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The Paris Seamstress (Free Preview: Chapters 1-4)

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4.11  ·  Rating details ·  1,973 ratings  ·  211 reviews
For readers of Lilac Girls and The Nightingale comes a World War II novel that spans generations, crosses oceans, and proves just how much two young women are willing to sacrifice for love and family.

1940: As the Germans advance upon Paris, young seamstress Estella Bissette is forced to flee everything she's ever known. She's bound for New York City with her signature go
...more
Kindle Edition, 464 pages
Published August 11th 2018 by Forever
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Julie I found it very difficult to follow the characters. This is an issue with me with many books though. I am not good with names. I needed a flow chart o…moreI found it very difficult to follow the characters. This is an issue with me with many books though. I am not good with names. I needed a flow chart or a family tree or something. It was confusing. (less)

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Anna
Dec 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Estella Bissette grew up in Paris dreaming of fashion and design. When she inadvertently becomes involved in transferring secret materials for the resistance, her mother persuades her to flee to America. Starting with almost nothing but determination and a couple of close friends, Estella builds a fashion empire.
Current day, Fabienne Bissette is in NYC to spend time with her grandmother, Estella. As Fabienne celebrates her grandmother's legacy, the secrets, tragedies and loves of her past are r
...more
Almira
Apr 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another look at the fashion industry during WWII and after.
Four named "characters" were indeed real people Harry Thaw (he really did the murder described). Evelyn Nesbit (she was really raped by both Harry and Stanford), John Barrymore (the actor) and Stanford White.

In the days before the Nazis stormed Paris, Estella and her mother worked in a fashion house. Estella's mother insists that Estella leave Paris and go to America to be safe. Crossing the Atlantic the ship (SS Washington) is nearly to
...more
Georgettenecessities Gmailcom
It seems I am not in the majority with my rating of this book. I purchased it because it was said to be on par with The Nightingale. The similar aspects were...Paris in World War II and women focus characters....but, to me, did not come close to a satisfying read as was The Nightingale. I was tired of all the dialogue which seemed to be merely page fillers. What I did enjoy...since I follow that era of fashion design...was the detail in description of the industry at that time. I found myself tr ...more
Cassie
Sep 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Estella Bissette is forced to flea Paris for America in 1940 as the Germans advance, leaving her mother and everything she knows behind. Arriving in New York City with her sewing machine, a gold dress, and a few new friends, Estella is determined to uphold the promise she made to her mother.

This section of The Paris Seamstress was so enthralling - beautifully descriptive and deeply emotional. The characters are relatable and honest, and Estella is such a strong female protagonist. I can't wait t
...more
Libby
Dec 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
I had high hopes for this novel. For the most part they were not met. The present day Fabienne pages at times were sappy, hard to fathom and poorly written. I more enjoyed the Estella character but there always seemed to be an underlying element of something missing. It wasn’t until near the end that I felt more compelled to want the main characters to come back together. It was a little too late for that after slogging through 394 pages to get there. I contemplated not finishing the book but ho ...more
Robin Tobin (On the back porch reading)
The vivid sharing of the making of Couture Fashion and the fashion industry over the years captivated me. I feel I have been allowed a sneak peek into a very special world. This book had it all. Mystery, suspense, colorful characters, Paris and fashion
Rachel
Oct 18, 2020 rated it liked it
Thank you for my birthday present, Vivian! Solid read. ❤️ I like the Eiffel Tower on the cover too.
Nancy
Oct 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Alleluia!! An absolutely wonderful book. A French seamstress. A British spy. An American heiress. One destiny that begins in war-torn France.
Nancy Gentile
Nov 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book gave me a way to look in which fabric and the construction of clothing and the history of the fashion industry weave their way through the lives of different characters. There’s a lot of interesting history here especially Estella’s life looks at the fashion industry from Paris to New York. Where the characters who are seamstresses think about what women do and how clothing makes them feel. It’s a story of love and a lot of sadness. At the end of the book which I found to be very intri ...more
Sarah Patt
Oct 27, 2020 rated it liked it
I felt like I read a trilogy in this 450 paged novel that took me a long time to finish because there were many parts that dragged on and should have been shortened. The story bounced between generations and countries. Grandma in Paris during the 1940's and her grandaughter in Manhatten in 2015. Author Natasha Lester writes beautifully though and visualizing the characters and places came easy. Certain chapters however had too many characters that it became overwhelming-all the names! And some o ...more
Brittany Sommers
Feb 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
(4.5/5)

