A collection of essays that are "like being seated beside the most entertaining guest at a dinner party" (Atlanta Journal Constitution), from the New York Times bestselling author of American Housewives
“Thank you Helen Ellis for writing down the Southern Lady Code so that others may learn.” —Ann Patchett
Helen Ellis has a mantra: “If you don't have something nice to say, say something not-so-nice in a nice way.” Say “weathered” instead of “she looks like a cake left out in the rain” and “I’m not in charge” instead of “they’re doing it wrong.”
In these twenty-three raucous essays, Ellis transforms herself into a dominatrix Donna Reed to save her marriage, inadvertently steals a Burberry trench coat, avoids a neck lift, and finds a black-tie gown that gives her the confidence of a drag queen. While she may have left Alabama for New York City, Helen Ellis is clinging to her Southern accent like mayonnaise to white bread, and offering readers a hilarious, completely singular view on womanhood for both sides of the Mason-Dixon.