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3.1 out of 5 stars
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on 17 November 1997
This book is not only bad, it's irratating. It's like sitting next to a fading social butterfly on a long flight and listening to stories of her life. At first it's sort of interesting-- I mean,lets face it, this dame's been around. But after a while the endless name dropping starts getting to you, till finally you just want to snap, "Will you just shut up already?" The world of Washington society-- a world filled with women named "Mitzi" and men named "Huntington"-- she describes is a hot house, in-bred world in the grips of a Versallies mentality. This is no where better seen then in one of the last stories of her book. She and her husband were giving a New Year's Party for a hundred or so of their "dearest friends". Suddenly an older, rather modest, couple show up, introduce themselves and are hesitiantly admitted. Neither Quin nor her husband nor any of their glittering friends have any idea who these...these "people" were. As a result, says our hostess with the mostest, "I was so annoyed that I ignored them all night." Turns out that due to a computer error Mr.& Mrs. Nobody actually had been invited. This elderly couple from the heartland weren't gate crashers. "I still haven't forgotten how rude I was,"sighs Quinn. Still, she reminds us brightly, "There is no such things as perfection."
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on 27 January 1999
This book was a hoot -- a light hearted romp through the dining rooms of the Quninn/Bradley's and other DC luminaries. Mrs. Quinn peppers the book with good ideas while not taking the topic (or herself) too seriously. It's nice to see that the hoitie-toitie aren't always perfect either!
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on 19 January 1998
In many ways, "The Party" follows its own rules. Its main goal is for the reader to have a good time, and not get too stuffy. Quinn moves quickly through all the party essentials, in a conversational style that makes it an easy one-night read. Remember that she is culling from the Washington party circuit - if you get cranky from name dropping, this book isn't for you. What the names do is underscore how important the guest mix is when planning a great party. Certainly Quinn seems to gloss over the importance of full-time staff and caterers, but for the most part the suggestions are on target the anectdotes (real or imagninary) serve to illustrate the various topics. Miss Manners may certainly give you more precise formulae for parties, but Quinn's are realistic and fun to read. Remember - the point is to have a good time!
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on 7 January 1999
I entertain frequently, and Ms. Quinn has a most delightful way of discussing the angst (and disasters!) of every experienced hostess. "The Party" had me laughing out loud, and I have been giving this book as a gift to other friends who entertain. They love it!
On a more practical note, she has good suggestions about what really makes a party work. So whether your guests are 'famous' or not, her wisdom is true.
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on 25 February 1998
I enjoyed this book. Sure, Ms. Quinn's means are above the means of most readers, but what the hell, improvise! I guess I liked this book mostly because it reassures me that my wife and I aren't the only people left that know how to entertain (we do it so well). And the recipe for Jerry Mazzetti (page 97) was damned good!
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on 30 January 1998
This sounded like an interesting insider's view into the party habits of famous people in Washington, D.C. Instead, it is a frivious memoir of the wife of a famous man, Ben Bradlee, written mainly to brag on herself, her family and her home. I would caution the prospective buyer to save your money on this one!
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on 30 November 1998
This book was very entertaining to read, no pun intended. Sally Quinn had some interesting ideas about things you would never think of, but that can make a big difference when having a party. Her anecdotes and stories of experience were hillarious.
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on 3 April 1998
Sure, Sally is a name dropper. But I would LOVE to be invited to one of those parties.....even if it WERE by computer mistake!
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