Download ePUB The ChaperoneAuthor Laura Moriarty –

A Captivating Novel About The Woman Who Chaperoned An Irreverent Louise Brooks To New York City In , And The Summer That Would Change Them Both Only A Few Years Before Becoming A Famous Actress And An Icon For Her Generation, A Fifteen Year Old Louise Brooks Leaves Wichita To Make It Big In New York Much To Her Annoyance, She Is Accompanied By A Thirty Six Year Old Chaperone Who Is Neither Mother Nor Friend Cora Carlisle Is A Complicated But Traditional Woman With Her Own Reasons For Making The Trip She Has No Idea What She S In For Young Louise, Already Stunningly Beautiful And Sporting Her Famous Blunt Bangs And Black Bob, Is Known For Her Arrogance And Her Lack Of Respect For Convention Ultimately, The Five Weeks They Spend Together Will Change Their Lives Forever For Cora, New York Holds The Promise Of Discovery That Might Prove An Answer To The Question At The Center Of Her Being, And Even As She Does Her Best To Watch Over Louise In A Strange And Bustling City, She Embarks On Her Own Mission And While What She Finds Isn T What She Anticipated, It Liberates Her In A Way She Could Not Have Imagined Over The Course Of The Summer, Cora S Eyes Are Opened To The Promise Of The Twentieth Century And A New Understanding Of The Possibilities For Being Fully Alive

10 thoughts on “The Chaperone

  1. says:

    I really liked so much of this book including Elizabeth McGovern s excellent narration , but it just went on so long I felt like it had several false endings, places where I was finished but then it kept going.Maybe the probelm is just that I didn t expect an epic when I began The story covers almost 50 years of Cora s life in a great deal of detail And while I find the 20th century interesting background, I was frustrated at Moriarty s need to touch on so many different issues Prohibition, adoption, gay rights, reproductive rights, suffrage Add to that, Cora happens to witness or read about dozens of historical events I began to feel manipulated after a while.What a I loved was the relationship between Cora and Louise Brooks I am a sucker for an author using a notice one true event and creating fiction from there.I would have been much satisfied had she ended the book after their summer together.

  2. says:

    When one reads the name of Louise Brooks on the jacket of a book, one assumes that the book will be filled with tales of the glamorous silent movie star who went to seed too fast but remained proud and arrogant till her death The fact that the name of the book is The Chaperone hinted to me that the story might involve Louise Brooks influencing her dowdy chaperone and introducing her to the big bad beautiful world of New York City That makes for okay reading Luckily for me, the book in no way took that turn Instead it focused on the life of Cora Carlisle, a proper married lady from Wichita, who accompanies Louise on her journey to New York but really goes to find truths, freedom, and a broader mind That s not including all the things she didn t count on finding On first meeting Cora in the book, one assumes she s a well bred woman of society who is happily married, enjoys ladies luncheons and teas, and has a keen eye on the world around her With Louise being the bubbly, obnoxious, carefree teenager, it was easy to think that Cora would be the stark opposite with a spotless background As the book progresses, we see Cora s strengths and, importantly, her vulnerabilities in marvellous ways Cora came to Kansas from an orphan house in New York City with no knowledge whatsoever of her real family Her teenage years were marked by the tragic loss of her adoptive parents and then a wedding to a rich, handsome lawyer Their marriage, seemingly normal on the outside, had its own hidden tragedies that left me torn and confused for Cora Moriarty never made her characters all good or all bad, there were two sides to every story and one had to keep reading to find out how they felt Cora s whirlwind journey in New York with Louise was only part of the book The rest is the aftermath, both good and bad, focusing on Cora but with bits of Louise s shooting success and equally quick and gossip worthy failures leaking in.The Chaperone is a moral quandary, an ache for freedom and happiness, and a need to conform to the proprieties of society It uncovers the fact that everyone has deep secrets which drive their actions It showcases examples of good parenting, absent parenting, and downright horrendous parenting It portrays the differences in love and how important certain unforeseen relationships can turn out to be Most importantly, it confronts truth and the necessity of hiding it for one s own good Cora s character was equal parts practical and spontaneous The fact that she was almost 22 years older than her charge showcases the differences in generational thinking and how both learned from each other, however reluctantly it might have been The most beautiful part of it all is that the story is embedded in the world of Prohibition, blacks versus whites, the emergence of the Klu Klux Klan, the obscenity of birth control, the glamour of Broadway and finally, World War II Moriarty takes us back into the 20s, 30s, and 40s with ridiculous ease as she weaves a plot that made me loathe to put the book down for as much as a minute.

