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Scent of Triumph

Scent of Triumph

4.4 22
by Jan Moran

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"Jan Moran is the new queen of the epic romance."- USA Today best-selling author Rebecca Forster

When French perfumer Danielle Bretancourt steps aboard a luxury ocean liner, leaving her son behind in Poland with his grandmother, she has no idea that her life is about to change forever. The year is 1939, and the declaration of war on the European

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Scent of Triumph 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
DiiMI More than 1 year ago
Talk about falling completely into a book! Scent of Triumph by Jan Moran will take you back in time, to another world full of sights, sounds, and yes, scents. You’ll feel the ocean spray, smell the scents in the air, feel the breezes carrying those scents. Danielle Bretancourt Von Hoffman, as the heroine, was the perfect window into the devastation and pain of World War II, as she lived through each dark moment of the Nazi’s invasion and the lengths people will go to in order to fight back and live. Faced with the horrors of the war and the feelings of the era regarding women as entrepreneurs, Danielle travels to America to start a new life, struggling to care for her family and start a business of her own, while maintaining her own identity and traditions. Jan Moran has done a marvelous job of re-creating the horrors of World War II, the social and economic realities of the era. An emotionally beautiful work with vividly detailed backgrounds and characters with depth and strength. A copy of this book was provided by NetGalley and Briarcliffe Press in exchange for my honest review.
ReadersFavorite4 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Maria Beltran for Readers' Favorite "Scent of Triumph" is a historical novel built on incidents taking place during the Second World War. After the conclusion of business meetings in the United States, Danielle and Max von Hoffman returned to Europe by ship. It was just a couple of days after the invasion of Poland and the boat they were in was sunk by a German U-boat. This heralded the major changes in the life of perfumer Danielle Bretancourt. In swift succession, she lost the people closest to her. Being of Jewish origin, her family suffered and in an effort to find her little son Nicky, who was left behind in Poland, she joined the Resistance in France. Unable to find her son and devastated by the loss of her husband, father, brother and sister in law, Danielle went to the US with her mother, daughter and niece, where another struggle awaits her. Belonging to a family of perfumers, she certainly has the “nose” for scents and this was her ticket back to wealth and influence. Jan Moran writes about heart-wrenching despair and devastation in such a way that everyone can get easily carried away. Her debut novel is about families torn apart during the Second World War. It is a story of courage and determination in the face of overwhelming despair. It is about wealth lost and regained and love that is lost. The events in Danielle Bretancourt's interesting life unfold in a swift pace that seem to match the urgency of life during war time Europe. The author weaves her story in such a way that it is difficult to put the book down. Every chapter presents a tapestry of overwhelming emotion that, as a reader, I find very exciting. This novel brings me back to the 1940's when the world suffered the indignities of war. It seemed unbelievable that anyone can rise above this kind of devastation and this is perhaps the most important lesson we get from Danielle's story. "Scent of Triumph" is also a story of love between two people whose personal circumstances prevent them from being together. For love to flourish, they have to fight against all odds.     
ReadersFavorite3 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Patricia Day for Readers' Favorite Danielle Bretancourt von Hoffman is on board the Newell-Grey Explorer, on her way to Paris. The ship is in the middle of the Atlantic and war has just been declared. The Germans have invaded Poland. Danielle’s family is back in Poland. Business matters demanded her presence in New York and that is the reason why she is on board the Newell-Grey. Her mother Sofia is battling cancer and is too weak to take the journey. Choosing to remain behind, she promises to care for Danielle’s young son Nicky until Danielle returns home. It was a decision that would prove to be a huge mistake on her part. Now, as the ship on which Danielle travels is torpedoed, she is not at all certain she will ever see them again. This very engrossing story takes you on a journey of romance, loss, horror, war and peace. Danielle overcomes many of the challenges thrust into her young life, while others leave her stranded and in despair. Her sheer determination helps her take each new step even though at times she lacks the strength to even think.  I found this book to be a very easy read. There are great characters and it is a captivating story. I knew when the first page grabbed my attention that the book was going to be a good one. The deeper I got into the story, the more engrossing I found it. There is no doubt that "Scent of Triumph" is a thoroughly enjoyable story and a triumph in its own right. I loved it!
