Cover Image: On Gin Lane

On Gin Lane

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Member Reviews

I was given an early release copy of On Gin Lane through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  This book took me a little while to get into but I am glad that I continued to the end. Set in the mid-1900s, the story immerses you into the high society life of summering in the Hamptons.  Everleigh is a young woman who grew up in a wealthy but dysfunctional household. She has always conformed to be the girl she thought her parents wanted her to be. Engaged to be married , her fiancé surprises her with by rebuilding his family house in the Hamptons into a hotel on Gin Lane.  It all seems idyllic and full or romance until it all starts to crumble. Out of the debris of what Everleigh believed her life was going to be emerged a woman who finds her true self and inner strength.
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Everleigh has it all, a big trust fund, loads of friends, and an adoring fiance, Roland.  Roland moves Everleigh (Lee) out to the Hamptons for a fun-filled life in a hotel that he had built and named after her.  When the hotel catches on fire it shakes up their lives and the lives of their friends.  The cops are investigating because the fire was arson.    This is a drama-filled book with a long list of suspects and a girl who is tired of the socialite lifestyle.
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I really enjoyed this book! I do love historical fiction novels. I love to read about a time and place past. I enjoy reading about how people lived, what they wore, hearing how they spoke. On Gin Lane followed Everleigh, engaged to Roland, through a summer at the beach before their wedding. They were part of New York society and all that that entailed. There is a fire, an investigation, a scandal, mystery, intrigue, and romance. It delves into what was expected of women versus what they actually wanted.. and did it even matter?? Everleigh does some deep diving into her life, into herself, and into what makes her happy. Great story, great writing, and very satisfying.
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This book was a fun treat! I loved it! It was a good reset after I read a heavier book. It kept me flipping pages well past my bedtime!!
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I loved Brooke Lea Foster’s first book and had high hopes for this one.  It is well written and entertaining but I found the flashbacks unnecessary and felt the detracted from the book.
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On Gin Lane by Brooke Lea Foster is a perfect beach read. Set in 1950s New York, Lee finally has life all figured out with her fiancé, Roland, a trust, and a beautiful home. But then, Roland surprises her with a hotel in the Hamptons named after her and tells her they'll spend the whole summer there. Lee feigns joy, but really, she doesn't want to live in any hotel again after growing up in one and feeling lonely her entire childhood in the shadow of her mother's mental illness. Then, tragedy strikes on the hotel's opening night, her fiancé refuses to cooperate with the investigation, and he starts pulling away from her. When he doesn't have time for her, she decides to pursue her passion of photography, but that only leads to more difficulty in her relationship. Roland is hiding things, she's unhappy, and her past has come back to terrorize her. Lee is sympathetic as a character--even if she's not always likable--and she projects a lot of the inner turmoil that women in the 50s experienced. Foster does a beautiful job of ensuring that things and people are never as they seem, and, by the end, readers' opinions of almost every character take a 180. The characters you sympathize with are ultimately problematic and the ones you hate, you start to respect. This is a good single sitting read, but sometimes I found certain aspects felt forgotten--there were several chapters in a row where the investigation wasn't mentioned despite it being a major plot device.
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I got to go to the Hamptons last weekend and never left my couch. Foster did an amazing job of recreating a time and place and telling a tale that kept me enthralled. This is the perfect summer read -- a trip to a romantic, storied town where the characters leap off the page and entertain you with their story. Wonderful historical fiction!
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If you have a love for historical fiction, this is a great read!  Set in the 1950's,we meet Everleigh "Lee" Farrow, a New York socialite who is taken by her fiancé Roland to glamorous Southampton in the summer of 1957.  Lee has everything she could want: a handsome, rich husband, a trust fund in her name, a home in Bronxville waiting for their return and a hotel, build for Lee by her fiance.   Opening weekend tragedy strikes and Lee's summer will never be the same.  

