. We follow the four Riva siblings as they host their annual party. We learn about their past, present, and future. We see their struggles and flaws. Taylor Jenkins Reid writes about the complexities of love so well. The writing flowed so well me it definitely hooked me a fourth of the way through this book. This is definitely one of the best books of 2021 for me

happiestwhenreading's review

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adventurous emotional hopeful reflective fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

Even though this book doesn’t release until June 1, I couldn’t wait to read it any longer. As a huge fan of TJR (who isn’t), I was so happy to be pulled into another one of her worlds. This time she writes about Malibu, California in the 1980s. I could easily envision this world – the golden sunshine; surfboards everywhere you look, on top of cars and leaning on the sides of restruants; California girls with their golden legs and Daisy Duke shorts; the warm ocean breeze along the Pacific Coast Highway. It’s a world I’m familiar with and a world I love.

There are two parts to the story. The first one is about Mick and June’s tumultuous love story. It gives the reader background into the lives of their children – Nina, Jay, HUD, and Kit. This was by far my favorite part of the story and I could have explored this family dynamic for the whole book. It was layered and revelatory, making each of the Riva kids such a human touch and I was smitten with their loyalty and devotion to one another.

The second part of the book is the 12-hour lead up to the Riva’s annual Malibu party. The night promises juicy gossip, obscene behavior and epic tales to talk about for years to come. I really, really liked the set up of this part of the book, but as the night and the party wore on, it started to go off the rails for me. TJR chose to introduce and focus on a lot of random characters here and I was a bit confused by that choice. I hated the way these minor characters acted and it really detracted from the overall brilliance of the rest of the book. It’s a small complaint, but it was enough to knock it out of a 5-star rating for me.

Overall, I see this being a smash hit this summer – everyone is going to be talking about it and it’s sure to make all the Summer Reading Guides!