This too is a combination of text to read and text to use, as the story of the Rectors, Senior and Junior provides a rather flippant biographical introduction, studded with names famous in the annals of New York society, theatre and the arts. Rector's files included several thousand recipes; 500 have been selected with focus on dishes famous in the '90's. (Some surprises here,- tomato cocktail and creme Vichysoisse so long ago?) As a practical home cookbook, it is of doubtful value. As a curiosity- and a stimulant to lagging imagination in the restaurant field, it should be popular. It certainly would not appeal to the budget minded housewife, with the lavish use of expensive ingredients. But it should provide gustatory conversation, and the photographs and drawings (by Bob Cato) will make a plus sale item.