Thursday, July 6, 2023

Book Review and Giveaway: Starring Adele Astaire by Eliza Knight

Pages: 395
Genre: Adult Historical Fiction
Pub. Date: 6/6/23
Publisher: William Morrow
Source: Publisher for review
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

Goodreads says, "A spirited rising stage star… Adele Astaire was a glittering, glamorous star, dancing with her brother, Fred, endearing herself to audiences from New York to London. But although she is toasted by royalty and beloved by countless fans, Adele Astaire has dreams of a loving husband and a houseful of children. And when she meets Lord Charles Cavendish, her wishes may just come true—but at what cost? A determined young dancer … Ever since Violet Wood could walk she’s wanted to dance on the London stage. Befriended by Adele, filled with ambition, she is more than willing to make the sacrifices it will take to becomes a star herself, and her rags-to-riches hopes are within reach. But the road to fame is never easy. Two women with unquenchable spirit …From the fast-paced world of roaring 20s New York to the horrors and sacrifice of wartime London, Adele's and Violet’s lives intertwine, and each must ask themselves is fame worth the price you must pay?"




Adele and Fred Astaire have been a dancing duo for years taking the world by storm. As they get older, Adele wants a simpler life for herself, one complete with children and a doting husband. Adele's life is far from normal though. She travels from New York to London with many adoring fans and brushes elbows with the British aristocracy. That's when she meets Lord Cavendish, a fascinating man who catches her eye. Perhaps he is the answer to her prayers? It appears that she will get her happily ever after, but things with Charles Cavendish are harder than they look. Things don't go easily for her and even the thought of a family seems a far away pipe dream. A parallel narrative is told throughout the novel about young London East end dancer, Violet Wood. Adele takes her under her wing and it follows her ups and downs as well. Life for a female dancer is never easy, especially with WWII on the horizon. Eliza Knight's Starring Adele Astaire is a delightful historical novel, albeit often sad, that follows Adele from the 1920s to the 1950s. Fans of Hollywood and stories of forgotten women will especially appreciate this one.

I have grown up being mesmerized by Fred Astaire and I knew nothing about Adele, so I jumped at the chance to learn about this forgotten star in Starring Adele Astaire. Adele, just as talented as Fred, is forgotten in the pages of history as she took a different path than her brother. A path that should have been easier, but was riddled with many bumps in the road. Adele's life was indeed privileged, but it was filled with so much hardship. The trials and tribulations Adele experienced once married to Charles were heartbreaking. Also, I like how Starring Adele Astaire followed Adele from the 20s to the 50s, through dance, her marriage, castles in Ireland, nights out in London, house parties, miscarriages, alcoholism, and the horrors of WWII. 

While I didn't care for Violet Wood's story as much in Starring Adele Astaire, I could appreciate the many problems women during that period faced just to pursue their dreams, especially if they were unconventional. I also appreciated how Violet and Adele stayed friends through the years and it all.

If you appreciate stories about lesser-known women, Starring Adele Astaire is the novel for you. I liked learning more about Adele's life and Knight brought the time period to life. My favorite aspect of the novel was all the cameos from famous people, from the Prince of Wales to Kick Kennedy, JFK's sister.

Are you a fan of Eliza Knight? Do you plan on reading Starring Adele Astaire this summer? Thanks to William Morrow, I have an extra advance copy to giveaway to one lucky reader. Enter in the rafflecopter below and good luck! 


  1. I didn't even know Fred Astaire had a sister! I love the time period and I bet all the cameos are super fun!

    1. Right? It's crazy to find out about her and I was surprised by how talented she was. The cameos were the best part. Thanks for visiting, Angela!


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