11 December 2012

Summer at Tiffany; Marjorie Hart

Summer at Tiffany LPSummer at Tiffany by Marjorie Hart
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Don't think "Breakfast at Tiffany", think Our Hearts Were Young and Gay. This is a slight memoir about the author's most memorable summer, one where she and a college friend moved to New York, somehow became the first women to work on the salesfloor at Tiffany (as pages), met soldiers (this is 1944) and generally enjoyed life despite pinching pennies.

I say "slight" because nothing much happens. No great Life Lessons are learned, although there is a Big Decision to be made. There's a little celebrity sighting (Judy Garland, Nat 'King' Cole, Marlene Deitrich, to name a few) but no real rubbing of shoulders. When she writes about being in Times Square when Japan surrenders, it's completely part of the experience, not added in to set mood or place. And her trying to be sophisticated, ordering odd drinks and rum raisin ice cream with strawberry sauce? Told matter-of-factly, without a knowing adult wink at how ridiculous this Iowan was.

"Slight" doesn't mean bad, by the way. My quibbles are more about the verbatim reportage of conversations at a remove of 50 years. The letters included were great, but why not letters from home to NYC? Or were they lost?

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