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The Secret Lives of Dresses Paperback – February 10, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
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Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the publisher.
Then she receives a call, she has to return back home, her grandmother has suffered a stroke. Dora drops everything and returns to Forsyth, North Carolina with just the clothes on her back. This is't a problem though because she has a full closet at her grandmother's house, but it not your typical closet full of clothes, the closet is full of vintage dresses. Mimi runs a vintage dress shop and she has always brought home dresses she thinks would look great on Dora. As a child Dora played "dress up" with these clothes, but now with Mimi in the hospital, Dora must take over things at the dress shop and Mimi requires employees of the shop wear vintage clothing so she gets to wear the dresses out in public. Dora had been brought up being taught that a vintage dress can life a woman's spirit no matter the problem.
While working at the store she meets Mimi's friends and selfish relatives seem to appear out of the woodwork. But the best thing about working at the store was learning that some of the dresses came complete with their own story. Mimi had been writing the stories and giving them away to the customer who purchased the corresponding dress.
I LOVED IT!!!!!Read more ›
Hmm, I am not known for my terse reviews so I'll go a bit further. The novel starts out with the protagonist lacking style, purpose and direction and as the story progresses she gains all three. Sadly the story itself seems to have the reverse progression. The basic idea behind the story that clothes have lives of their own with back stories that influence the present day wearer is interesting and I actually liked the little vignettes that were interspersed throughout the story, but I never felt they were a part of the story. There is a reason that people say that "the clothes make the man" (or in this case woman). It is true that we feel different when we dress differently and every morning when we awake we generate a new person by the simple choice of what to wear, but that is only touched upon in the lightest way. The main character seems to almost accidentally generate her new persona as opposed to it being a true journey of discovery.
I'd really rather it just have been about the secret lives of dresses or about recognizing and discovering oneself through adversity. Either of those could have been good books, but together it just didn't quite jell.
The character development is also weak--how old is Con? There are so many unanswered questions and no suspense. I found myself skimming toward the end of the book.
Read A Vintage Affair instead--it is much more entertaining.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really enjoyed the character development. It wasn't just a love story, but most importantly, it was a family story.Published 1 month ago by TexasT
I enjoyed this book. There is nothing extremely profound in the story but I enjoyed it as a light and easy read. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Adri-Anne
If you like vintage clothing then you will enjoy this nice story about a girl, dresses and the lives they lead.Published 13 months ago by Paula Wolff
I really enjoyed this light, fun, "out of the box" book and i was able to read it in a week. The story moves along quickly tooPublished 13 months ago by sara leavell
Nice little story, nothing that requires much thought but a quick interesting read. Several recent
books have involved vintage clothing, odd. Read more