Books about perfume

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lulu
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Books about perfume

Post by lulu »

Just wondering if anyone can recommend any novels that have perfume as a theme.....I know there was that one called Perfume (have seen the movie but not read the book). Also any non-fiction books that go in-depth about learning about perfume. Thanks!:bigsmile::bigsmile:
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Books about perfume

Post by pink.dot »

I bought this book recently: Parfums et Aromates de l' Antiquite( Paul Faure)
I don't know if there is an English translation but I think it would be. Mine is in greek:)
it seems very intresting.
It's subjects cover the Greek, Roman and the Egyptian world.

I have read the Perfume and I prefer it from the movie.
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Chime
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Books about perfume

Post by Chime »

Fiction - the Jitterbug perfume. It's pretty good.
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pink.dot
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Books about perfume

Post by pink.dot »

Chime this book sounds very good! I have to buy it as soon as possible!!
MollyG
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Books about perfume

Post by MollyG »

Essence and Alchemy by Mandy Aftel is a great book about perfume, though it is somewhat geared toward people who want to try their hand at perfumery. It has really nice breakdowns of top, middle, and base notes, how accords are created, etc. My only real beef with the book is that it is very anti synthetic ingredients -- I respect perfumers who choose to work only with naturals, but the rhetoric can be a little shrill at times.

Perfumes: The Guide by Luca Turin and Tania Sanchez is sort of a bible for mass market and niche reviews. Because the book is all reviews, it's obviously very subjective... but still, it's fun to read and actually pretty educational in parts. Luca Turin was originally a chemist or something by trade, so he talks quite a bit about aromachemicals.

Ooh, and I totally second Perfume: The Story of a Murderer! It's very twisted and macabre but hard to put down. The movie makes a whole lot more sense if you have read the novel first.
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Books about perfume

Post by fabienne »

Look around for The Emperor of Scent and A year In The Life Of A Perfume (not 100% sure about that title) by Chandler Burr. He is an excellent writer. Luca Turin is outstanding in anything he does (try getting hold of his French and original perfume guide) and Essence and Alchemy is a classic.:beret:
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Books about perfume

Post by warriortwo »

Two lists that would keep you busy for years: Books for the Perfume-Obsessed and Book Reviews from Now Smell This! "A Scented Palace: The Story of Marie Antoinette's Perfumer" would be right up my alley.

Kind of an aside, I have read "Fast Food Nation" several times, and in one chapter the author visits the International Flavors & Fragrances lab, which provides flavorings for fast food and processed foods, as well as the fragrances of many well-known perfumes. Noted in the book is the fact that while consumers respond favorably to "natural flavors" as opposed to "artificial", in most cases the flavor/fragrance is made up of the exact same chemical structure, no matter how it is derived. The flavor is invariably added later in either case. Certain flavors derived naturally can actually be toxic--such as almond flavor, which contains traces of hydrogen cyanide--which would mean that a synthetic version, invented in the lab using other chemical combinations which are much less harmful, is actually the "healthier" option. The point being, synthetic and natural flavors/fragrances aren't what you imagine them to be. It's just a few pages out of the book, but I found it fascinating.
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Books about perfume

Post by MollyG »

Oh yeah -- The Perfect Scent by Chandler Burr! (Thanks for the memory jog, Fabienne!) It's a chronicle of how Hermes Un Jardin sur le Nil and Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely were made. Really interesting glimpse inside the industry, and a neat comparison between the business decisions and creative processes involved in creating a mass-market celebrity scent (where keeping it affordable is a concern) versus an upmarket, niche scent (where money is no object).

Warriortwo, thanks for the recs! They all sound like great reads. :bigsmile:
lulu
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Books about perfume

Post by lulu »

Thanks everyone for your suggestions so far! Some of those sound very interesting.....:bigsmile:
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Books about perfume

Post by emma »

I had forgotten all about "A Scented Palace" I really enjoyed that! I must check out some of the other titles.
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