British novelist-screenwriter Bagshawe (The Go-To Girl) updates '70s mega-business romance Scrupleswith this internationally flavored fantasia on love, lies and shopping. After 13 years of marriage, jewelry magnate Pierre Massot suddenly disappears from his British-born wife Sophie's life. For seven more years, Sophie (née Roberts) stays in Paris raising son Tom and cowering before mother-in-law Katherine until, with her priest's blessing, she has Pierre declared legally dead and starts showing interest in the family business. Naïvely, she allows herself to be taken in personally and professionally by the new CEO, Gregoire Lazard, and finds herself fooled by the grasping overdressed Oklahoma-born PR executive, Judy Dean, who was Pierre's lover until he disappeared. Gradually, Sophie masters retail, the family and even loves again, but not without a lot of hard knocks. Jewels and couture (Sophie's a clothes horse) are described in more detail than the sex, while murder and betrayal in Mother Russia give this story of the rich and glamorous its dark side. But House of Massot shenanigans and the mystery of Pierre's disappearance don't put much rock beneath the glitter. (Apr.)Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Sparklesby Louise Bagshawe
Fabulously wealthy, internationally adored, the aristocratic Massot family owns one of the last great jewelry firms in Paris. But seven years have passed since the disappearance of the patriarch, Pierre Massot. With hope of his return all but extinguished, his beautiful young widow, Sophie, reluctantly declares her husband dead and takes control of the family business. But even as Sophie begins to look to the future, forces are conspiring to destroy the Massots—by unearthing the devastating secret from their past that Pierre may have died trying to protect.
Bagshawe’s sweeping story takes readers from the murky diamond mines of Soviet Russia to the cultural whirl of modern-day Paris, unraveling the mystery of Pierre Massot’s fate and the scandal and deceit that lies behind the Massot family fortune. Spanning continents and decades, Louise Bagshawe’s Sparkles is an addictive tale of ambition, betrayal, and romance.
When wealthy French jewelry mogul Pierre Massot disappears, his dutiful young wife, Sophie, waits seven years before declaring him dead, even though her mother-in-law and her son, Tom, disagree with her decision. Sophie decides to become actively involved with the family jewelry empire, working to revitalize it and save it from ruin and takeover. While doing so, she deals with her son's anger, a conniving CEO, a handsome business rival, Pierre's former mistress, and shocking family secrets. Fans of thick, glitzy, and glamorous novels in the vein of Judith Krantz should enjoy this one by British novelist Bagshawe (For All the Wrong Reasons), though they may be momentarily confused by the unannounced flashbacks, distracted by the meticulous detailing of clothing and jewelry (lots of Chanel and brooches), and disappointed by the lack of sex scenes. Recommended for public libraries.
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Meet the Author
Oxford-educated Louise Bagshawe worked in the record business before leaving at age twenty-three to write full-time. A bestselling novelist and screenwriter in the U.K., her work has been published in nine languages, and she has adapted her novels for major Hollywood film studios.
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In Paris, jewelry tycoon Pierre Massot vanishes. His British wife Sophie remains in the city raising their son Tom in hopes that Pierre will return. However, she is very unhappy besides there is no closure as the millions spent on investigations proved fruitless. She also has to put up with the bullying tactics of Pierre¿s mother Katherine. Finally after seven years have passed since her husband disappeared a fearful Sophie, over the objection of her martinet mother-in-law, has Pierre legally declared dead. --- Sophie begins to look into the House Massot business. Company CEO Gregoire Lazard offers her lessons in the boardooom and bedroom. Pierre¿s former lover American expatriate head of public relations Judy Dean ¿befriends¿ the widow to insure Sophie does not interfere with her get rich schemes. As Sophie learns the business, some of Pierre¿s darkest secrets including the Russian connection, she meets fellow Brit Hugh Montfort, who offers her real comfort though he himself has suffered from personal tragedy. --- When this thriller looks deep into the machinations of the missing Pierre, it is intoxicating as the audicne wants more when the story line focuses on the lifestyle especially the wardrobe of the rich and famous the plot suffers inertia as momentum is slowed. Still the cast is fully developed beyond the central lead character as the three females in Pierre¿s life and the four males (to include Pierre) in Sophie¿s life bring the plot alive. With a final plausible twist that will stun the audience, this book entertainingly SPARKLES with delight. --- Harriet Klausner
Chic Lit at its best - a good story for an airplane or a rainy day. Thoroughly enjoyed it! Wish B$N would import more of her books.
I really liked this book. It was the first one I had read by Louise Bagshawe. I would definitely be interested in another book of hers. I found the story captivating, a page turner, and easy read. I found myself rooting for Sophie. Some people are not who you think they would be. Who is the true protagonist or the antagonist. I would compare her to the likes of Barbara Taylor Bradford.
I found this story an engaging read. The plot was quite unpredictable - I didn't know what to expect next, which is always good. The characters were believable and glamorous, with plenty of in-fighting. Overall I thought Sparkles a good page-turner and can recommend it.