I just received this book in the mail from a dear friend for Christmas. When I was visiting her this summer, I was flipping through her copy of it and became entranced, and vowed I would have to buy it as soon as I got settled again! Of course, I had forgotten about it and not bought it yet, so I was thrilled to receive it in the mail!
It is an excellent book! The first chapter is titled "My secret life" and starts as follows:
"I am a working woman with a secret life: I keep house. An off-and-on lawyer and professor in public, in private I launder and clean, cook from the hip and devote serious time and energy to a domestic routine not so different from the one that defined my grandmothers as "housewives." When I want a good read, I reach for my collection of old housekeeping manuals. the part of me that enjoys housekeeping and the comforts it provides is central to my character."
It has been called the "joy of cooking" for housekeeping. It has information and "how to" instructions for just about every household task. It's kind of like having all your mothers, mothers in law, grandmothers, and grandmothers in law's collective knowledge about everything from deciphering washing instructions to making a good fire, to cleaning china and making a bed with hospital corners (there are pictures!).
I love it!