I've seen a number of poor ratings on this novel and I couldn't disagree more. I loved the characters, the representation of fashion and it's impact during the war, and the notice given to real life couturiers (The House of Worth, etc). I loved the way the real life events of Henry Thaw, Evelyn Nesbit, John Barrymore, and Stanford White were intertwined with the fictional stories of the other characters. It was such a varying dynamic of the upbeat and fast moving fashion world mixing with
...more
Denise Deen
Aug 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: beachbooks-2020
Let me start off by saying that this book is in NO WAY comparable to Lilac Girls or The Nightingale. Those books had depth, description and detail. They also had a brilliant storyline and beautiful writing. The characters in those books were real and relatable on an emotional and realistic level. This book had none of those qualities. It was all I could do to get through its 450 pages (I am compulsive to always finish a book once started). The only reason it gets two stars is because the main ci ...more
Lila Smith
May 14, 2019 rated it liked it
didn't finish ...more
Laura Mauro
Sep 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is the first historical fiction book I read in awhile and I really enjoyed it. I was really invited in both time lines and also the other characters we read through their eyes. I also really enjoyed the focus on the fashion industry and the complex relationships that we explored. I also really enjoyed the spy craft and war elements that were used throughout this novel. I also really liked how this book wa structured and how it kept swapping time lines. I really did enjoy this book, I felt t ...more
Vic Oliver
Oct 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully written! Highly recommend to all readers, but especially for those who love a complex love story
Vicki Purifoy
May 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is a book that spans generations, hides and ultimately reveals secrets, breaks the heart and puts parts of it back together. It has true historic context and modern day timeliness. Its characters are talented overachievers and flawed by insecurities. There is love and love lost. This book has it all. Thank you, Natasha Lester! And I loved The Paris Orphan as well!
Dawn

In 1940, young seamstress Estella Bissette is forced to flee Paris as the Nazi’s and German army advance into her beloved city. Leaving everything she loves behind, Estella ends up in New York City with her signature gold dress she designed, a few dollars in her pocket and her dream of opening her own fashion house.

In the present day, Fabienne Bissette, Estella’s granddaughter, helps open up the Met Gala’s exhibit featuring the work of her grandmother within the fashion world. But as Fabienne f
...more
Heather Williams
I have found myself really being drawn to books that take place in war torn Paris during the 1940s and the Paris Seamstress did not disappoint. The story was very easy to follow while bouncing back and forth between war torn Paris and present day New York. I loved diving into the lineage of the Estella and Fabiella and how they are connected. Also, the fact that the story focuses on females being self sufficient and conquering the man-centered business world was so empowering.
Madeline
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Thought this would be more of a historical novel not a novel about fashion. Not to my liking. Did not finish it.
Patty
Dec 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
interesting story of a young lady who escapes from france during WWII because she discovers her father was an American and she was born in America-with a passport, her mother tells her to escape and start a new life but it is very hard-very good story, not only of her trials and tribulations of trying to break into the dressmaking/fashion world but her connections to France and the war
Carol Mcgrath
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a well written book with a very interesting story. Estella Bissette was forced to leave her mother in Paris after becoming involved in one incident during the war that could have cost her her life if she hadn't left. The year was 1941. Before leaving Paris she met Alex, a spy, who would play an important part in her future. Estella, while she was en route to America met a man by the name of Sam on the boat. Estella wanted to be a dress designer and Sam wanted to be cutter for a fashion h ...more
Eva Thieme
Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
I'm glad there are some others who weren't as enthralled with this book as the flap suggested we should. You cannot compare this with The Nightingale or even Lilac Girls. No way. There is hardly any historical fiction in it, other than briefly the fall of Paris in 1940, and some tidbits about the fashion industry in both Paris and New York in those days. Perhaps if fashion interests you, it makes for good enough of a story, but I felt the drama was contrived, the modern-day love story boring (wh ...more
Skylar
Jul 03, 2020 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Faith Lindsey
Mar 12, 2019 rated it liked it
The book the Paris Seamstress is a heart wrenching book about a young girl in her 20's trying to make a life for herself. She goes through trials and tribulations on her way to figuring out who she is. Estella grew up in Paris, France in the 1940's during the time of Hitler's rein. Estella ended up helping out a person trying to save France which made her mother question Estella's safety. After thinking it over Estella's mom decides it is not safe for Estella to live there anymore and sends her ...more
Sara
Jul 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher that gave me the opportunity to read the first 4 chapters of this book in exchange for an honest review.
***
The books begins with the story of Estella, a young seamstress who, in 1940 Paris, dreams to become a fashion designer With the Germans beginning their invasion of France, and after finding herself helping the Allies, Estella is forced to flee to New York and to leave he mother behind.

