City of Girls: Elizabeth Gilbert's fizzing portrait of giddy young female hedonism

Review: The Eat Pray Love author said she wanted to write a book ‘that would go down like a champagne cocktail’. And that’s just what she’s done

Elizabeth Gilbert: frothy delight delivers a real kick beneath the bubbles. Photograph: Heather Sten/The New York Times

Elizabeth Gilbert: frothy delight delivers a real kick beneath the bubbles. Photograph: Heather Sten/The New York Times

There’s a moment in the 1937 film Stage Door when Ginger Rogers, playing a struggling young actress, gazes down at Manhattan from the apartment of a sleazy theatrical producer who she hopes will give her a job. “I love New York from up here,” she says dreamily. “It’s all rouged and manicured and ready to go out for the evening.”

This sense of New York as a glamorous friend, a partner in crime, someone who looks perfect from a distance but is a little more complicated close up, is an integral part of Elizabeth Gilbert’s delicious new novel.

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