Summer at Tiffany by Marjorie Hart (Wordshaker Online Book Club) review)

Welcome to New York City in 1945.  Marjorie Jacobson and her best friend Marty Garrett arrive on scene fresh-faced from Iowa,  young, and ready for the world!   Their mission is to find jobs where they can work together and they want it to be somewhere wonderful, after all they are in New York!

The girls are turned away from many of their top selections for jobs and find themselves applying at Tiffany and Co., not only miraculously securing jobs for both of them – but on the sales floor no less, making them the first women ever to work on the sales floor.

This book is the true story of a summer of miracles and memories, written by author Marjorie (Jacobson) Hart.  Marjorie shares stories of the famous people she met, the mishaps, and triumphs, the boy, and celebrating V-Day in Times Square (exactly where her parents had warned her not to go!).  Marjorie tells a story that is filled with dreams come true…. and memories that truly last a lifetime.

Marjorie at a book signing

This book was chosen to be the Word Shaker On Line book club read and 22 people signed up to read this book together.  This review is a mixture of my thoughts as well as some of the comments that came in from the group about this read.

The appeal of this memoir is while it is a story from over 50 years ago, it is also one that holds true today – filled with the fun of first being able to go out on the town alone, dates with boys that actually picked you up at the door and you dressed up for a date in dresses even!  While the girls were naive, they did something that was unheard of at the time and that really is the heart (and the Hart) behind this story.

Throughout the book Marjorie writes letters home back to her family letting them know of what was happening in New York.  Another reminder of a time gone by, and the letter writings posted in the book are filled with young girl excitement about jobs and paychecks…. and who came through the doors of Tiffany’s….

This book is a reminder that no matter what the rules have been – gender, race, etc… you can go out and be a trend setter, you never know who will be the next person to do something to change the way the world thinks or acts, it can be as big as changing a nations way of thinking about discrimination, or as small as being the first women on a sales floor at Tiffany’s.

Within these pages Marjorie describes what it was like to be in Times Square as the war was announced over.  I can not even imagine what that had to feel like!  The oneness of all the people all the excitement!

I am taking away from this read a better knowledge of the war and what it was like during 1945, as well as a wee bit of knowledge on how to sniff brandy.  (Yup – more on that in my author chat with Marjorie!)

If  Marjorie tells us anything within these pages it is if you are going to dream – dream big.

Stay tune for more Summer At Tiffany fun!  Yet this week there will be an author chat with Marjorie with questions from those who participated in this review – also be alert for a giveaway of Marjorie’s book – signed!!!

My Amazon Rating

Book Journey 2010 reading map has been updated to include Summer At Tiffany

I am not sure if Marjorie and Marty had a favorite coffee stop but in current day when in New York near Time Square the rave is the Coffee Pot known for a fair priced cup of coffee and super comfy couches!

Cover Story:  Love it!  It has a great color to it and yet has that faded look of yester year by using the lighter blues and the scene.

Also – be sure to sign up for a chance to win a copy of Marjorie’s book signed and in hard cover!!!

Have you reviewed Summer At Tiffany?  If so, please feel free to link your review here.  (below)

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I purchased my copy of this book from Amazon

I first heard of this book over at my friend Barbara’s blog:

Reading Group Choices

51 Comments on “Summer at Tiffany by Marjorie Hart (Wordshaker Online Book Club) review)

  1. Oh, this book sounds wonderful! I love visiting other times and places, and remembering those symbols of those historic moments…like actual letters!

    In this time of chats and e-mails (and even Skype), letter-writing has truly become a lost art.

    Which is probably why we are fascinated with them to the point that whole books are set up in the epistolary style (The Guernsey book, for example).

    Nice review, Sheila.

    • Ayesha it is a good read and I love that it is true. After seeing New York for the first time this past spring, it is fun to read about it from the year 1945….. it sounds like where they were in the book is real close to where I stayed in May – I was just a couple blocks off of Times Square.

  2. This sounds like a wonderful book, Sheila! I always enjoy memoirs. With the time, place, and inclusion of real letters, it sounds a bit like The Red Leather Diary which I also enjoyed.

    Thanks for the review!


    • Sue I like memoirs too and this one had such a positive air about it – no tragedy, nothing but a good story. 🙂

  3. What a cool- sounding little book! The title automatically reminded me of Breakfast at Tiffany’s too 🙂

  4. I really enjoyed this book. While reading, I had flashbacks of being a little girl listening to my grandparents talk about their youth. I was just in awe of how different things were then as compared to when I grew up. Reading Marjorie’s view on NYC was fantastic. I learned more about the city in the 1940s and how it was then compared to the city I’ve come to cherish today. Thanks for having this as a selection. It was a great read.

  5. I read Summer at Tiffany’s a few weeks ago and loved it. If I didn’t know it was a biography before I started reading it, I would have thought it was a work of fiction. Many biographies tell a story, this took me back in time and brought back memories of my first job with my best friend. Although it was at the local roller skating rink, nothing fancy like Tiffany’s. 🙂 I especially loved the letters written to home. This book was a wonderful journey back in time. I have recommended this to many friends and thank you Sheila for leading me to this book.