These sample chapters swept me off my feet. The setting, the atmosph
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Yenny
Aug 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Thank you to NetGalley and Forever (Grand Central Publishing) for giving me the opportunity to preview The Paris Seamstress by Natasha Lester. The preview is only for Chapters 1-4 but I'm already hooked!

Historical Fiction + High Fashion + WWII in Paris = what's not to love? This is the third book I've read in a row (well, just an excerpt for The Paris Seamstress) that includes two timelines revolving around a strong female protagonist set in 1940's Paris during WWII.

Estella Bisette is a young Pa
...more
Jess Brown
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is one of the most engaging books I’ve read in awhile. It wasn’t what I expected, but in all the right ways. Based on a true story during WW2, the Paris Seamstress keeps you turning the page. I fell in love with the characters more and more every chapter. As the book goes back and forth between different generations the answers to your questions slowly unfold and keep you reading to get more.
It starts in the year 1940. Estella is a seamstress in Paris who is forced to leave to America when
...more
Lonna Pierce
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
An epic novel of cinematic and artistic beauty, this is a story over time of two women: Estella, who was taught by her Parisian maman to sew at 4 years old, and her granddaughter, Fabienne, who is similarly gifted at fashion design. The thrilling world of jewelry and dresses and the craft behind the designers' prescient imagination is stunning. It is also an enduring love story of Alex and Will, and of phenomenal friendships of Lena, Melissa, and Janie. A backdrop of deeper, darker stories of wa ...more
Joyce Hertzoff
Dec 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
I don’t usually read romances, not even historical ones, but I found this book in my ginormous TBR pile and started it. I finished it in just a few weeks. The story about a seamstress who flees Paris as the Germans are invading and find new family and friends in New York as well as eventual success as a designer of ‘clothes women want to wear’ would probably have been enough. But that story is interspersed with her granddaughter modern day story. Like most romance novels, the women are all beaut ...more
Deb
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
This combination of fashion history, World War II, two love stories, family lost and found and historic figures like Evelyn Nesbitt and Harry Thaw, was engrossing. Using the history of MI9, the Nazi occupation of Paris and the first years of the American fashion industry as a backdrop, Lester imagines a family scarred by repeated tragedies that still built a successful business, kept its secrets, and ultimately triumphed in the fourth generation. Along the way, there are lessons in architecture, ...more
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Natasha Lester is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of THE PARIS ORPHAN / THE FRENCH PHOTOGRAPHER and THE PARIS SEAMSTRESS.

Prior to writing, she worked as a marketing executive for L’Oreal, managing the Maybelline brand, before returning to university to study creative writing.

Her first historical novel, the bestselling A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald, was published in 2016. This was
...more

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