The world gets more confusing every day, and now even our family life can be unbearably complicated. There's one person who knows how to keep her poise in any social situation, and, fortunately for the rest of us, she has condensed her household wisdom into Miss Manners' Guide to Domestic Tranquility
. Including questions from her column's readers, her delicately witty answers, and original essays on topics like "Child Rearing" and "Sabotaging Festivity" (one of these is a good thing, the other bad), the Guide
is well-organized enough to use as a reference but also entertaining enough to browse on the way to grandma's house.
Miss Manners' style navigates the passage between refined and precious with ease, and is consistently endearing. She has correctly divined that the only way modern Americans will pay attention to etiquette advice is to couch it in gently humorous language, yet her seriousness pervades each sentence. Her advice on subjects ranging from resolving family feuds to surviving reunions to paying relatives for professional services is straightforward, unambiguous, and as pleasant as a flawless tea party. If you have a family, consider Miss Manners' Guide to Domestic Tranquility your instruction manual. --Rob Lightner
From Library Journal
In her never-ending quest for civility to all, with malice toward none, Miss Manners here tackles the most ticklish of relationships: those at home. Pointing out that mutual respect and consideration must be the cornerstone of any domestic establishment, she considers the myriad facets of living with family, friends, guests, and society in general in this latest offering to her Gentle Readers. She demonstrates the fine art of being courteous without being a doormat by reminding us that consideration of people is more important than that of money; that greed, no matter how cleverly embroidered, is still greed; and that concession in any form must be reciprocal. Best of all is Martin's sweetly genteel rapier wit. She provides a gentle reminder to boors of all types that they are not fooling anyone except themselves. Recommended for all public libraries.ASusan B. Hagloch, Tuscarawas Cty. P.L., New Philadelphia, OH
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