Sunday, April 28, 2019

Weekend Review: the Dress Shop of Dreams

Dress Shop of Dreams / Meena van Pragh
New York: Ballantine, c2014.
326 p.

Dresses. Books. Science. Baking. All in one.

This is another story about a magical vintage dress shop; there seemed to be run of them for a while!

It's cute, sweet, a little predictable and not altogether believable -- but still entertaining and charming. And the cover is lovely :)

Cora Sparks is a focused realist, a scientist whose parents died mysteriously when she was quite young. She was raised by her wonderful grandmother Etta, the owner of said dress shop. When women come to try on dresses, Etta stitches in a magical little star somewhere on the inside which brings women their dreams. 

Mixed in with this story is Cora's search for the truth of her parents' tragic deaths, a conspiracy with long-reaching effects. And there is also a secondhand bookseller just down the street, one who bakes a mean cherry pie. And is the velvet voice of a late night radio show. Walt has been Cora's friend since they were 5 yrs old, but she doesn't see how he adores her. Until Etta throws a little magical influence into the mix...

There are many lines in the story that cross and influence one another, just like Etta's little thread stars. If you let yourself go with the flow, you'll probably enjoy this sweet read. 

In some bookish ways it reminded me of The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry (the good parts) or maybe even the slightly loopy magical bits from stories by Sarah Addison Allen. If you like shopping vintage, or details of said dresses, or a gentle romantic thread, this is a great pick. 


  1. Another book in my local library! I have put a hold on it. After a couple of weeks of travelling and camping I will look forward to settling down inside to a light entertain read with lots of sewing talk.

    1. That's a great plan! This is such a light & fun read.


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