I was thrilled to receive a copy of the The Reluctant Entertainer: Every Woman's Guide to Simple and Gracious Hospitality by Sandy Coughlin to review. I've been a browser of her blog, The Reluctant Entertainer, for awhile now, so I had a sense of what this book would be about. I must say it exceeded my expectations and I was already set for a great read. This truly is an every woman's guide. I must say my own personal experiences in hospitality and entertaining were very similar to Sandy's. In my 20s I couldn't wait to host events and have friends over even in our small 600 SF condo. We would host dinners for up to 12 guests there. Now in my 30s with kids a little bit bigger home I've locked myself a bit in the need to be perfect box, just as Sandy shared. I guess I feel, as many others probably do, that I should have it more together now that I'm older. I've raised the expectations on myself and in turn have simply started to shy away from hosting events. Or maybe I've just had more time to build up my arsenal of excuses.
I'm so glad I got a copy of this book so it will not take me until I reach my 40s or longer to get my priorities and expectations set right. Sandy's writing style is personable, open and gracious. This book is packed with all the practical tips, recipes, ins and outs of hosting events in a simple and inviting way. Add in all of Sandy's warm encouragement and you will be set to start opening your heart and home to others. This is a must have guide to entertaining and will be a resource that I will go to for many years to come.
I received a free copy of this book from Revell: A division of Baker Publishing Group. The opinions expressed in this review are my own and I was not required to provide a positive review.