The Saturday Evening Girls Club is a historical fiction set in Boston in the early 20th century. The women are young immigrants, based on actual people, who are working together to help build a new life in America.
The Saturday Evening Girls Club blends real historical figures of early 20th century Boston with an engaging story of young women from immigrant families trying to find their place in the new world. The characters struggle with respecting the “old ways” of their immigrant parents, and pursuing opportunities of work, education and autonomy that were beginning to be available to women. This is the best book I’ve read this year!
These women are from Italian and Jewish families and they all live in Boston's North End. Their names are Caprice, Maria, Ada and Thea. They are considered to be second class citizens due to their gender and being immigrants, but they do not look at themselves as victims. Caprice is aiming towards her own hat shop. Ada takes college classes, secretly, while trying to keep her aim true and not to fall for a boy of different ethnicity. Maria is trying to escape from her father's alcoholism. Thea admires the possibilities in being a modern girl but she also admires the traditional ways. Each of these girls come together through The Saturday Evening girls Club and find the support they need in this group of women.
This book was interesting to read. I could see the amount of research Jane Healey placed in her work, through her writing about this group of women, Boston's North End and two of the founders. I felt like I was in the lives of these women as they went about their lives, including the troubles and the good times.
Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres, so when I came across this one, I had a feeling I would want to jump in and I did.
I was given this book by NetGalley and Lake Union Books in exchange for my honest review.