Published by Quercus on November 8th 2012
'Business is a jungle. But I love animals.' Francis Boulle. Venture Capitalist and CEO Francis Boulle has set out to conquer the world. Armed with strategies not seen since Sun Tzu, philosophies to rival Aristotle, a business head that makes Alan Sugar look like an amateur and thoughts about life that even Confucius would have found enlightening, Francis is king of the new life-gurus. In this must-have little book of Boulleisms, Francis shares his wry observations and indomitable views on business, love, sport, art, family, politics and even pets. He offers expert guidance to help you live your life the Boulle way, even if you've never set foot in Belgravia. Using clever typography, illustrations and amusing diagrams, this is the perfect gift for every budding entrepreneur.
Boulle’s Jewels Review
Boulle’s Jewels is a funny guide to ‘the business of life’ by Made in Chelsea star, Francis Boulle or should I say Francis Maximilien Yvan Christophe Boulle (yes, that is his real name). On the show, Francis is someone a lot of people like laughing at and it’s usually quite hard to tell whether he’s being serious or joking when he does ridiculous things. Francis is an entrepreneur and heir to a diamond business so he’s living the high life, but does lots of work too (I think). He’s a bit of an oddball, but he’s pretty lovable and definitely one of my favourite characters on the show.
I was under the impression that Boulle’s Jewels would be dedicated to tips on business and being an entrepreneur. Whilst the book starts out like that, after the midway point this book descends into random tips about random things from a list of Francis’ favourite films to ‘picnic protocol’.
Whilst these sections in the second half were equally interesting to read about, I couldn’t help but feel a little disappointed that there weren’t more ‘insightful’ tips on the wonderful world of business given that this book is actually categorised under ‘Business’.
That said, one of the great thing about this book is that you have absolutely no idea what’s going to be waiting for you when you turn the page. It was quite exciting to read Boulle’s Jewels because it is so unpredictable and Francis offers his unique perspective on life, dating, even must-have pets.
If you’re not a fan of Made In Chelsea or you don’t know who Francis Boulle is then don’t bother reading this book – you won’t enjoy it or find it funny. This book is definitely aimed at people who already have an idea of who Francis is, the type of life he leads and what his personality is like. The voice of Francis really shines through this book and you get his sort of awkward, sometimes (unintentionally) self-deprecating humour as well as some down-right outrageous statements that you’re not quite sure what to make of. Several pages are dedicated to quotes from Francis himself and at several moments he jokes about how this book will be a best-seller and how awesome he is, so this book is a mockery of himself in many ways.
What I was really impressed with, was the general design of Boulle’s Jewels in terms of look, feel, design, layout etc. The presentation of this book is impeccable with brilliant graphics, photos and diagrams to support the text. The book itself is also really well made as the material used for the cover and the pages is quite thick. General presentation isn’t something that is usually that striking with a book, but it’s probably one of the key features of this book. Without the fancy graphics this book would be considerably less successful and less interesting to read as the funny pictures/quotes/captions etc. all add to the humour. There’s even a handy piece of string attached to the spine to use as a bookmark – useful for when you want to mark your favourite passage!
All in all, Boulle’s Jewels is an interesting and funny read that is perfect for any fans of Made In Chelsea and Francis Boulle. If you’ve never heard of the show or Francis, then I’d steer clear of this book because you probably won’t appreciate the humour or the strange tips quite as much. Whilst the advice given in this book is pretty funny at times, some of it is actually useful advice for entrepreneurs once you’ve stripped away the comedy.
There are a few life lessons to be learnt from this book and if you can learn those whilst having a good laugh then this book’s done pretty well. You can fly through this book pretty quickly and it’s a nice light hearted read. There isn’t actually all that much text in this book as a lot of page space is dedicated to fancy fonts, block lettering and pictures or diagrams. If you love Made in Chelsea and/or Francis Boulle, like good looking book and having a laugh, then this is a book I’d definitely recommend.