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Archive: Other Books > The Gown, by Jennifer Robson; 4 Stars

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Hahtoolah | 422 comments The Gown: A Novel of the Royal Wedding, by Jennifer Robson (2019)

After Heather Mackenzie’s grandmother died in 2016, Heather received a box containing some samples of beautiful embroidery on delicate silk. The box had only the message “For Heather” with no other explanation. She realized that she knew virtually nothing of her grandmother’s past, only that she had immigrated to Canada in late 1947 and that her mother had been born a few months later. The embroidery must contain some clue into her grandmother’s past.

The novel alternates between the present (2016) and post-war England in 1947 with the announcement of the engagement of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Ann Hughes, Heather’s grandmother, was a young woman working an embroiderer for the real-life Norman Hartnell, couturier to the royal family. She befriends Miriam Dassin, a young French Holocaust survivor, who had worked as an embroiderer in a French fashion house before moving to London.

Both young women are highly skilled. When the royal family commissions Norman Hartnell to design the wedding dress for Princess Elizabeth, both Ann and Miriam are selected to be a part of the team to embroider and sew the dress. All the women working on the dress are sworn to secrecy ~ if the press gets wind of the design, they will be fired.

Ann meets the handsome Jeremy, who appears to be a wealthy businessman. She wonders why he has selected to take her out on dates, knowing that he is out of her class, but decides to go along for the ride. Heather travels to England hoping to find out about her grandmother’s early life and her grandfather.

The novel gives a lot of historical information about the making of the wedding dress for the future Queen of England, and describes in detail the motifs found on the dress and its train.

I found this to be a fun read.

4 Stars


Jgrace | 2813 comments I've been looking at this one. I'm glad to see that you liked it.


message 3: by Booknblues (new)

Booknblues | 5765 comments Me too! It sounds interesting.


message 4: by KateNZ (new) - added it

KateNZ | 2321 comments Adding to the TBR!


message 5: by Amy (new) - added it

Amy | 8518 comments I think it’s already on mine!


message 6: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7469 comments I have this one on my TBR-nice review, I am looking forward to it now!


message 7: by [deleted user] (new)

I was given this book for a gift and it is sitting on my book cart. Every month I want to add it but I end up putting it on the next shelf because I don't have time! I have got to manage my months better. This book sounds so good.
Love your review.


Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 5800 comments My F2F book club is reading this next year (we always wait for the paperback, and the hold lines at the library to die down). So, I'm avoiding reading most reviews right now. But it's interesting to see how much attention the book is getting. Excited to get to it.


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