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Mad Women: The Other Side of Life on Madison Avenue in the '60s and Beyond

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"Breezy and salty." -The New York Times "Hilarious! Honest, intimate, this book tells it as it was." -Mary Wells Lawrence, author of A Big Life (In Advertising) and founding president of Wells Rich Greene "Breezy and engaging [though] ...The chief value of Mad Women is the witness it bears for younger women about the snobbery and sexism their mothers and grandmothers endured "Breezy and salty." -The New York Times "Hilarious! Honest, intimate, this book tells it as it was." -Mary Wells Lawrence, author of A Big Life (In Advertising) and founding president of Wells Rich Greene "Breezy and engaging [though] ...The chief value of Mad Women is the witness it bears for younger women about the snobbery and sexism their mothers and grandmothers endured as the price of entry into mid-century American professional life." -The Boston Globe "A real-life Peggy Olson, right out of Mad Men." -Shelly Lazarus, Chairman, Ogilvy & Mather What was it like to be an advertising woman on Madison Avenue in the 60s and 70s - that Mad Men era of casual sex and professional serfdom? A real-life Peggy Olson reveals it all in this immensely entertaining and bittersweet memoir. Mad Women is a tell-all account of life in the New York advertising world by Jane Maas, a copywriter who succeeded in the primarily male jungle depicted in the hit show Mad Men. Fans of the show are dying to know how accurate it is: was there really that much sex at the office? Were there really three-martini lunches? Were women really second-class citizens? Jane Maas says the answer to all three questions is unequivocally "yes." Her book, based on her own experiences and countless interviews with her peers, gives the full stories, from the junior account man whose wife almost left him when she found the copy of Screw magazine he'd used to find "a date" for a client, to the Ogilvy & Mather's annual Boat Ride, a sex-and-booze filled orgy, from which it was said no virgin ever returned intact. Wickedly funny and full of juicy inside information, Mad Women also tackles some of the tougher issues of the era, such as unequal pay, rampant, jaw-dropping sexism, and the difficult choice many women faced between motherhood and their careers.


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"Breezy and salty." -The New York Times "Hilarious! Honest, intimate, this book tells it as it was." -Mary Wells Lawrence, author of A Big Life (In Advertising) and founding president of Wells Rich Greene "Breezy and engaging [though] ...The chief value of Mad Women is the witness it bears for younger women about the snobbery and sexism their mothers and grandmothers endured "Breezy and salty." -The New York Times "Hilarious! Honest, intimate, this book tells it as it was." -Mary Wells Lawrence, author of A Big Life (In Advertising) and founding president of Wells Rich Greene "Breezy and engaging [though] ...The chief value of Mad Women is the witness it bears for younger women about the snobbery and sexism their mothers and grandmothers endured as the price of entry into mid-century American professional life." -The Boston Globe "A real-life Peggy Olson, right out of Mad Men." -Shelly Lazarus, Chairman, Ogilvy & Mather What was it like to be an advertising woman on Madison Avenue in the 60s and 70s - that Mad Men era of casual sex and professional serfdom? A real-life Peggy Olson reveals it all in this immensely entertaining and bittersweet memoir. Mad Women is a tell-all account of life in the New York advertising world by Jane Maas, a copywriter who succeeded in the primarily male jungle depicted in the hit show Mad Men. Fans of the show are dying to know how accurate it is: was there really that much sex at the office? Were there really three-martini lunches? Were women really second-class citizens? Jane Maas says the answer to all three questions is unequivocally "yes." Her book, based on her own experiences and countless interviews with her peers, gives the full stories, from the junior account man whose wife almost left him when she found the copy of Screw magazine he'd used to find "a date" for a client, to the Ogilvy & Mather's annual Boat Ride, a sex-and-booze filled orgy, from which it was said no virgin ever returned intact. Wickedly funny and full of juicy inside information, Mad Women also tackles some of the tougher issues of the era, such as unequal pay, rampant, jaw-dropping sexism, and the difficult choice many women faced between motherhood and their careers.

