Friday, May 26, 2017

Review: The Last Chance Matinee by Mariah Stewart

Women’s Fiction


Gallery Books

Release Date:
March 21, 2017

Synopsis from Goodreads:

From New York Times bestselling author Mariah Stewart comes the first novel in her all-new series, The Hudson Sisters, following a trio of reluctant sisters as they set out to fulfill their father’s dying wish. In the process, they find not only themselves, but the father they only thought they knew.

When celebrated and respected agent Fritz Hudson passes away, he leaves a trail of Hollywood glory in his wake—and two separate families who never knew the other existed. Allie and Des Hudson are products of Fritz’s first marriage to Honora, a beautiful but troubled starlet whose life ended in a tragic overdose. Meanwhile, Fritz was falling in love on the Delaware Bay with New Age hippie Susa Pratt—they had a daughter together, Cara, and while Fritz loved Susa with everything he had, he never quite managed to tell her or Cara about his West Coast family.

Now Fritz is gone, and the three sisters are brought together under strange circumstances: there’s a large inheritance to be had that could save Allie from her ever-deepening debt following a disastrous divorce, allow Des to open a rescue shelter for abused and wounded animals, and give Cara a fresh start after her husband left her for her best friend—but only if the sisters upend their lives and work together to restore an old, decrepit theater that was Fritz’s obsession growing up in his small hometown in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains. Guided by Fritz’s closest friend and longtime attorney, Pete Wheeler, the sisters come together—whether they like it or not—to turn their father’s dream into a reality, and might just come away with far more than they bargained for.


After Hollywood agent, Fritz Hudson dies from cancer, his three daughters are brought together for the reading of his will. The problem is Allie and Des didn't know Cara even existed and vice versa.  They are all stunned to learn that their father had been living two separate lives.

Allie and Desdemona Hudson are the product of his first marriage to a Hollywood star, while Cara McMann is from his second marriage to Susa, a free spirit hippie. Fritz never divorced his first wife and never bothered to tell either wife about the other. So now his three daughters are faced with the shocking news and now have to fulfill his dying wish. All three daughters must restore his old theater in his hometown and they must do it together. If any of the women back out, nobody will inherit anything. All three really need the money so they vow to see this through to the end.

Cara McCann has gone through some bad times…her mother died, her husband cheated on her with her best friend and now she learns that her father had cancer and died. She had no idea he had even been sick. She’s more than a little shocked when she finds out her beloved father, Fritz Hudson, had another family with two daughters.

Cara is clearly the odd woman out since she is perceived to be the child of the “other” woman since her mother was the second marriage. However, Cara had no idea and neither did her mother. She pulls herself together and tries to build a relationship with Allie and Des, but it’s far from easy. Allie especially wants no part of her, but for the sake of the inheritance she tries.

It’s been a long time since I’ve read one of Mariah Stewart’s books, but I’ve always been a fan. I was thrilled to see she had a new series out and I wasn’t disappointed.

This is the first book in the series and it’s primarily Cara’s story, but all three sisters are heavily featured. We learn quite a bit about each ones struggles and heartaches. I found myself captivated by this book and quite interested in the restoration process of the theater. It was nice to see the sisters work together for a common goal.

I truly loved this book and couldn’t put it down. I did not want it to end. My favorite sister is Des, but Cara is a close second. It was easy to feel for all three women, although Allie not so much. LOL

Book #2 isn’t out until the spring of 2018 and it’s Des’ story. I’m looking forward to reading that one too.

Disclosure: I borrowed this e-book from the library. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. Family sagas definitely my cup of tea. Thanks for the review.

  2. Wow, two families, and neither on knew the other existed. My kind of family drama.

  3. Wow, two families, and neither on knew the other existed. My kind of family drama.


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