ReadersFavorite2 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Gayani Hathurusingha for Readers' Favorite In her novel "The Scent of Triumph" Jan Moran takes her readers to a hectic world. The start of the Second World War paves the way to the crisis in her novel, separating her characters from each other in a heartbreaking manner. Jan Moran functions as a chronicler of actual history in her presentation of the chaotic realities of war. Danielle, the protagonist of the novel, is engaged in a sea voyage, wishing to expand her career as a skilled perfume blender. The outbreak of war interferes with the journey and her life. Forced to stay away from her family because of the intensity of war, how would she win back her life which starts slipping away through her fingers? Will she be able to find her son who was lost in the confusion of the war? The novel "The Scent of Triumph" is proof of the writer's ability to depict the diverse impacts of war on each and every individual. When the peacefulness of the protagonist's life is challenged by war the reader tends to question the sanity of those who cause war. Even though war provides the novel with its background, it is not the main concern of the novelist; her focus is on the inner strength of humanity which makes people tougher when they emerge from the hardships of life. The plot is highly emotional, dramatic and even inspiring. It is not another war tragedy. It follows that special quality humans have which cannot be destroyed by tragedy.
ReadersFavorite1 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Kathryn Bennett for Readers' Favorite "Scent of Triumph" by Jan Moran introduces us to a gifted young woman born in Paris, named Danielle Bretancourt von Hoffman. You may ask what her gift is. Danielle has such a sensitive nose that she can not only smell the faint scents of a perfume but recall thousands of essences by memory alone. World War II broke out in 1939 and raged its way across Europe leaving no country unaffected by what was happening. Danielle and her family find themselves swept up into wartime. When her husband and son are trapped behind enemy lines, Danielle takes it upon herself to spy for France. Soon she must flee from Europe and begin again plying her gifted nose to make a living. Jan Moran spins a story that follows Danielle through ups and downs, losses and gains, and even gives a glimpse of old Hollywood, while still in the middle of a war. Any Historical Fiction fan is going to love this book that Jan Moran has written. For me the book started a little bit slowly but it only took about three chapters for me to really get hooked onto the story. In Danielle, Jan Moran has created a heroic 'stop at nothing' type of heroine, a woman who, despite the circumstances a war throws at her, refuses to give up fighting. I love a character with fighting spirit especially when it is something we can relate to. You can tell that Jan Moran did a lot of research on the time period, and that makes the book more of an enjoyable read. While the characters may be imaginary, the time period is not. Seeing justice done to such a well-documented time in the world's history is gratifying. The prose is stunningly spun and describes scenes so beautifully that you almost feel as if you are watching a movie in your head, instead of reading a book. 
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Alice DiNizo for Readers' Favorite "Scent of Triumph" is a well-written novel that captures the drama of World War II and the people who lived and loved back in those threatening years. The main character Danielle Bretancourt has been raised in Paris as the daughter of a Jewish mother and Catholic father. Her marriage to a much older German aristocrat, Max, has produced a son, Nicky, and, shortly into the story, a daughter named Jasmin after one of the floral scents that the Bretancourt family uses to make perfumes in their home in the south of France. Max fights against the Nazis who are ruining his beloved homeland and Nicky is stranded in Poland with his grandmother Sofia. Surrounded by death and horror, Danielle takes Jasmin, her niece Liliana and her shell-shocked mother, Marie, who has also witnessed death, and flees to America and to Los Angeles where they are impoverished but free from war's harm. Can Danielle survive the horrors she has witnessed? And where does Jon Newell-Gray fit into her complicated life? Jan Moran has created a novel of a young woman's triumphs after numerous setbacks and missteps that will recall the writings of Danielle Steele and Barbara Taylor Bradford. Danielle, her husband Max von Hoffman and addicted but charming Cameron Murphy, her true love Jon Newell-Gray, her family and friends like Abigail Newell-Gray and Lou Silverman are believable and seem real products of those wartime years. The plot line moves with resolvable twists and turns to the story's happy ending. I am sure "Scent of Triumph" will be a popular book for readers everywhere to place on their "must-read" lists.
