ANNA GODBERSEN BEAUTIFUL DAYS PDF

By Anna Godbersen. For the bright young things of , the beautiful days seem endless, filled with romance and heartbreak, adventure and intrigue, friendship and rivalry. She is ready at last to chase her Broadway dreams—no matter the cost. Cordelia is still reeling from the death of her father at the hands of Thom Hale, the man she thought she loved.

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By Anna Godbersen. For the bright young things of , the beautiful days seem endless, filled with romance and heartbreak, adventure and intrigue, friendship and rivalry. She is ready at last to chase her Broadway dreams—no matter the cost. Cordelia is still reeling from the death of her father at the hands of Thom Hale, the man she thought she loved.

Charlie Grey is a gangster playing a dangerous game; and for Astrid, Cordelia, and Letty, the stakes could be deadly. From the New York Times bestselling author of The Luxe comes the second book in an epic series set in the dizzying last summer of the Jazz Age. A lot of noise was made last night in the mansions that lined White Cove, and plenty would be made tonight, but for now the sky was just a wide arc of blue, and three such girls—some of them already much discussed by newspaper columnists and women in hair salons—were browning poolside.

One lay facedown, one sprawled on her back, and one curled up on her side, the better to turn the pages of her fashion magazine. The voice of the first cut through the listless atmosphere, ending the peaceful silence. Cordelia Grey took a breath of sweet, still air as she returned to consciousness.

The sun had warmed the skin of her long legs, and the chaise she was lying upon comfortably accommodated her languid pose. June, with its occasionally gloomy weather and mourning clothes, was behind her. She moved her arm so that her eyes were no longer covered; it was another beautiful day. Cordelia blinked so as not to be blinded. The sky was very bright and the pool was very turquoise.

Even the leaves on the trees at Dogwood seemed to have embraced the indolent spirit of summer; they were thick and mysterious and green, hardly moving even on their high branches. She rolled over and pushed her cartwheel hat, which she wore to protect her creamy skin, back on her head. Cordelia laughed, drawing her heaps of sun-streaked dirty-blond hair into a bun at the nape of her neck. Both girls wore new navy blue tank swimsuits, although Letty had mostly covered her petite frame in a gauzy robe.

Her dark hair was cropped short and she had pushed her bangs to the side so that they revealed a pale triangle of forehead. Even this far into summer, her skin was almost white. Astrid had been born wealthy, and anything she threw on seemed, as if by some magic, deliberate and expensive. You were smiling to yourself, Letty went on, in that small, crystalline voice that belied the deep, rich sound her throat produced when she sang, and whispering something.

Astrid drained her lemonade glass and put it on the little wood table that separated their chairs. I know how you like to keep secrets, Cordelia Grey, and I am not above listening to you talk in your sleep to find them out.

I got nothing to hide, Cordelia replied, with a rakish and somewhat disingenuous innocence, and swung her legs over the side of the chaise. She stood and walked quickly across the hot pool deck. It was as shimmering and solid now as on the nights he had thrown his famous parties there, and it remained a safe haven to his two children—Cordelia, who had only been reunited with him in May, and Charlie, who was now running the bootlegging business that had made Darius Grey rich and famous.

A ripple of gratitude passed over Cordelia, and she even smiled a little to think how satisfied Darius would be to know his offspring were still sheltered under that fine roof. Then she sprang forward, arms overhead so that her body went like an arrow into the cool water. Beneath the surface there was true silence, and she sailed forward on the momentum of her dive as long as she could.

It was serene and quiet, and she remembered that in her dream she had been flying. Cordelia came up for air and took three strong strokes to the end of the pool. She breathed in and pushed the strands of her hair away from her face. As she pushed herself onto the edge and twisted around, she caught sight of him. He was wearing an undershirt, darkened in places by sweat, and he was trying not to look at the girls in their revealing suits.

It was part of the life, and anyway, these men in sweat-stained undershirts had much better stories than the ones where she came from. The afternoon had been so tranquil and perfect; there had been no hurry about anything, and she had swum and joked with her best friends since just after breakfast. To go in so abruptly struck her as sad. She sighed and turned toward the chaises.

What did he want? Astrid asked, pushing herself up on slender arms when Cordelia returned to their little encampment. Cordelia pulled a linen tunic over her head and reached for a towel to wring out her hair. I suppose I ought to get out of the sun, too, Astrid said, her tone careless. Maybe put on something new and shiny and go into the city and dance till dawn.

She gestured at the tray of sandwiches and the lemonade pitcher and piles of magazines that lay around their chairs. You should stay and enjoy the rest of the day. Letty paused awkwardly—she had half raised herself to go into the house with the other two, but had frozen when Astrid casually instructed her not to move. She watched her oldest friend glide toward the house in tandem with Miss Donal, who always seemed to mean kindly, but whose manner was so detached that it was difficult for Letty not to feel like a simple girl from Ohio in her presence.

