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Mademoiselle Chanel: A Novel
by C. W. Gortner

Published: 2015-03-17
Hardcover : 416 pages
4 members reading this now
2 clubs reading this now
2 members have read this book

For readers of The Paris Wife and Z comes this vivid novel full of drama, passion, tragedy, and beauty that stunningly imagines the life of iconic fashion designer Coco Chanel—the ambitious, gifted laundrywoman’s daughter who revolutionized fashion, built an international empire, and ...

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Introduction

For readers of The Paris Wife and Z comes this vivid novel full of drama, passion, tragedy, and beauty that stunningly imagines the life of iconic fashion designer Coco Chanel—the ambitious, gifted laundrywoman’s daughter who revolutionized fashion, built an international empire, and become one of the most influential and controversial figures of the twentieth century.

Born into rural poverty, Gabrielle Chanel and her siblings are sent to orphanage after their mother’s death. The sisters nurture Gabrielle’s exceptional sewing skills, a talent that will propel the willful young woman into a life far removed from the drudgery of her childhood.

Transforming herself into Coco—a seamstress and sometime torch singer—the petite brunette burns with ambition, an incandescence that draws a wealthy gentleman who will become the love of her life. She immerses herself in his world of money and luxury, discovering a freedom that sparks her creativity. But it is only when her lover takes her to Paris that Coco discovers her destiny.

Rejecting the frilly, corseted silhouette of the past, her sleek, minimalist styles reflect the youthful ease and confidence of the 1920s modern woman. As Coco’s reputation spreads, her couturier business explodes, taking her into rarefied society circles and bohemian salons. But her fame and fortune cannot save her from heartbreak as the years pass. And when Paris falls to the Nazis, Coco is forced to make choices that will haunt her.

An enthralling novel of an extraordinary woman who created the life she desired, Mademoiselle Chanel explores the inner world of a woman of staggering ambition whose strength, passion and artistic vision would become her trademark.

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Discussion Questions

Suggested by Members

We really didn't need any questions to start up the discussion. The details of her life started immediately.
by janetbals (see profile) 03/21/18

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

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Book Club Recommendations

French related food, table decorations, and personal french dress
by janetbals (see profile) 03/21/18
The hostess made a wonderful concoction of pears and chicken. Absolutely delicious. The tables was exquisite with decorations of pearls and sample Chanel #5 packets. To top the evening the hostess served delicious french pastries from a local bakery.

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
by pjrossman (see profile) 08/10/20

 
  "Admirers of Coco Chanel"by janetbals (see profile) 03/21/18

It was of general opinion that everyone loved and respected Coco Chanel for her revolutionary change in the world of fashion. Not as much respect for her personal life.

 
by catzpawz00 (see profile) 01/26/16

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