I’m in the middle of M.J. Rose’s The Book of Lost Fragrances, and my actual book review will appear tomorrow. In the meantime, I have a synopsis, and a short posting from M.J. as part of her fragrance tour.
A sweeping and suspenseful tale of secrets, intrigue, and lovers separated by time, all connected through the mystical qualities of a perfume created in the days of Cleopatra–and lost for 2,000 years.
Jac L’Etoile has always been haunted by the past, her memories infused with the exotic scents that she grew up surrounded by as the heir to a storied French perfume company. In order to flee the pain of those remembrances–and of her mother’s suicide–she moved to America. Now, fourteen years later she and her brother have inherited the company along with its financial problems. But when Robbie hints at an earth-shattering discovery in the family archives and then suddenly goes missing–leaving a dead body in his wake–Jac is plunged into a world she thought she’d left behind.
Back in Paris to investigate her brother’s disappearance, Jac becomes haunted by the legend the House of L’Etoile has been espousing since 1799. Is there a scent that can unlock the mystery of reincarnation – or is it just another dream infused perfume?
The Book of Lost Fragrances fuses history, passion, and suspense, moving from Cleopatra’s Egypt and the terrors of revolutionary France to Tibet’s battle with China and the glamour of modern-day Paris. Jac’s quest for the ancient perfume someone is willing to kill for becomes the key to understanding her own troubled past.
GUEST POST – M.J. Rose has written a piece telling us about a lost fragrance. Thank you, M.J.
M.J. Rose: I’ve been fascinated with lost fragrances since long before I started writing The Book of Lost Fragrances… since I found a bottle of perfume on my great grandmother’s dresser that had belonged to her mother in Russia. Here is one of those lost fragrances that stirs the senses and the imagination… (researched and described with the help of the perfume writer Dimitrios Dimitriadis)
Ciro parfums emerged in the 1920s and created a number of fragrances which were sold on the US market and presented in flacons of exceptional quality. Danger, created in 1938, carried the marketing line: “not for the timid” and advertising images promised a degree of attraction ‘like moths to a flame’. A complex creation, Danger married rich ambery tones and warm, comforting spices to create a dramatic sweet oriental which became one of Ciro’s best-selling perfumes. A fleecy, slightly powdery trail left a line of men swooning behind women right up until 1961, when Ciro sadly suspended their operations.
M.J. Rose is the international best selling author of eleven novels and two non-fiction books on marketing. Her novel THE BOOK OF LOST FRAGRANCES (Atria/S&S) was published in March 2012. Her fiction and non-fiction has appeared in many magazines and reviews including Oprah Magazine. She has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, USA Today and on the Today Show, and NPR radio. Rose graduated from Syracuse University, spent the ’80s in advertising, has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for authors – Authorbuzz.com. The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose’s novels in the Renincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of International Thriller Writers and runs the blog- Buzz, Balls & Hype. She is also the co-founder of Peroozal.com and BookTrib.com.
Rose lives in CT with her husband the musician and composer, Doug Scofield, and their very spoiled and often photographed dog, Winka.