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Extended Audio Sample The Chaperone, by Laura Moriarty Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.0006342393896 out of 53.0006342393896 out of 53.0006342393896 out of 53.0006342393896 out of 53.0006342393896 out of 5 3.00 (12,582 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Laura Moriarty Narrator: McGovern Elizabeth, Elizabeth McGovern Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A New York Times bestseller, The Chaperone is a captivating novel about the woman who chaperoned an irreverent Louise Brooks to New York City in the 1920s and the summer that would change them both.
Only a few years before becoming a famous silent-film star and an icon of her generation, a fifteen-year-old Louise Brooks leaves Wichita, Kansas, to study with the prestigious Denishawn School of Dancing in New York. Much to her annoyance, she is accompanied by a thirty-six-year-old chaperone, who is neither mother nor friend. Cora Carlisle, a complicated but traditional woman with her own reasons for making the trip, has no idea what she’s in for. Young Louise, already stunningly beautiful and sporting her famous black bob with blunt bangs, is known for her arrogance and her lack of respect for convention. Ultimately, the five weeks they spend together will transform their lives forever.
For Cora, the city holds the promise of discovery that might answer the question at the core of her being, and even as she does her best to watch over Louise in this strange and bustling place she embarks on a mission of her own. And while what she finds isn’t what she anticipated, she is liberated in a way she could not have imagined. Over the course of Cora’s relationship with Louise, her eyes are opened to the promise of the twentieth century and a new understanding of the possibilities for being fully alive.
Drawing on the rich history of the 1920s, ’30s, and beyond—from the orphan trains to Prohibition, flappers,  and the onset of the Great Depression to the burgeoning movement for equal rights and new opportunities for women—Laura Moriarty’s The Chaperone illustrates how rapidly everything, from fashion and hemlines to values and attitudes, was changing at this time and what a vast difference it all made for Louise Brooks, Cora Carlisle, and others like them.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The Chaperone is the enthralling story of two women…and how their unlikely relationship changed their lives…In this layered and inventive story, Moriarty raises profound questions about family, sexuality, history, and whether it is luck or will—or a sturdy combination of the two—that makes for a wonderful life.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • “In her new novel, The Chaperone, Laura Morirty treats this golden age with an evocative look at the early life of silent-film icon Louise Brooks, who in 1922 leaves Wichita, Kansas, for New York City in the company of thirty-six-year-old chaperone, Cora Carlisle…A mesmerizing take on women in this pivotal era.”


  • “Devour it.”

    Marie Claire

  • “A fun romp.”

    Good Housekeeping

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • Selected for the June 2012 Indie Next List
  • Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award
  • A BookPage Book of the Day, June 2012
  • A 2012 Washington Post Notable Book for Fiction
  • A 2012 BookPage Best Book for Fiction
  • A 2012 Kansas City Star Top 100 Book for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Beth | 2/10/2014

    " I enjoyed this book very much. Starts as a woman named Cora with grown children who agrees to chaperone a neighbors daughter to dance school in NYC for the summer. But you learn to story of Cora lives with all the heart ache and happiness. Had a hard time putting it down and cried at the end. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Theresa | 2/9/2014

    " Always enjoy hiustoric fiction, butI didn't anticipate giving this one a 5. I think I could read again. There is a lot to consider as sadness, twists, turns, secrets are revealed. The final paragraph is worth reading first...but don't!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Lalla | 2/7/2014

    " The plot of this book is an egrossing story of a woman trying to trace her biological roots during the twenties when information of this type was very guarded and secretive. It is also the story of Louise Brooks a silent screen star and her rise to fame and fall from it. The book recreates the morals and fashions of the time creatively. Some events test the credibility of the reader and you wonder if this could really happen in those times, but the reader will find themselves carried away by the story as they read it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Kathy | 2/4/2014

    " What fun! I had just finished reading 'Just One Day' where the main character met a boy who said she looked like Louise Brooks, so he called her Lulu---and then I started this book for my March book club and discovered that the main character is in charge of said Lulu! This is a well-developed tale with believable characters; setting is true to history, problems are solved in a believable manner, and the ending is satisfying. I will read another book by this author. "

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