How to pick a book?
1. Chose a subject you’ve only just developed an interested in.
2. And most importantly? It’s title is one of your all time favorite songs.
I think those are all excellent reasons. Champagne Supernovas is about the early nineties convergence on the fashion scene of Alexander McQueen, Kate Moss and Marc Jacobs. In a lot of ways the launch of the grunge stuff. Going into this I probably knew the most about Moss and the Calvin Klein ads that launched her and heroine chic. Sadly what I knew most about McQueen was his manner of death and of course Kate Middleton’s wedding dress. Marc Jacobs? Well, I covert his bags.
All in all this was an interesting read although it wasn’t really surprising or new. Jacobs and McQueen had all kinds of connections including rough childhoods and raging drug problems. Seriously, it sometimes felt like the early parts of this book were mostly talking about high functioning drug addictions.
The weird thing was how the ending worked. It pretty much ended for Jacobs the minute he got clean and got his life on track. For Moss her part ended after what was probably her first stay in rehab. Mentions of her icon status and her business work is in there but not nearly as in depth as the early parts of her career. McQueen’s destruction gets the lion share of the ending and it’s a sad train-wreck of a tale. He had some real problems and unfortunately money and success and hangers on didn’t help at all.
The book also touches on the sad lives of Corinne Day a photographer who launched Kate Moss and who liked taking pictures of the ‘messy’ side of life including pictures of models surrounded by drugs and a young friend of hers engaged in sexual relations with her boyfriend. As well as McQueen’s fascinating to big to be believed and tragic music Isabella Blow.
This book was a good quick read with some cameos from all the usual models, fashion icons and of course Nirvana and Courtney Love. But it’s also a subject I’m interested in. The book touched on a lot of threads, ideas and people that I would like to read more about in the future. But I wish the book would have been a lot more in-depth or maybe take out one of the three to concentrate on the other.
One more issue I had about the book that’s admittedly little: there definitely should have been more pictures.
Recommend: Overall there are more in-depth books on the subject and the people and the time.