"No one captures the exuberant passions and inner struggles of women like Elizabeth Church."—Martha Hall Kelly, author of Lilac Girls
A powerful novel about a gutsy showgirl who tries to conquer her past amongst the glamour of 1960s Las Vegas—and finds unexpected fortune, friendship, and love.
It was unimaginable. When she was eight years old, Lily Decker somehow survived the auto accident that killed her parents and sister, but neither her emotionally distant aunt nor her all-too-attentive uncle could ease her grief. Dancing proves to be Lily's only solace, and eventually she receives a "scholarship" to a local dance academy—courtesy of a mysterious benefactor.
Grown and ready to leave home for good, Lily changes her name to Ruby Wilde and heads to Las Vegas to be a troupe dancer, but her sensual beauty and voluptuous figure land her work instead as a showgirl performing everywhere from Les Folies Bergere at the Tropicana to the Stardust's Lido de Paris. Wearing sky-high headdresses, five-inch heels, and costumes dripping with feathers and rhinestones, Ruby may have all the looks of a Sin City success story, but she still must learn to navigate the world of men—and figure out what real love looks like.
With her uncanny knack for understanding the hidden lives of women, Elizabeth J. Church captures both the iconic extravagance of an era and the bravery of a young woman who dances through her sadness to find connection, freedom, and, most important, herself.
Praise for All the Beautiful Girls
"A gorgeously written novel with the bite of a gin martini, All the Beautiful Girls goes beyond the splashy, gaudy dazzle of Las Vegas in the sixties to reveal the beating heart beneath the glamorous facade of a showgirl with big ambitions."—Sara Gruen, New York Times bestselling author of At the Water's Edge
"A razzle-dazzle novel about loss, love, and friendship...?i>All the Beautiful Girls pulls back the curtain on the glamorous, titillating world of showgirls, revealing the emotional bruises hidden beneath the dazzling costumes."—Melanie Benjamin, New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue
"Delightful...?hurch's appreciation of language is apparent as she masterfully creates pictures with words."—Associated Press