Malibu: August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at 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.
The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the centre of attention, and who has also been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis husband, Oh, and maybe Hud – because it is long past time to confess something to the brother whom he’s been inseparable since birth. Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there. And Kit has a couple secrets of her own – including a guest she invited without consulting anyone.
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.
As a book blogger / bookstagrammer I continue to feel very lucky to receive books in the post from publishers, proofs and finished copies fill me with joy, but receiving a proof copy of Malibu Rising was an absolute high point, it was a surprise and I think the neighbours heard my ‘small’ shriek of delight! Thank you to the publisher.
I read Daisy Jones and the Six the day it arrived in its Goldsboro Books Premier Box, my first Taylor Jenikins Reid but by no means my last. I was smitten. You can read my review here and my next book by this author confirmed her autobuy status. Check out my review of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo here.
I had savoured the anticipation of Malibu Rising for some time after it landed through my letterbox, waiting closer to publication date, but as May approached my eagerness got the better of me and I gleefully picked up one of my most antcipated reads of 2021.
Malibu Rising, set in the celebrity world of Malibu, sun, sea and suft at its heart, along with the Riva’s, children of the legendary Mick Riva. His philandering ways lead to divorce and his absense is complete as his children are growing up. Impoverished, living with their damaged, alcoholic mother, the 4 siblings become a cohesive, likeable group fending for themselves.
Told over a 24 hour period in the immediate lead up to the infamous Riva party the 4 siblings all hold secrets and their stories are told chronologically as they prepare for the party. With a ‘then’ part interspersed through the chapters we learn about Mick and June Riva, their children and journeys to adulthood, survival and the present day. There is a sense of anticipation throughout the book, we know from the outset that Malibu burns and the party, as it spirals out of control reaches a climactic finale. And it certainly did!
What to say about this book? I loved it! Once again Taylor Jenkins Reid has produced an orignal and sharp piece of historical fiction. Immersed in the glamour of fame and celebrity, but with a dirty underbelly, the author has successfully created a set of interesting, likeable characters with stories to be told.
If you loved Daisy Jones and Six and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo then I defy you not to love this one also. Historical fiction that consistently feels edgy and different, each of these books is an immersion into another world and one that I cannot wait to revisit.
Will you be reading Malibu Rising? What has been your favourite Taylor Jenkins Reid novel? Or have you yet to meet this incredible author?
About the Author
Taylor Jenkins Reid is the author of several novels, including Daisy Jones & The Six, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Forever, Interrupted. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, their daughter, and their dog.