Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Guest Post: Author M.J. Rose talks lost perfumes

Have you ever come across an older item that belonged to your grandmother or another relative and became completely caught up in the faint fragrance emanating from it?  My grandmother had a silky purple dress I inherited when she passed on that had a lovely floral smell to it.  I often wondered what the fragrance was.  Today M.J. Rose, author of The Book of Lost Fragrances (check out my review HERE) is stopping by to tell us about a wonderful sounding fragrance that is also now lost to us.

M.J. Rose:  I've been fascinated with lost fragrances since long before I started writing The Book of Lost Fragrances... since I found a bottle of perfume on my great grandmother's dresser that had belonged to her mother in Russia. Here is one of those lost fragrances that stirs the senses and the imagination... (researched and described  with the help of the perfume writer Dimitrios Dimitriadis).


Launched at the 1900 World’s Fair, Le Parfum Idéal became Houbigant's crowning glory and a beacon to which the well-heeled flocked. An arresting floral composition, Le Parfum Idéal married natural and synthetic components which included rose, ylang ylang, carnation, coumarin, jasmine, cloves, vanilla and ambergris. It was a scent that typified La Belle Époque, and was first presented in apothecary-style Baccarat flacons which were housed in boxes with patterned motifs inspired by oriental carpets. Additional perfumed products were added to the line and sold right up until the 1950s, when regrettably production was permanently suspended.

Thanks M.J!  I think the perfumes today would have nothing on many of the older fragrances that are sadly no longer around (Le Parfum Ideal included).  To me half the ones released now smell like soap. M.J's new book centers around a lost fragrance which is so potent it may give the person smelling it the power to visit past lives!

Here is a synopsis:

A sweeping and suspenseful tale of secrets, intrigue, and lovers separated by time, all connected through the mystical qualities of a perfume created in the days of Cleopatra--and lost for 2,000 years. 
Jac L'Etoile has always been haunted by the past, her memories infused with the exotic scents that she grew up surrounded by as the heir to a storied French perfume company. In order to flee the pain of those remembrances--and of her mother's suicide--she moved to America. Now, fourteen years later she and her brother have inherited the company along with it's financial problems. But when Robbie hints at an earth-shattering discovery in the family archives and then suddenly goes missing--leaving a dead body in his wake--Jac is plunged into a world she thought she'd left behind.

Back in Paris to investigate her brother's disappearance, Jac becomes haunted by the legend the House of L'Etoile has been espousing since 1799. Is there a scent that can unlock the mystery of reincarnation - or is it just another dream infused perfume?

The Book of Lost Fragrances fuses history, passion, and suspense, moving from Cleopatra's Egypt and the terrors of revolutionary France to Tibet's battle with China and the glamour of modern-day Paris. Jac's quest for the ancient perfume someone is willing to kill for becomes the key to understanding her own troubled past.

M.J is visiting Bippity Boppity Book as part of her tour with Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours.  For more reviews of The Book of Lost Fragrances and guest posts you can view the rest of the tour schedule HERE.


M.J. Rose is the international best selling author of eleven novels and two non-fiction books on marketing. Her fiction and non-fiction has appeared in many magazines and reviews including Oprah Magazine. She has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, Time, USA Today and on the Today Show, and NPR radio.  Rose graduated from Syracuse University, spent the '80s in advertising, has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for authors - Authorbuzz.com.  The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose's novels in the Renincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of International Thriller Writers and runs the blog- Buzz, Balls & Hype.  She is also the co-founder of Peroozal.com and BookTrib.com.

Rose lives in CT with her husband the musician and composer, Doug Scofield, and their very spoiled and often photographed dog, Winka.

For more information on M.J. Rose and her novels, please visit her WEBSITE. You can also find her on Facebook.

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