The Gospel According to Coco Chanel

  • by Karen Karbo
  • Narrated by Bernadette Dunne
  • 6 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Delving into the long, extraordinary life of renowned French fashion designer Coco Chanel, Karen Karbo has written a new kind of book, exploring Chanel’s philosophy on a range of universal themes—from style to passion, from money and success to femininity and living life on your own terms.
Chanel is credited not simply with giving us the little black dress and boxy jackets, but with popularizing pants for women and easy, practical clothes that allowed women a chic freedom they’d never known before. In her strong-headed, elegant, opinionated, passionate, entirely French way, Coco Chanel helped bring women into the modern era, and because of this she was the only person in fashion to be named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People of the 20th Century.
Karen Karbo weaves Chanel’s life story into chapter themes that subtly convey life lessons and leave the reader utterly entranced with Chanel’s amazing individuality, confidence, and determination. The story of the designer’s extraordinary life and rise to unprecedented success is both compelling and admirable. And while the great Coco may have launched her singular empire a hundred years ago, her methods, attitude, and élan are as relevant and modern as ever, and perhaps more appealing. Chanel was a self-made girl who knew how to make do with less until she had more, discover and stay true to her own style, problem solve using the tools at hand, and do it all with seemingly effortless flair. The Gospel According to Coco Chanel is a captivating, offbeat look at style, celebrity, and self-invention—all held together with Karbo’s droll Chanel-style commentary and culled from an examination of Chanel’s difficult childhood and triumphant adulthood, passionate love affairs, career choices, habits, eccentricities, and personal philosophies.

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What the Critics Say

“Anyone with a good sense of humor should hugely enjoy, or should I say enjoie, Karen Karbo’s funny and stylish take on Coco Chanel. Like a little black dress, this handy life guide will take you from day into evening. K. K. on C. C.: oui, oui!” (Henry Alford, author of How to Live: A Search for Wisdom from Old People (While They Are Still on This Earth))
“Wise, witty, and refreshingly colloquial, The Gospel According to Coco Chanel is an enchanting tour through the complex, often controversial life of fashion icon Chanel. Filled with relevant life lessons for the modern woman, this book is Karbo at her irrepressible best.” (Hilary Black, editor of The Secret Currency of Love: The Unabashed Truth about Women, Money, and Relationships)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

She's one of my faves

What made the experience of listening to The Gospel According to Coco Chanel the most enjoyable?

This is a funny and accurate account of Coco Chanel. You can relate to Karen Karbo as if she were your friend. If you like Chanel this is a must for you. You will learn more about her and get a kick out of the perspective.


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- Heather

Karbo is Such a Mom

If you could sum up The Gospel According to Coco Chanel in three words, what would they be?

Best Feminism Ever!


Who was your favorite character and why?

Coco of course, but Karbo is quite interesting herself.


Have you listened to any of Bernadette Dunne’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but I loved her performance. She really creates an atmosphere and brings a lot of energy to the story. She makes it alive like I believe Karen Karbo intended.


What’s an idea from the book that you will remember?

The idea that some of the greatest people of our time have "created" themselves literally in their own minds and refused to let anyone correct them.


Any additional comments?

Great infusion of fashion history in a way that a none fashion buff can also relate to. In fact, I was able to give background info to my husband (who probably didn't care, but pretended very well) about a recent Chanel headline.

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- Marie

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-18-2010
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.