Elegance by Kathleen Tessaro
A Novel

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Louise Canova should be happy and in love. But her actor husband seems to be growing distant and she doesn't know why. Is it her fault? The uncertainty and insecurity she thought she'd left behind in adolescence now come back to haunt her.

But when she discovers a faded volume titled Elegance in a secondhand bookshop, she believes she's found the answers. Written by the formidable French fashion expert Madame Dariaux, Elegance is an encyclopedia of style, that promises to transform plain women into creatures of grace and poise at all times. And from Accessories to Zippers, there's nothing Madame can't advise upon -- including inattentive husbands, false friends, and the absolute importance of good-quality seductive lingerie.

Louise vows to follow Madame's advice, but the lessons she learns have a surprising effect and an outcome she never expected. Within its pages lie clues to her past. And as she begins to unravel them, she discovers that everything, even elegance, has its price.

Starting with A and finishing with Z, Elegance is a unique alphabetical journey of timeless fashion, true friendship, and the rare, unexpected gift of love.


About Kathleen Tessaro

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Kathleen Tessaro is the author of Elegance, Innocence, The Flirt, and The Debutante. She lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with her husband and son.
Published January 1, 2003 by HarperCollins. 320 pages
Genres: Romance, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Louise Canova is dimly aware that her marriage has grown cold—her husband Colin, a successful but dull actor, calls her Pumpkin, or, less kindly, Ouise (pronounced “Wheeze”).

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Publishers Weekly

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In this case, Louise is her own Professor Higgins, and using Dariaux's amusingly anachronistic (is anyone wearing veils these days?) yet timeless advice ("being beautiful is no guarantee of happiness in this world"), she changes her appearance, her self-image and her entire life.

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