I've been going through books like water lately, and this is another awesome one. I listened to it on Audible, big surprise & it was really enjoyable. It was a book I got into immediately, and was really sad when it was over because I felt like I needed more information.
The Dollhouse is one of those books that go back and forth between the past and the present, which I like and is also a feature that I've been seeing a lot more in books these days.
The book takes place in New York in both 1952 and 2016; it takes place at the Barbizon Hotel, which in the 1950s was an all women hotel and ladies from all over the country would come and live there as a "safe space" while they were trying to find jobs and husbands in New York City.
The present day centers around Rose, who lives in the remodeled Barbizon, which is now an apartment building. She's a journalist who has a sick dad, and a boyfriend who decides to go back to his family. She's an ex news anchor who is trying to make it in the start up, digital age of journalism. Her boss is younger than her, and kind of a dick who doesn't appreciate her eye for news. It's a rough road for Rose, until she stumbles upon the 4th floor ladies & Darby.
All the 4th floor ladies used to live in the Barbizon during the 1950s, and Darby is the one who draws Rose's attention...
Darby, as we switch back the the 1950s, is moving to New York by herself to go to secretary school. She has a rough time, since she's placed on the floor with the models and not the other secretary students. She's depressed and frustrated and wants to leave for home until she meets a maid named Esme.
And from there, the story takes off.
It's definitely a suspenseful novel because there is a huge mystery about the Barbizon hotel that Rose must figure out. It involved Darby, and the maid Esme but because Darby is so closed lipped, Rose has to go around her to figure it out.
While you're in the present part of the book, you are constantly wondering what is going to happen in the past part. It kept me on the edge of my seat, and there were definitely some twists and turns to keep you hyped up.
I also loved seeing the differences between the 1950s NYC and the present. I would say both characters, Rose & Darby, were tolerable and didn't get on my nerves (sometimes the protagonist tends to irritate me).
It was a great book, not a super quick read but definitely something that will interest you and keep your attention!