Park Avenue Summer Book Review

It’s not exactly a secret that men underestimate women. But that is often our secret to success.

Park Avenue Summer by Renee Rosen was released earlier this year. Alice Weiss is 21 in 1965, a transplant from Ohio and dreams of becoming a photographer. But like many young people who come to New York City with a dream and not much else, Alice has to get a job.

She gets a job as the secretary for the late Helen Gurley Brown, the author of Sex and the Single Girl and the new editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan. At that time, the magazine was on it’s death bed. It was up to Helen to turn the magazine around, but it seemed to be a Herculean task. The magazine was shedding employees like a snake sheds it’s skin and the men who run the parent organization are more than ready to shut the magazine down.

When a fellow employee tries to pull Alice in into a plan to spy on her boss, Alice goes the other way. She will do everything in her power to help Helen succeed. Along the way, Alice learns a few things about life, men and success.

Described as a literary love child of The Devil Wears Prada and Mad Men, this book is more than the story of a young woman discovering herself. It is the story of an unconventional woman who succeeds in a man’s world on her own terms.

I recommend it.


I Have No Sympathy For Felicity Huffman

College is supposed to be the great equalizer. It is also supposed to set us up for life, opening up professional opportunities that would not exist without that college degree.

However, there are two problems with college: the rapidly rising cost and the idea that for some parents, sending their children to a specific college is more about bragging rights than setting up their child for future success.

In the latest news regarding the college cheating scandal, actress Felicity Huffman pleaded guilty yesterday for her part in the scandal. She will be spending two weeks in jail, will have to pay a fine, complete community service and be under one year supervised release.

Honestly, I have no tears for this woman.

I am not a mother and I don’t agree with what she did, but I understand her motives. The job of a parent is to make their child’s life as easy as possible. However, there comes a point in which a parent must step back and let their child rise or fall on their own merit.

What bothers me about this case is that there are so many students who studied their behinds off to get into college and many parents who scrimped and saved for years to get their kids into these colleges. The fact that Ms. Huffman and others thought that they could buy their way into the college admissions process is a sad reminder that the money still gets one farther that hard work.

I hope that this case is a lesson to us all, especially those in the 1%. Money can only get you so far, but hard work will get you everywhere.

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