  3. says:

    Corsets, yes Condoms, no Times are changing in 1922, but repressive attitudes linger Birth control is for sleazy people Divorce carries a permanent stigma Homosexuals are called sodomites, and face severe consequences if found out The Volstead Act Prohibition is strongly enforced, and abstinence a virtue Like most people in Wichita, Cora Carlisle adheres to these conventions out of habit, and fear of being ostracized by the community Along comes sassy little Louise Brooks Beautiful, talented, ambitious and brazen She s ready to take on New York City, but she s only fifteen, so Cora is sent along to make sure Louise maintains the proper decorum The five weeks they spend together in New York help to launch Louise s career as a silent film sensation In subtle and unexpected ways, the trip serves as a catalyst for changes in Cora s attitudes and lifestyle Cora is the chaperone, and this is her story Laura Moriarty writes with quiet elegance about the changes in the roles of women and societal norms She shows not only the contrast between 36 year old Cora and 15 year old Louise, but also the differences between Wichita and New York City in that era Most interesting and distressing to me was seeing the way people had to live a lie in the public eye in order to gain a measure of happiness in private So many things were frowned upon, and often illegal, that people had to feign moral rectitude while taking great risks behind closed doors and curtains As far as I know, Cora Carlisle was not a real person, but she serves as an excellent vehicle to carry us through almost 100 years of life A woman born in the 1880s and living into the 1980s had a lot of adjustments to make as the world changed around her Cora isn t a particularly exciting person, but the context in which she is placed makes her interesting indeed The story has some flaws in pacing, crawling along in some places and fast forwarding in others Aside from that, it s written with confidence and subtlety by an author who knows the story she wants to tell and is determined to tell it her own way I m glad I went along for the ride Review copy provided by the publisher.

  4. says:

    First off, I am a sucker for historical fiction I really, really liked this book Cora Carlisle the chaperone is a great character I felt as though I knew Cora and was completely wrapped up in her life There was one twist in the story I didn t see coming The author also piqued my interest in reading about Louise Brooks, who was certainly a woman ahead of her time I would highly recommend this one I ve already passed my copy to a coworker.

  5. says:

    Cora Carlisle is a fictionalized character, as The Chaperone , in this story to Louise s Brooks who in real life was a film actress and dancer who starred in 17 silent films and 8 sound films before she retired in 1938 Author Laura Moriaty created a really engaging tale about a journey that Louise Brooks Cora might have taken together to New York Louise was only 15 years old when she auditioned for the famous Denishawn Dance Company in 1922 In read life Louise did get hired with the company that year as a 15 year old For the purpose of this storyall girls underage no matter how mature or precocious they might be we re not allowed to be on their own.Coming from Wichita, Kansas, all young performers had a chaperone.Cora Carlisle, was married with twin boys Her boys were older going off to College and no longer needed her in the way young children do Cora told her husband she was taking this summer job instead of consulting with him which provides for a little mystery from the start The Brooks would cover all the expenses a little mystery around this family too Louise is very self centered at the start of the book It s almost no wonder her mother seems happy to send her off not being the one to take her herself Louise is bright, talented, precocious, and will try stretch every possible rule She exemplifies the Jazz Age flapper girls with bobbed hair Cora is matronly, a little predictable, and quietly judges Louise s liberal ways.There is a reason this story is mostly about Cora..and less about Louise.Yet..I did look up information about Louise Brooks it s only natural to be curious.When Cora and Louise get to New Yorkit s Cora that has the biggest growth She confronts her past She was in an orphanage as a child, and was one of the orphans sent west on the Orphan Train She begins to do research into the orphanage where she stayed looking for answers to questions she has Cora and Louise both have secrets in their closets Things are not all as they seem to be for either one of these women The blending of fact and fiction was a perfect dance This story was enjoyable I started out listening to the audiobook which was good , but I wanted to speed things along I couldn t hike all night long so I continued reading a copy of the physical book which I ve owned for years It s fun book shopping in my own house I m finding treasures to read without spending a dime 4.5

  6. says:

    It s the summer of 1922 in Wichita, Kansas, and thirty six year old Cora Carlisle is bored Her twin sons are preparing to leave for college, and she doesn t have anything to do with her time except various charity functions Then she learns that her neighbor s fifteen year old daughter has been accepted to a summer dance program in New York, and needs someone to accompany the girl as a chaperone Cora volunteers for the job, but has motives other than just an excuse to get out of Kansas for the summer Cora s own history began in New York, and she goes there hoping to answer some questions about her past In the meantime, though, she will stay busy keeping an eye on her charge headstrong, independent, fifteen year old Louise Brooks, who is only a few years away from becoming a Hollywood superstar I picked this up expecting it to be a light, fun romp in the vein of Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day just two ladies being modern and fun and generally having a blast in a pre WWII setting What I got was somethingpretty different It feels unfair to say that the synopsis felt like a bait and switch it s called The Chaperone, after all, so obviously it s going to focus on Cora than Louise but it s so Cora heavy that Louise barely functions in the story at all Moriarty is obviously concerned with Cora s story than Louise s, and this is most apparent in the structure of the book I expected the story to cover just the period that Cora and Louise spent in New York, but instead the book spans Cora s entire life When she returns to Kansas from New York, what I expected to be a two or three page epilogue instead turns into the last 3 4 of the book, as we have to sit through all of Cora s marital drama turns out that her husband view spoiler is gay, a plot twist that was blatantly projected from basically the minute the husband was introduced hide spoiler

