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Miss Hildreth Wore Brown: Anecdotes of a Southern Belle [Paperback]

Olivia deBelle Byrd
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

May 1 2010

While Olivia deBelle Byrd was repeating one of her many Southern stories for the umpteenth time, her long-suffering husband looked at her with glazed over eyes and said,“Why don’t you write this stuff down?” Thus was born Miss Hildreth Wore Brown—Anecdotes of a Southern Belle. If the genesis for a book is to shut your wife up, I guess that’s as good as any.  On top of that, Olivia’s mother had burdened her with one of those Southern middle names kids love to make fun.  To see “deBelle” printed on the front of a book seemed vindication for all the childhood teasing.  With storytelling written in the finest Southern tradition from the soap operas of Chandler Street in the quaint town of Gainesville, Georgia, to a country store on the Alabama state line, Oliviade Belle Byrd delves with wit and amusement into the world of the Deep South with all its unique idiosyncrasies and colloquialisms.  The characters who dance across the pages range from Great-Aunt LottieMae, who is as “old-fashioned and opinionated as the day is long,” to Mrs. Brewton, who calls everyone “dahling” whether they are darling or not, to Isabella with her penchant for mint juleps and drama.  Humorous anecdotes from a Christmas coffee, where one can converse with a lady who has Christmas trees with blinking lights dangling from her ears, to Sunday church,where a mink coat is mistaken for possum, will delight Southerners and baffle many a non-Southerner. There is the proverbial Southern beauty pageant, where even a six-month-old can win a tiara, to a funeral faux pas of the iron clad Southern rule—one never wears white after Labor Day and, dear gussy, most certainly not to a funeral.  Miss Hildreth Wore Brown—Anecdotes of a Southern Belle is guaranteed to provide an afternoon of laugh-out-loud reading and hilarious enjoyment.


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Review

“With Miss Hildreth Wore Brown, Olivia deBelle Byrd proves that she is the real thing—an authentic Southern Belle with stories galore. I can’t wait to give this hilarious and heartwarming book to all my sweet friends.”
—CASSANDRA KING, author of The Same Sweet Girls

“As a fifth generation Southerner, I thought I knew all there was to know about Southern culture.  However, Olivia deBelle Byrd has taught me a thing or two. Miss Hildreth Wore Brown covers everything from Sunday church, beauty pageants and Northern exposure with humorous insight. This is one that you’ll want to savor with a mint julep!”
—MICHAEL MORRIS, author of A Place Called Wiregrass

“Olivia deBelle Byrd is a wonderful writer if you happen to enjoy wit, talent, charm, and good looks.  Anyone who has ever cracked a grin at the works of Nora Ephron or Fannie Flagg owes it to herself to read Miss Hildreth Wore Brown, which is the warmest, wisest, funniest book I’ve read in a month of Sundays. It’s like lunch with your wittiest friends—full of heart, love, and juicy gossip!”
—ROBERT LELEUX, author of The Memoirs of a Beautiful Boy

Book Description

While Olivia deBelle Byrd was repeating one of her many Southern stories for the umpteenth time, her long-suffering husband looked at her with glazed over eyes and said,“Why don’t you write this stuff down?” Thus was born Miss Hildreth Wore Brown—Anecdotes of a Southern Belle. If the genesis for a book is to shut your wife up, I guess that’s as good as any.  On top of that, Olivia’s mother had burdened her with one of those Southern middle names kids love to make fun.  To see “deBelle” printed on the front of a book seemed vindication for all the childhood teasing.  With storytelling written in the finest Southern tradition from the soap operas of Chandler Street in the quaint town of Gainesville, Georgia, to a country store on the Alabama state line, Oliviade Belle Byrd delves with wit and amusement into the world of the Deep South with all its unique idiosyncrasies and colloquialisms.  The characters who dance across the pages range from Great-Aunt LottieMae, who is as “old-fashioned and opinionated as the day is long,” to Mrs. Brewton, who calls everyone “dahling” whether they are darling or not, to Isabella with her penchant for mint juleps and drama.  Humorous anecdotes from a Christmas coffee, where one can converse with a lady who has Christmas trees with blinking lights dangling from her ears, to Sunday church,where a mink coat is mistaken for possum, will delight Southerners and baffle many a non-Southerner. There is the proverbial Southern beauty pageant, where even a six-month-old can win a tiara, to a funeral faux pas of the iron clad Southern rule—one never wears white after Labor Day and, dear gussy, most certainly not to a funeral.  Miss Hildreth Wore Brown—Anecdotes of a Southern Belle is guaranteed to provide an afternoon of laugh-out-loud reading and hilarious enjoyment.

