MISS MANNERS ON (PAINFULLY PROPER) WEDDINGS by Judith Martin

MISS MANNERS ON (PAINFULLY PROPER) WEDDINGS

KIRKUS REVIEW

 A prompt thank-you note is due to Miss Manners for her latest, an astringent guide to mounting a wedding that puts out- of-control brides in their place and uninvited guests at home, where they belong. Miss Manners is distressed--distressed!--that weddings of today have come to be regarded as entertainment events rather than the serious, if not solemn, rituals they were meant to be. Moreover, it has come to her attention that brides and grooms have been known to coerce friends and relatives into refilling the wedding coffers by paying for the meal or contributing to the financing of a house. Via her alter ego Judith Martin (Miss Manners' Guide for the Turn-of-the-Millennium, 1989, etc.), Miss Manners tries to set the soon-to-be-wed on the straight and narrow aisle of appropriate etiquette. Forget about it being ``My Day,'' she warns brides early on. At the least, it is ``Our Day,'' and normal consideration for other human beings should not be suspended as the bride turns autocratic. Inconsiderate guests- -who bring uninvited friends and unwelcome children or insist their pet monkey be included (she cites such a case) receive their share of scolding. Using the familiar ``Dear Miss Manners'' question-and-answer format, Martin covers protocol for engagements, showers, invitations, and announcements, the responsibilities of bridesmaids and groomsmen, presents and thank-yous, as well as more esoteric forms of prenuptial crises, like canceled or restaged weddings, and gay and lesbian ceremonies. She expresses no small irritation at couples who solicit gifts or cash, stage the ceremony and reception for the benefit of hired photographers, or leave a trail of hurt feelings as they blunder toward the altar. At the ramparts of proper behavior, Miss Manners gives us a valiant and vinegary defense of retaining dignity without losing joy in the celebration of a marriage. (15 line drawings, not seen) (Author tour)

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-517-70187-1
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: Crown
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 1995




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