b00kr3vi3ws More than 1 year ago
Set during the World War II era, the story follows the life of Danielle Bretancourt. As pregnant Danielle and her husband travels from New York to England after business trip, the Nazis threaten to sink their ship as England declares war on the Germans. That’s just the beginning. Finding herself alone and helpless during the war, Danielle taps into her inherent talent of perfumery. She creates her own perfume that leaves Hollywood in a wowed daze. All the while she also tries her best to do anything and everything in her power to reunite with her husband and son.  The character of Danielle is all about strength, perseverance and resilience. I really liked her because being pregnant and away from family without any news during the war times cannot be easy on a person. Yet she simply rolls up her sleeves and gets to work in order to survive and to reunite her family.  She is like phoenix, toiling against most difficult situations and rising from it victorious. While there are various other characters in this novel, playing different parts to give a formation to the storyline and taking it forward - to me, they all seemed a bit pale in comparison to Danielle. Jonathan, a rich businessman from the shipping industry, plays an important role in the story as he is attracted to Danielle. He is a good man. The plot is pretty much straightforward and predictable. But that didn’t stop me from reading the book as Jan Moran already had me through Danielle and her style of writing. While I cannot label the author’s style and language as exotic, there is something very charming about it - especially at the times when she is narrates about different scents. Overall, it’s a great historical fiction with romance, drama and adventure in it. Whats not to like?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Scent of Triumph took me into an amazing journey from France to America. Through the first pages I thought that I was going to read a story similar to Titanic but oh!! Was I ever wrong? Jan Moran did an excellent job in keeping the reader eager trying to keep up with the next scene. Danielle is a strong courageous woman that spied for the French resistance, and I fell in love with her character. My mother was one of those amazing spies so I felt a clear connection to the heroine of this story. Danielle lived through some nail biting situations during the tremulous times of II world war. The war destroyed the days of tranquility and beauty in her life and threw her world into a whirling tornado. She endured the horror that enveloped her life when her husband and son were lost behind enemy lines. She was forced to flee France and come to America, where she picked up her broken heart and the fragments of her life and started over again with more gusto and more determination. She developed her signature perfume that mesmerized Hollywood. Jan Moran blends smoothly into those pages a mixture of so many tangible feeling such as loss, fear, love, hope, and self-identity. The book is enticing and I know you would love it! When I finally finished the book I found myself wanting more but there was no more ¿. I do want to see the book as a movie, however I don’t think anyone can portrait on the screen what Jan has put so superbly on paper. I am a fan!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Scent of Triumph is a historical masterpiece. Nazis, spies, WWII, nations in mourning, sinking ships, family secrets, heartbreak, new love, renewed hope... this book has everything. Throughout it all, the protagonist Danielle, soldiers on, creating something from nothing and everything from something. Scent of Triumph is a delicious treat for the senses. I enjoyed reading about Danielle's perfume creations and the amazing landscapes she travels through in Poland, France, England, and the United States. The characters are real and the story is scentational from beginning to end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a wonderful day I have had with Danielle and her family! This book is very sweeping in it's scope: from Poland and France, through WW2 and then to America and the new life she makes for herself and her family. In some ways, much like when she works on her perfumes, Danielle dreams of what she has had and what she has now as she blends the past and all it's pain and bittersweetness with hope for a better tomorrow. Reminscent of the Emma Harte saga of Barbara Taylor Bradford and multiple historical dramas of Danielle Steel, this book is historically present but not overly dramatic. I love perfume and learned a lot in this book about that too. It's truly a scent that will linger long past archiving this book.