  7. says:

    4 I would describe this story as a woman s journey of self discovery as she is entering a mid life crisis at the dawn of the twentieth century A voyage to discover truths about her beginnings which will change the set course of her life as she knows and expects It will lead to one focused on greater personal fulfillment and meaning rather than other s expectations or strictures Cora is wearing a tight corset during this quest which is mentioned often It s uncomfortable constrictions offer a symbolism to all the things about her life that are keeping her confined Prohibition and widespread lack of sexual information and women s health mirror the general restrictions and prohibitions women were subject to at the time, especially ones lacking the preferred background pedigree When she travels to New York as chaperone to a young, rebellious Louise Brooks, her eyes begin to open to the changes coming in society s s and challenge her to look beyond her rigidly held beliefs and conventional outlook about what is acceptable and right in her own life Cora s dominant character is complete fiction up against the secondary one of the real life Brooks The based on fact details of Louise s life add contrast and interest to the changing times during the Gilded Age I really enjoyed the reading experience, and as often happens in a story like this, I stop and think about how fortunate we modern day women are in progressive countries.

  8. says:

    I can t recommend this book to any of my friends SPOILER ALERT There is a bit of a spoiler in the next paragraph.There are a couple of themes going on in this book The first is knowing oneself How do we know who we are Cora, abandoned as a child, felt compelled to find her birth mother because she thought it would help her to feel complete Louise, raised by two parents, seemed to have the background that Cora envied The author did a good job exploring the lives and backgrounds of the two characters and how they found that sense of self, or did not find it.The other theme was morality Set in the 20 s, morality was black and white If something was bad that was it, there were no shades of gray As Cora went through life, those lines began to blur She was very judgmental in the beginning of the novel and became aware and accepting as she matured It was interesting to see the contrast between her and Louise, who because of life s unfairness, had a distinct lack of morality The real life character, Louise, however, had very real consequences for her actions, but Cora, the fictional character, had a better life as she became accepting of immorality I read a review on Goodreads earlier The reviewer mentioned that the historic information was sometimes put in as an aside she said, It was jarring every time I agree The author also covered large blocks of time and often it seemed rushed The book would have been better if Moriarty hadn t tried to cover a lifetime.On a positive note Cora s story was very interesting and it really pulled me in It didn t take me long to read the book.

  9. says:

    Yuck Would not recommend this book at all I would put this book in the category of I wasted my time reading it so you do not have to LOL This book is loosely historical fiction, but then has modern sensitivities and opinions inserted, like a bait and switch, or a wolf in sheep s clothing, or any other sort of metaphor or imagery along these lines you may care to use It purports to be about Louse Brooks the silent screen star of the 1920s and her trip to NYC from Kansas City, and how her mother hires a local woman to be her chaperone The story is told from the point of view of this chaperone And it goes off on tangents about how chaperone herself was originally from NYC, but was an orphan, sent out on the orphan trains to the Midwest, and was adopted by a farm family outside of Kansas City So, on this trip back to NYC, she tries to go to the children s home where she had lived and tries to find information about her birth family All of this is fine Until the book turns, and becomes about a how chaperone lady s husband is really gay, and has a longstanding affair with a gay friend of his, and chaperone comes to accept this b chaperone lady coexists in the home in Kansas City, after returning from NYC with husband and gay lover, and her own lover, a man she has met in NYC and brings back with all 4 basically live together, happily ever after c author inserts plotlines about Margaret Sanger and birth control and how it will revolutionize the lives of the ladies of Kansas City b c, like chaperone lady, they can have their true relationships now w o worrying about getting pregnant WHAT This book is CRAY CRAY CRAZY As one reviewer wrote, Cora chaperone lady starts throwing off previously held beliefs about social conventions at an unbelievably alarming rate Avoid..

  10. says:

    Realmente este libro a sido toda una sorpresa En ning n momento cre que fuera a gustarme tanto, ni a sorprenderme como lo ha hecho Seg n la sinopsis, acompa amos por un mes a Cora y a Louise Brooks a Nueva York, pero hacemos mucho m s que eso vemos la prohibici n del alcohol, los trenes de los ni os sin padres que eran repartidos por todo el pa s como si fueran ganado, la estricta moralidad de los dorados a os 20, as prohibidos y los prejuicios de la homosexualidad y sus penas