* Diary of a Nose by Jean-Claude Ellena


The Diary of a Nose: A Year in the Life of a Parfumeur is the dreadful diary of a perfume creator, written with a mix of arrogance, vanity, and, perhaps surprisingly for someone so successful, shame at not having a formal education or degree.

This is not to say that there are not interesting tidbits in the morass. Every now and then, the author sees fit to leave his name dropping to describe his craft (he would probably say art, but I found the crafty aspects most interesting) of creating perfumes and discusses the ingredients he uses, his methods to systematically explore various aspects of a theme for a perfume, and how he finds inspiration. I cannot recommend suffering through the book for those crumbs, however…

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