"A fascinating tale about two women who worked on Princess Elizabeth wedding gown..."
Reviewed by Magdalena Johansson
Posted December 13, 2018
Women's Fiction Time Slip | Historical
So, what makes a story about a gown so special? In this case, it's the
wedding gown that Princess Elizabeth wore at her wedding. Jennifer
Robson has woven together a fascinating tale about two women that
worked on the gown and a young woman that discovers her
grandmother has some skeletons in her closet...
It's 1947, and London is facing a tough winter after the War. Despite the
victory, people are still feeling the pinch from rationing. Ann Hughes
and Miriam Dassin both work as embroiderers at the famous Mayfair
fashion house of Norman Hartnell and develop a strong friendship,
especially with the huge challenge of working on the wedding dress of
In present-day Toronto, Heather Mackenzie is sad to learn that her
beloved grandmother has died. Finding a set of embroidered flowers
that her Nan left to her makes her very curious. Why does Heather's
grandmother have embroideries with the motif that strongly resembles
the motif of the wedding dress worn by Queen Elizabeth II almost
seventy years before?
THE GOWN is the latest novel by
Jennifer Robson and it's a fabulous story about the making of a
beautiful, important gown. The book is well written and I found the
characters to be fully developed. The dual storylines are equally
interesting to read and I enjoyed getting to the bottom of the mystery
about the embroidered flowers; I was really surprised by this ending.
Learn more about The Gown
From the internationally bestselling author of Somewhere
in France comes an enthralling historical novel about
one of the most famous wedding dresses of the twentieth
century—Queen Elizabeth’s wedding gown—and the fascinating
women who made it.
“Millions will welcome this joyous event as a flash of
color on the long road we have to travel.”
—Sir Winston Churchill on the news of Princess
Elizabeth’s forthcoming wedding
London, 1947: Besieged by the harshest winter in living
memory, burdened by onerous shortages and rationing, the
people of postwar Britain are enduring lives of quiet
desperation despite their nation’s recent victory. Among
them are Ann Hughes and Miriam Dassin, embroiderers at the
famed Mayfair fashion house of Norman Hartnell. Together
they forge an unlikely friendship, but their nascent hopes
for a brighter future are tested when they are chosen for a
once-in-a-lifetime honor: taking part in the creation of
Princess Elizabeth’s wedding gown.
Toronto, 2016: More than half a century later, Heather
Mackenzie seeks to unravel the mystery of a set of
embroidered flowers, a legacy from her late grandmother. How
did her beloved Nan, a woman who never spoke of her old life
in Britain, come to possess the priceless embroideries that
so closely resemble the motifs on the stunning gown worn by
Queen Elizabeth II at her wedding almost seventy years
before? And what was her Nan’s connection to the celebrated
textile artist and holocaust survivor Miriam Dassin?
With The Gown, Jennifer Robson takes us inside the
workrooms where one of the most famous wedding gowns in
history was created. Balancing behind-the-scenes details
with a sweeping portrait of a society left reeling by the
calamitous costs of victory, she introduces readers to three
unforgettable heroines, their points of view alternating and
intersecting throughout its pages, whose lives are woven
together by the pain of survival, the bonds of friendship,
and the redemptive power of love.
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