30 review for Mad Women: The Other Side of Life on Madison Avenue in the '60s and Beyond

  1. 4 out of 5

    Beth

    I will keep my stance that the narrarators sharp, quick, clipped, sometimes snooty vocal cadence wore me out while listening to this book. She veers away from the advertising profession and travels down equal rights alleys, and seems to get lost in those alleys. Maas does a good job of comparing and contrasting her real world 1960's advertising experience to what we see on Mad Men. I can get a flavor for what goes on at Sterling, Cooper, Draper, Pryce or the previous Sterling Cooper was realistic I will keep my stance that the narrarators sharp, quick, clipped, sometimes snooty vocal cadence wore me out while listening to this book. She veers away from the advertising profession and travels down equal rights alleys, and seems to get lost in those alleys. Maas does a good job of comparing and contrasting her real world 1960's advertising experience to what we see on Mad Men. I can get a flavor for what goes on at Sterling, Cooper, Draper, Pryce or the previous Sterling Cooper was realistic to the shenanagins on Madison Avenue during the 1960's Maas seems to have regrets for being a working mother although she had someone else raise her children, and she fully owns up to not raising her own children. I don't think she has a dog in the fight to opine on how other women, working, working mothers, housewives or single workin mothers felt during that time period and if they feel they 'haven't come a long way baby'. Her situation was one where she could have it all and not have to do it all. If you want the scoop on Mad Men you will find it in here, if you want to know what it was like to be a woman in the 1960's perhaps not the book for you. Unless you want to know what it was like to be an affluent well off woman in the 1960's Net net, despite the sharp, quick, clipped, narration I enjoyed this book. It certianly did help keep me awake during some early morning and late night drives!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Marla

    I listened to the audiobook and it was really good. The reader had a very silky voice that could put you to sleep. It was interesting to hear the woman's perspective of the Mad Men Show and how it was in advertising in the 60's. We've really come a long way over the last 50 years. I listened to the audiobook and it was really good. The reader had a very silky voice that could put you to sleep. It was interesting to hear the woman's perspective of the Mad Men Show and how it was in advertising in the 60's. We've really come a long way over the last 50 years.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Tammie

    It took me a long time to get around to watching Mad Men. After 3 weeks of watching at a near addicting pace (Jon Hamm, late nights...sigh)I finished it and experienced a severe case of withdrawal. I need more! Where is season 5, Netflix?!?!?! Last Tuesday I was browsing through the library and this book reached out and grabbed me! I had to read it, I had to feed this Mad craving for everything having to do with Mad Men!!! I loved it! I appreciate Jane's realness. She's a careerwoman, a wife and m It took me a long time to get around to watching Mad Men. After 3 weeks of watching at a near addicting pace (Jon Hamm, late nights...sigh)I finished it and experienced a severe case of withdrawal. I need more! Where is season 5, Netflix?!?!?! Last Tuesday I was browsing through the library and this book reached out and grabbed me! I had to read it, I had to feed this Mad craving for everything having to do with Mad Men!!! I loved it! I appreciate Jane's realness. She's a careerwoman, a wife and mom...in that order. So what? I don't dare criticize her for having a live in nanny. If I had the extra money to do it when my kids were young, you bet I would have. And I was a stay at home mom!! Even today, as a woman, you are damned if you do and damned if you don't. Ultimately, you have to do what is right for you and yours. I'm glad she didn't get all deep in the feminist side of things. This is her story, her experiences. I would have been disappointed had this been some sharp, shrill diatribe of the woes of the working woman! Duh, some of it still happens today. (How does your boss react when the school calls and YOU have to go pick up a sick child and take them home? Mmmhmm...) Again, I found this entertaining. I was born in 1970, but I remember the non-stop smoking (everywhere), the drinking, my parents' cocktail parties. Good Read!!!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jane Roper

    As a copywriter myself, not to mention a fan of Mad Men, I was really excited to read this book. But I didn't end up finishing it because I just wasn't compelled to do so. The problem for me was that it wasn't really a memoir, just a collection -- in no specific order, just thematically grouped -- of reflections and anecdotes. It's well written enough, and provides some interesting glimpses of what things were like in the 60s for women both in the workplace and at home. But there is no narrative As a copywriter myself, not to mention a fan of Mad Men, I was really excited to read this book. But I didn't end up finishing it because I just wasn't compelled to do so. The problem for me was that it wasn't really a memoir, just a collection -- in no specific order, just thematically grouped -- of reflections and anecdotes. It's well written enough, and provides some interesting glimpses of what things were like in the 60s for women both in the workplace and at home. But there is no narrative tying it all together, and it never really goes very deep into the author's feelings, hopes, fears, etc., so I found it pretty unsatisfying.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jessi Lee Gaylord

