Don’t know what the weather is like where you are, but here in Atlanta, it is hotter than the hinges of hell. Perfect reading weather, to my way of thinking. So here’s what I’ve been digging into, and digging.
1. SUMMER AT TIFFANY by Marjorie Hart. 51k The Booklist review says it all: “Although the country is still at war, Manhattan during the summer of 1945 is an intoxicating place, especially for two fresh-faced young coeds who step off a train from Iowa armed with little more than their youthful exuberance and the name of a very influential contact. The combination is enough to land Marjorie and her best friend, Marty, jobs as pages at the prestigious Tiffany & Co., making them the first female employees ever to work the sales floor. From this groundbreaking vantage point, the girls see and do it all, from assisting notorious gangsters and international playboys at the jewelry counters, to rubbing elbows with celebrities at the city’s legendary nightclubs, to glimpsing General Eisenhower during his triumphant victory parade, to kissing soldiers in Times Square on V-J Day. Remarkably, this winsome memoir was written 60 years after that giddy summer spent pinching pennies and dreaming of diamonds, yet Hart’s infectious vivacity resonates with a madcap immediacy, delectably capturing the city’s heady vibrancy and a young girl’s guileless enchantment.” Carol HaggasCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved/
Such a charming book! I read this on vacation in Mexico, loaned it to the other posse members who also loved it, and even bought a copy to send to my Aunt Alice. Would love to see a movie adaptation.
2.SERVICE INCLUDED: Four Star Secrets of An Eavesdropping Waiter, by Phoebe Damrosch. In the interest of full disclosure, I should tell you that this book was edited by my own editor at HarperCollins, the fabulous Carolyn Marino. At the risk of being accused of nepotism, let me just say that SERVICE INCLUDED is a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the workings of Per Se, the Manhattan restaurant owned by celebrichef Thomas Keller. Damrosch became the first female captain at Per Se, and decided to write about it while in grad school. The book pubs in October, so make sure you order it.
3.THE OVERLOOK by Michael Connelly. Anything Connelly writes is amazing. This is the book form of a serialized story that first ran last year in the New York Times Sunday magazine. It’s twisty, dark, and another satisfying outing for Connelly’s detective, Harry Bosch. This is one of the few mystery series I always read–in addition to Margaret Maron’s Deborah Knott series and Lisa Scottoline’s legal thrillers, and Jan Burke’s Irene series.
4. A HOUSE IN THE SOUTH: Old-Fashioned Graciousness for New-Fashioned Times by Frances Schultz and Paula S. Wallace.
I’m a sucker for interior design/shelter books, and this is a lovely one with gorgeous color photos of grand and simple homes around the South. I picked up my copy at E. Shaver Fine Books, one of my all-time favorite indy bookstores in Savannah. The girls at Shaver’s never steer me wrong.
Other things I’m digging: iced tea. I’m moderately famous for my iced tea–I always use Luzianne’s family-size teabags, three to a pot of boiling water to make a big pitcher of tea. ‘Mater sammiches. Home-grown tomatoes out of my neighbor’s garden, Pepperidge Farm hearty white bread, Duke’s Mayo, lots of salt. Here’s a great iced tea cocktail I pulled off the Luzianne website:
Bourbon Street Iced Tea
Preparation Time: Quick
2 cups boiling water 1 Cup orange juice concentrate 1.5 cups lemonade concentrate 2 quart size or 8 cup size Luzianne Tea Bags 1 Cup bourbon, (optional) 3 cups cold water.
Movie update: The old mister and I went to see THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM Friday. The perfect escape vehicle for a steamy summer night. Matt Damon’s Jason Bourne is the poster-boy for Post-Modern heroes: brooding, but not in a snivelling way, sensitive–he doesn’t even try to jump Julia Stiles, and buff–but not in a Matthew McConaughey look-at-my-abs-look-at-my-ass kinda way.