From the author of How Paris Became Paris, a sweeping history of high finance, the origins of high fashion, and a pair of star-crossed lovers in 18th-century France.
Paris, 1719. The stock market is surging and the world’s first millionaires are buying everything in sight. Against this backdrop, two families, the Magoulets and the Chevrots, rose to prominence only to plummet in the first stock market crash. One family built its name on the burgeoning financial industry, the other as master embroiderers for Queen Marie-Thérèse and her husband, King Louis XIV. Both patriarchs were ruthless money-mongers, determined to strike it rich by arranging marriages for their children.
But in a Shakespearean twist, two of their children fell in love. To remain together, Louise Magoulet and Louis Chevrot fought their fathers’ rage and abuse. A real-life heroine, Louise took on Magoulet, Chevrot, the police, an army regiment, and the French Indies Company to stay with the man she loved.
Following these families from 1600 until the Revolution of 1789, Joan DeJean recreates the larger-than-life personalities of Versailles, where displaying wealth was a power game; the sordid cells of the Bastille; the Louisiana territory, where Frenchwomen were forcibly sent to marry colonists; and the legendary “Wall Street of Paris,” Rue Quincampoix, a world of high finance uncannily similar to what we know now. The Queen’s Embroiderer is both a story of star-crossed love in the most beautiful city in the world and a cautionary tale of greed and the dangerous lure of windfall profits. And every bit of it is true.
Oh my, if you want a book on the beginning of Paris fashion then you need to read this book! It is an amazing in depth of information and details of the Paris fashion era. It makes you realize that the “fancy” looks we see today does not hold a candle to how they looked in the beginning.
This is a non-fiction book, so I am quite honestly not a reader of non-fiction so my review is not as in depth as it would be for a fiction book. I rarely read non-fiction so I apologize for the lack of depth to my review.
I received this book from Net Galley for this review.