This must-read historical novel offers a glimpse into the high society life of the 1950's and what expectations were put on women to serve their husbands and plan parties.  With Lee though we find a brave, coming of age story, filled with captivating characters, an engaging and well-written storyline, a sensitive look at how mental illness was judged.  

I would highly recommend this book!
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Now this is exactly what historical fiction should be! The plot and main character Everleigh ‘Lee’ were captivating. There was a hint of mystery intermingled in to the story which made it even more intriguing and entertaining.

Lee was portrayed as a woman coming into her own despite the the lifestyle she was born into during the 1950’s when women should “behave in a certain way” because of societal norms. 

Readers of historical fiction will really enjoy this book. The setting of the 1950’s is captivating, as it gives the first glimmers of massive social change in the United States. 

I finished this in less than a day, eager to see what would happen. This is the perfect summer beach read! I’d love to see this as a movie.

Thank you @netgalley for an Arc copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Thank you NetGalley, Brooke Lea Foster and Gallery Books. This is my personal review.
This book took me into a time and place that I really enjoyed reading about. The story was a bit slow for me in places and I knew I wanted to read on to learn how Lee’s life plays out for her.
This is a book that many will enjoy and I can see this being a huge hit with book clubs.
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LOVED! What a fantastic read- Loved the setting in the hamptons, loved the pace, loved the MC, and really love the overall vibe and feeling of the story. The ending is exactly what I was hoping for.
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Absolutely loved this book. The descriptions of the hotel and fashions of the age put you directly in the story as if you’re sitting next to Leigh at the same party. I’d be thrilled for another book from this author
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I really enjoyed Foster's prior novel, SUMMER DARLINGS, and IN GIN LANE was equally delightful.  Following Everleigh Farrows' trajectory of a sweet, compliant New York debutante to an independent woman is both entertaining and heart-wrenching.  Women in Everleigh's position were given very little freedom to make choices; they were expected to be wives who supported their husband without question and had children as soon as possible.  Everleigh's journey of self-discovery, struggling with whether she needs to fulfill societal expectations or follow her passion is engaging, filled with realistic character and some intrigue as well.  A really good read.
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I LOVED THIS! I loved Lee's character development and kept wanting to root for her throughout the story, despite how awful her fiancé was. This story is such a great example of female friendships and power - I was rooting for every female character throughout the story and was shocked to learn the twist at the end. Would recommend!
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Set in Southampton in the 1950’s, On Gin Lane is the story of Everleighh Farrows and her soon to be husband Roland. Roland surprises Everleigh with a hotel in her honor but when tragedy strikes,  we’re left wondering who we can really trust. 

While this story definitely has elements of ‘poor little rich girl’, by the end I found myself rooting for Everleigh and hoping she finds her way to happiness. I loved the exploration of what it was like to be a twenty something women in high society in the 1950’s and was hooked to the story with every twist and turn. I would recommend this book if you’re looking for a captivating summer beach read.
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Summertime 1957. Everleigh Farrows heads off to Southampton with her beau who has, no big deal, built a hotel for her. As glamorous as the gesture is, Everleigh is initially dismayed by having to spend the summer in a hotel, her dismay is heightened even more when the hotel tragically burns down. 

While her thought-to-be honorable beau begins emerging himself in the hotel rebuild, Everleigh begins a journey all her own that might just lead her to finding her own individual happiness for the first time in her socialite life. 

I enjoyed this book for its partial historical relevance and also enjoyed that Everleigh takes up photography as her passion. Though I don’t know how factually realistic it would be for its time in regards to Everleigh setting out on her own, I enjoyed the premise behind the book and the mystery element webbed throughout the storyline as you attempt to figure out who is responsible for the fire that killed and rebuilt Everleigh Farrows.


