- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (April 18, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1501108611
- ISBN-13: 978-1501108617
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 132 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #246,537 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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My Mrs. Brown: A Novel Paperback – April 18, 2017
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"So genteel, so old-world, so self-effacing, so full of surprises--Mrs. Brown's entrance into the world of high fashion will delight you. She'll change the way you look at certain women, and she'll stay in your heart forever. Only Bette Davis could portray her remarkable excursion to New York when she goes on a secret mission that will bring you to tears." (Ilene Beckerman, author of Love, Loss, and What I Wore)
"In the gentle hands of Billy Norwich, the tale of the odyssey of a simple woman, an "invisible" woman, to the city becomes a wise and sensitive statement of the dignity and decency of ordinary lives. The moving and wonderfully entertaining Mrs. Brown has great heart and a real soul. Thank you, Billy, for this very human tribute to the women who too often pass unseen, quietly and courageously carrying on." (George Hodgman, author of Bettyville)
"My Mrs. Brown is a delightfully charming and poignant story that gets to the essence of why style matters, as a deeply personal expression of both who we are and who we want to be." (Kate Betts, author of My Paris Dream)
"Much like the classic Oscar de la Renta dress this charming book pays homage to, My Mrs. Brown is lovely, timeless, and a pleasure to behold." (Susan Rebecca White, author of A Soft Place to Land and A Place at the Table)
“An unassuming yet magnetic older woman becomes possessed by the notion of acquiring an Oscar de la Renta dress. [A] fairy tale of a novel by fashion writer Norwich…Despite her plain Yankee exterior, [Mrs. Brown] has a dignity and luminosity of spirit that draws people to her… Like its main character, appealing, sweet, old-fashioned—and, at heart, very sad.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“Meet a delightfully old-fashioned heroine in My Mrs. Brown…Even if you find Mrs. Brown anachronistic, with a gentle conservatism of an age long-gone, you come to like and respect her. Then, you come to love her…Goodness really is its own reward, says Norwich’s gentle-hearted book. Better yet, sometimes goodness is rewarded.” (BookPage)
"Smart and touching." (Dujour.com)
“Mrs. Brown's incredible adventures in storming the gates of haute couture...details of heroic persistence, culture and manners and all of the rest of what we are mostly missing these days.” (Liz Smith New York Social Diary)
“As a fashion journalist, William Norwich - Billy to his friends – knows a thing or two about celebrities getting dressed. But it was the anti-celebrity who inspired him to write My Mrs. Brown.” (W Magazine)
"Norwich crafts Mrs. Brown with the sensitivity of a seasoned sculptor....a flawless and immensely enjoyable tale of empowerment." (Patrik Henry Bass NY1)
About the Author
William Norwich is a writer, editor, and video and television reporter. He is the author of the novels My Mrs. Brown and Learning to Drive as well as the children’s book Molly and the Magic Dress. Norwich also has written introductions and essays for many pictorial books. Currently the editor for fashion and interior design at Phaidon Press, he has also written and edited for The New York Times Magazine, Vogue, Town & Country, Architectural Digest, and New York magazine. Norwich is a graduate of the writing program at Columbia University (MFA), Hampshire College (BA), and the Pomfret School. He lives in New York City.
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What I loved best was the sensitive way Mr. Norwich presented his main character, aging women and fantastic dreams all of which were believable. His writing is superb.
Hopefully this will be the beginning of a series of Mrs. Brown books continuing her story and those of her friends.
The message of this book is hope, positive attitude and love of your fellow man. Topics missing in current literature. Too bad for them. Hooray for William Norwich.
Whatever happened to dignity and kindness? Mrs. Brown embodies these lost wholesome qualities with grace and aplomb. She gives us a basic lesson in setting an intention and the force of maintaining an unwavering will in the twists and turns of her transformative heroine’s journey.
Most striking to me is the voice (assuming this is our dear author?) of the narrator. The tone of this running banter is refreshingly hilarious, while simultaneously driving a dead serious commentary on the state of affairs in this 21st century.
I found myself longing to remain in it’s world. From the get-go, I will admit I tried my damnedest to read as slowly as possible…Not! Norwich’s nuanced beguiling characters and his compelling storyline won over my attempted snail’s pace, and I admit that I’m now on page 54 of my second go-round.
This time, probably due to the cheerful news that the movie rights have been sold, I’m drinking it all in a bit more slowly and savoring the entertaining ideas of who will be cast in the film. We need great film with a glorious array of complex and nuanced female characters (with a few good men in supporting roles).
Thank you William Norwich for giving us the most witty, charming and touching little gem of a book!
This book started slow to me, but once it gained momentum I couldn't put it down. Mrs. Brown is an utterly endearing character whose simple sweetness and dignity comes through to the reader perfectly. This is what I would term a perfect 'beach read'. The relationships between the characters are overly simplified and how Mrs. Brown achieves her goal seems a bit to good to be true. But I was looking for a perfectly fun and easy read, which this offered.