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Download The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Widow Clicquot: The Story of a Champagne Empire and the Woman Who Ruled It (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Tilar Mazzeo
3.48 out of 53.48 out of 53.48 out of 53.48 out of 53.48 out of 5 3.48 (31 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Tilar Mazzeo Narrator: Susan Ericksen Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2009 ISBN:
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Veuve Clicquot champagne epitomizes glamour, style, and luxury. But who was this young widow - the Veuve Clicquot - whose champagne sparkled at the courts of France, Britain, and Russia, and how did she rise to celebrity and fortune?

In The Widow Clicquot, Tilar J. Mazzeo brings to life for the first time the fascinating woman behind the iconic yellow label: Barbe-Nicole Clicquot Ponsardin. A young witness to the dramatic events of the French Revolution and a new widow during the chaotic years of the Napoleonic Wars, Barbe-Nicole defied convention by assuming - after her husband's death - the reins of the fledgling wine business they had nurtured. Steering the company through dizzying political and financial reversals, she became one of the world's first great businesswomen and one of the richest women of her time.

Although the Widow Clicquot is still a legend in her native France, her story has never been told in all its richness - until now. Painstakingly researched and elegantly written, The Widow Clicquot provides a glimpse into the life of a woman who arranged clandestine and perilous champagne deliveries to Russia one day and entertained Napoleon and Josephine Bonaparte on another. She was a daring and determined entrepreneur, a bold risk taker, and an audacious and intelligent woman who took control of her own destiny when fate left her on the brink of financial ruin. Her legacy lives on today, not simply through the famous product that still bears her name, but now through Mazzeo's finely crafted book.

As much a fascinating journey through the process of making this temperamental wine as a biography of a uniquely tempered woman, The Widow Clicquot is utterly intoxicating. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Margaret Sankey | 2/6/2014

    " If you've ever looked at the bright yellow label and wondered if there really was a Veuve Clicquot rather than a marketing creation, the answer is oui--Barb-Nicole, bourgeois survivor of the French Revolution, bankrupt widow and winemaking genius was not just a real person, but a revolutionizer of 19th century industry. While managing vineyards and negotiating the every changing political allegiances of France, she also invented labels and international name recognition, a secret method for storing bottles en pointe to ensure clarity, profit-sharing to keep the method secret, used the Napoleonic Wars as a marketing tool and convinced occupying Russians not to loot the cellars but to pay and sing the praises of Clicquot champagne. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Victoria | 2/2/2014

    " So far a really interesting biography of the woman behind one of the largest and most prolific Champagne empires (and my personal favorite :) "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Molly | 1/25/2014

    " Started out slow, thought the first chapter was overly wordy - "get to the point already." In the end I reall;y enjoyed it and learned so much about wine and the wine industry. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elizabeth | 1/21/2014

    " I love me some good bubbly from the orange label and I learned a lot about champagne and business from this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Weezie | 1/17/2014

    " I love historical novels and this one was good for me because we were in Champagne last summer. I wish I had read this before we went because I would have tried to find the places written about here. It is the story of a very industrious, bright and determined woman to continue and prosper in the wine making business her husband left her with. Needless to say, this was not a time of women owned businesses! She was very young when she was widowed. In the process of making a go of the business, she perfected the process of making "bubbly" and in fact invented the process of inverting the bottle to uncork the "lies" from the first fermentation. I loved reading about the process of making champagne against the backdrop of the French Revolution and Napoleon. I was disappointed in the Widow (Veuve en francais, hence the name of the champagne) in the way she raised her daughter. But that was the only disappointment; I highly recommend this quick read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 1/8/2014

    " Great history of the woman and the bubbly! Educational and enjoyable. I so want a glass right now...but I gave up wine for lent. Darn. Also the author is a professor at Colby! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cynthia | 12/24/2013

    " The woman behind the famous champagne, it turns out, has a remarkable story. Lucky in the timing of her birth and in the man to whom she is married, bold in her risk taking, daring and tenacious in her entrepreneurship, she is quite the role model. Anyone who enjoys the story of a bold entrepreneur, of a fascinating woman, or of a great wine should read this book! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paige Pell | 12/19/2013

    " Eye-opening story of the life of female entrepreneur in a time when that status was highly unusual. Also an interesting history of the development of the champagne industry. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tom Stewart | 11/25/2013

