Cover Image: Eliza Starts a Rumor

Eliza Starts a Rumor

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Member Reviews

A story of secrets, lies, and friendship. At times funny, at times heartbreaking. Eliza is in the midst of an agoraphobic episode (the repeat an episode in high school). She is the moderator of a neighborhood bulletin board that acts as a marketplace/event planner/advice column for the suburban housewives in the area. When a newer, more youthful and cutting edge forum seems to be getting more attention, Eliza posts a rumor (anonymously) about a neighbor to increase the traffic on her site. What happens next has ramifications that ripple throughout the community.

Although somewhat predictable in places, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The characters are entertaining, if somewhat maddening at times. The storyline is plausible except for a few notable moments that made me roll my eyes. The progression of the story drew me in completely, and the ending was reasonable and satisfying. Is this Pulitzer material? No, but it is a pleasant distraction to spend a few hours with these women (and one man) who are clearly destined to be lifelong friends. There are some themes that are "ripped from the headlines" that would make this book a good choice for books clubs looking for a lighter read that also will lead to good conversation.
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Eliza Starts a Rumor was the perfect title to make me want to know more. Who’s Eliza? Why did she start a rumor? Then I learned that the book was spun around the numerous mom’s groups all over Facebook, and I was sold. 

Eliza is troubled. We don’t really know why but we accept her truth because of her crippling inability to leave her house. She’s bored, depressed and lonely. By starting a Facebook group for Hudson Valley moms to connect online, she finally has a sense of purpose. When she learns there’s a new Facebook group for the same area, she decides to post a rumor by an anonymous sender that really stirs things up.

From there the book get tangled up into many side plots that all ensued from her fake rumor. I really connected with all the other women and loved that mere strangers can bond for a common cause. Crazy that the author used all vowel names for the main female characters. Amanda, Olivia, Allison and Eliza. Got to be honest, there were moments my head was spinning trying to remember whose plot belonged to which character.

This book touched on parenting, infidelity, abuse, abuse of power, friendship, love, dating, rape and mental illness. Seems harsh but these issues were tackled and pummeled through the help of the other women. The writing was witty and face paced. Overall, this was a heartwarming book that readers will enjoy.
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I really enjoyed this book with multiple characters - sort of an "ensemble" cast. I love the setting and really liked the characters.
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A really engaging, heartfelt read about the power of sisterhood and the connections forged when the moderator of a community internet forum decides to anonymously post something scandalous to spark interest. This was closer to a 3.5 overall for me, but given how engrossed I was in the story I’m willing to round up.

My one complaint was that the book had a lot of shifting POV within chapters where I don’t think they were necessarily needed, especially in the case of supporting or minor characters. Additionally, tenses weren’t very consistent — there was a lot of switching back and forth between omniscient narrator and third person. It didn’t take away from my enjoyment but I’m not sure how essential it was to the book? 

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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The friendship that binds and saves each is astounding. The underlying stories are ones that break your heart, feed your soul, and rebuild your spirits. It’s got all the feels. Highly recommended!
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I recently picked up Eliza Starts A Rumor, hoping for an engaging and entertaining read. I have been having a harder time reading during the last few weeks and needed something that would keep my attention. 

It was my first book by Jane L. Rosen and it ended up being such a delightful reading surprise! While it was definitely engrossing, it was also timely and super relevant. The characters were fleshed out and the strong storylines made this one hard to put down. It is set in a small suburban town and Rosen sets the scene so well I almost felt like I was part of the neighborhood too.

It has a Big Little Lies vibe, but dare I say I loved it even more? The multiple storylines weave together to create such a satisfying novel. I loved the themes of sisterhood, family, motherhood, friendship, and hope. I highly recommend this one and I can't wait to read Nine Women, One Dress now! 

Thank you to Berkley Publishing for the gifted copy. All opinions are my own.
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What starts as an attempt to draw attention to her Hudson Valley Ladies' Bulletin Board, Eliza Hunt posts a comment that creates a ripple across town.  Four women are affected differently by the forum but are drawn together. They are likeable, relatable and come together to show their support for one another.  You’ll want to share it with all of your friends.
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Wow, so many different stories for each of the characters but then they all came together to support each other.  The writing just flowed in this story and the surprise(s) ending shook me. A good summer read that covers today’s issues affecting women. I would love to see another book continuing these women’s lives.
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I loved this book! Told from different perspectives in a New York suburb, Eliza Starts a Rumor centers around a women's online bulletin board and the the secrets and lies that are revealed on it. I was a big fan of Rosen's book Nine Women, One Dress. This book is similar in that it is narrated by different characters and each character's story eventually intertwines with every one else's, which is brilliant. This book is different however in that these characters are drawn a little deeper and their struggles are at times a little darker.  But that shouldn't deter you from reading this book as it is still fun of fun and laughter and hope.
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And what a rumor it is Eliza moderate a Facebook group for women in the Hudson Valley, NY and when she found out that this group is no longer relevant to younger women she needs a way to show these hip, new young moms old girls get it. Lots of interesting characters with a variety of problems make up the sphere of this small town. The author has done a good job linking all the people who narrate the chapters. Lots of variety in individual issues make a good story.
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Eliza Hunt created the Hudson Valley Ladies Bulletin Board when her twins were toddlers and her site grew to be the place moms looked for advice on everything from parenting to marriage to the best purchases or vacations.  With her toddlers now freshmen in college, Eliza decides to start a rumor:  she anonymously posts about her neighbor's wife having an affair with someone's husband.  Unfortunately, this made up rumor has some truth to it, and strikes a chord with several subscribers.  

