Tiffany Girl by Deeanne Gist ~ My Review
by Deeanne Gist
From the bestselling author of It Happened at the Fair and Fair Play comes a compelling historical novel about a progressive “New Woman”—the girl behind Tiffany’s chapel—and the love that threatens it all.
As preparations for the 1893 World’s Fair set Chicago and the nation on fire, Louis Tiffany—heir to the exclusive Fifth Avenue jewelry empire—seizes the opportunity to unveil his state-of-the-art, stained glass, mosaic chapel, the likes of which the world has never seen.
But when Louis’s dream is threatened by a glassworkers’ strike months before the Fair opens, he turns to an unforeseen source for help: the female students at the Art Students League of New York. Eager for adventure, the young women pick up their skirts, move to boarding houses, take up steel cutters, and assume new identities as the “Tiffany Girls.”
Tiffany Girl is the heartwarming story of the impetuous Flossie Jayne, a beautiful, budding artist who is handpicked by Louis to help complete the Tiffany chapel. Though excited to live in a boarding house when most women stayed home, she quickly finds the world is less welcoming than anticipated. From a Casanova male, to an unconventional married couple, and a condescending singing master, she takes on a colorful cast of characters to transform the boarding house into a home while racing to complete the Tiffany chapel and make a name for herself in the art world.
As challenges mount, her ambitions become threatened from an unexpected quarter: her own heart. Who will claim victory? Her dreams or the captivating boarder next door?
I've always found the whole stained glass making process fascinating. I'm pretty sure I fell in love with this book before I even read it. The beautiful cover featuring a workshop and Tiffany style glass is stunning. The pages in between are pretty great too. Deeanne Gist has made a name for herself writing edgy romances for the inspirational genre and in this book she continues with her tradition of penning fabulous, clean fiction.
Flossie Jayne is a woman of the new century. At the dawn of the 20th century, a new era was approaching for women and Flossie is a great example of who many working class women were and what they had to face in a man's world. She's a "New Woman". Forced to give up her beloved classes at art school and give up her and her mother's hard earned wages to her father were the last straw. Deeanne does a wonderful job at making Flossie seem relatable to today's woman while maintaining an authentic 1890s feel. It can be a fine line, but I think Dee had it well in hand. Reeve, our protagonist, is a bit gruff and stubborn at first especially when it comes to Flossie and the idea of women at work. Thankfully, he's not a complete "man" and admits his mistakes.
Tiffany Girl is a cute story about a woman learning to make it on her own after being dependent on men for so long. The scenes at the Tiffany studios were some of my favorites. The time and care that went into putting together just one lamp or window pane is incredible. Even if you're not necessarily a fan of romance, this story could be a captivating read. I've loved Dee's books from the get go and this one is no different. Tiffany Girl is a smashing story!
~ My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars ~
*I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.*