Book Review of Modern Manners

Modern Manners by Dorothea Johnson and Liv Tyler, is a concise and well-organized book on precisely that - manners in the modern world. Ranging from topics of cell phone and internet etiquette, to which bread plate to claim at the table, the book is beautifully illustrated, informative, and easy to navigate. The chapters are broken up by situation, i.e. "On the Job" or "Out and About." You'll find commentary on manners ranging from whether to stand or remain sitting in a social situation, how to write a cover letter, and how to make a graceful entrance or exit as both hosts and guests.The book also skims the customs and etiquette of various international countries, while focusing primarily on appropriate behavior in the US today. Dorothea and Liv set a kind tone to the book, making you feel like you have two powerful and polite women in your corner who are going to help you succeed in social situations. I found the part about appropriate attire particularly helpful, as I've never known the different between white and black tie. (For those of you who don't know, here's a hint: white tie is the most formal you can get.) I also loved the illustration of how to set a table for a three-course meal.

I found the pages addressing how to properly introduce someone very interesting, primarily because I had never been taught this concept before and therefore found it completely foreign. I'll admit I found some of the concepts rather dated, for example, the fact that you say, "I'd like to introduce to you Mr. XYZ," as opposed to saying, "I'd like to introduce you to Mr. XYZ." I found this bit confusing and I'm still not quite sure how I'm supposed to introduce someone in a formal setting.

All in all, this book is a quick read, has lovely illustrations (which educate the reader not only on dress, but also posture,) and is engaging. It's written with diagrams and do's and don't's lists which make the read fun and easy. Whether you need a brush up on your modern etiquette, or are starting from square one learning manners, you're sure to learn something from this read.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review. All opinions are my own.

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