    Mad Women: What the fuck do you mean “sexual harassment” didn’t exist yet? I was counting down the days until the new season of Mad Men with my panties in a bunch, when I picked up the book Mad Women by Jane Maas. Maas was both a copywriter and a creative director at Ogilvy & Mather in the penis-slinging hustle of the New York advertising world in the 1960s. The book articulates the agony of ecstasy of a career woman in the misogynistic though mesmerizing world of advertising, but readers, with Mad Women: What the fuck do you mean “sexual harassment” didn’t exist yet? I was counting down the days until the new season of Mad Men with my panties in a bunch, when I picked up the book Mad Women by Jane Maas. Maas was both a copywriter and a creative director at Ogilvy & Mather in the penis-slinging hustle of the New York advertising world in the 1960s. The book articulates the agony of ecstasy of a career woman in the misogynistic though mesmerizing world of advertising, but readers, with a penis or without a penis, will like the wit and insight the book gives about advertising’s history and evolution, its campaign philosophies, bad habits, artful departure, its sex, drinking and genius. All that Drinking, Smoking, Sex? Really? Yes, yes and yes, says Jane Maas. In one chapter, she gives birth and holds the newborn with one hand, while she smokes with the other, in the hospital bed. She says Mad Men fans always ask if they really drank as they do on the show. “Most people drank most of the time,” she says. “It was the custom then to drink before eating, during eating, and after eating. Then everyone came back to their offices at about two o’clock and went to work. Those lucky enough to be finished by five and able to leave went to a bar and started right in again.” What the fuck do you mean “sexual harassment” didn’t exist yet? Maas relates one experience with a creative director (described as Draper-esque and good at his job) who harassed her for weeks. She couldn’t tell anyone because this was “before sexual harassment existed.” The thought of facing a workplace before sexual harassment became a noun is terrible, as in terrible-terrible. We had our sexual harassment training at work and everyone was grumbling about the lame videos showing “Chad” telling “Shelley” she has a “great body” and bullying her to go out until she starts crying in the HR office (Maas says there was no such thing as HR in the 60s). Chad had this autistic look on his face the entire time; I think it was supposed to confuse people about whether he was being a borderline rapist without knowing it somehow or he was just a downright sociopath. Dudes at offices the world over get that stupid look on their faces whenever they unwittingly or wittingly make women uncomfortable. Idiots. Of course, women are also idiots about the exact same topic. Sometimes it turns out that Shelley is wrong about Chad. Like the time this IT guy was fixing my computer and he was like “wow, your mouth moves really fast” and his voice seemed to be coming straight out of Barry White’s lips with cheesy porn music playing in the background. Gaylord that I am, I stormed off into the bathroom instead of confronting him, but at the sexual harassment premier, I turned around and glared at him for about four seconds too long. Last week he was at my desk fixing something and he’s like, “wow, your mouse always moves around so fast. Doesn’t it drive you crazy? You should like totally get a mouse pad from the mailroom.” Sometimes, the difference between mouth and mouse makes all the difference in the world. But I guarantee somewhere in the world there is a Chad harassing a Shelley right now. I can’t imagine how terrible it must’ve been for the Shelleys in the 60s.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Vida

    I thought Mad Women was many things. It was a history lesson, it was a reminder of the advertising campaigns of my youth, it was philosophical, it was a story of the women's working world that I missed by staying home to raise my children, it was entertaining. I couldn't put it down. After graduating college, I dreamed of being a professional advertising woman. This was like being voyeur in Jane Maas' life. I appreciated her philosophizing, "Edes Gilbert connects the increasing guild of working mo I thought Mad Women was many things. It was a history lesson, it was a reminder of the advertising campaigns of my youth, it was philosophical, it was a story of the women's working world that I missed by staying home to raise my children, it was entertaining. I couldn't put it down. After graduating college, I dreamed of being a professional advertising woman. This was like being voyeur in Jane Maas' life. I appreciated her philosophizing, "Edes Gilbert connects the increasing guild of working mothers to rise of today's helicopter mom, constantly hovering over her children. "In the good old days," she says, "if a child came home with an F on a paper, the mother would give the child a good scolding. Now, the mother calls the school and gives the teacher a good scolding. And if she's really upset, she calls the principal, too." Gilbert add that the higher a woman stand professionally, the more likely she is to hover. It makes sense; the executive mom likes to be in charge." Women couldn't catch a break back then and they still can't catch one today.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mary Mckenna longford

