Books in Review
by Adrienne Petterson 2006

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Talk to the Hand #?*! - The Utter Bloody Rudeness of the World Today, or Six Good Reasons to Stay Home and Bolt the Door
by Lynne Truss
Gotham Books
ISBN 1-592-40171-6
Published November 2005 - Hardcover - 206 pages - $20.00

I have Lynne's outlook - she's a woman after my own heart, albeit she's a little more drastic than I.  I couldn't wait to read her second offering on the foibles (both human intentions and by other means - automated answering services) of her fellow humans.  This book came at a great time as I am also writing a book on "manners", or lack thereof, and found myself agreeing with Ms. Truss as I read along.  Her observations of modern day manners is spot on (she should spend more time in America!) and says, "This book is, obviously, a big, systematic moan about modern life," and it's both accurate and honest.  We humans who like manners and orderly structure in our lives, can heave a collective sigh that at last, someone has had the guts to tell it like it is.  She covers the Internet and how it affects our social standing, and I particularly liked her saying, "Sitting at screens and clicking buttons is a very bad training for life in the real world".  Interact with anyone (particularly teenagers) who spend enormous chunks of their days at the computer, and you'll see.  She also goes on to say, "The effect of all this limitless self-absorption is to make us isolated, solipsistic, grandiose, exhausted, inconsiderate, and anti-social".  Simple words or gestures, such as please, thank you, and excuse me go a long way and I just wish they were taught to more kids from the beginning.  As for the Eff word - more kids' mouths should be washed out with soap, and more importantly, more parents and adults should not use it in front of little children, or anyone for that matter!  Ms. Truss discusses the use of cell phones in public and litterbugs and self-absorption, among other subjects.
Conclusion - Not as hilarious as her first book but observational and nevertheless enjoyable.

Review copy not supplied by publisher - library copy reviewed.


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