Reminiscences, anecdotes, naive political commentary, and even a job query or two tossed off by an extraordinarily ambitious woman. (In one successful attempt at influence-peddling, she helped get painter Enrico Donati into the Union of Painters and Scenic Artists so that he could fulfill a commission to design sets for the ballet. ""I long to design for the ballet myself,"" posits Cowles, coyly.) Her successes touch on at least four other fronts. She married two inordinately wealthy men, publisher Gardner Cowles and Englishman-of-the-world Tom Montague Meyer. She became an intimate of the great and near-great, among them Picasso, L.B.J., Bernard Baruch, and Queen Frederika of Greece. She was a power in publishing, first as associate editor of her then-husband's Look magazine, next as editor of her own, Cowles-backed Flair. Currently she is enjoying another kind of success as a painter. But her memoirs don't tingle. The anecdotes are dreary (when Cowles ventured into Egypt at Eisenhower's behest, Nasser clasped her wrist, but turned her peacemaking efforts down) and the literary component is nil. A tour de force of name-dropping, an exercise in self-promotion--but not much else.