A.L.T.: A Memoir

One of the most striking figures in international style offers a unique and unforgettable memoir of the two women who shaped his dreams, tastes, and character. "My grandmother and Mrs. Vreeland had similar ways of appreciating luxury," writes Andre Leon Talley, "because they both believed in the importance of its most essential underpinning: polish." In A.L.T., Vogue's editor at large explains how a six-foot-seven African-American man from North Carolina became the influential fashion figure he is today, learning life's most enduring lessons from two remarkable women: his maternal grandmother, Bennie Frances Davis, a woman who worked back-breakingly hard as a maid, yet taught him to embrace the world with a warm heart and an open mind; and Diana Vreeland, the inimitable editor in chief of Vogue and director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute, who became his peerless professional mentor. In a rich, eloquent voice that resonates with both small-town wisdom and haut monde sophistication, Talley tells of the grandmother who encouraged his dreams and ambitions while instilling in him an abiding sense of dignity and style, and of the legendary fashion doyenne who took him under her wing as he rose to fame in the wild New York of the 1970s. Threaded throughout are stories of the man himself, who has survived thirty years in the "chiffon trenches" with eminent grace and style. Clear, elegant, and often magical, A.L.T. shines like a rare jewel as it illuminates thre

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