Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

Much like Park Avenue Summer was a fictional take on Helen Gurley Brown, Rosen’s latest imagines the life of another groundbreaking woman, Estée Lauder, through the eyes of everywoman Gloria Downing, who meets Lauder when she gets a job washing hair at a neighborhood salon and works her way up to the buying department at Saks. Many of Lauder’s life elements are woven into the story - Rosen offers an appendix to differentiate the true from the tweaked. But more than entertaining historical fiction, Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl is also a fascinating exploration of artifice and reinvention. What else would you expect from a story about the Queen of Cosmetics?

— Daniel Goldin


It’s 1938, and a young woman selling face cream out of a New York City beauty parlor is determined to prove she can have it all. Her name is Estée Lauder, and she’s about to take the world by storm, in this dazzling new novel from the USA Today bestselling author of The Social Graces and Park Avenue Summer.

In New York City, you can disappear into the crowd. At least that’s what Gloria Downing desperately hopes as she tries to reinvent herself after a devastating family scandal. She’s ready for a total life makeover and a friend she can lean on—and into her path walks a young, idealistic woman named Estée. Their chance encounter will change Gloria’s life forever.

Estée dreams of success and becoming a household name like Elizabeth Arden, Helena Rubinstein, and Revlon. Before Gloria knows it, she is swept up in her new friend’s mission and while Estée rolls up her sleeves, Gloria begins to discover her own talents. After landing a job at Saks Fifth Avenue, New York’s finest luxury department store, Gloria finds her voice, which proves instrumental in opening doors for Estée’s insatiable ambitions.

But in a world unaccustomed to women with power, they’ll each have to pay the price that comes with daring to live life on their own terms and refusing to back down.

About the Author

Renée Rosen is the USA Today bestselling author of The Social Graces, Park Avenue Summer, Windy City Blues, White Collar Girl, What the Lady Wants, and Dollface. She is also the author of Every Crooked Pot, a YA novel published in 2007. Renée lives in Chicago.

Praise For…

“In this captivating novel, Renée Rosen invites readers to peer behind the lovely facade of the iconic Estee Lauder, at her real origin and hardscrabble rise. This illuminating tale about ambition and friendship between Estee and Gloria Downing, another young woman who has changed her name and her identity, explores the dangers inherent in embellishing the truth. A fascinating glimpse into a legend who has changed the face of cosmetics forever.”
Marie Benedict, New York Times bestselling author of The Personal Librarian and The Mitford Affair

"A scintillating, beautifully written peek into the life of one of America’s most fascinating women, Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl is an ode to the singular magic of chasing and catching one’s wildest dreams. Through Renee Rosen’s well-trained pen, Estée Lauder returns, living and breathing on every page. Rosen is at the height of her storytelling prowess with this glittering novel that shines as brightly as the heroine at its center. I absolutely could not put it down. "
Kristy Woodson Harvey, New York Times Bestselling Author of The Wedding Veil
“A dazzling story of the beauty of female friendship and the dogged persistence of a cosmetics legend who knew that she—and the women around her—were meant for more… Estée Lauder was a force to be reckoned with and her ambition and drive leap off the page in Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl!”
Stephanie Marie Thornton, USA Today bestselling author of A Most Clever Girl

"Like the perfect red lipstick, Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl is both utterly stylish and satisfying. Renée Rosen deftly shows us what a determined dreamer Estee Lauder was and, in so doing, creates a heroine as timeless and remarkable as the products she introduced to women all around the world. A truly inspiring rags to riches tale, told by a wonderful storyteller.”
Natasha Lester, New York Times bestselling author of The Riviera House

“Renee Rosen tells a page-turning story of resilience and self-determination even as she brings a household name to life. Through fascinating detail and heartfelt empathy, she illuminates Estee Lauder’s determined rise to be the woman she always wanted to be. An inspiration for us all.”
—Lynn Cullen, national bestselling author of The Woman with the Cure

"A tale of blazing trails in a man's world, FIFTH AVENUE GLAMOUR GIRL is an empowering, touching story of enduring friendship and beating the odds. A perfect spring read!"
--Heather Webb, USA Today bestselling author of Strangers in the Night
 "With her golden pen, Rosen delves into the power of friendship, emphasizing that while cosmetics can be bought, true friendship must be earned. Rosen’s world is lush, well researched, and her characters are vividly portrayed. Like her iconic subject matter, Rosen’s FIFTH AVENUE GLAMOUR GIRL is truly an inspiration.
-- Lisa Barr, New York Times bestselling author of WOMAN ON FIRE

 “An intimate and fascinating glimpse into the woman whose determination to fulfill her dream literally changed the face of American women, told with an immediacy that was captivating far beyond the final page. A must read!”
Shelley Noble, New York Times bestselling author of Summer Island

Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl sweeps us into the fascinating world of New York’s beauty industry and pulls back the veil on the Cinderella story of how Estee Lauder carved out a name for herself through perseverance and hard work. With Renee Rosen’s impressive research and richly crafted characters, this beautifully written story will be one you won’t be able to put down as you cheer these women on.”
Madeline Martin, New York Times bestselling author of Librarian Spy

“Renée Rosen’s gift for creating real, fallible and compelling characters we grow to love and cheer for shines in Fifth Avenue Glamor Girl, a story of the grit and determination behind the glamor of beauty icon, Estée Lauder, and of an enduring, flawed friendship between two strong women. Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl is a brilliant, absorbing, and emotional novel you won’t want to put down!”
Christine Wells, author of Sisters of the Resistance

“Renée Rosen’s Fifth Avenue Glamour Girl vividly portrays the elegance of the 1930s and 1940s cosmetics industry while showing the warts-and-all journey of the rise of the iconic Estée Lauder’s rise. Readers will love this fascinating story of two women concealing the blemishes of their past while building a friendship that will carry them through the heartbreak and ambition of claiming their space at the beauty counter.”
Georgie Blalock, author of The Other Windsor Girl

Product Details
ISBN: 9780593335666
ISBN-10: 059333566X
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: April 25th, 2023
Pages: 432
Language: English