Rated of 5
by Steven Davis
the home nazi comes to towne
I have had this book on my shelves for nine years now, and have only cracked it three or four times in situations of truly penetrating boredom.
I would not recommend it to anyone. It's full of obsessive arcana, such as, for example, the "right" way to take a book off a shelf (with accompanying illustration; you were doing it wrong all along), and that you should dust your oil paintings once a year, with a tiny brush, from the top to the bottom.
This book makes people who are too busy to do housework feel even worse about themselves because the menu of "bare minimum" tasks that the author presents are far more than most of us do when we are doing housework at full tilt.
To put it another way: this book was meant to be the home equivalent of McGee's "On Food and Cooking," and in fact McGee gave it quite the laudatory blurb on the back of the first edition. I keep them both next to each other on the bookshelf in my kitchen. McGee's book I reference all the time, Mendelson's almost never. The sales are commensurate: On Food stays in the top 100-200 year after year, whereas Home Comforts is relegated to the 30,000+ basement.
Be warned: it will not make you happy, nor will it help you clean your home. Ask your mother and her friends what to do instead.