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Elegance
     

Elegance

3.5 18
by Kathleen Tessaro
 

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Louise C. wants what Jackie O had ...

Unhappy with her looks, her life, and her empty marriage, Louise Canova needs help — and she finds it in a secondhand bookstore. A forty-year-old encyclopedia of style titled Elegance, this slim volume by formidable French fashion expert Madame Dariaux promises to transform even the plainest of women into

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Elegance 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Starts off strong but quickly begins to drift. A lot of time wasted on characters and scenarios that don't pay off or come to any interesting conclusion. The protagonist is unsympathetic -- her problems are all self-created. She doesn't seem to grow or change, even though that is supposedly the point of the story. Interesting idea, but not skillfully written.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a happy find! Amidst all the Bridget Jones rip-offs that try too hard and give us no one of interest, this book stands apart as a well-written, intelligent, thoughtful work. The protagonist is beautifully drawn, and the reader is with her for every step and every emotion of her journey. It's a wonderful thing when the contents of a book are as marvelous as its cover! (I liked this book so much, I got a copy of The Guide to Elegance by Madame Dariaux, which inspired this novel -- in fact, I'm giving copies of Elegance and The Guide as a pair for Christmas gifts to my girlfriends!)
Guest More than 1 year ago
Frome the front cover to the very last page, is a book well written and stylishly put together. I was consistantly wraped in the main character's journey to elegance through her life, friends, and lessons learned.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book's cover and black edging initially caught my eye. I then read the 'blurb' and decided that it might be an intersting read. Started reading it (while cooking supper!) the same day thinking I would just read leisurely; but I ended up finishing it in no time at all. Was very glad I bought it as it turned out to be a deceptively simple book that leaves you with warm and happy feelings in the end. Would write more praise about this book but am obviously not a writer so can't adequately express how wonderful this book is! Will definitely be on the lookout for her next one...hope I don't have to wait too long.
xoxo_leigh More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed the combination of the book inside a book. Found much of Madame Dariaux's "Elegance" book excerpts to be quite entertaining, as a look back at women's etiquette but almost as fascinating is how the rules still currently apply. It's interesting to think which story enabled the other. Was it the hope of grace and sophistication that the book "Elegance" promised or was it Louis's determination in making a change in her boring, unhappy, empty marriage life? I really enjoy Kathleen's witty, clever and sarcastic writing style following Louise as she fumbles and fails as she awkwardly finds her path to inner elegance through her divorce, friendships, dating and self-revelation. A very fun, clever and realistic read. xoxo_leigh
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Vovo More than 1 year ago
I was trying to find the actual book, but, in the end, I could only find the audio book, which may have hindered me from fully appreciating the novel the way it deserves. So I will write what I was able to gather, and I will suggest to readers that they read the actual book, because there is something to be said about the feel of pages between hands, the smell of paper, the experience of reading as well as the process of it. I found that Louise was very easy to relate to and indeed to have empathy for. Her life was a bit messy and complex, and we follow her as she stumbles through a simple guide to elegance. Although somewhat crude at times, the book nicely portrayed the common mistakes that many people make in fashion and in romance. I especially liked the quotes from Madame Dariaux.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Some classic references to amazing attire tied with a beautiful bow of a modern dance cinderella story told backwards.
Guest More than 1 year ago
To be honest, my friend lent this book to me and, a 'cover girl' who usually sticks to historical romances, I was hesitant to read a book titled ELEGANCE with a wispy model-type figure on a black & white cover. I can't even tell you how long I avoided starting this book--it sitting on my nightstand table for months--but once I did, I was SO happily surprised (and feeling a little bit guilty at mistrusting my friend's judgement). I loved it! I know both myself and many of my friends have 'been' Louise many a time--and relating to her, I often found myself cringing in sympathy or laughing out loud at the everyday horrors of Louise's imperfect/normal life. A quick, light-hearted read, I highly recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a delight of a book! An interesting, three-dimensional heroine and a supporting cast of charming minor characters. A true feel-good treat. Fans of 'What Not to Wear' and 'America's Next Top Model' will adore this frothy tale.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A great summertime book. Its funny how a 'how to book' can have an influence on people.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book was enjoyable because of the old, odd excerpts from Genevieve Dariaux's Elegance. It made me want that book also. The story typifies many American women's need to makeover themselves every so often but it makes it a fun event. I found the book to be fun and it would be a great book to make into an altered book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I had read good things about this book and wasn't disappointed. I enjoyed it throughtly. Yes, some of the advice is dated-isn't that part of the fun. Overall, I laughted and delighted in the evolution into swan of the ugly duckling heroine. What is surprising is that that old silly advice really does still resonate. LOVED IT!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you think that you will get some advice from this book on being elegant then save your money, or better yet, your effort. The book lures you in very well in the beginning with well written instructions but wanes down dramatically when it passes the 200 page mark, too far to stop. The antiquated ways of elegance explained in this book are downright tacky, corny, simply unacceptable in this day and age. It is of no surprise that the main character ends up with someone who could care less about her clothes, or Wellingtons! Yes, this book is about being English, and acting English although the desperately seeking elegance gal is American, interesting right.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this was a very unique idea for a book, but the author lost me half way though. I loved the excerpts from the old book about 'elegance', but it seemed like this chick had every cliche' problem on earth! Suddenly in one chapter, out of the blue, you find out she has an eating disorder. What? At the beginning of the book the girl was fat! Plus, I was soooo sick of hearing her whine about stupid things. (oh, boo-hoo, she has to go to Ascot) It's not a completely bad book, but it could have been much better.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a fan of chick lit and especially those novels that invoke the glamour of a more gracious time, I was excited about this book. Unfortunately the somewhat charming beginning evolves into a horrible, self-pitying, vulgar diatribe by the whining narrator who is so very preoccupied with her 'shocking' dark past. Neither truly romantic nor truly modern, the moral of the story is: This is a tale, truly told by an idiot, lacking in any kind of sophistication or intelligence.