Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt" and J. C. Leyendecker's Art

I recently read "The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt."  This is a quick read-- I think I read it in under two hours.  It is the "scrapbook" of the title character, Frankie, and is a picture of eight years of her life, beginning with her high school graduation in 1920.  Through the years covered in the book, Frankie goes to Vassar, moves to New York, and eventually takes a ship to Paris to pursue her dream of becoming a successful writer. Her adventures and romantic ups and downs are recorded through ticket stubs, notes, post cards, fabric swatches, advertisements, paintings, photos, and more. The story itself is a decent read, but the "scrapbook" items that fill every page are the real star.  Author Caroline Preston is an archivist, and she masterfully decorates the novel with vintage memorabilia.  Each page of this book is a visually entertaining retro-treat. Frankie's type-written entries look as if they were typed on her Corona typewriter.  This book will transport you to another era, and give you plenty of smiles along the way.

"Butterfly Couple" by J.C. Leyendecker

Featured in the pages of the book is the work of Golden Age of Illustration artist, J.C. Leyendecker.  Leyendecker painted over 300 covers for the Saturday Evening Post long before Norman Rockwell.  His distinctive style was also used in many advertisements, including those for Arrow shirts.  He became a household name, and was particularly prominent during the 1920s.  To see more of Leyendecker's work, click here.

I hope you enjoy taking a walk down nostalgia lane through the pages of "The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt!"