    Jane Maas wore me out with her "Egocentric and I was such a pioneer" prose. I found some of her account of life as a working mother in the '60's interesting but it was all too self congratulatory and self indulgent for my liking. She's derisory at times about women who chose to leave the workforce and raise their children themselves rather than have a stranger do it as if women who chose the second path were trail blazers, too clever to be concerned with domestic responsibilities. Newsflash Jane Jane Maas wore me out with her "Egocentric and I was such a pioneer" prose. I found some of her account of life as a working mother in the '60's interesting but it was all too self congratulatory and self indulgent for my liking. She's derisory at times about women who chose to leave the workforce and raise their children themselves rather than have a stranger do it as if women who chose the second path were trail blazers, too clever to be concerned with domestic responsibilities. Newsflash Jane Maas....some very smart and accomplished women stayed home with their children in the 1960's and 1970's and trail blazed in other ways. I also felt I was supposed to be shocked and giggling about some of the high jinx going on in the offices of Madison Avenue in the 1960's and really a lot of it was boring and quite tame compared to what was going on in the corporate world, particularly finance in the 1980's. Okay book but it probably wouldn't have got a guernsey without Mad Men creating some interest.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Bunny

    I'm disappointed that there are so few reviews of this book on GoodReads. I was utterly charmed by it. I love advertising. I think I always have, without realizing it. I vividly remember the first commercial that stuck with me. For those who remember it, all I need to say is, "Cha-ching!" Who knew that almost 20 years later, I was going to be madly in love with that guy when he played a guitar-playing werewolf. This book was never boring. I learned more about old ad campaigns, and it only added to I'm disappointed that there are so few reviews of this book on GoodReads. I was utterly charmed by it. I love advertising. I think I always have, without realizing it. I vividly remember the first commercial that stuck with me. For those who remember it, all I need to say is, "Cha-ching!" Who knew that almost 20 years later, I was going to be madly in love with that guy when he played a guitar-playing werewolf. This book was never boring. I learned more about old ad campaigns, and it only added to my love for the show Mad Men. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the "real side". And after watching seven seasons of that show, I was more than ready for the horrible sexism that I knew was coming. Seriously, the only word I can use is charming. This was just a delightful book. Though I am horrified to learn that Roald Dahl was a complete asshole. HORRIFIED.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I found this remarkably lacking in both substance and new information. There were occasional moments of inspired story-telling, but for the most part it read as if the writer was jumping up and down shouting "Me, too! Me, too! I braved the 60's in advertising, too! Over here!". This might have been better as a collection of stories--truly, some were very interesting--rather than spending so much retreading ground that's been well-covered. We know that it was difficult being a woman in a field do I found this remarkably lacking in both substance and new information. There were occasional moments of inspired story-telling, but for the most part it read as if the writer was jumping up and down shouting "Me, too! Me, too! I braved the 60's in advertising, too! Over here!". This might have been better as a collection of stories--truly, some were very interesting--rather than spending so much retreading ground that's been well-covered. We know that it was difficult being a woman in a field dominated by men. It still is. Unless you bring something new or insightful to the conversation, you're not advancing the discussion.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cynda

    I was born I 1963, so books (and other media) describing women's lives during the mid-century Era help me to better understand my mother and my early Self. I was born I 1963, so books (and other media) describing women's lives during the mid-century Era help me to better understand my mother and my early Self.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Diane Meier

