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All the Beautiful Girls

Bookreporter.com Bets On...

All the Beautiful Girls

March 2018

ALL THE BEAUTIFUL GIRLS by Elizabeth J. Church is set in 1960s Las Vegas and features a troupe dancer named Ruby Wilde, who gives readers a fabulously well-written look into life behind the scenes on the Strip. Ruby grew up as Lily Decker in Salina, Kansas. Her parents and sister are killed in a traffic accident, and she is sent to live with her aunt and uncle. Her uncle sexually abuses her, and she is pretty lost and alone.

Lily’s protector comes from an unexpected place --- it’s the man who is responsible for the deaths of her parents and sister, a military pilot stationed nearby. He is referred to as “the Aviator,” and he fuels her passion for dance. When her dance teacher suggests that Lily go professional, she guides her to Las Vegas instead of to New York or L.A. Lily becomes a showgirl, and from there we learn all about the life of these performers on the Strip. 

Readers are taken behind the curtain, where the risqué costumes and the crazy nightlife are part of the world of showgirls. There is big money in this business; there is also a lot of risk. Church details it all well.

The Aviator continues to be part of Ruby’s life, always there when she needs his help. He’s harboring a secret as well. There’s a lot of social commentary woven in here. While Vegas is wild and fun, the rest of the country is seething in unrest.

I loved Church’s first book, THE ATOMIC WEIGHT OF LOVE, and selected it as a Bets On. She has a real talent for giving a powerful voice to everyday women who may have been ignored otherwise as they were not seminal figures.

All the Beautiful Girls
by Elizabeth J. Church

  • Publication Date: March 6, 2018
  • Genres: Fiction, Historical Fiction
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • ISBN-10: 0399181067
  • ISBN-13: 9780399181061