Delving into the long, extraordinary life of renowned French fashion designer Coco Chanel, Karen Karbo has written a new kind of book, exploring Chanel’s philosophy on a range of universal themes—from style to passion, from money and success to femininity and living life on your own terms.
Chanel is credited not simply with giving us the little black dress and boxy jackets, but with popularizing pants for women and easy, practical clothes that allowed women a chic freedom they’d never known before. In her strong-headed, elegant, opinionated, passionate, entirely French way, Coco Chanel helped bring women into the modern era, and because of this she was the only person in fashion to be named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of the 20th Century.
Karen Karbo weaves Chanel’s life story into chapter themes that subtly convey life lessons and leave the reader utterly entranced with Chanel’s amazing individuality, confidence, and determination. The story of the designer’s extraordinary life and rise to unprecedented success is both compelling and admirable. And while the great Coco may have launched her singular empire a hundred years ago, her methods, attitude, and élan are as relevant and modern as ever, and perhaps more appealing. Chanel was a self-made girl who knew how to make do with less until she had more, discover and stay true to her own style, problem solve using the tools at hand, and do it all with seemingly effortless flair. The Gospel According to Coco Chanel is a captivating, offbeat look at style, celebrity, and self-invention—all held together with Karbo’s droll Chanel-style commentary and culled from an examination of Chanel’s difficult childhood and triumphant adulthood, passionate love affairs, career choices, habits, eccentricities, and personal philosophies.
What made the experience of listening to The Gospel According to Coco Chanel the most enjoyable?
This is a funny and accurate account of Coco Chanel. You can relate to Karen Karbo as if she were your friend. If you like Chanel this is a must for you. You will learn more about her and get a kick out of the perspective.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
If you could sum up The Gospel According to Coco Chanel in three words, what would they be?
Best Feminism Ever!
Who was your favorite character and why?
Coco of course, but Karbo is quite interesting herself.
Have you listened to any of Bernadette Dunne’s other performances before? How does this one compare?
No, but I loved her performance. She really creates an atmosphere and brings a lot of energy to the story. She makes it alive like I believe Karen Karbo intended.
What’s an idea from the book that you will remember?
The idea that some of the greatest people of our time have "created" themselves literally in their own minds and refused to let anyone correct them.
Any additional comments?
Great infusion of fashion history in a way that a none fashion buff can also relate to. In fact, I was able to give background info to my husband (who probably didn't care, but pretended very well) about a recent Chanel headline.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful
I was disappointed in this book. It just wasn't what I expected. I would like to return it for a refund if possible but I can't find the place to ask for a return credit.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
This was a horrible way to tell the great story of Coco Chanel. The author jumps around from different points in Chanel's life, making it hard to follow. She attempts to make modern day comparisons and connections (frenemies? internet porn?!), but they just come across unneeded. She also follows her own hunt for a Chanel jacket that at almost all points through the book leaves me thinking "who cares?" I really didn't like this book - I wish I had spent time and money on a book that just focuses on Coco Chanel, without silly embellishments.
4 of 6 people found this review helpful
I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audio book. The narrator's voice is perfect for the work. Sometimes, the narrator can distract from the content. As though the words are forced thru them and not natural. Bernadette is flawless in her presentation.
A huge fan of this audio book, clever and a fun listen, it was a great introduction to the history of Chanel. fun and funny in a clever sort of way I feel smarter because of it.
A detailed account of a legend icon enigma and such. A great insight of the lady that lead an industry
Would you consider the audio edition of The Gospel According to Coco Chanel to be better than the print version?
I always enjoy listening to a book being read well more than I do reading it, as an audio book brings the words alive. Reading I do adore though and have a huge library
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Gospel According to Coco Chanel?
Any additional comments?
I enjoyed listening to Bernadette, however if one is going to read a book about Coco, one need also learn to to pronounce the little French descriptives, address's and names far better than they were attempted in this book.
an extensive history of Gabrielle chanel. much too long. was disappointing and exhausting to listen to. the point was so dragged it was hard to finish.
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Yes. It is a wonderful audiobook, Chanel's life story is always so interesting, she was such an amazing character... and the narration was very pleasant.