Friday, March 20, 2015

Review: Mademoiselle Chanel by CW Gortner

Mademoiselle Chanel
by CW Gortner

Publisher: William Morrow
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  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. 

Kritters Thoughts:  Gabrielle Chanel was born into a hard life and doesn't have the most positive childhood, but she had tenacity from day one to the very end!  Although this is a piece of fiction, I think that many of the stories were based in fact and I loved learning so much about such an iconic person who made big impacts on the clothes I wear (not a Chanel owner, but in the work clothes I wear.

I love reading historical fiction because it has the heartbeat of a story, but based in facts and I end up learning things along the way.  This book took us through most of Chanel's life and I am glad that her childhood was included, it provided the foundation and history so the reader knew where Chanel was coming from when we saw how she acted in her adulthood.  

spoiler alert - The biggest thing I learned about Coco Chanel is the amount of men she had in her life, but she never married a one and didn't have a child to bequeath her empire to.  I can't imagine building such a company and not having someone in your family to inherit it.  

I loved this book!  Anyone who loves historical fiction, must pick this one up and read it!  It would be a great addition to your collection.
Rating: absolutely loved it and want a sequel (not sure you can get one!)

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from TLC Book Tours.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.


  1. Thanks for being a part of the tour!

  2. Thank you so much for hosting me and for your lovely review. I'm honored to be here!


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