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Jewels Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 1993


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Dell; Reprint edition (May 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 044021422X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440214229
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.2 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #383,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Birthdays are a time for reflection, especially for Sarah, Duchess of Whitfield, who is awaiting the arrival of her far-flung family. Years earlier, reeling from her pending divorce, Sarah Thompson is force-marched through Europe on the grand tour by her concerned parents. Disinterested in the sons, grandsons, and nephews paraded before her by well-meaning acquaintances, Sarah chances upon William Whitfield, the Duke of Whitfield, 14th in line for succession to the English throne. Disarmed by his wit and intrigued by his intellect, Sarah allows William to become her companion in London, warning him they can only be friends. Undeterred, William dismisses Sarah's protestations that her divorce makes her unsuitable to be his duchess and finally convinces Sarah to marry him. While honeymooning in France, Sarah and William happen upon Chateau de la Meuze. Enchanted, the Whitfields buy and set about restoring the estate. But World War II looms, threatening their idyllic existence. Following the birth of their first child, Phillip, William joins the RAF when England declares war on Germany. Reluctantly, he leaves Sarah and Phillip at the chateau. German troops, led by the courtly commandant Joachim von Mannheim, take possession of the chateau to establish a hospital, removing Sarah and Phillip to the caretaker's cottage.

When the war ends, William, after being imprisoned for three years and barely surviving the torture that deprived him of the use of his legs, returns to his family. The Whitfields pick up threads of lives strained, but not broken, by war. Soon, they are approached by others who lost everything during the war except a few secreted heirlooms. But jewelry can't put food on the table, and the Whitfields begin purchasing jewelry to provide neighbors with much-needed cash. When William jokingly suggests opening a Paris store, a legacy is born: Whitfield's, Jewelers to the Crown. Over the next decades, which bring three more children, two more branches of Whitfields, and the death of her husband, Sarah is molded into a force to be reckoned with, capable of handling her willful children and a highly successful international business with equal aplomb. Steel paints a portrait of a family, imperfect as they may be, and the powerful matriarch who reminds them of the bond that transcends titles, money, and borders. --Alison Trinkle

From Publishers Weekly

In the Steel collectionoeuvre, which means works of art, is awk with following jewel metaphor , Jewels is merely a semiprecious gem. Set in the WW II era, the novel depicts the travails of its to elim dangler heroine, Sarah, Duchess of Whitfield. The beautiful debutante daughter of a wealthy American family, Sarah has endured the disgrace attending her divorce of her caddish first husband. Eventually she marries the charming and very rich Duke of Whitfield, who buys her a chateau in France. The rest of the novel follows the self-satisfied course of their usually happy since he's in prison camp at one point union. WW II offers Steel a chance to pump drama into this bland narrative, but she misses it. Sarah spends the war comfortably ensconced on the grounds of her chateau, looked out for by a solicitious German commander so polite she doesn't guess he has fallen in love with her. Meekly, he leaves the moment Sarah learns her husband, the duke, ? has survived a Nazi prison camp. After she nurses William back to health, their idyllic marriage placidly resumes. They are rich and envied. They eat well, dress well, live well, have or else mention first child above? children and open a jewelry store for amusement. The narrative's greatest conflict comes in the final chapters, when widowed Sarah has to deal with her unruly offspring. Costume jewelry has more sparkle than this uninspired tale. Major ad/promo; Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club main selections.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

The characters are so well written.
JerseyAmy
I loved this book when I read it in the early 1980's and I still love reading it in 2014!!!
Lisa Osbun
You have to keep reading to see whats going to happen next.
debra burla

