Review: Radio Girls

Title: Radio Girls
Publisher: NAL
ISBN: 9780451475565
Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Publisher, NetGalley


The Great War is over, and change is in the air, in this novel that brings to life the exciting days of early British radio…and one woman who finds her voice while working alongside the brilliant women and men of the BBC. 

London, 1926. American-raised Maisie Musgrave is thrilled to land a job as a secretary at the upstart British Broadcasting Corporation, whose use of radio—still new, strange, and electrifying—is captivating the nation. But the hectic pace, smart young staff, and intimidating bosses only add to Maisie’s insecurity. 

Soon, she is seduced by the work—gaining confidence as she arranges broadcasts by the most famous writers, scientists, and politicians in Britain. She is also caught up in a growing conflict between her two bosses, John Reith, the formidable Director-General of the BBC, and Hilda Matheson, the extraordinary director of the hugely popular Talks programming, who each have very different visions of what radio should be. Under Hilda’s tutelage, Maisie discovers her talent, passion, and ambition. But when she unearths a shocking conspiracy, she and Hilda join forces to make their voices heard both on and off the air…and then face the dangerous consequences of telling the truth for a living.

My Thoughts:

Radio Girls takes place in the 1920's, which was such an interesting historical period. So many things changing. A lot of out with the old, in with the new. The war is over, the suffragette movement underway, advances in technology . . .  It would be a great time to be alive to witness. 

I don't often find myself jealous over a character, but I did with Maisie Musgrave. Maisie has begun her career at the BBC during its infant years. She crosses paths with many interesting people as well as finds her mentor in Hilda Matheson. Under Hilda's tutelage, Maisie finds her voice, her passion, and ultimately herself. 

But not everyone is happy with the women being allowed to work, and certain groups wish to take over the BBC and run it the 'right' way. Maisie stumbles upon a mystery that threatens to undo the progress the women's rights movement accomplished. With the help of Hilda and her friends, Maisie decides to take on the nefarious group.

I really liked reading this book. I love the time period, the history, the characters. However, this book was not a fast read. The plot was a bit slow, and the book was about halfway through before the I felt the action of the story really picked up. I enjoyed the day-to-day activities of the BBC and learning a bit of the history behind it. I would recommend this book to historical fiction fans. Just go into it knowing it's not action packed, but good nonetheless.