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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on May 26, 2004
Over the past couple of years, I've become a big fan of the Social Grace etiquette advice column. It offers a refreshing outlook on etiquette and manners. So I was really looking forward to the first Social Grace etiquette book . . . and it was definitely worth the wait. This book is funny and entertaining, but it also has some fantastic advice on how to live a courteous, dignified life. I would recommend Urban Etiquette to anyone who has ever had to ride a subway, use a public laundromat, eat in a restaurant, do anything in a city environment, etc. -- and was not sure how to behave. This book will be extremely helpful.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on June 10, 2004
Mr. Purdy has done the impossible; he's made etiquette something that's not just for the social elite or something from an earlier century like bustles and dowries. In his book he writes that being kind and polite is for everyone in every age. It makes the world a nicer place to live. And why wouldn't we want that?
Well done, Social Grace, I can't wait to see what your next project will be.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on June 25, 2004
I have really enjoyed reading Urban Etiquette, not only for my personal use, but to inform my friends of public etiquette. I recently moved to SF and I loved the section on bus (public transportation) etiquette. I enjoyed the way the book polished the etiquette I had learned as a child from my parents, but told it in a new "trendier" fashion.
I would recommend this book to anyone and I have alreayd bought two more for house warming gifts. You will get a chuckle from the book and it will open your eyes what not to do in public.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 2, 2004
Finally, a book that takes the rather murky world of "proper" manners and gives it a sensible, modern spin. This book is a must for anyone even remotely interested in interacting with their fellow man with dignity and grace. The layout makes for an interesting and entertaining read, while also serving as a handy reference tool for when you need a few quick tips on throwing a right proper cocktail party. This is just a great little book, and would make a wonderful gift. It does beg the question though, who on earth would forcibly remove a person's Argyle socks from their sock drawer? For shame.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 14, 2007
As an immigrant to Australia I used to get baffled by the some of the social expectations that I never learnt or witnessed while growing up in India. If a non Westerner behaves differently in a social setting, Westerners consider it rudeness rather than ignorance. This book covers most of the aspects of Western style etiquettes. And it is covered in such a simple way that within a week I felt quite comfortable in most social settings. I think that any person who is new to Western culture should read this book.
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on December 10, 2011
My etiquette awareness level is total etiquette idiot, so, there were some practical tips in here that were worth my reading, like what to say and do when someone's loved one dies, appropriate office conversation topics, taboo topics that make other etiquette-aware people uncomfortable, whether or not and how to congratulate a lady who's pregnant, these types of things.

This book addresses some topics in gay and transgender etiquette, but it seemed a bit waffly as a guide and so Hetero here from Bigoted Podunk County is still not etiquette savvy after reading. It is not at all adequately sensitive, creative, or aware regarding people with food politics and food sensitivities, but, it does bravely try to navigate that minefield.

Mostly, it's lighter advice. It's so well written that it's fun to read and there are some laugh-out-loud spots, but I think the author is really conveying his heavier points in a fun and approachable way, showing how truly important and powerful it is, how we treat each other "out there."
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on July 21, 2009
I bought this book hoping it would be somewhat of an advanced etiquette course, but this book appears to cover more of the essentials and foundations. It is still great material to cover if you haven't done so. I was hoping for more of the formalities that only a select crowd follows and the historical origins, I just chose the wrong book for my purposes.
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on May 20, 2015
Truly elegant manual. Very practical, as well.
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