Pro Diva Assistance

How to Behave is pretty much all a person needs to survive, but then again, as much as we love F & M (of course we love F & M), still, to be honest, one can’t eat there every day. Sometimes a person needs another opinion

To De-Clutter When You Need a System – Marie Kondo

To Feel Happier – Gretchen Rubin

When You Want to Think About Your Faith – chick lit version – Does This Church Make Me Look Fat? by Rhoda Janzen

When You Want to Think About Your Faith –  calm version – Here if You Need Me by Kate Braestrup

When You Want to Think About Your Faith –  woo-woo version – anything by Tosha Silver

Etiquette – Judith Martin/ Miss Manners

Advice for Daily Life – Carolyn Hax

Advice for Improving Yourself – Help Me by Marianne Power

Ideas about What to Read – The Modern Mrs. Darcy

Ideas about What to Read that no one else has read so that you can start or shut-down conversations at will with your superior, esoteric knowledge – London Review of Books (a little too much on British history and they need to work a little harder on getting more women authors and reviews, but better than anything else out there)

And yes, they are all obsessive about their topics. That’s why we love them. They are like Cook’s Illustrated for life’s difficulties. They, darling busy little bees that they are, go out are look at everything, every snickery thing, in their topic and report back on the best. Darling Gretchen, reading 38 gazillion books on being happy, trying everything out, and letting us know what to do. She goes up all the mountains so we can sit in the café in a sweet light-pink silk shift and eat bon-bons. Love her. Love all of them. And if you are feeling twitchy (or, Heaven Forfend, bitchy) about any of them – it’s the jealousy talking. So stop it.

Specialist Books

Books to wallow in after an Awful Breakup – The End of the Affair, The Good Soldier and Brideshead Revisited

Perfect book to take to café to appear approachable, interesting and erudite for when you are over the Awful Breakup – Much Ado About Nothing

Advice on Surviving Evil Bosses – Edward Luttwak (yes, he does not mention evil bosses, but he is kick-ass realpolitik on winning, so read and learn)

Book to Give Smaller Children to Impress on Them the Necessity of Learning Foreign Language: The Little Princess

Give all children collections of poetry, but for 11-13 yr olds who are having a tough time of it, give Emily Dickenson, Cavafy and the SAS Survival Handbook