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 14, 1997
Format: Hardcover
Absolutely one of my favorites by Danielle Steel! The main character is wonderfully portrayed as an intelligent, loving and faithful woman, even during the worst of times. This book reminds us how important family really is -- in the good times and the bad
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kerri (yellow_rose94@hotmail.com) on August 28, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is my favorite book by far by Danielle Steel. She is wonderful! This book was long, but that's what I loved about it. I never wanted it to end. I cried at parts and I laughed at parts. I loved every bit of it. The one thing about her books is that as soon as you finish one of her books, you want to run out and get another by her right away! I always have a Danielle Steel book right next to me it seems! The bottom line is, if you read ANY Danielle Steel book, then read Jewels. It's absolutely wonderful.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Beverly C. Sanders on March 11, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Danielle Steel is so good at what she does and this book is no exception. She writes about a very passionate married couple who goes through many trials and tribulations only to be faced with shortcomings of one of their childern. That said, this book tells about how the wife literally wills her near death war inflicked husband back to life. She also, after his revival, births three more children to add to the first child (son) they had together and moves on to developing a career for herself and the family. Ergo, the title, Jewels, is about how she created an empire of jewelry that brought her fame and fortune. After a successful store of Jewelry in Paris, she moves on to open a store in New York and a couple other places. Before turning her business over to the grown children, she loses her husband (a veteran) to the military contracted illness. Nevertheless, this heroine pulls off a successful life for herself even after his death. If you love a love story, you absolutely must read this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 20, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the best book by Ms. Steel! I have just finished reading it and it was wonderful. What I liked best was the romance between the Duke and Duchess of Whitfield. The romance is so strong and loving! It shows you what true love really is. I want to see the movie now! This is the best book, so read it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jamie from Books and Beverages on November 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Danielle Steel is an author I never thought I would read again, but recently that changed and here's why.

Back in the day I read a couple of Danielle Steel's books. And if we're honest, after the second one I thought, same ol, same ol in each book. I think she's a great writer (the sheer number of books written and best sellers can attest that she can captivate a reader), but I lost interest rather quickly, mainly because it simply isn't my preference of story. Fast forward several years and on my blog reader pops up this post about Danielle Steel and her work she does and the foundation she started after her son committed suicide in 1997 after a long battle with bipolar disorder. She wrote a book on her son's story, with the proceeds going to start a foundation to help with mental illness. It's always inspiring to see people truly commit to making the world a better place.

Anyway, since the post also mentioned bits of Steel's love history, I became intrigued. Enter one of my favorite websites: wikipedia. Talk about drama! Her first two novels were based off an affair she had with an inmate (as in jail), who she married after she divorced her first husband and then divorced a few years later. Wha?? After that, I went on a Danielle Steel internet investigation (I know, the things that happen when I'm on wiki), which led to discussion of her writing, her style, themes and how it's changed over the years. All that to say, that is why I picked Jewels to read. With World War Two as the setting and reviews of how different it was from the normal Steel novel, I was curious enough to read it.

It wasn't a bad read. It was different from the Steel novels I remember reading, but there was definitely plenty of the drama and scandal.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By L Murphy on September 15, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This story starts as Sarah Whitfield stands waiting for her children on the eve of her 75th birthday. We are then taken through the memory of her life.

Her first marriage to Freddie is a disaster as he regrets marrying her. finds her boring and is not ready for marriage anyway. Her parents take her on a trip round Europe when she divorces him to try and get over the trauma. When she gets to London she meets William, Duke of Whitfield. She falls in love with him and they buy a French chateau. When they are parted by war Sarah waits for Williams return and her chateau is taken over by the Germans, so she spends the war years living side by side with the Germans and befriends a commander.

We are taken through Sarah's 75 years and I preferred the first half of the book, ie pre war and war years to the second half ie after war. I found Sarah children completely unlikable, but then, I think there supposed to be. Especially Philip, what an ass. I thought Sarah was pretty shallow towards the end also, she didn't like her grand kids cause they were boring and pale skinned. She felt sorry for Philip because he had to have affairs because his wife was boring, much like Sarah with her first husband. Also it was ok for Emmanule to have an affair with minister because his wife was sick and they were doing no harm! For the first 2/3 s of this book, definitely 5 stars, last 1/3 3 stars.
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