Friday, November 5, 2010

Invaluable Advice

Very short book review here of a thin volume published in 1965 and written by that eminent expert in proper behavior, Miss Hyacinthe Phypps. I was attracted to the book by the illustrations of that illustrious illustrator, Edward Gorey, but I must say I was was quite taken by the wise advice that Miss Phypps provides for the eponymous subject of the work, The Recently Deflowered Girl. A variety of delicate social situations that a recently deflowered girl might find herself in are described, and the offered wisdom never fails to be sound. What, for example, would you say if you had been deflowered by an elevator operator, a famous crooner, or a Chinese detective? Do you know the proper response if you find that you have been deflowered in a Moroccan palace, on a cross-country bus, or at a séance? Of course you don't. But you would had you read this book. And you would surely have found the drawings by the wonderful Mr. Gorey to be helpful and illuminating. In a time when such advice is sorely needed I am gratified that this volume has been republished.

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