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Most helpful customer reviews
By Mrs. Q: Book Addict TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Author: Olivia DeBelle Byrd
Publisher: Morgan James
Pages: 156
Source: Author
Category: Southern Fiction
Rating: 5/5

'Miss Hildreth Wore Brown: Anecdotes of a Southern Belle' is an absolutely hilarious read. We all have stories about our upbringing, the stereotypes, the new generation vs the old generation and the influences of others in our lives. We love recounting the hilarious stories about individuals in our towns. After telling her stories verbally over and over for years, Olivia finally puts pen to paper, and delivers a fascinating read. Olivia deBelle Byrd picks her readers up and drops her readers into a Southern world. A world filled with traditions, and laugh-out loud stories. Stories that will leave you thinking, and have you recollecting your own stories. Each chapter is a short fun filled chapter, one that will leave you laughing and learning from her lessons. A self-proclaimed 'directionally challenged' individual, Olivia recounts driving her son to soccer practice, but ending up in the wrong state. Her husbands response when she asks why he never gave the correct directions, 'I didn't think you knew where west was.' Yes, Olivia's husband is always ready with an answer. After her husband asks her to purchase blue or brown pants. OIivia responds with 'Marine blue, navy blue, dark blue, chocolate brown, mocha brown, latte brown?' I wonder what my husband would say...Imagine her husbands shock when he learns Ice Cream is no longer 25 cents a scoop and Chanel No.5 is not cheap. Imagine his horror when she pretends the bottle spills to the ground...

This book is not written solely for the Southern reader, everyone can relate and enjoy this book. A Fun, fast-paced, hysterical read. This is one that you will pick up, and not want to end. It's all of 150 pages, so you may want to ration the stories.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  37 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Amazing! Dec 1 2010
By MyReadersBlock - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Miss Hildreth Wore Brown: Anecdotes of a Southern Belle by Olivia deBelle Byrd is an absolutely amazing book. At just over 150 pages it is an incredibly fast and funny read. The anecdotes remind my of Erma Bombeck and Lewis Grizzard all rolled into one delightfully hilarious book of Southern comfort. The image of her husband leaping out of the car to have a showdown with their son only to have his pants fall around his knees..."I'm here to tell you, your sense of authority is greatly compromised when you are standing on the side of the road with your pants in a pile around your ankles." All the way to Olivia threatening to go bonkers and embarrass her son at every opportunity that presents itself. ("'Well, all I can say,' he answered, 'is that you're well on your way.'") These are stories that I'll remember long after I've passed this book on.

But as much humor as there is--and the book is chock full--there is wisdom embedded as well. I particularly liked her explanation of self-esteem:

"You can tell children they are intelligent or beautiful or talented all you want, but that doesn't give them self-esteem. Self-esteem comes from trying and failing and finally succeeding. It comes from your own efforts and not those of your parents."

Southern humor sprinkled with Southern wisdom makes for an enticing combination that is impossible to resist. Combine that with a wonderfully accessible writing style and you have a real winner! I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the South, witty anecdotes, family humor and just plain excellent writing. Four and a half stars out of five. (Amazon would only let me go with a straight four or five)
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Southern Charm Oct. 1 2010
By Bennet Pomerantz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
If you have read Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe: A Novel or The Sweet Potato Queens' Book of Love , you only got a small sample of the art of the Southern Woman. This book, Miss Hidreth Wore Brown, should take away the stereotype blinders that these books have given you.

