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Le Snob: Perfume Hardcover – 1 Oct 2012


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Hardie Grant Books (1 Oct 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1742704689
  • ISBN-13: 978-1742704685
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 1.8 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 182,951 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dariush Alavi is a Jasmine Award winning critic and amateur perfumer whose blog, www.Persolaise.com, is considered to be one of the most important sources of independent fragrance reviews in the world. He is a regular contributor to Basenotes, he writes a column for Esprit Magazine and his work has been recommended by the Financial Times.

Born in London to a Polish mother and an Iranian father, he was raised in both his parents' countries, as well as in the United Arab Emirates. He currently lives in the south of England with his wife and several bottles of perfume.

He also writes literary fiction, some of which has been broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and published in PRISM International Magazine and on Pulp.net.

Product Description

About the Author

Dariush Alavi is an award winning perfume critic, writer and lecturer who also edits Persolaise, a blog offering high quality, independent reviews of both niche and mainstream fragrances (www.persolaise.com). The blog has a strong international readership, as well as the attention and praise of several important industry figures. Dariush is also a regular contributor to Basenotes, the world s most popular perfume site, and a columnist for Esprit, the UK's top trade publication for the beauty and cosmetics industry.

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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. R. on 21 Oct 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I hope that the publisher's imprint 'Le Snob' won't put people off buying, because this little book takes an egalitarian approach to perfumery, not a superior one. It's helpful, clearly and beautifully written, and open about things which perfume manufacturers and marketers sometimes are not.

Of course, some of the scents which Dariush Alavi describes are expensive, but he takes the opposite of a snobbish attitude to them. The only vague snobbishness is the book's desire to stop people wasting good money on dreadful scents. Which is just plain good sense.
He takes a 111 perfumes (if I've counted correctly) and explains why they are worth trying, and where they fit into the circle of scents (see page 23). You don't get a more accessible brand than 4711, but it has earned a place in the guide because they make a great cologne.

The author has chosen perfumes he thinks are wonderful, so you don't get the scathing assassinations of inferior scents which Luca Turin gives you. And he's had to edit to fit the space available, so I'm sure there are some more he'd love to put in there but hasn't been able to.
But he gives you a good place to start if you're thinking of exploring some new fragrances and don't want to be overpowered by single minded salespeople.

Some of perfumery's mysteries are unveiled here, gently, without upsetting the major perfume houses. The Fundamentals section is an essential read. The reviews are short and helpful. Dariush Alavi writes an influential perfume blog, Persolaise, and there his reviews are more literary, worldly, entertaining and - well - long.

Bying perfume for a present can be a bit hit and miss. Get this instead and you really can't go wrong.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By BubbaSolo on 12 Jun 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was not a perfume fanatic, I was not a perfume fan nor did I possess the basic knowledge about perfumes BEFORE I read this book. I was told it was a good, short, concise book for newbies and for those in the know as well, so I gave it a shot. I must say, the introductory chapters simply opened the doors to new corridors for me and I started to really appreciate what perfumes really are, how you can categorize them, how they are made, what are the different types and how you can start to describe the smells (reminds me of wine tasting to an extent). As a newbie, I think that information was extremely useful to me and now I have a different take on what smells I actually like and I have even started narrowing down my favorite 'smell palette'. I actually uncovered a whole new smell world and I wear what suits my mood, my looks and it makes me feel confident and is a part of my character and not just some random after shave splash on the face - I couldn't have done it without the info. and tips in this book.
Then there are the actual reviews in the book, I didn't know most of those perfumes, I would go so far as to say I didn't know 99% of them, however, I wasn't a perfume expert. Nevertheless, the descriptions and reviews are well written, some are very witty and very creative and once you latch on to some smell characteristics, it makes it easier to understand the reviews and I recommend passing by perfume shops whenever you are in a mall just to compare notes with the author and build up your own smell buds.
Another thing to mention which I rarely pay attention to; the book itself (physically) is actually quite impressive, it is small enough to tuck away in your bag as it is like a diary/calendar sized book with a band that goes around it to keep it shut; I thought that was a smart touch.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By PCM on 1 Nov 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am rather a latecomer to Mr Alavi's perfume blog, but having become a regular reader, I was delighted to see that he was to publish this. It is a beautiful volume, clearly & concisely written (& gorgeously illustrated), reflecting the author's knowledge as well as opinions. It's a lovely book for dipping into & I have done so many times since receiving it. It would make a fitting gift for someone at the start of their fragrance world exploration, & a fine addition to a perfumista's existing library.

Is it too much to hope for another, longer book at some point?

Well done, Mr Alavi!

From Carolyn Middleton, Aberdeen, Scotland
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sam Egerton on 4 Jan 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Easy to read and engaging, it gave interesting tips and insights into a topic that I had known very little about.

Despite having the words "le snob" in the title, it is unpretentious. Written in a witty yet accessible way, Perfume invited me in and created a space where I could start to appreciate what I had regarded as a daunting and complex world.

A good and thoroughly worthwhile buy.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Esther L. Oberbeck on 5 Feb 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good into with great tips for those looking to buy or gift the classics or something more adventurous, all in an easy to find format.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By KV on 13 Jun 2013
Format: Hardcover
Like most people I enjoy buying and using new perfumes, but I had no idea to immense depth that exists within this topic. I learnt things that I never even thought about before in terms of the "perfume world". It makes a great gift. In fact, I had actually bought this book as a gift for my brother-in-law as he likes to seek, find, collect and try different scents from around the world. I began to read the first few pages simply because there was nothing else to do. The book quickly drew me in and I became more engrossed in it with every passing page. I really enjoyed this book. It has enough richness and detail to keep you "scent-illated". Pardon the pun. Wink, Wink!

:D
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