This summer novel has a great formula.  The reader meets several of the Hudson Valley moms, each of whom is connected to a secret.  The price of those secrets and the lies associated with them play out as the narrator changes, and will have the reader guessing at the resolutions.  For every nasty protagonist, there is a compassionate counterpart. I found Eliza Starts a Rumor to be a fun, quick read, very entertaining and perfect for a lazy Saturday or late summer night.
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This is a book that did not manage to engage me. And it’s not the book’s fault, this is on me.

There was nothing wrong about the book, the writing, the story. Besides not pulling me in, that is. I think the issue was that the entire book felt more like background music to me. I read it, but didn’t take it in. The characters, the different POVs, it didn’t matter, because I just couldn’t engage with any of it.

At that point I already knew it would be a hard book to review. How can I rate a book that was such a miss on my part, but where there was nothing glaringly wrong, except it wasn’t the right book for me.

Whatever the issue was, the story didn’t sync with me.

So, unfortunately this was only a 2 star read for me.
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I loved this book.  I loved the witty and supportive banter between the friends.  It was such a perfect reminder of the importance of friends to help survive the ups and downs of life.  While heavy topics were dealt with, they were done in a way that was not overwhelming and created feelings of hope in light of the support network.
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Hello, gorgeous purple cover!

Eliza founded The Hudson Valley Ladies’ Bulletin Board when she was a young mom. Now, the nest is empty, and she’s been diagnosed with agoraphobia. As you can imagine, the bulletin board gives Eliza an important outlet now.

Except there’s a new parent forum in town, and it threatens Eliza’s site.

So does Eliza do? She starts a rumor about the new site.

Eliza Starts a Rumor surprised me. It has plenty of emotion and depth, and I loved the sisterhood between the women. There’s also some charming humor interspersed throughout and the different points of view.

Overall, Eliza Starts a Rumor is a genuine-feeling story about the strength and resiliency of women, especially when we come together to support one another. It’s like a warm hug from your girlfriends after a lingering lunch.

I received a gifted copy. All opinions are my own.
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When something you enjoy is threatened it sometimes calls for desperate measures. When Eliza's community bulletin board is threatened by a younger, hipper board, she starts a false rumor to give hers some life. However, not all best intentions end well. 
This is a moving, book about a woman that has to step out of her comfort zone to save something important to her and in the process learn more about herself.
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I adored this book about the bonds of friendship and the damage a lie can cause. Rosen has developed a fabulous story with delightful characters that you just want to become friends with. Some of the characters have been life-long friends, while others are new to town and develop a bond. I mentioned in a previous post how so many books seem to switch each chapter between characters. I will say that it was bothering me somewhat in this book because I would get so caught up in certain characters' stories, and then it switched, and then the same thing would happen with the next story. The stories are compelling, and I loved the support the women gave each other. I also enjoyed that this was more than just fluff. Rosen touched on some serious issues that the characters were struggling with. I highly recommend this engaging and heart-warming book. It was a great book to read during quarantine.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for a copy to read in exchange for an honest review.
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4. 5 stars

Eliza is the founder and moderator of The Hudson Valley Ladies’ Bulletin Board. When she learns of a rival site that seems to be more popular, she decides she needs to do something to shake things up a bit. She sees something going on at a neighbor’s, imagines what’s happening, and writes an anonymous post about it. The post goes viral and creates a lot of drama before pulling the community together.

On the surface, it seems this book is fluff but Rosen does an outstanding job of tackling some tough issues (infidelity, rape, agoraphobia, and more) without making things too heavy. There are a lot of fun, light hearted moments in this book that made me laugh, cry, and think. I thought the plot and characters were terrific and
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ELIZA STARTS A RUMOR by Jane L. Rosen (Nine Women, One Dress) is a summer read choice that will make you laugh and cheer for female empowerment and likely cringe at times, too. The story is set in Hudson Valley suburbia and the rumor (on a local social media site) involves infidelity.  When Eliza, an older woman struggling with agoraphobia, alludes to her neighbor having an affair, it's surprising how many wives suspect their husbands.  Of course, one young wife actually has reason to be suspicious and an unlikely sisterhood forms to help her uncover the truth. Babies and romance are involved in this mostly light read, plus secrets and more online deception. With several male characters learning to face the consequences of their actions, some tougher #MeToo moments surface, although it works out in the end for a cast of genuinely likeable, supportive women.
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3.5 stars rounded up
This is an ultimately touching and empowering book. So many heartfelt moments that brought me to tears.
One quibble is that there's quite a bit of head hopping and jarring POV changes, even from one paragraph to the next. It made it difficult to follow with changes in tense and going from an omniscient POV to a limited one and back again quickly.
Other than that, I warmed to all of the women characters and appreciated insights into each of their lives and histories. I thought Olivia's story was particularly meaningful, and of course Eliza's was as well. I loved the idea of the message board/Facebook group, it made the entire story relatable.
Glad I read this one!
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Eliza Starts a Rumor by Jane L. Rosen is a new book that I enjoyed.  I really liked the characters in this book about a group of women when their lives intersect due to an online billboard for women in their town. There is drama, romance, and friendship all mixed in to make this a great read. Thanks to Berkley via Netgalley for this review copy.
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