Last May, a new historical novel came out that still has me thinking about it. The title and cover immediately intrigued me. If you read my posts, you know I love color. Tiffany creations epitomize usage of color. On a visit to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Tiffany’s Autumn Landscape window took my breath away. So the colors on this cover caught my attention.
The title is The Tiffany Girls. I immediately pictured a room full of girls working with colored glass. I wanted to know their story!
The author, Shelley Noble, writes about girls who worked for Tiffany in 1899, when the famous creator of stained glass windows was preparing for the World’s Fair in Paris. The novel follows three girls who work with the glass.
Emilie is the daughter of an art forger who longs to become an artist. She forges a letter of recommendation to get the job with Tiffany. Grace cuts glass for the flower borders of the windows. She’s very talented, but also secretly creates political cartoons. Clara is tasked with managing the girls and the project, but she is obsessed with a design that will eventually become Tiffany’s signature dragonfly lamp.
I love stories of unknown women contributing to a world I’m familiar with. The 19th century conditions are well depicted, especially of working women forging their own lives. The peak at the art world entranced me, too. I enjoyed following these women as they created masterpieces they never got credit for.
Linda Ulleseit writes award-winning heritage fiction set in the United States. She is a member of Historical Novel Society, Women’s Fiction Writers Association, and Women Writing the West, as well as a founding member of Paper Lantern Writers. Get in touch with her on Instagram (lulleseit) and Facebook (Linda Ulleseit or SHINE with Paper Lantern Writers).