gaele More than 1 year ago
Stars  3.5 As a fan of historic fiction, the era surrounding World War II has always fascinated: different but sill familiar, a clear villain to abhor, and people struggling to survive and thrive against desperate odds.  Jan Moran uses the backdrop of war and change to bring us the story  of Danielle Bretancourt and follows her journey.   Danielle is, at the outset, a Nose: one of those blessed with the ability to distinguish and remember distinct scents, highly prized by perfumers.  Married to a successful businessman, pregnant with her second child, and her eldest son in the care of his grandmother, the story opens at sea, heading for England from the US in September 1939.   Europeans, at that time, were familiar with the rise of Hitler, and whether it was a wait and see attitude, or a sort of blithe disregard to the  threat, the continent and the world are on the edge of massive change. With England’s declaration of War on Germany, the quiet passage across the Atlantic soon is disrupted by this war, and Danielle and her husband are sent to England.  The early chapters are portent of things to come: a story that is laced with dramatic events, some teetering on the edge of melodrama,  the multiple subplots are simple backdrop to Danielle and the strength of character and determination she shows.  Her character is, fortunately, believable and solidly drawn: she has a sense of who she is, where her strengths lie, and a wonderful ability to transform herself to fit the role most needed at the time Most emotionally present in her story is the frequent insets of Danielle’s devotion to her son, and the questions that surround his whereabouts, health and future (if any) as she had left him behind with his grandmother before  war was declared.  A story that spans multiple years, it was a read that was intriguing, even as parts were overburdened with melodramatic reactions not necessary to the plot. The war years were horrid, and Danielle’s ability to morph and change to fit situations was beautifully done:  intelligent and with an innate flair for fashion and her perfumer’s nose, she was able to redefine herself for the world’s eye repeatedly.   Several twists and turns lead the reader on an emotional journey that keeps Danielle at the forefront: not just a witness to the changes  in her life but an active participant and captain, steering her path in ways she feels will ensure her survival.   Danielle was a character that shone through the story, while some twists and moments were overworked to add dramatic effect, the  strength of her character as written by Moran allowed readers to keep her at the forefront of the story. Indomitable yet facile in her ability to react and grab for every opportunity presented, Danielle’s story does stick with readers long after the final page is turned.  I received an eBook copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.  
BirdhouseBooks More than 1 year ago
I love historical fiction and find the 1940's a fascinating era, so I knew I would enjoy this read. The period details were so interesting, and I enjoyed learning more about the perfume business through the details of this novel. Danielle is a strong woman who shows a lot of bravery. She works hard, achieves a lot, and longs to be with the man she loves. Their love story was the strongest part of the novel for me. The descriptions of life in Europe during World War II and later in Los Angeles were all very interesting. The depiction of glamorous 1940's Hollywood was my favorite setting of the book. This is an old fashioned book, in a good sense, and reminded me a bit of Barbara Taylor Bradford's novels. The book is a fast paced read, and would make a good movie. I think fans of sweeping books with a historical 1940's setting will enjoy Scent of Triumph.
KLS500 More than 1 year ago
Remarkable read.. all 800 some pages of it! It hooked me on the first page and didn't let go until the last. Someone else mentioned it was reminiscent of Danielle Steel's early works and I would fully agree with that compliment. This is the kind of book to curl up with and get lost in the past.
nhr3bookcrazyNR More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book.  While I found Danielle a wonderfully strong and brave figure I found it hard to believe she could accomplish all that she did in such a brief period of time.  I applaud her courage and her many talents and the ability to survive and overcome.  The story really was powerful.  For me, the story got a bit bogged down for a while and then, suddenly, it all seemed very rushed at the end.  OVerall, I enjoyed the book, the time period, and the settings, and the ideas of perfume and fashion that were threaded throughout the storyline.