Even on a day like today when she wore no jewelry, Astrid had a shimmering quality as though she were covered in diamond dust. These kinds of thoughts agitated Letty, and whenever they arose she buried them quickly, then tried to smile at whoever was nearby and do something delightful, or else help with any household chore that needed doing. She had those high cheekbones and long limbs, and that impressive way of carrying herself that had earned her the disdain of many of the small-town folks in Union uppity, they called her but had caused her close friends to hang on her every word.

Even next to Astrid, who had grown up around thoroughbreds and china tea services and yachts and couture, Cordelia did not look a tiny bit out of place. Letty reached under her chair and felt for the head of Good Egg, her greyhound, who was hiding from the heat.

The dog whimpered and lifted her head for more scratching. For another minute, Letty obliged. Then she sank back against the cushioned chaise, pulled her soft robe close around her neck, and turned the page of her fashion magazine, which contained any number of handsome things that, remarkably, it might actually be possible for her to acquire.

If any of the people back in Union could see her now—the very picture of sophistication, lounging in rich environs with her sleek, long-legged pet—they would be struck dumb by the miracle of it all.

A smile tugged at the corners of her mouth. After all, tomorrow would be just as lovely as today, and there was lots of summer left, and plenty of time yet for her to go about making a name for herself down in Manhattan. Once, not long ago, Cordelia had stood on that spot with her father while he taught her how to shoot grapefruit out of the sky. They stepped into the ballroom, with its gleaming, rarely used dance floor and white grand piano, and continued on toward the main hallway.

The girls let go of each other and Cordelia passed into the unlit hall, where she had to pause so that her eyes could adjust. Although the ceiling soared three stories above and some natural light filtered from the third-floor windows, the dark wood of the stairs and walls could sometimes create a gloomy effect even on the sunniest days. I had better go, Astrid said. All right. As the girls parted, Cordelia turned to Victor. Will you drive Miss Donal home? But now it was furnished with three wide, green felt—topped tables and a few Victorian settees.

These had been pushed to the walls and were looking a little worse for wear after being handled so often by rough young men. Cordelia rested her shoulder against the wall by the door. An open pack of cigarettes sat on a small antique-looking table, and she reached down and drew one out along with a match from the matchbox that lay beside it. But here no one cared and Cordelia had developed a taste for it.

Especially when she was nervous, which she sometimes was around Charlie. There was a camaraderie between them, and he was brotherly and protective of her—but there were also times when she reminded him of the way their father had died, and her foolish involvement in the tragedy, and then she saw the anger in his fierce brown eyes.

At the same instant that she struck the match her brother took his shot, and the smack of the cue ball hitting its mark rung out to the high picture moldings. There was crowing from around the room, and Charlie moved busily to the other side of the table. He was about the same age as her father, and he had that long, horse face with features that never moved much. Her hair was wavy from the water, her legs naked under the tunic, and her feet were bare. The skin on the bridge of her nose was surely redder than the rest of her face, and her brown eyes probably had that washed-out quality they took on after too many hours in the sun.

There was another loud thwack from the pool table, and Cordelia glanced away from Jones. Danny shook his head and cursed under his breath.

Charlie turned, handing his cue off to Danny and giving his sister a rakish grin. Smiling back, she put out her cigarette. Cord, come talk with Jones and me. There was a large mahogany desk with only a telephone and several empty glasses on it.

That was where the secret passageway originated from, the one that the gunman who assassinated their father had escaped through. Charlie pushed a few of the glasses out of the way, propped himself against the desk, and gave Cordelia an intent, twinkling stare. When Cordelia first met Charlie—by chance, at a place called Seventh Heaven, before she was anybody—she had not liked him, and he had not liked her. On occasion, Cordelia had wondered at them being related at all—but in moments like these she got a glimpse of their shared parentage.

He could be hot while she was cool, but they were unmistakably cut from the same cloth. They were both tall with light-colored hair and sweet brown eyes that shone and searched at the same time. Charlie took the pack from his front pocket and Cordelia pulled one out. Jones lit it for her, and then retreated to the edge of the room and leaned against the bare wall.

There had been plenty of trees and quiet there, and she had longed instead for noise. She played back the reel of those days again and again, trying to locate the moment when she went wrong, imagining that if she closed her eyes and concentrated hard enough, she could return there and make the story come out differently.

Smoking seemed to her the least of the bad little habits she could have picked up. Cord, please. Charlie smiled at her in a softer way now, bringing her out of her thoughts and back into the spare office.

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REVIEW: Beautiful Days by Anna Godbersen

This review took me far longer to produce than it should have. It was no fault of the book. The blame rests entirely upon my shoulders. But once I was able to clear some time to devote to reading, I devoured the first book in this series, Bright Young Things , in an afternoon. The same thing can be said about this book.

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Beautiful Days (Bright Young Things Series #2)

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Beautiful Days

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