This humorous and kind-hearted little tome examines various facets of topics pertaining to 'guests'. In the first chapter, Lynes discusses the changing face of hospitality, from an older more formal time (when the rules were clear) to his time, when (as today) a more informal culture prevails, with some attending confusion. The second chapter is an unforgettable taxonomy of various types of cocktail party 'bores' (from the Crashing Bore to the boring Fascinating Conversationalist.) The third section examines the perils of inviting guests for a weekend country visit. In the final chapter, different types of hosts and hostesses are discussed and dissected, including the bossy, the shy, and those wearing slogan-emblazoned barbecue aprons.