ErinOhio More than 1 year ago
The Scent of Triumph, by Jan Moran, is a beautiful book on so many levels! For some reason, I become often really attached to books on perfume, or other such goods/products that are passed down as an art form from generation to generation. That the novel was set amid the turmoil of WWII, just made the book more exciting for me as it’s one of the historical periods that I most like to read about, especially in terms of what happened to families, occupations, and in turn, how their lives were most often changed. You can see quite easily upon reading that Moran did extensive research into the time and place for this book. Couple that with exquisite character development, with characters who are fully dimensional and connective, as well as lush descriptions and fluid sentences, and this novel came together as one that I had a hard time ever putting down. It’s a novel that absorbs and captivates you, compelling to read it in one sitting. Not only that, but I love reading about women who overcome adversity by showing great courage and strength. In her main female character of Danielle Bretancourt Von Hoffman, we have a woman of such caliber and yet who holds so much grace. She is a perfumer in an old family business and she’s talented, as she has the gift of scent, one in which allows her to pick up nuances of fragrances and how they react together, in order to create perfection. It’s her passion, as is keeping her family business and history alive for future generations. When WWII breaks out, she’s left to rebuild her life and her business, to use her art form and gifts to start anew again in a new place. From Paris to Hollywood, Danielle has to leave her life behind and fit into the glitz and glamour of America in the 1940s. I LOVED all the details of perfume and fashion of the time. Moran certainly also did her research in these areas. Chanel is one of my very favorites, as a strong business woman and innovator, and Danielle’s spirit mirrors a little of Coco. She’s very driven in a male-dominated world and it’s her passion for her work that drives her forward. Of course, as with the alluding tension in the opening scene, there is also romance. But it’s the type of romance I prefer, a little more subtle and not overpowering Danielle’s obvious independence. It’s enough to make you want to turn the pages, but not distracting to the overall story. It’s more a ships passing in the night-type of romance. The type that makes your own heart flutter for them. You’ll definitely feel for Danielle as she also struggles with family and life moments in regards to children and how families are torn apart during war time. I know I anguished a bit for her and yet cheered in her determination to keep herself, her family, and her art afloat amid very difficult times and circumstances. There’s a lot packed into this book, but you never feel burdened by any of it or not complete, and I felt that all parts are intertwined elegantly together into a story of devotion and zeal. This one woman will steal your heart with her unwavering spirit. An eloquent novel that will sweep you back in time to a place of struggle and fervor for living, Scent of Triumph will leave you breathless, yet overjoyed at the nature of women who struggle to define and keep hold of their families and their art. If you like any of M.J. Rose’s novels like I do, especially The Collector of Dying Breaths, you’ll love Moran’s Scent of Triumph. Moran’s ability to take you back in time and place, opening your mind and senses, is truly her gift as a storyteller and a writer. I hope to read more by Moran in the future! If you want to get lost in a book, I highly recommend this one!
TheAvidReader_KA More than 1 year ago
Scent of Triumph by Jan Moran is a historical romance set during World War II. It starts in September of 1939. Danielle Bretancourt von Hoffman (a perfumer with the “nose”) and her husband, Max (whose company makes crystal including perfume bottles) are heading back home to Poland on the Newell-Grey Explorer. During the voyage Germany invades Poland and England declares war on Germany. Danielle and Max are worried about his mother, Sofia and their son, Nicky who were in Poland. Sofia was supposed to take Nicky and head for Paris, but Danielle has no way of knowing if they escaped Poland. On their voyage to New York they had met Jonathan (Jon) Newell-Grey, heir to the Newell-Grey shipping fortune. Jon and Danielle were attracted to each other, but since Danielle is married (and pregnant) they become friends. Jon is also on the return voyage with them to England. Once England declares war on Germany, their ship is attacked by a German submarine. Scent of Triumph will take us from London to Paris to Los Angeles during World War II. Danielle will never stop looking for her son, Nicky while taking care of her family and struggling to survive. Scent of Triumph is the story of Danielle and what she will do to find her son and take care of her family. I give Scent of Triumph 4.25 out of 5 stars. Scent of Triumph contains beautiful descriptions of the perfumes that Danielle creates as well as the clothing. I loved the ending of this book. If you like historical books (especially the World War II era) and romance, you will enjoy Scent of Triumph. I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley (and the publisher) in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
For those who love historical romantic espionage thrillers set during WWIi this book is for you. I also loved background material about perfune creation & fashion during this period. It reminded me a little bit of Winds of War & it could make a good made forTV miniseries!
janeML More than 1 year ago
Loved the book, kept my attention and wanted to finish it. A bit of romance, history of WII and great ending.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book had unexpected twists and turns that kept me engaged. Good book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
anita60 More than 1 year ago
This was an okay historical fiction page turner, but some of the scenarios were a little too implausible, such as the sinking of a ship where our pregnant heroine is almost killed to be followed by her attendance at a dinner party later that same evening. Despite multiple tragedies and losses, she overcomes it all to find love again and again and become very successful in her business. The horrors of WWII are a big part of the book as well. Overall, a good summer read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I like the book. Interesting. If you are a fan of Danielle Steele's early stuff, this is right up your alley. This book is quite predictable though. I'm only about half way through the book. Its 835 pages give or take.