    I promised myself that I would only review books worth recommending. What's the point of taking up time telling someone what NOT to read. But this book, I fear, is making me break my rule. Jane Maas' entry into Advertising came a decade or more before mine. A day closer to the "advertised" Peggy Olsen era of the first season of Mad Men. And for that alone, give the gal a star. It took guts. It wasn't easy 15 years later (it isn't easy now). And -- she was responsible for the I HEART NY campaign. I promised myself that I would only review books worth recommending. What's the point of taking up time telling someone what NOT to read. But this book, I fear, is making me break my rule. Jane Maas' entry into Advertising came a decade or more before mine. A day closer to the "advertised" Peggy Olsen era of the first season of Mad Men. And for that alone, give the gal a star. It took guts. It wasn't easy 15 years later (it isn't easy now). And -- she was responsible for the I HEART NY campaign. Beautifully realized. But her account of that industry, which was nothing short of cut-throat, and full of characters - unsavory and unethical and perfectly horrible while being utterly fascinating - is bland and buttoned up. Where - to put it in advertising terms - is the BEEF? Maas admits to a small degree of sexism (female copywriters only covered 'domestic' products) but never really questions the culture that promotes the double standard and hangs on to the status quo for dear life. In fact, she holds Feminism out at arm's length, as though its seeping discontent might color the environment she's managed to navigate for herself. She touches on all kinds of things - from raises to marriage, to mothering, but always in a light, surface-skimming way. And if I felt it was dishonest, am I saying that she is dishonest? I don't think so. Sadly, the women who managed to live in corporate environments (and many who still do), dealing with the belittling evidence of sexism every day, are either emotionally suited to the shallow end of the pool, or learn to look the other way and concentrate on problem-solving on behalf of their clients and collecting their pay checks - on behalf of themselves and their families. Either way, it's not the set-up for introspection, depth and truth telling. And where would a memoir be without those skills. Many of the ads Jane Maas created, she tells you with a strange sense of wry pride, were emblematic of the very problems we faced. Ads designed to provoke women's shame about grimy collars on husband's shirts, and spots on glasses. Mass doesn't really - not really - see the connection between her not being assigned an auto account and her presentation of women as servants. It's kind of stunning. So - sadly, no. This is not the answer to MadMen. One look at Joan or Peggy's face will tell you that. This is the story of a perfectly nice women who didn't find those times 'so bad'. Which makes them not so interesting either.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kim

    Brought to my bedside by my personal librarian in honor of Mad Men's new season, this book was mildly interesting. Not sure why I felt compelled to finish it, but finish it I did. Jane Maas tells of her experience making boatloads of money as a female advertising copywriter ( a la Peggy Olson in the show) who later turns exec. She started in the 60s. Unlike Peggy, she was married and had two schoolage children then. She also had a during-the-week live-in maid/nanny. [It's hard for me to take wom Brought to my bedside by my personal librarian in honor of Mad Men's new season, this book was mildly interesting. Not sure why I felt compelled to finish it, but finish it I did. Jane Maas tells of her experience making boatloads of money as a female advertising copywriter ( a la Peggy Olson in the show) who later turns exec. She started in the 60s. Unlike Peggy, she was married and had two schoolage children then. She also had a during-the-week live-in maid/nanny. [It's hard for me to take women seriously who have such things. Forgive my being entrenched in my lower-middle-class ways.] In the book she speaks often of sexism, drinking, sex, and, of course, advertising. Often clunkily, I think, but what do I know about writing. ;) She mentions wonderful large clients "like Monsanto." [It is also hard for me to take seriously people who think of companies like Monsanto, which to me are evil incarnate, and think of them as a delightful oppportunity dressed in dollar signs.] She tells a story about working for Leona Helmsley, who seems abou seven times worse than we'd have imagined from her horrendous press (and may I also say how much I hated when Helmsley was in the news? Our last names were not the same, but similar enough that there were jokes. It was annoying, to say the least.). My favorite part of the book is her story about the I Love New York campaign. It was fun to learn the behind-the-scenes stuff on that one, since unlike many of the ads she mentions, that campaign is obviously very much still around, and still makes an impression. Right now I am sitting next to a backpack with an I Love Fish Tacos button on it; the same font and style as the I Love New York pins. Apparently it was astonishing that cabbies glommed on to this; it cheered everyone right up. I love that. So the book is what it is. It's a woman who was in advertising in the 60s making a buck by writing a book riffing off of/connecting to a show about (wo)men in advertising in the 60s. There's rather a lot of self-promotion (she apparently co-wrote a book that is still in print 30 years later. She mentions this no fewer than four times. It did not get less annoying with repetition, in case you were wondering. I won't mention the name here, though it is easy to remember and is burned into my skull).

