Book Review: A Vintage Affair – Isabel Wolff

Title: A Vintage Affair: A Novel
Author: Isabel Wolff
ISBN: 9780553807837
Pages: 368
Release Date: June 22, 2010
Publisher: Bantam
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Source: Amazon Vine
Rating: 4 out of 5

Summary:

After years of working at a prestigious auction house dealing with vintage clothing, Phoebe Swift is finally ready to strike out on her own.  She has taken a huge chance by following her dream – opening a vintage clothing shop called Village Vintage.  Along the way, Phoebe learns that there is more to vintage clothing than meets the eye – these clothes have the power to give people courage, heal old wounds, and change lives.

Review:

Though I don’t know much about vintage clothing, I thought the premise of A Vintage Affair sounded fascinating.  I loved the idea of a woman finding the courage to strike out on their own and learning a lot about herself in the process.

A Vintage Affair had a lot of interesting information about vintage clothing, which was a real treat.  It was great to learn about something while simultaneously enjoying an entertaining read.  Phoebe is clearly passionate about vintage clothes and really believes in their power to give people confidence.  It’s easy to forget how big of a difference feeling like one looks good can make on a person’s mood.

Phoebe herself was a very endearing character.  She was grappling with some personal demons of her own, and threw herself into work in order to avoid thinking about them.  I really enjoyed reading about her coming to terms with her past.  Wolff did an exceptional job making her feelings palpable to the reader – it was easy to sympathize with her emotions.  Additionally, I loved the secondary characters in the novel – from Phoebe’s mom to Dan, Wolff has a flair for creating three-dimensional, appealing characters.

A Vintage Affair was an enjoyable read that’s difficult to classify.  There are so many different threads that come together beautifully to make up this novel, it defies being assigned a single genre.  It’s a complicated, well-written novel, and I will definitely be going back to read more of Isabel Wolff’s works.

Comments

  1. I was really intrigued by this one when it was out in the UK — and with a pink dress on the cover, I believe! — so I’m happy to see it’s making its way stateside! I’ll definitely be grabbing this one in the near future.

  2. I was really intrigued by this one when it was out in the UK — and with a pink dress on the cover, I believe! — so I’m happy to see it’s making its way stateside! I’ll definitely be grabbing this one in the near future.

  3. I have always been interested in vintage clothes, and this book sounds like it would be a lot of fun to read. I am glad that the main character and her emotions were so believable and that you had such a great time with the book!

  4. I have always been interested in vintage clothes, and this book sounds like it would be a lot of fun to read. I am glad that the main character and her emotions were so believable and that you had such a great time with the book!

  5. Great review. This book has been on my radar for some time. It was published here in Canada (with a pink dress on the cover) last year. I just picked up a copy the other day. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Now I can’t wait to read it.

  6. Great review. This book has been on my radar for some time. It was published here in Canada (with a pink dress on the cover) last year. I just picked up a copy the other day. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Now I can’t wait to read it.

  7. I also don’t know a lot about vintage clothes, but this book seems interesting. I will be looking at her work as well. Thanks!

  8. I also don’t know a lot about vintage clothes, but this book seems interesting. I will be looking at her work as well. Thanks!

  9. I don’t know anything about vintage clothing, so I would love to read a book like this and learn something! Great review!

  10. I don’t know anything about vintage clothing, so I would love to read a book like this and learn something! Great review!

  11. This book sounds terrific. Will definitely add it to my list. Thanks, Swapna!

  12. This book sounds terrific. Will definitely add it to my list. Thanks, Swapna!

  13. I’ve had my eye on this one for awhile. Glad to see you enjoyed it.

  14. I’ve had my eye on this one for awhile. Glad to see you enjoyed it.

  15. Everything about this book sounds right up my alley. I love the idea of learning a little more about vintage clothing while also interacting with what sounds like fascinating characters. I’ll definitely be adding this to my summer reading list. Thanks for the fabulous review.

  16. Everything about this book sounds right up my alley. I love the idea of learning a little more about vintage clothing while also interacting with what sounds like fascinating characters. I’ll definitely be adding this to my summer reading list. Thanks for the fabulous review.

  17. Oh I like the sound of this because it seems to be more complex than I would have guessed. And I like vintage clothing (though I know very little about it).

  18. Oh I like the sound of this because it seems to be more complex than I would have guessed. And I like vintage clothing (though I know very little about it).

  19. What an interesting premise!

  20. What an interesting premise!

  21. Great review, I saw this book through BN reccommendation. I never thought about reading a book about the vintage clothes shop. I have always been fascinated by it. Sounds like a great read.

  22. Great review, I saw this book through BN reccommendation. I never thought about reading a book about the vintage clothes shop. I have always been fascinated by it. Sounds like a great read.

  23. Hi Swapna!

    First of all, that you for the great website you have created!
    I have been thinking to read Vintage Affair for half a year now, but I always got to something else instead.. Now after I have seen your review here, I am even more eager to get to it soon!!!
    As as I cannot reach you from my personal computer, this is the only way for me my message to get to you… I don’t have Twitter.

    Swapna, you read lots of books! I am amazed by that, really! I like so much to go through the lists and check for some of the titles, but to be honest, there are long lists!
    Wouldn’t be easier for all of us, if you could list all the titles in alphabetical order instead of reading order? This way we could easily find the book we are after.
    I couldn’t see a book I read recently, maybe I have missed it on your list. Check, if you want, “Girl in Translation” by Jean Kwok.
    I really hope my message will reach you. I will definitely come back to your page!

    Best,

    Gergana

    geri_bghh@yahoo.com

  24. Hi Swapna!

    First of all, that you for the great website you have created!
    I have been thinking to read Vintage Affair for half a year now, but I always got to something else instead.. Now after I have seen your review here, I am even more eager to get to it soon!!!
    As as I cannot reach you from my personal computer, this is the only way for me my message to get to you… I don’t have Twitter.

    Swapna, you read lots of books! I am amazed by that, really! I like so much to go through the lists and check for some of the titles, but to be honest, there are long lists!
    Wouldn’t be easier for all of us, if you could list all the titles in alphabetical order instead of reading order? This way we could easily find the book we are after.
    I couldn’t see a book I read recently, maybe I have missed it on your list. Check, if you want, “Girl in Translation” by Jean Kwok.
    I really hope my message will reach you. I will definitely come back to your page!

    Best,

    Gergana

    geri_bghh@yahoo.com

  25. I loved this book, couldn’t hardly put it down. Loved the way she ties everything in at the end. Read it for my book club

  26. I loved this book, couldn’t hardly put it down. Loved the way she ties everything in at the end. Read it for my book club

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