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Dog Days at the Four Seasons

Vero Beach author Leslie McGuirk's latest is a comedy classic about canine manners.

Leslie McGuirk, Vero Beach-based author of 12 children's books, recently published No. 13, a humorous account of courteous behavior among humans and dogs titled

Leslie McGuirk, Vero Beach-based author of 12 children's books, recently published No. 13, a humorous account of courteous behavior among humans and dogs titled "Wiggins Learns His Manners at the Four Seasons Retaurant."

When writer Leslie McGuirk said she thought good manners were “going to the dogs,” her friend Alex von Bidder, the exquisitely mannered owner of the Four Seasons restaurant in New York, quickly agreed – and he had witnessed enough examples of poor taste among the patrons at his dining landmark to know. (After one meal, Martha Stewart huffed that her power lunch companion took three calls on his cell phone while dining with her at the Four Seasons. Now, really!)

If Leslie considered the axiom that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks to be at least somewhat true, she hoped that the young would more readily catch on to the importance of learning good manners. So, in collaboration with Von Bidder, McGuirk, the author of 12 previously published children’s books, began work on Wiggens Learns His Manners at the Four Seasons Restaurant (Candlewick Press, $16.99), which has been delightfully well received by parents, grandparents and reviewers alike.

Leslie explains that there hasn’t been a manners how-to for the younger set since Tiffany Table Manners for Teenagers was published 20 years ago. And she and Von Bidder definitely saw the need for one.

Read the entire article in the December 2009 issue