They say this is the book that inspired Mad Men. It's probably true. In fact last year, it was republished with a Mad Man-esque cover to exploit the fact. It was, without doubt, a bloody awful cover. Look, here it is. Sorry if you bought it, I don't mean to be offensive, but it is a terrible cover. A lazy cover. That's what I most dislike about it. It's a weak attempt to capture something about the show. And it fails. It's a feeble, superficial design that is clearly trying to exploit the association. I think it could have been handled so much better.
If I was the Mad Men production company I'd have been offended by it. If I were Della Femina, I would have been outraged (except, from what you learn about his character when you read the book, he's more likely to just shrug it off with some off-the-cuff retort or wise-crack). From Those Wonderful Folks Who Gave You Pearl Harbour is a riotous, politically incorrect and laugh-out-loud funny exposé of the NYC advertising scene, circa 1970. It's superb and does not need to lean on the success of Mad Men; there's a reason it inspired the series.
It was only by chance that I bought the original version. Someone, somewhere, mentioned it on their blog. I wish I could remember who it was so I could both credit and thank them. I feel it was someone linked to Dan at Innocent, but I can't remember who, or if that is, in fact, correct. Anyway, whoever it was said something like, "If you're at all interested in advertising, you should read this book", something to that effect.
And that just about sums it up. Della Femina is frank, uncompromising and often hilarious. It rattles along, jumps about and pulls no punches. Brilliant. If you can only get hold of the new edition, well I wouldn't let the cover put you off, it's a great read.