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    Hands down the most disappointing book I have read of 2012. I haven't been this bored with an author in a long time. I knew who Jane Maas was thanks to the requisite advertising class in my MBA program. Famous for the I Love NY campaign, she is a pioneer in advertising. She worked for David Ogilvy in the 1960s when the ad world was made up of men. Not only was she an account bigwig, she was a working mother. Something almost unheard of in that period. Maas has the background to weave an interestin Hands down the most disappointing book I have read of 2012. I haven't been this bored with an author in a long time. I knew who Jane Maas was thanks to the requisite advertising class in my MBA program. Famous for the I Love NY campaign, she is a pioneer in advertising. She worked for David Ogilvy in the 1960s when the ad world was made up of men. Not only was she an account bigwig, she was a working mother. Something almost unheard of in that period. Maas has the background to weave an interesting story about the 1960s advertising world that Mad Men is now making famous. Instead she spends so much time on completely irrelevant tangents that I often forgot this was a book about advertising. She clearly was moving to profit off the the Mad Men hype. I don't begrudge her that. While she isn't necessarily the inspiration for Peggy Olsen, the similarities are uncanny. She has every right to try to put into print what that world was like. Except she doesn't really. She talks about her big accounts, how women were treated, and the whole working mom thing, but at the end of the book I learned nothing new. It is the same 1950s-1960s information about women that most women already know. There certainly are a few interesting parts, but they comprise less than 10% of the book. Spare yourself and just watch Mad Men. There truly aren't many differences.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    Very riveting look into the world of advertising in the Mad Men era from the perspective of a woman in the industry (who was more than a secretary but of course still often assumed to be one). It refers to the Mad Men series a lot, but I found it wasn't necessary to have seen Mad Men to understand the gist of the author's observation and comparisons. Worthwhile read about NYC advertising life, especially from the perspective of a working woman who admittedly placed her career first, her husband Very riveting look into the world of advertising in the Mad Men era from the perspective of a woman in the industry (who was more than a secretary but of course still often assumed to be one). It refers to the Mad Men series a lot, but I found it wasn't necessary to have seen Mad Men to understand the gist of the author's observation and comparisons. Worthwhile read about NYC advertising life, especially from the perspective of a working woman who admittedly placed her career first, her husband second, and her children last...

  15. 4 out of 5

    Berenice

    It says something, that I read this in one sitting. Fascinating, entertaining, poignant. Whether you're a fan of Mad Men suffering withdrawal, or a fan of women at all, Mad Women is well worth reading. It says something, that I read this in one sitting. Fascinating, entertaining, poignant. Whether you're a fan of Mad Men suffering withdrawal, or a fan of women at all, Mad Women is well worth reading.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Caryl Parker

    Super interesting. I now want to read David Ogilvy's book Super interesting. I now want to read David Ogilvy's book

  17. 4 out of 5

    Melinda Elizabeth

    I laughed when I picked up this book and thought 'this will take me two days tops to read' as it was a large print book, and short to boot. Well I'm not laughing now to admit it's taken me almost 6 weeks to read, through no fault of its own this poor book was forgotten and I trudged through every now and then. Capitalising on the popular television show "Mad Men", Jane Maas is an advertising guru who worked on campaigns such as "I Love New York" and is very well regarded in her field. She provide I laughed when I picked up this book and thought 'this will take me two days tops to read' as it was a large print book, and short to boot. Well I'm not laughing now to admit it's taken me almost 6 weeks to read, through no fault of its own this poor book was forgotten and I trudged through every now and then. Capitalising on the popular television show "Mad Men", Jane Maas is an advertising guru who worked on campaigns such as "I Love New York" and is very well regarded in her field. She provides some interesting insights into working in New York, and in advertising specifically in the 50's to 80's, and touches on the patriarchal misogyny of the times. Jane does so with a sense of humour and a great deal of reflection for the times and the standards. It's a light read, so if you're expecting a deep dive into anything particularly meaningful you might be disappointed, but I did enjoy reading about some of the campaigns that shook up the advertising world and watching these advertisements on youtube to see how scandalous they are compared to what's on these days!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne Charles

    I am a big fan “Mad Men”, so this book has been on my radar. I finally had the opportunity to read it and was intrigued by the cultural knowledge intertwined with the author’s personal experiences. Born in 1970, I am always struck by how much things have changed. However, by the end of the book, the author had me questioning how much deep change has actually occurred. Sure, we don’t wear girdles, no 3 martini lunches, my husband doesn’t expect me to do all of that housework, no one smokes all da I am a big fan “Mad Men”, so this book has been on my radar. I finally had the opportunity to read it and was intrigued by the cultural knowledge intertwined with the author’s personal experiences. Born in 1970, I am always struck by how much things have changed. However, by the end of the book, the author had me questioning how much deep change has actually occurred. Sure, we don’t wear girdles, no 3 martini lunches, my husband doesn’t expect me to do all of that housework, no one smokes all day at their desk and I can report harassment to the now existent HR department. But in terms of home-work balance, it appears that today’s moms still have the same thoughts and fears as those pioneering women from the 60’s and 70’s. Overall, this is a quick, informative and at times laugh out loud funny read. It made me miss “Mad Men” and wonder what the series would be like if Peggy had the chance to fully tell us her story.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Casie

