Back to real life today! A brand new year! And a brand new weekly post!
I have been posting MY MOM’S MONDAY BOOK THOUGHTS on Instagram for the past few months so I thought I’d bring them to the blog as well. I’m going to try a more structured schedule this year to keep my posting more consistent and to keep me on task. There will be more consistency between my blog and Instagram posts going forward. hopefully! 😂
My Mom’s Thoughts
THE CHANEL SISTERS by Judithe Little and THE WRIGHT SISTER by Patty Dann are both historical fiction stories told in first person and/or through letters and diary by the younger sister of a famous sibling.
Although the story’s focus was on Antoinette Chanel or Katharine Wright much was included about Coco Chanel or Orville Wright.
THE CHANEL SISTERS covered 1897 to 1921, and THE WRIGHT SISTER started in 1926 although both mentioned the use of planes in WWI. The Chanels were in France and the Wrights in the USA although all spent some time in Paris.
What was the most striking difference between the two families was the Chanel’s obsessively, selfish desire to rise from poverty to wealth and fame while the Wrights were happier to remain middle class humanitarians.
*** Big thank you to the publishers for my gifted copy of this book. All opinions are my mom’s own. ***
About The Chanel Sisters
A novel of survival, love, loss, triumph – and the sisters who changed fashion forever.
Antoinette and Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel know they’re destined for something better. Abandoned by their family at a young age, they’ve grown up under the guidance of nuns preparing them for simple lives as the wives of tradesmen or shopkeepers. At night, their secret stash of romantic novels and magazine cutouts beneath the floorboards are all they have to keep their dreams of the future alive.
The walls of the convent can’t shield them forever, and when they’re finally of age, the Chanel sisters set out together with a fierce determination to prove themselves worthy to a society that has never accepted them. Their journey propels them out of poverty and to the stylish cafés of Moulins, the dazzling performance halls of Vichy – and to a small hat shop on the rue Cambon in Paris, where a boutique business takes hold and expands to the glamorous French resort towns. But the sisters’ lives are again thrown into turmoil when World War I breaks out, forcing them to make irrevocable choices, and they’ll have to gather the courage to fashion their own places in the world, even if apart from each other.
“The Chanel Sisters explores with care the timeless need for belonging, purpose, and love, and the heart’s relentless pursuit of these despite daunting odds. Beautifully told to the last page.” (Susan Meissner, best-selling author of The Last Year of the War)
About the The Wright Sister
An epistolary novel of historical fiction that imagines the life of Katharine Wright and her relationship with her famous brothers, Wilbur and Orville Wright.
On December 17, 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright flew the world’s first airplane at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, establishing the Wright Brothers as world-renowned pioneers of flight. Known to far fewer people was their whip-smart and well-educated sister Katharine, a suffragette and early feminist.
After Wilbur passed away, Katharine lived with and took care of her increasingly reclusive brother Orville, who often turned to his more confident and supportive sister to help him through fame and fortune. But when Katharine became engaged to their mutual friend, Harry Haskell, Orville felt abandoned and betrayed. He smashed a pitcher of flowers against a wall and refused to attend the wedding or speak to Katharine or Harry. As the years went on, the siblings grew further and further apart. In The Wright Sister, Patty Dann wonderfully imagines the blossoming of Katharine, revealed in her “Marriage Diary” – in which she emerges as a frank, vibrant, intellectually and socially engaged, sexually active woman coming into her own – and her one-sided correspondence with her estranged brother as she hopes to repair their fractured relationship. Even though she pictures “Orv” throwing her letters away, Katharine cannot contain her joie de vivre, her love of married life, her strong advocacy of the suffragette cause, or her abiding affection for her stubborn sibling as she fondly recalls their shared life.
An inspiring and poignant chronicle of feminism, family, and forgiveness, The Wright Sister is an unforgettable portrait of a woman, a sister of inventors, who found a way to reinvent herself.