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Greenburgh Public Library Blog

Fiction and Fashion

by Eugenie Contrata on 2022-04-29T09:00:00-04:00 in Authors & Writing, Digital Collections, What To Read | 0 Comments

The Met Gala is coming up on Monday, May 2, 2022. The Gala is a major event in the world of fashion. It brings to mind the questions of how fashion includes society and how society influences fashion. The Guardian lists their, Top 10-best dressed characters in fiction. lists The 12 Fiction Books Any True Fashion Girl Needs to Read.

How is fashion represented in fiction? Is a character a chic fashionista, like the women of Sex and the City, or not? How does the character's clothing move the novel forward? What does the character's dress reveal about their motives? Can you imagine Holly Golightly without her little black dress, Scarlett O'Hara without her green velvet dress made from drapes, or Miranda Priestly without her Prada heels?  Ask yourself these questions while reading these suggested novels. 

All titles are available via the library's Libby eBook collection.

The Silver Chairs by C.S. Lewis Cover The Silver Chair

Through dangers untold and caverns deep and dark, a noble band of friends is sent to rescue a prince held captive. But their mission to Underland brings them face-to-face with an evil more beautiful and more deadly than they ever expected.

The Silver Chair is the sixth book in C.S. Lewis's The Chronicles of Narnia, a series that has become part of the canon of classic literature, drawing readers of all ages into a magical land with unforgettable characters for over fifty years. This is a complete stand-alone read, but if you want to discover what happens in the final days of Narnia, read The Last Battle, the seventh and concluding book in The Chronicles of Narnia.

Cover Jane EyreJane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Jane Eyre is raised in her aunt's house after the death of her parents. Her aunt cannot stand the queer, quiet child and sends her off to a spartan boarding school where she is severely mistreated. She survives, however, and eventually finds herself a situation as a governess in the household of Edward Rochester. She and Rochester fall passionately in love, in one of the great literary love stories. But a dark secret in his house will tear them apart and send her alone into the wilderness before she can find her way back to him.


Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

"Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way," writes Tolstoy in his literary masterpiece Anna Karenina. Commonly regarded as one of the greatest realist novels ever written, Tolstoy himself saw it as his first true novel. The novel was not well received by critics when first published, but Tolstoy's fellow Russian greats all considered it a great work of art.



Cover The Lord of the RingsLord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

A peaceful hobbit, who is content with living in a distant corner of Middle-Earth, is given a challenge: he must obliterate the Ring of Power to prevent the forces of evil from getting a hold of it. It's Frodo's task in J.R.R Tolkien's famous novel The Lord of the Rings. When he inherits the Ring, he suddenly has the fate of the world in his hand. The Ring has been forged by the Dark Lord Sauron and contains terrible powers. Frodo is lead by the wise wizard Gandalf on a dangerous journey towards the land of Mordor to unmake the ring.


Cover for The Great GatsbyThe Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Scott Fitzgerald's novel, The Great Gatsby, follows Jay Gatsby, a man who orders his life around one desire: to be reunited with Daisy Buchanan, the love he lost five years earlier. Gatsby's quest leads him from poverty to wealth, into the arms of his beloved, and eventually to death.



Cover for I Capture the CastleI Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

I Capture the Castle tells the story of seventeen-year-old Cassandra and her family, who live in not-so-genteel poverty in a ramshackle old English castle. Here she strives, over six turbulent months, to hone her writing skills. She fills three notebooks with sharply funny yet poignant entries. Her journals candidly chronicle the great changes that take place within the castle's walls, and her own first descent into love. By the time she pens her final entry, she has "captured the castle"— and the heart of the reader— in one of literature's most enchanting entertainments.


Cover The Hunger Games by Suzanne CollinsThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The tomboyish Katniss must compete for her life in a dystopian TV contest. Her sympathetic costume designer Cinna puts her into “a simple black unitard… and a fluttering cape made of streamers of orange, yellow and red” that bursts into synthetic flames during the initial parade, instantly transforming her from dull representative of Panem’s despised coal-mining District to the public’s “Girl on Fire” heroine. Collins’s trilogy came to us before Trump’s America, but its satire on the kind of cruelly divisive populist culture that led to his victory looks increasingly prescient. Katniss’s costume is especially thrilling because she will indeed become the fiery rebel leader of a revolution against the Capitol.


Cover Orlando by Virginia WoolfOrlando by Virginia Woolf

As his tale begins, Orlando is a passionate sixteen-year-old nobleman whose days are spent in rowdy revelry, filled with the colorful delights of Queen Elizabeth I's court. By the close, three centuries have passed, and he will have transformed into a thirty-six-year-old woman in the year 1928. Orlando's journey is also an internal one—he is an impulsive poet who learns patience in matter of the heart, and a woman who knows what it is to be a man.




Cover Gone With the Wind Margaret MitchellGone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

This is the tale of Scarlett O'Hara, the spoiled, manipulative daughter of a wealthy plantation owner, who arrives at young womanhood just in time to see the Civil War forever change her way of life. A sweeping story of tangled passion and courage, in the pages of Gone With the Wind, Margaret Mitchell brings to life the unforgettable characters that have captured readers for over seventy years.



Cover Breakfast at Tiffanys Truman CapoteBreakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote

Holly Golightly knows that nothing bad can ever happen to you at Tiffany's. In this seductive, wistful masterpiece, Capote created a woman whose name has entered the American idiom and whose style is a part of the literary landscape—her poignancy, wit, and naïveté continue to charm.



Cover The House of MirthThe House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

In The House of Mirth, which helped to establish Edith Wharton’s literary reputation, she honed her acerbic style and discovered her defining subject: the fashionable New York society in which she had been raised and that held the power to debase both people and ideals. In this devastatingly accurate and finely wrought tale, Lily Bart, the poor relation of a wealthy woman, is beautiful, intelligent, and hopelessly addicted to the moneyed world of luxury and grace. But her good taste and moral sensibility render her unfit for survival in a vulgar society whose glittering social edifice is based on a foundation of pure greed. A brilliant portrayal of both human frailty and nobility, and a bitter attack on false social values.

Cover A Vintage AffairA Vintage Affair by Isabel Wolf

Every dress has a history. And so does every woman. Phoebe Swift’s friends are stunned when she abruptly leaves a plum job to open her own vintage clothing shop in London—but to Phoebe, it’s the fulfillment of a dream, and her passion. Digging for finds in attics and wardrobes, Phoebe knows that when you buy a piece of vintage clothing, you’re not just buying fabric and thread—you’re buying a piece of someone’s past. But one particular article of clothing will soon unexpectedly change her life.

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