‘The 7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo’: A dive into glamour, scandal and love

By Esmeralda Villalobos Soriano

The “7 Husbands of Evelyn Hugo” by Taylor Jenkins Reid is an amazingly written novel on the behind the scenes of one of Hollywood’s most famous actresses, Evelyn Hugo, and Monique Grant, the reporter chosen to write a book about her life. It deals with Evelyn’s road to becoming an actress and explains why she had seven husbands throughout her life. 

I loved the amount of diversity between the characters and various complex relationships, as well as LGBTQ representation that usually isn’t seen within these types of books. Jenkins’ choice of having people of color as main characters instead of side characters, and adding LGBTQ elements made the story more realistic. Having this type of representation definitely makes readers feel more included and helps them relate to the characters.

Road to success: The story on how Evelyn Hugo became one of the best actresses in Hollywood (Photo courtesy of Goodreads)

Evelyn’s journey from rags to riches was extremely intriguing and at times I found it was easy to forget she wasn’t a real person. The outright honesty Jenkins portrays in Evelyn to show her making her way from small roles to major roles was so blunt, it made things more believable. She wasn’t afraid to do the dirty work to get movie directors and managers to notice her and give her big roles.

Aside from the way her life was built up, I found each and every one of her marriages was intriguing and captured a different side of Evelyn. In some marriages she was happy and felt free, and in others she was miserable, wanting something completely different for herself. Reading about Evelyn’s growing through each one made her character more likable, since she never let anything bring her down. 

Although the drama with her relationships made the novel interesting and engaging, there were a few things that fell through.

At times it seemed like all of Evelyn’s progress was useless due to the constant back and forth between her and her husbands. It was a cycle of breakups and makeups which seemed super repetitive at times. 

One of the main points in the novel was the unknown involvement of Evelyn and Monique Grant. It was built up throughout the entire book, but the actual reveal was underwhelming. 

For their relationship to be hyped for so long, I expected something huge that would completely change the story, and although it was a bit shocking, it felt rushed and ultimately unsatisfying.

Despite the anti-climatic ending, I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I would absolutely recommend this novel to anyone who likes novels filled with LGBTQ representation and diversity, as well as a behind the scenes of Hollywood life.