Bright Young Things (Bright Young Things (Quality)) Hardcover – 16 Oct 2000
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"This incredibly fashionable and high-profile group is redefining society style."
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Far more risible is the introduction by William Norwich, in which "these meritocrats -- don't call them aristocrats" are painted not only as the apotheosis of style, but also of social concern, enlightened world view, forward-looking design, and folks-next-door approachability. In fact, three quarters of these "meritocrats" I'd never heard of before ... and most of those whose names I recognized (Guinness, Lauder, Herrera, another Lauder, Von Furstenburg [and one of the Miller sisters], Hermès, etc.) came more from their families' prosperity and fame than from the meritocratic achievements of the individuals themselves.
Still, the pictures are pretty enough, and the writing (apart from Norwich's) unobjectionable. And maybe it wasn't the subjects' fault they showed up in this embarrassing book. If one of my friends called up and said she was assembling a picture book of obscure Seattle book reviewers and wanted me in it, I might oblige her just out of friendship. But I'd make sure not to leave my copy sitting around where visitors could see it.
In all, this title has a certain voyeuristic value, from the pre-September 11 era. But I hope those of us outside the rarified little world of New York Society don't take it for a lot more than that.
And their apartments are mostly just really ugly.
As for those readers who see this as a work of high camp. I'd hate to think that "camp" has fallen this low.
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