The 1920’s came alive in Larkin’s book “Vixen.” Following straight-laced Gloria as she becomes a flapper and then lands a job as a singer in a speakeasy was exciting! The only thing ruining Gloria’s new life as a flapper is her country cousin, Clara, who has come to live with Gloria’s family for the summer. But Clara is working hard to hide from everyone that living the flapper life in New York with fast men and flowing bootlegged liquor ruined her reputation. The author presents a unique antagonist in Gloria’s best friend, Lorraine, who becomes adverse to Gloria when her jealousy of Gloria’s life can no longer be contained.
Gloria’s new life doesn’t quite coincide with her proper family or engagement to a staunch advocate of prohibition. When Gloria finds herself falling for the black piano player in the speakeasy, life quickly becomes complicated, since society does not approve of interracial relationships. Yes, this was technically a teen book, but the women’s curfew and teen status only heightened the forbidden nature of the speakeasy scene, which enhanced the fact that flappers had to sneak around to live the life they desired. The story was engaging and drew me into the most exciting parts if the 1920’s. Gloria personifies the struggles of the young to live the life they want, not the life their parents want them to have. The characters speak and act as one would expect for the time but in a manageable way. Of course, no 1920’s storyline would be complete without gangsters, and the girls can only resist the criminal life for so long before they get caught up sinister acts.
I liked it enough to want to continue reading the entire series. I can see this series easily becoming a tv series. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to see what the speakeasy scene would be like and escape to the 1920’s.