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The Art of Conversation: How Talking Improves Lives Paperback – 3 Sep 2009
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It is a treasure trove of literary and historical delights, with each page containing a little gem in the form of a quotation or a factoid (Independent on Sunday)
'Witty, charming and appropriately garrulous . . . it shamed me into wanting to
mend my own, lumpen, non-conversational ways and pull my speech-related
socks up...this smart little book should be in every house like Gideon
bibles in hotel rooms'
A bit of fun by a young genius. The Art of Conversation . . . is a witty meditation upon
all aspects of talk . . . if you give to a friend it will itself provoke hours of amusing chat as you read out her jokes and her wisdom
'Blending science with psychology and philosophy with literature, she argues the case for banter and badinage. It's free, fun and gets your brain cells firing like the prettiest of firework displays' (Marie Claire)
'I tried my hardest to dislike The Art of Conversation, but it's hard to dislike anything that quotes Chanelle from Big Brother in the same breath as Andrew Marvell and Henry James' (Guardian)
'Everybody will read it, but pretend they haven't' (Observer)
'As Woodrow Wilson once opined of the US President Warren Harding, I am simply in possession of 'a bungalow mind'. I hope that reading The Art of Conversation has furnished me with a staircase or two' (Observer)
'A witty, entertaining guide, much praised' (Bookseller)
'Modern man - and woman - have forgotten how to engage larynx and ears. Catherine Blyth teaches the lost art with wit and charm' (Harry Mount, author of AMO, AMAS, AMAT . . . AND ALL THAT)
'Brings a professional sensibility to the topic' (Scotland on Sunday)
Ever wanted to be the most interesting person in the room? Let Catherine Blyth take you on an entertaining tour of the neglected art of conversation. You'll never think of talk as cheap ever again . . .See all Product description
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I have yet to finish this book, as it is now consigned to a category of 'interesting and entertaining' but I have not found much in the way of 'informing.' In her Introductory Chapter "We Need to Talk" in the section "There is no Right Way" Catherine Blyth mentions a 'scary novelist' whom she feels is sceptical about her qualifications. '... You'd better be bloody good at it' he advises her, and I am, so far, not convinced.
If you wish to skip the excessive "blablabla", you will be just fine by reading the pages where she summarizes each topic.