Shoulder Season by Christina Clancy #BookReview #ChickLit #HistoricalFiction #1980s #20booksofsummer21

ONCE IN A LIFETIME, YOU CAN HAVE THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE. The small town of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin is an unlikely location for a Playboy Resort, and nineteen-year old Sherri Taylor is an unlikely bunny. Growing up in neighboring East Troy, Sherri plays the organ at the local church and has never felt comfortable in her own skin. But when her parents die in quick succession, she leaves the only home she’s ever known for the chance to be part of a glamorous slice of history. In the winter of 1981, in a costume two sizes too small, her toes pinched by stilettos, Sherri joins the daughters of dairy farmers and factory workers for the defining experience of her life. Living in the “bunny hutch”—Playboy’s version of a college dorm—Sherri gets her education in the joys of sisterhood, the thrill of financial independence, the magic of first love, and the heady effects of sex, drugs, and rock and roll. But as spring gives way to summer, Sherri finds herself caught in a romantic triangle—and the tragedy that ensues will haunt her for the next forty years. From the Midwestern prairie to the California desert, from Wisconsin lakes to the Pacific Ocean, this is a story of what happens when small town life is sprinkled with stardust, and what we lose—and gain—when we leave home. With a heroine to root for and a narrative to get lost in, Christina Clancy’s Shoulder Season is a sexy, evocative tale, drenched in longing and desire, that captures a fleeting moment in American history with nostalgia and heart.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Shoulder Season by Christina Clancy is a coming-of-age story that is poignantly raw and genuine.

I was quickly taken back in time to the early 80s as Sherri Taylor, nineteen and recently orphaned, finds herself interviewing at the Playboy resort in Wisconsin close to her hometown of East Troy. Sherri wants to break out of her small town, experience anything and everything, and sees the Playboy resort as a means to an end. I can’t say that I liked Sherri, as she didn’t give me anything to like, but I did sympathize with her naïveté and found the conclusion to be very satisfying. If I had more time with present-day Sherri, I would have found her more relatable and a character with which I could connect.

Nineteen-year-old Sherri, though, is a hot mess. Her story provides a look into the Playboy world, which has an air of mysterious naughtiness even today. I enjoyed the uncompromisingly honest narration of this gripping tale and the information I gained about the period and the setting.

This book is perfect for anyone intrigued by the Playboy world and what happened to all those young women who once made a career of serving resort guests in a tight corseted costume with a fluffy tail and a headband with bunny ears.

16 Replies to “Shoulder Season by Christina Clancy #BookReview #ChickLit #HistoricalFiction #1980s #20booksofsummer21”

  1. Interesting review, Tessa. I’m not really interested in this one; although you have me intrigued with Sherri’s character. I definitely like the historical component too. Glad you still enjoyed this one for the most part! 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I did enjoy it. I was glad that it wasn’t over the top in sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll. And, Sherri is a very interesting character, so complex!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the time period in which this one is set, but the overall story is a pass for me. Sounds like, for the most part, you enjoyed it, and that’s always a plus!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is very interesting- a side of life that is totally foreign to most of us, I think … well, definitely me and my disney-like life. ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s very interesting. It definitely kept my attention but it’s just a lot of drama and I don’t really do drama – so that made it a bit difficult to review.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds so interesting to me. The time period is one that I actually remember, and I’ve always wondered about the lives of playboy bunnies, and how they became one. Great review.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m a child of the 80s and it is kind of fun to take a step back to that time. It’s a fascinating read but more of a dramatic one, which is unusual for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I had seen this one around and was not sure about it. I am glad to hear it was not about sex, drugs and rock & roll. I like a character based story, even though this character was a hot mess. It definitely intrigues me though. Great review Tessa.

    Liked by 1 person

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