A breathy memoir of eight Administrations' worth of parties, by a former Washington-society syndicated columnist. Beale started chronicling the D.C. social circuit during the Truman era, attending an estimated 15,000 parties before retiring in January 1989. Her capsule portraits of the entertaining styles of the various Presidents, however, hold few surprises. The Kennedys were elegant, although things sometimes got a little raucous in private (Beale cites parties at Bobby and Ethel Kennedy's during which Ethel repeatedly pushed fully dressed guests into the pool). LBJ was gregarious; Carter had the White House menu printed in English instead of French. The Reagans window-dressed events with Hollywood types. More amusing than Beale's party critique is her avalanche of minutiae representing the society columnist's stock in trade. She compares notes about chihuahuas with Haile Selassie, talks about pride with Imelda Marcos. She describes the pair of throne-like chairs that the Eisenhowers occupied during state dinners, and reveals that the hors d'oeuvres were generous in the Kennedy White House, and that LBJ was a dance partner ``with a good sense of rhythm.'' Beale scolds the Carters for including Amy in formal dinners and adamantly defends Nancy Reagan's china acquisition. And while the author doesn't share much about the nuts and bolts of her job, she does tell all about a three-year affair with Adlai Stevenson, even quoting from corny love poems she sent him. Beale clearly is a pro in her specialized world. Readers seeking fresh social or political gossip will come away hungry, but those who thrill to hear Nixon describe himself as ``an earring man'' will find lots to nibble on at this trivia-laden buffet. (Photographs—not seen)

Pub Date: June 1, 1993

ISBN: 0-89526-503-6

Page Count: 352

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1993

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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