Book Review: the King of Carnaby Street

Jeremy Reed’s biography of fashion designer John Stephen escapes many of the familiar tropes that biographies tend to fall into. The “life” of John Stephen, as indicated in the title, is really only his professional one, with little of the typical biographical exposition bookending each side. Reed begins his story with the Glaswegian’s arrival in London in 1952 at the age of 18. Six years later he opened the first boutique in Soho’s Carnaby Street and played a key role in transforming the neighbourhood into the a shopping and cultural hub.
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