    I have no idea why this memoir doesn't have a higher Goodreads rating. It's a quick, fun, educational trip through the career of Jane Maas in the '60s and '70s, a time when hats, hosiery, and in-office smoking were the norm and women in leadership roles were not. Thank you, Jane, for paving the way and for sharing your story without preaching or pretending you have all the answers. This book is a great read for anyone. I have no idea why this memoir doesn't have a higher Goodreads rating. It's a quick, fun, educational trip through the career of Jane Maas in the '60s and '70s, a time when hats, hosiery, and in-office smoking were the norm and women in leadership roles were not. Thank you, Jane, for paving the way and for sharing your story without preaching or pretending you have all the answers. This book is a great read for anyone.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    It’s cute It’s definitely written with a copy editor as it’s not that in-depth and it reads almost like a validation for mad men rather than her own version of it. But overall the insight is great.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jillian

    Fast read! Very interesting.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    An interesting perspective of the Mad Men world from a girls point of view. Otherwise it's a bit dry, and boring at times. Lots of facts or recounting of old commercials. An interesting perspective of the Mad Men world from a girls point of view. Otherwise it's a bit dry, and boring at times. Lots of facts or recounting of old commercials.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Trang Ngo

    Tried hard to finish. Tried so hard to finish. Just one more chapter. Now one more. Another one... Almost the end. Oh my God, I can’t stand it any more. A boring, blah blah book about women in advertising in the 60s in New York. I felt like I’m reading a diary of an old woman about sexism and how hard it was for women (the author in particular) to work in her time. I think this book should just be a gift sent to the author’s colleagues who had worked with her during that period. Yeah, it’s that ba Tried hard to finish. Tried so hard to finish. Just one more chapter. Now one more. Another one... Almost the end. Oh my God, I can’t stand it any more. A boring, blah blah book about women in advertising in the 60s in New York. I felt like I’m reading a diary of an old woman about sexism and how hard it was for women (the author in particular) to work in her time. I think this book should just be a gift sent to the author’s colleagues who had worked with her during that period. Yeah, it’s that bad.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Debbi Mack

    This is highly enjoyable look back at a time when I was just a child. I've noticed some of the reviews for this book have been shocked at the sexism in it. Unfortunately, that was a harsh reality of that time. The book has a witty and conversational tone, as if the author is sharing stories with the reader over coffee. I enjoyed learning about her life and the (sometimes awful) realities of being a working woman back then. But it reminded me of how happy I am not to have been raised to think like This is highly enjoyable look back at a time when I was just a child. I've noticed some of the reviews for this book have been shocked at the sexism in it. Unfortunately, that was a harsh reality of that time. The book has a witty and conversational tone, as if the author is sharing stories with the reader over coffee. I enjoyed learning about her life and the (sometimes awful) realities of being a working woman back then. But it reminded me of how happy I am not to have been raised to think like that. I also enjoyed her comparisons between the show Mad Men and the actual experience of working on Madison Avenue in the 60s. Frankly, I enjoyed this book more than watching the show. If you're looking for a chatty and funny memoir about life in the 60s, I recommend this book.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Judith

    Mad Women: The Other Side of Life on Madison Avenue in the ‘60s and Beyond by Jane Maas answers all those questions about the television series, “Mad Men.” Yes, it was an era of wine, women and expense accounts for men in the rapidly-growing advertising industry. Yes, working women were not only demeaned, but that was deliberate and socially approved treatment at the time, not only on Madison Avenue, and not only among men. Jane Maas was one of the few women who was twice as bright and willingly Mad Women: The Other Side of Life on Madison Avenue in the ‘60s and Beyond by Jane Maas answers all those questions about the television series, “Mad Men.” Yes, it was an era of wine, women and expense accounts for men in the rapidly-growing advertising industry. Yes, working women were not only demeaned, but that was deliberate and socially approved treatment at the time, not only on Madison Avenue, and not only among men. Jane Maas was one of the few women who was twice as bright and willingly worked twice as hard as most men, thus she enjoyed the rewards of a glamorous, creative, lucrative career, as well as, she emphasizes, lots of fun. As promised, her “real-life Peggy Olson” type stories are delightful. She is quick to admit that having Mabel, her loyal housekeeper and nanny help bring up her two children with motherly love and attention freed her to enjoy her success. She says that even so, she was often torn emotionally and exhausted physically when the children were young. By the time the “you can have it all” myth came along to replace the “incompetent little women” myth, Jane already knew better.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Cara

