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The Breakfast at Tiffany’s TBR: 5 Books Full of Fabulous Female Characters

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Based on Truman Capote’s novel, the 1961 film Breakfast at Tiffany’s is no doubt a classic, beloved for its unusual love story, impeccable comedy, and Holly, its fashionable, iconic heroine (played by the stunning Audrey Hepburn). If you love revisiting this unforgettable romance, check out these five novels featuring sweeping views of Manhattan, characters who would likely love Holly’s style, and protagonists who also dream of freedom while making plenty of questionable choices.


Mrs. Everything
by Jennifer Weiner

From Jennifer Weiner, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Who Do You Love and In Her Shoes comes a smart, thoughtful, and timely exploration of two sisters’ lives from the 1950s to the present as they struggle to find their places—and be true to themselves—in a rapidly evolving world.

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Mrs. Everything
Jennifer Weiner

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Our Kind
by Kate Walbert

From the award-winning author of The Gardens of Kyoto comes this witty and incisive novel about the lives and attitudes of a group of women—once country-club housewives; today divorced, independent, and breaking the rules.

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Our Kind
Kate Walbert

Kate Walbert masterfully conveys the dreams and reality of a group of women who were once country-club housewives, and are now divorced, independent, and breaking the rules. This brilliant, thought-provoking novel opens a window into the world of a generation of women caught in a cultural limbo.

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My Mrs. Brown
by William Norwich

This “immensely enjoyable tale of empowerment” (Patrick Henry Bass, NY1) about a gentle Rhode Island woman who makes her first journey to New York City to buy an exquisitely tailored dress “gets to the essence of why style matters” (Kate Betts).

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My Mrs. Brown
William Norwich

This “immensely enjoyable tale of empowerment” (Patrick Henry Bass, NY1) about a gentle Rhode Island woman who makes her first journey to New York City to buy an exquisitely tailored dress “gets to the essence of why style matters” (Kate Betts).

Early one September not long ago, a woman with a secret traveled to New York City in pursuit of a dream, to buy the most beautiful and correct dress she’d ever seen. But sometimes a dress isn’t just a dress…

Emilia Brown has spent a frugal, useful, and wholly restrained life in Ashville, Rhode Island. She is a genteel woman who has known her share of personal sorrows and quietly carried on, who makes a modest living cleaning and running errands, who delights in evening chats with her much younger neighbor, and who counts her blessings on a daily basis.

While helping to inventory the estate of the late grand dame of Ashville and her lifelong source of inspiration, Mrs. Brown comes upon a dress that changes everything. It’s a simple yet exquisitely tailored Oscar de la Renta sheath and jacket—a suit that Mrs. Brown realizes, with startling clarity, will say everything she has ever wished to convey about herself. As a means to an end as much as a thing of beauty, she must have it. And so, like the heroine in one of her favorite books Paul Gallico’s 1958 classic Mrs. ‘Arris Goes to Paris, her odyssey to purchase the dress in New York City begins. For not only is owning the Oscar de la Renta a must, the intimidating trip to purchase it on Madison Avenue is essential as well. If the dress is to give Mrs. Brown a voice, then she must prepare by making the daunting journey—both to the emerald city and within herself.

Timeless, poignant, and appealing, My Mrs. Brown is “a contemporary fairy tale…a gentle rebuke to today’s hyped-up fashion culture” (The New York Times).

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MENTIONED IN:

The Breakfast at Tiffany’s TBR: 5 Books Full of Fabulous Female Characters

By Off the Shelf Staff | January 17, 2020

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Holly Would Dream
by Karen Quinn

Holly Ross often wishes she lived in a simpler time, when the clothes were glamorous, the men debonair, and the endings happy. That said, her career as a fashion historian isn't so bad. With both a wedding and a big promotion coming up, her own happily ever after seems assured. But when it all goes wrong, she finds herself having to choose between her long-held fairy tale fantasy and a new, real-life dream with an ending she couldn’t possibly imagine.

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Holly Would Dream
Karen Quinn

Holly Ross often wishes she lived in a simpler time, when the clothes were glamorous, the men debonair, and the endings happy. That said, her career as a fashion historian isn't so bad. With both a wedding and a big promotion coming up, her own happily ever after seems assured.

So how, in the space of one day, does it all go wrong? How does she end up homeless, jobless, penniless, and fiancé-less? Why is she cruising the Mediterranean in hot pursuit of real estate tycoon Denis King? And why, for heaven's sake, is she chasing down a suitcase full of stolen Audrey Hepburn gowns?

With the sparkling Mediterranean and the eternal city of Rome as the backdrops, Holly's adventures begin to resemble one of the 1950s Hollywood gems she so adores. Finally she must choose between her long-held fairy tale fantasy and a new, real-life dream with an ending she couldn't possibly imagine.

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MENTIONED IN:

The Breakfast at Tiffany’s TBR: 5 Books Full of Fabulous Female Characters

By Off the Shelf Staff | January 17, 2020

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
by Taylor Jenkins Reid

From the author of Daisy Jones & The Six—an entrancing novel “that speaks to the Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor in us all” (Kirkus Reviews), in which a legendary film actress reflects on her relentless rise to the top and the risks she took, the loves she lost, and the long-held secrets the public could never imagine.

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The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo
Taylor Jenkins Reid

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