The Necklace

The Necklace

Thirteen Women and the Experiment That Transformed Their Lives

Book - 2008
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Random House, Inc.
The true story of thirteen women who took a risk on an expensive diamond necklace and, in the process, changed not only themselves but a community.

Four years ago, in Ventura, California, Jonell McLain saw a diamond necklace in a local jewelry store display window. The necklace aroused desire first, then a provocative question: Why are personal luxuries so plentiful yet accessible to so few? What if we shared what we desired? Several weeks, dozens of phone calls, and a leap of faith later, Jonell bought the necklace with twelve other women, with the goal of sharing it.

Part charm, part metaphor, part mirror, the necklace weaves in and out of each woman’s life, reflecting her past, defining her present, making promises for her future. Lending sparkle in surprising and unexpected ways, the necklace comes to mean something dramatically different to each of the thirteen women.
With vastly dissimilar histories and lives, the women show us how they transcended their individual personalities and politics to join together in an uncommon journey. What started as a quirky social experiment became something far richer and deeper, as the women transformed a symbol of exclusivity into a symbol of inclusiveness. They discovered that sharing the necklace among themselves was only the beginning; The more they shared with others, the more profound this experience–and experiment–became.

Original, resonant, and beautifully told, this book is an inspiring story about a necklace that became greater than the sum of its links, and about thirteen ordinary women who understood the power of possibility, who touched the lives of a community, and who together created one extraordinary experience.

Baker & Taylor
Describes how thirteen women combined forces and funds to jointly purchase a diamond necklace that they would share, revealing how a simple agreement to share a piece of jewelry became a study in friendship, adventure, possibility, and the power of giving back.

Baker
& Taylor

Describes how thirteen women combined forces and funds to jointly purchase a valuable diamond necklace that they would share, with each woman holding the necklace for twenty-eight days each year, revealing how a simple agreement to share a piece of jewelry became a study in friendship, sharing, adventure, possibility, and the power of giving back. 100,000 first printing.
Four years ago, Jonell McLain saw a diamond necklace in a jewelry store window. The necklace aroused desire first, then a provocative question: What if we shared what we desired? Several weeks, dozens of phone calls, and a leap of faith later, Jonell bought the necklace with twelve other women. With vastly dissimilar histories and lives, the women transcended their individual personalities and politics to join together in an uncommon journey. Part charm, part metaphor, part mirror, the necklace weaves inand out of each woman's life, and comes to mean something dramatically different to each of them. What started as a quirky social experiment became something far richer and deeper, as the women transformed a symbol of exclusivity into a symbol of inclusiveness. They discovered that sharing the necklace was only the beginning: the more they shared with others, the more profound this experience became.--From publisher description.

Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, c2008
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780345500717
Characteristics: xiv, 210 p. : ill ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Jarvis, Cheryl

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TheresaAJ
Aug 17, 2015

This quick read is the August 2015 selection of the Willa Cather Book Club. It tells the story of 13 women who bought a share in a diamond necklace and the surprising results. Wearing and sharing the necklace for a month at a time yielded big and small moments for each woman. This memoir gives the back story on each member and how the necklace affected her life. An interesting experiment in group dynamics!

knbray Jul 21, 2014

Interesting experiment, but I wish the writing and the organization of the book had been better. This book should lead to a lot of good discussion, however!

d
dprodrig
Jul 16, 2012

It was a nice, light read. Each women who stayed in the necklace co-op has their story described here, and what the necklace brought to their lives is unique, and interesting. However, the book is extremely lacking - the first chapter starts with Jonell, but we actually hear very little from her about what she thinks the necklace has done for her and the group. The book should end with some thoughts of the women who started it all. Then, there are women who sold out their share of the necklace - why don't we hear from them, why did they leave, why was the experiment a failure from their point of view. There is a lack of details in some of the chapters - agreements and an LLC were created, what were the final decisions taken to change or to define the use of the necklace more fully? It's only touched upon briefly and barely even then. More details could have been furnished without disclosing the entire structure of the deal. Some chapters actually spent very little time on their "person" and ended up covering stories that impacted others more in the group rather than their own. Should the book have been organized by personal benefit and then by larger themes that cropped up due to the necklace. What about the jewellers who sold the necklace at a discount - how has this impacted their business (I know all boring questions, right). Did it pay off for the husband on a personal level from his perspective to have his wife in the "co-op", did their sales or store morale improve? Overall, a nice light amateurish read. With a lot of meat missing.

Kidbooker Nov 19, 2011

How can 13 women share a 15 carat diamond necklace that they all helped pay for without strife? This real story which started out as a social experiment is a worthy read for anyone interested in the dynamics of women's friendship groups.

c
c_currie
Jul 04, 2011

this a very inspiring book that digs deep in your heart. i absolutly love this book

smc01 Feb 24, 2009

The premise of this book is enticing - how does sharing a very expensive necklace change the lives of thirteen women? The answer, though is a bit disappointing overall. Some of the stories are very touching and genuine, but others are mundane.

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