Review: ‘Summer at Tiffany’ by Marjorie Hart

by Kim on April 19, 2011 · 20 comments

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A Note from Kim: The original title of this post called the book Breakfast at Tiffany, a mistake I’ve been making for about a week. My apologies for the mix up!

Title: Summer at Tiffany
Marjorie Hart
From the Book Blogger Convention last year (geeze!).
Rating: ★★★½☆

Long Review: In the summer of 1945, Marjorie Hart and her friend Marty, two sorority girls from the University of Iowa, decide to go to New York to find work for the summer as shopgirls. They are turned away from all the top department stores they visit, yet through a little bit of luck and a lot of pluck, they are hired at Tiffany & Co. — the first women ever hired to work on the sales floor. Summer at Tiffany is the story of that surprising summer.

I’m really glad that I read this memoir during the Read-a-Thon a few weeks ago, since I think at another time I may not have enjoyed it as much as I did. The description — sororities and fashion and celebrities — isn’t normally my thing, and yet I found this memoir both entertaining and charming. It was like a breath of fresh air in the middle of my reading marathon.

What I liked best about it was how well Hart captured the spirit of that summer in New York in her writing. Although her style is relatively straight forward, she still manages to include some of her youthful exuberance and surprise in the stories she tells. I felt the sense of awe that Hart had about being a girl from Iowa in New York when she was — seeing celebrities when they came into the store, being able to celebrate the end of World War II in Times Square, and having a first romance with a dashing young midshipman.

Admittedly, there’s not much conflict in the book — no major scandals or revelations or problems that seem to be typical of most memoirs. Hart pinches pennies to make ends meet, but never goes hungry. She wonders about her future, but gets to choose between all good options. Her romance has some ups and downs, but there’s not a lot of drama too it. Normally lack of serious conflict in a memoir bothers me, but in this case I rather enjoyed it.

Summer at Tiffany is a sweet story, one to read more for the atmosphere and feel of 1945 than for any real conflict, but in the end it’s a story that I was charmed by while I was reading it.

Other Reviews: Reading on a Rainy Day | Book Journey | One-Minute Book Reviews | Chocolate & Croissants | The Window Seat Reader |

If you have reviewed this book, please leave a link to the review in the comments and I will add your review to the main post. All I ask is for you to do the same to mine — thanks!

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