(Review) Astor Place Vintage by Stephanie Lehmann

Publication Date: July 1, 2013.
Publisher: Touchstone.
Genre: Fiction.
Pages: 416.
Source: Gift.
Rating: 3 stars for good.

Amanda owns a vintage clothing store in Manhattan, New York City. She is single and quickly approaching 40. She has a complicated relationship with a boy she's known since high school. Amanda meets an older woman wanting to sell her classic vintage clothing to Amanda. Amanda finds a diary tucked away in one of the articles of clothing. The two women barter and bargain. Amanda keeps the diary and becomes absorbed in the author's story.
The book travels back and forth between the worlds of modern day Amanda and the diary's author Olive Westcott. When the diary begins, it is 1907. Olive is an independent minded young women of a new era in America. She yearns to have a career. The two women have certain qualities in common, but they live in different times.

My Thoughts:
What I loved about the story is vintage clothing, a hidden diary, another era in history, turn of the twentieth century NYC, and a coming of age---becoming independent quality.
What I disliked about the story is Amanda at age 39 seems more immature that Olive at age 20. Amanda comes across as sarcastic and about as mature as a teenage girl. In my opinion sarcasm is a mask for insecurity. It's bravado with a smidgen of humor.
A second point I did not like was the ending felt predictable. I had already figured out in the early part of the story where all this was leading.
I loved Olive's story more than Amanda's. I had empathy for Amanda's issues, but I was ready for her character to develop.


  1. I read this a while ago and I remember feeling that Amanda never developed either. I did like the historical part of the book, though.

  2. Thanks Melinda for leaving a comment. I loved the historical part, actually I think there could be a good story for a part two of Olive's life.


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