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The Georgetown Ladies' Social Club


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About the Author

C. David Heymann (1945-2012) is the author of several New York Times bestselling biographies, including Bobby and Jackie, American Legacy, The Georgetown Ladies' Social Club, and RFK: A Candid Biography of Robert F. Kennedy. He lived in Manhattan.


Heymann, a writer of popular "candid" and "intimate" biographies (e.g., A Woman Named Jackie), asserts (repeatedly) that in the second half of the 20th century, Georgetown dinner parties, run by women, mattered to the nation. This several-hundred-page gossip column fails to demonstrate his claim: a consequential exchange occurs at most every hundred pages. The rest of the tome recounts the lifestyles of the rich and politically well connected, including their adulterous escapades and the names of their fashion designers, as well as other excruciating trivia. (From what store in Chevy Chase did Ambassador Ardeshir Zahedi buy a wardrobe for Elizabeth Taylor in preparation for her meeting with the Shah?) Purportedly focusing on "Kay" Graham, "Vangie" Bruce, Lorraine Cooper, Pamela Harriman, and Sally Quinn, Heymann throws in chunks about Liz Taylor and Jackie Kennedy, subjects of his previous works. This book will hold precious little interest for Washington insiders, and none for those outside the city who have never heard of Lorraine Cooper. Nevertheless, the publisher will be conducting a major publicity blitz, so public libraries should be prepared to tell at least a few disappointed patrons that they'll have to buy this book themselves.-Cynthia Harrison, George Washington Univ., Washington, DC Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

The Toronto Sun An informative and entertaining book -- like the women it profiles.
The Washington Post Think Entertainment Tonight does Georgetown.
Liz Smith New York Post One juicy story after another. Mr. Heymann doesn't hold back. I couldn't put this book down....Don't miss it!

Heymann, bestselling biographer of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Barbara Hutton, offers a captivating chronicle of the female power behind American politics in the latter half of the 20th century. In a time when men wrote the rules of the political game, he writes, five formidable women greatly influenced who won and who lost: Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham; Lorraine Cooper, wife of Kentucky's Sen. John Sherman Cooper; Evangeline Bruce, wife of U.S. ambassador David Bruce; Democratic Party fund-raiser (and later ambassador) Pamela Harriman, married to the powerful and wealthy Averell Harriman; and Sally Quinn, Washington Post writer and wife of the Post's former executive editor Ben Bradlee. While they had husbands in high places, these women wielded a vital political influence in Georgetown by organizing the parties where momentous meetings took place and decisions were made. These women were so compelling not only for their professional and political accomplishments and legendary dinner parties but for their dynamic, and often clashing, personalities and ambitions. Heymann deftly explores these personalities through interviews with family, friends, enemies, admirers and detractors. The resulting anecdotal social history of Georgetown is a winning combination of sex, scandal and political escapade. It also provides a complex portrait of its subjects. "What the Georgetown Five ultimately share is their ability to maintain a public pose, to protect the image they sought to create, no matter what the cost, no matter what the burden," writes Heymann, whose earlier books have become award-winning TV miniseries. 16 pages of b&w photos not seen by PW. Agent, Owen Laster. (Oct. 28) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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