    " I'd hoped that this wouldbegoodeffervescent and enlightening fun. And it's ok. I learned quite a lot about the brief period during which champagne became *c*h*a*m*p*a*g*n*e!, a story I hadn't known. But the prose is baggy and flabby--this book fails the minimal test of editing, namely the application Struck & White's Rule 13. And the whole thing tries too hard. And so, while I have said that I finished, I mean that I finished reading the book, but not that i finished the book "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kirstin | 11/22/2013

    " Made me love champagne even more that I now understand so much more about it and where the industry comes from. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sarah | 11/10/2013

    " Fascinating look at life in France amidst a rash of revolutions, and at the beginning of Champagne as it is known now. But it runs long--particularly since the author admits the historical record on Widow Clicquot is sparse. Too many bubbles of historical fiction in this wine for my taste. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ann Paige | 10/20/2013

    " I love Veuve and I loved this book. Mazzeo rules in recreating the life of a true visionary and artist in a time when the world expected women to be seen and not heard. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Heather Macdermott | 10/2/2013

    " Interesting, a bit dry, but moved along at a nice pace. I found it very informative on the how and why of Champagne, along with a slice of frech history you would not nessacerraly find in other books on France. If Champage is your passion a must read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy | 9/7/2013

    " Fascinating read about the history of Veuve Clicquot champagne. Wonderful to read about the success of a woman in her time, the history of champagne, and general great read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mbinda | 8/12/2013

    " Enlightening and fun even though there seems to be so little actual record on the widow "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robin | 3/26/2013

    " This book could have been much more interesting & a great historical fiction novel. Instead read like a college dissertation. Great champagne! Merci Madame cliquot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michelle | 3/16/2013

    " In traveling to France I was going to the Veuve Clicquot Champagne house and I wanted a little knowledge of the family. Enjoyed the book and the woman who started it all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pam | 12/26/2012

    " I learned a ton about champagne. The Widow is an interesting character. My only complaint was the flowery writing style. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andy Perdue | 10/28/2012

    " I never thought much about Veuve Cliquot other than how delicious it is. Now that I understand the story behind the yellow label, I have even greater appreciation not only for Cliquot but also the entire sparkling wine industries. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carol | 8/10/2012

    " There is so much to know about champagne! I'm really enjoying learning about it, and with each page want to run out and buy a bottle so I can sip on some bubbly as I read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alicia | 3/10/2012

    " Interesting, without sharing much about the subject at all. Very little is known, so the author gives a history of the region and time period instead. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katherine | 2/15/2012

    " With only my high school French as a guide, I never knew Veuve meant Widow. I enjoyed reading about the building of the Champagne industry from 1811-1870. And besides I love to drink it! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Celia | 5/18/2011

    " This was a facinating topic but the way it was written was very academic. It took me several tries to get into but it was worth it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 4/5/2011

    " Great history of the woman and the bubbly! Educational and enjoyable. I so want a glass right now...but I gave up wine for lent. Darn. Also the author is a professor at Colby! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ann | 2/16/2011

    " Fascinating insight into the development of my favourite beverage! Author's knowledge of French history is impressive, and very approachable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Diane | 2/4/2011

    "
    Molly, I agree with you, well said........"Informative, but not quite as rich as I'd hoped". Lots of good info regarding champagne and the regions, but a bit dry. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robyn | 1/23/2011

    " I enjoyed reading about the entrepreneurial nature of the Widow Cliquot, and it made me want to know more about business woman from that era and before. All we here about are those male industrial barons. I also picked up some useful wine terminology.

    "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Leah | 1/9/2011

    " I give it three stars because it gave me a good high school history refresher, but the book also felt like a high school history paper . . . Repetitive and unsure. I got bored half way through "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Harriett | 12/28/2010

    " For biography, this reads well and has a good pace. Very informative and imaginative as well. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Valerie | 12/27/2010

    " I genuinely enjoyed learning about Veuve Cicquot and truly admire her. It was a fascinating journey. But I found the author dry, and Clicquot's life was not dry. She also occasionally and unexpectedly inserted her opinion, which I found to be an annoying interruption. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Claire | 12/18/2010

    " History of an unlikely business woman who was determined to make her family business grow despite her own limitations as a woman in male dominated French society "

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