The Perfect Scent by Chandler Burr
A Year Inside the Perfume Industry in Paris and New York

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Synopsis

From the New York Times perfume critic, a stylish, fascinating, unprecedented insider's view of an industry and its charismatic characters No journalist has ever been allowed into the ultrasecretive, highly pressured process of originating a perfume. But Chandler Burr, the New York Times perfume critic, spent a year behind the scenes observing the creation of two major fragrances. Now, writing with wit and elegance, he juxtaposes the stories of the perfumes--one created by a Frenchman in Paris for an exclusive luxury-goods house, the other made in New York by actress Sarah Jessica Parker and Coty, Inc., a giant international corporation. We follow Coty's mating of star power to the marketing of perfume, watching Sex and the City's Parker heading a hugely expensive campaign to launch a scent into the overcrowded celebrity market. Will she match the success of Jennifer Lopez? Does she have the international fan base to drive worldwide sales?
 
In Paris at the elegant Hermès, we see Jean Claude Ellena, his company's new head perfumer, given a challenge: he must create a scent to resuscitate Hermès's perfume business and challenge le monstre of the industry, bestselling Chanel No. 5. Will his pilgrimage to a garden on the Nile supply the inspiration he needs? The answer lies in Burr's informative and mesmerizing portrait of some of the extraordinary personalities who envision, design, create, and launch the perfumes that drive their billion-dollar industry.
 

About Chandler Burr

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Chandler Burr is the author of A Separate Creation: The Search for the Biological Origins of Sexual Orientation. He has contributed to The Atlantic and has written for The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and other publications.
 
Published January 22, 2008 by Henry Holt and Co.. 340 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Professional & Technical, Science & Math, History, Travel, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

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The New York Times perfume critic--yes, you read that right--follows the creation of two industry-defining perfumes.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Perfect Scent: A Year Ins...

Entertainment Weekly

This examination of the image-obsessed perfume industry by the New York Times perfume critic is engrossing — but only for roughly half its 286 pages.

Feb 08 2008 | Read Full Review of The Perfect Scent: A Year Ins...

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