  6. Hi Sheila –
    I LOVED this book – it reminded me of my grandmother’s own journey from a small town in Massachusetts to NYC at about the same time. I’ve often heard her speak fondly of the automat and ice cream sundaes from Schraft’s, and of course she daydreamed in many of the same fancy shop windows. 🙂 She’s reading it now, and it’s sparked many great conversations about her experiences.

    Thanks for spreading the word about this wonderful book!
    🙂 Sarah

  7. I really enjoyed this book and I gave it to my mom to read, and she really loved it! She had such vivid memories of that time period!

    • I bet it was pretty cool for your mom to read Sharon – wait until you see the interview with Marjorie tomorrow (Saturday) I actually cried.

  8. Good Morning Sharon:) Hope you have lots of coffee ready:) I really loved this book:) I am passing it to my MIL today and I am sure she will love it as much as I do:)

    • Good morning Bobbie! 😀 I just got up…. 7:00 am here in Minnesota and on my first cup. I think you MIL will enjoy this read. 😀

  9. Pingback: Summer At Tiffany by Marjorie Hart- Hard Cover Signed Copy Giveaway « One Persons Journey through a world of Books

  10. Pingback: Author Chat with Marjorie Hart (author of Summer At Tiffany) « One Persons Journey through a world of Books

  11. This book sounds SO good! I love the concept of these women going out there and bending the rules of gender and tradition. They lived their lives according to their own rules and were all the better for it. Cannot wait to read it!

    • I liked that too Colleen… its hard to imagine a world where women did not have certain positions and it was fun to read it from someone who was there and lived it! 😀

  12. This book is beautiful and I enjoyed the review. It would be memorable for this special time and place. thanks.

  13. What a lovely book to feature. I enjoy reading any and all novels that take place during this era. It sounds like a treasure.

    • Ellie, Marjorie was such a delight to work with on this Wordshaker review and I really think this experience for me set the bar for future Wordshaker reads.

      A book definitely to keep on my shelf.

  14. Sounds like a must read book to me! It sounds like
    something my friend and I would/should have done…
    Thanks, Cindi

    • Cindi – so fun! That would be a great memory for me as well – I love to be a ground breaker.. 😀

  15. Your review reveals a book filled with captivating, riveting experiences.
    This sounds like an amazing book to me! I love that it’s by a woman who experienced NYC during war time and was in Times Square when they announced the end of the war! I cannot imagine what an experience that must of been. The thrill & joy of hearing those words! Something you never forget.

    I cannot wait to read Marjorie & Marty’s first impressions of NYC. There’s so much to see, to do, even after living here for years. But for a young woman from out-of-state years ago, I can only imagine how exciting & a little scary NYC was at first! I’m excited to “hear” what it was like to be the first salesgirl at Tiffany, the NY Institution, a beautiful store that’s thrilling to just walking through the store. This book sounds like a mix of the sobering reality of life during the war & a young woman exercising her independance & experiencing life with her best friend by her side. I love the sweet touches of the regular letters home & the close-knot family unity as well.

    I loved your review detailing how special this book is. Thank you!

    ~ Amy
    Aimala127 AT gmail DOT com

  16. What a great review and author interview! I do remember my first trip to NYC with 3 girlfriends (all of us were 16!) with one girl’s aristocratic grandmother. Nothing but the best for that grandma–we stayed at the Waldorf Astoria, weren’t allowed near a subway (taxis only for us!), a carriage ride in Central Park, and visiting the Statue of Liberty. Thrilling for a small-town Ohio girl!

    • Linda that is so fun! My first trip to New York was this past May and I cant wait to go again next year – now that I have seen it I have big plans 😀

  17. I am really hoping to read this before autumn officially arrives. I want to read it in conjunction with Sheila’s group read, but just did not have enough time. It looks like a charming, delightful story and my book club is very interested in reading it together.

    Entered your giveaway!


    jhsmail at comcast dot net

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  19. I think there is a time in every young persons life when they consider the wide world out there waiting for them.n Some dive in and have the adventure of their lives. Marjorie was definitely one of those. The world is almost too different today for an experience like this to happen. There are still adventures out there, but things are just a bit different. The innocence of these two young women is part of what makes this story what it is. That freshness is in short supply in today’s world.

    This sounds like a great book that gives us a good feel for a special time in our country’s history.

    • Pat, yes Marjorie was someone who dove in and because of that she has this amazing story that is sweet and fun. I love that she wrote this all these years later and that through her book we can share in the excitement!

  20. I remember hearing about this book, but I was never really swayed either way — either had-to-have-it or ick-that-sounds-horrible. Just kind of ambivalent, I guess. Too many books! 😀

    • I get you there Hannah! (Oh my aching book shelves!) 😀 I think I was just so impressed to see Marjorie, now 86 write this book. As someone who has always hoped to be a writer and manages to do everything else but – it was inspirational for me to see that it is not too late to reach for the dream.

  21. I am so happy that you chose this book. Unfortunately, I finished it a little later than planned and so I’m late to the Word Shaker’s party! But at least I made it, right? Anyway, I loved the book. My review will be up tomorrow and I’ll add my link to the post. Looking forward to your next work shakers event!

    • Jennifer – no worries, I am glad you read it. I have to remind myself to swing in and see you review. I need to still do that with all those who linked up! 😀

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