Olivia Byrd tells essays of old time Southern life that most novels glimps over. Southerns have their own view of the world, the author recants these anecdoes with a pinch of Sunday dinner and a mountain of true Southern charm. Her storytelling ability is amazing. She takes her readership to the real South.

This is the other side of Jeff Foxworthy-land. You may find a redneck here and there, but Miss Byrd puts them in their southern places. Her inner Southern Belle is real, hip and truly witty. She is a straight Shooter and gets to the heart of the matter.

When I got tp reading the chapter called "The Art of Bargaining", I counted the remaining pages. I really wondered if I should slow down since I was enjoying myself too much. As I was reading the chapter on Bargaining, I also wanted to ask the author when is her next book.

She and Bailey White tread in similar circles...But I find Miss Byrd a lot funnier,,and so will you. She is a prize that you must savor and relish over after Sunday Dinner

Bennet Pomerantz
AUDIOWORLD
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars At times a bit naughty, but nevah in poor taste! Aug. 2 2010
By Grady Harp - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
MISS HILDRETH WORE BROWN: Anecdotes of a Southern Belle is a relic - and a welcome one at that! Author Olivia deBelle Byrd charmingly details moments in Southern etiquette that span memory of childhood and the manners taught for generations and then compares those with incidents she encounters today - incidents that simply do not fall under the good upbringing of Southern belles - or their children...... Her writing style is smart, to the point, and oh so intimidating as when observes behaviors or modern customs that 'won't do' or do not fit into the pattern of the gentility of the South.

This is by no means a scolding book: Bryd makes fun of her own ideas and upbringing and shares many stories that are laugh out loud funny. And she knows how to use that snide wit in more subtle ways, too. But the overall feeling after reading this short book of anecdotes is how far we have slipped in our consideration of common courtesy and proper manners - not only in the South but also across the country. Topics like not writing thank you notes will sting the readers who not only have ceased this bit of civility but also make them reflect on the training they have passed on to their own children. Byrd entertains us, yes, but she also is a fine watchdog for reminding us (in her own gentle Southern fashion) just what well-bred folks are forgetting. Emily Post would approve - and probably chuckle, too! Grady Harp, August 10
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Truly Adorable Jan. 12 2011
By Lori Caswell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Anecdotes of a Southern Belle
Morgan James Publishing
Available Now!
1% of book sales are being donated to Habitat For Humanity
ISBN-10: 1600377483
ISBN-13: 978-1600377488

I love the way this book came to be, as the author was repeating some of her stories for the "umpteenth" time, her long-suffering husband looked at her with glazed over eyes and said,"Why don't you write this stuff down?" Thus was born Miss Hildreth Wore Brown--Anecdotes of a Southern Belle.

The anecdotes cover the "Southern Way" of handling everything from funerals, thank notes and the dreaded wearing white after Labor day, all written with the author's true Southern charm.

It is a truly adorable fast read. A perfect book to pick up if you are having a bad or stressful day because these short little stories are sure to put a smile on your face and help you "escape" from your everyday strife.

I do have to mention I was born and raised in the North, a Yankee, oh my, but a lot of the things she talks about happening in the South were part of my upbringing also, so either the etiquette traveled North or we are not as different from each other as we were led to believe. Let's face it every family has at least one "eccentric" relative.

So whether you are a woman from the North, West, East or South, you will enjoy this book. It is chock full of humor, sarcasm and wit. You may even catch yourself laughing out loud. This also is definitely one you with friends and family too.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amusing insight to growing up in the south June 16 2010
By Michelle D. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I smirked, giggled, and laughed out loud at these stories. So true and so funny!
Its a very entertaining insight to life growing up in the Old South, and raising kids in the modern south. For those of you who grew up there, this will remind you of the laughter and quirkiness you grew up with. To those of you who didn't grow up here, its a great insight to why your southern friends are the way they are. The stories are short and sweet with just a touch of sass. You can read them one at a time for short pick-me-ups, or you can read the whole book in 1 sitting. Just great.
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