    I have come late to the Mad Men party. I didn't think I would like a retro 60's show about advertising. Really? So not me. But, Jon Hamm is such a tormented soul and a cutie to boot that when I saw it on Netflix, I thought I would give the series a go. Now I'm kicking myself for not recording season 5 in advance. On to the book! Jane Maas writes about her experiences as a copywriter in the 1960's in NYC. Her book is filled with details about how the "Mad Men" and women really lived and worked. Dr I have come late to the Mad Men party. I didn't think I would like a retro 60's show about advertising. Really? So not me. But, Jon Hamm is such a tormented soul and a cutie to boot that when I saw it on Netflix, I thought I would give the series a go. Now I'm kicking myself for not recording season 5 in advance. On to the book! Jane Maas writes about her experiences as a copywriter in the 1960's in NYC. Her book is filled with details about how the "Mad Men" and women really lived and worked. Drinking in the office? Yes. Affairs in the office? Yes. Interesting clients that must be appeased? Yes. Jane is best known, and seems proudest of her "I Love New York" campaign. It was interesting to read about her life, career, and what Mad Men gets wrong. She worked for Leona Helmsley, yes, the Queen of Mean for a short time. This was a light, fun read. If you like Mad Men, I recommend it.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    If you're a fan of the television show "Mad Men", if you grew up in the sixties, if you were a working woman or a stay-at-home mother in the sixties, this is a terrific and entertaining book to read. Not only does author Jane Maas tell what it was like for a woman to be in the advertising field back then, but she also relates how the struggles of being a working woman and a mother, when, if you had children, you were expected to stay home. My mother did both at time, and after reading this book, If you're a fan of the television show "Mad Men", if you grew up in the sixties, if you were a working woman or a stay-at-home mother in the sixties, this is a terrific and entertaining book to read. Not only does author Jane Maas tell what it was like for a woman to be in the advertising field back then, but she also relates how the struggles of being a working woman and a mother, when, if you had children, you were expected to stay home. My mother did both at time, and after reading this book, I have a whole new respect for what she went through back then. I especially enjoyed the last chapter as it compares women's struggles back then to our struggles today... and I agree with the conclusions.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Dawn Lennon

    Although a targeted expose of the advertising industry's motivators and misbehavior in the 1960s, this book is another reveal of the sexism that was the landscape of professional women at the time and beyond. Although a lot has changed, much has stayed the same, which is both troubling and cause to keep issues on the front burner. With considerable focus on David Ogilvy of Ogilvy Mather, advertising icon, Maas shares hre experiences working there as well as at other firms. She names names and rev Although a targeted expose of the advertising industry's motivators and misbehavior in the 1960s, this book is another reveal of the sexism that was the landscape of professional women at the time and beyond. Although a lot has changed, much has stayed the same, which is both troubling and cause to keep issues on the front burner. With considerable focus on David Ogilvy of Ogilvy Mather, advertising icon, Maas shares hre experiences working there as well as at other firms. She names names and revisits so many ads of old that rekindle nostalgia if you're old enough to remember them. An entertaining and revealing read.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Joanne Tombrakos

    Jane Maas gives a great inside view of what it was like to be not just the real Peggy Olsen, but a women in a man's world at a time when it was far less acceptable to be there. Her easy to read account demonstrates why she achieved such success as a copywriter early on. An important book for any women in business, not just in terms of how far we have come, but how far we have yet to go. Jane Maas gives a great inside view of what it was like to be not just the real Peggy Olsen, but a women in a man's world at a time when it was far less acceptable to be there. Her easy to read account demonstrates why she achieved such success as a copywriter early on. An important book for any women in business, not just in terms of how far we have come, but how far we have yet to go.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ira

    Very entertaining, and definitely opened my eyes on some aspects of advertising in the 60s

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