Malibu Rising

Taylor Jenkins Reid

Malibu Rising
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Malibu Rising

Taylor Jenkins Reid

A lifetime holding it together. One party will bring it crashing down.

Malibu- August, 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas- Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together, the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over-especially as the offspring of the legendary singer, Mick Riva.

The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud-because it is long past time to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth. Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there.

And Kit has a couple secrets of her own – including a guest she invited without consulting anyone. By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.

Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family- the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them … and what they will leave behind.


It’s 1983 and the night of the Riva family’s annual end-of-summer party. Anyone who is anyone will be stepping through the doors of supermodel Nina Riva’s beachside Malibu mansion. Every year, epic things happen, and this year will be no different. By midnight, the party will be out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames.

Taking place over 24 hours, Malibu Rising is a satisfying slow burn that weaves together multiple stories and perspectives, oscillating between past and present. We meet each Riva child: Nina the glamourous surfer and model who isn’t comfortable with provocative photos but will do anything to keep her family afloat; professional surfer Jay and photographer Hud whose work lands Jay magazine covers; and Kit, the beloved sister who doesn’t quite know how to love herself. As we count down to the party, each chapter uncovers various family secrets. Interspersed throughout the siblings’ chapters are flashback scenes of their parents – rock star Mick and his on-and-off-again wife June, and how their tumultuous romance left their children to fend for themselves.

This is the second book I’ve read by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I was absolutely blown away by her previous novel, Daisy Jones and the Six, and couldn’t wait to dive into Malibu Rising. I was not disappointed. Reid tells stories that feel wholly believable, including details such as real people and true events to add authenticity. This is an utterly engrossing read that will make you fall in love with all the Riva children. I just wanted to reach into the book and give them all a hug. If you loved Daisy Jones and the Six then you have to pick up this equally beautiful story of the power of family and the real price of choosing fame over everything else.

Lucie Dess is the marketing assistant for Readings.

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