Thanks to NetGalley and Gallery books for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Readers will travel from New York City down the Long Island Rail Road in this glitzy novel that has a pleasantly surprising amount of heart. Set in the 50s, there are many trappings of misogyny and classism that are wildly frustrating to see the main character go through (and know that this was real life for so many women), but never fear - Lee does just fine. I loved the supporting cast and the layers of mystery and whodunnit. While there were a few plot points I didn’t love, overall I found this delightful. Starling is the true star of this show, and I just love her spunk and the arc she goes through, as well. Four stars for a job well done and a book I’d absolutely pick up for a reread. Check this out if you love anything by Beatriz Williams. Definitely some similarities!
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"After her fiancé whisks her off to the glistening shores of Southampton in June of 1957, one young socialite begins to realize that her glamorous summer is giving her everything - except what she really wants - in this new novel from the author of Summer Darlings.

Everleigh "Lee" Farrows thinks she finally has life all figured out: a handsome fiancé named Roland, a trust in her name, and a house in Bronxville waiting for her to fill it with three adorable children. That is, until Roland brings her out to the Hamptons for a summer that will change everything.

Most women could only dream of the engagement present Roland unexpectedly bestows on Lee - a beachside hotel on the prized Gin Lane - but Lee’s delight is clouded by unpleasant memories of another hotel, the Plaza, where she grew up in the shadow of her mother’s mental illness. Shaking off flashbacks, Lee resolves to dive into an unforgettable summer with poolside Bellinis, daily tennis matches, luncheons with her Manhattan circle, and her beloved camera in tow. But when tragedy strikes on the hotel’s opening weekend, the cracks in Lee’s picture-perfect future slowly begin to reveal themselves, and Lee must look deep within herself to determine if the life she’s always wanted will ever truly be enough.

From the regal inns to the farmland, the well-heeled New Yorkers to the Bohemian artists, the East End of Long Island is a hodge-podge of the changing American landscape in the late 1950s - and the perfect place for Lee to discover who she really is."

Come revel in 1950s America!
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This is my first exposure to this author.  While I found parts of the novel intriguing, the erratic pacing and unlikeable characters made it difficult to stay engaged.

Everleigh (aka Lee) Farrows grew up in the famed Plaza Hotel in New York City under the watchful eye of her wealthy, stoic father and her mentally unstable mother. After one broken engagement, she is now somewhat desperate to secure her future of a home and children with a charismatic young man, Roland Whittaker.  Roland surprises Everleigh with an extravagant engagement gift – a luxury hotel named after her in the highly desirable locale of Southhampton. While Everleigh has mixed feelings about the gift and the plan to live there for the summer, a tragic turn of events presents an opportunity for her to reevaluate her life on several levels.

This historical novel takes place in 1957 with all of the cultural restrictions on women’s roles. I don’t know if the portrayal of the wealthy socialites is accurate, but in this storyline they come across as shallow and petty. As alluded to above, I found very few characters that I could embrace. I appreciated Everleigh’s struggle to reconcile her desire for a home and family with her ambition and creativity to pursue a career in photography. However, she vacillates so much between people pleasing and asserting herself that it became tiresome and made it hard to empathize. Roland has his own issues and his charm runs dry as he is exposed as a manipulative, selfish cad. The characters that did stand out for me were Starling, who becomes Everleigh’s mentor, and the personable local doctor.

Overall, there was some solid writing in the scenes describing the panic and terror related to the tragic incident at the hotel and the subsequent suspense related to its causation. Mostly, I found myself drifting at the beginning of the novel and finished it feeling moderately satisfied.

My thanks to the author, the publisher, and NetGalley for the privilege of reviewing this book. The opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

This review is being posted immediately to my GoodReads account and will be posted on Amazon upon publication.
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This was good, not great.  The story was interesting and it certainly portrayed Lee as a woman coming into her own despite the period she lived in and the lifestyle she was born to.  I wanted to love it but it was just too slow and I ended up skipping through most of the middle chapters just to get to the end.  And I have to admit there was a twist that I really didn't anticipate.  This is a great beach read with a wonderful romance and ending that satisfies.  I received an ARC from the publisher through NetGalley and I appreciate the opportunity to read this book.
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