The Age of Innocence

The Age of Innocence Description:

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize i The Age of Innocence i is b Edith Wharton b s masterful portrait of desire and betrayal during the sumptuous Golden Age of Old New York a time when society people dreaded scandal more than disease br br This is Newland Archer s world as he prepares to marry the beautiful but conventional May Welland But when the mysterious Countess Ellen Olenska returns to New York after a disastrous marriage Archer falls deeply in love with her Torn between duty and passion Archer struggles to make a decision that will either courageously define his life or mercilessly destroy it

Rating: 3.53 out of 5

Ethan Frome

Ethan Frome Description:

Ethan Frome works his unproductive farm and struggles to maintain a bearable existence with his difficult suspicious and hypochondriac wife Zeena But when Zeena s vivacious cousin enters their household as a hired girl Ethan finds himself obsessed with her and with the possibilities for happiness she comes to represent br br In one of American fiction s finest and most intense narratives Edith Wharton moves this ill starred trio toward their tragic destinies Different in both tone and theme from Wharton s other works Ethan Frome has become perhaps her most enduring and most widely read novel

Rating: 3.76 out of 5

The House of Mirth

The House of Mirth Description:

First published in THE HOUSE OF MIRTH shocked the New York society it so deftly chronicles portraying the moral social and economic restraints on a woman who dared to claim the privileges of marriage without assuming the responsibilities br br Lily Bart beautiful witty and sophisticated is accepted by old money and courted by the growing tribe of nouveaux riches But as she nears thirty her foothold becomes precarious a poor girl with expensive tastes she needs a husband to preserve her social standing and to maintain her in the luxury she has come to expect Whilst many have sought her something fastidiousness or integrity prevents her from making a suitable match

Rating: 3.45 out of 5

Ethan Frome and Other Short Fiction

Ethan Frome and Other Short Fiction Description:

No description available

Rating: 3.32 out of 5

The Custom of the Country

The Custom of the Country Description:

Considered by many to be her masterpiece Edith Wharton s second full length work is a scathing yet personal examination of the exploits and follies of the modern upper class As she unfolds the story of Undine Spragg from New York to Europe Wharton affords us a detailed glimpse of what might be called the interior d cor of this America and its nouveau riche fringes Through a heroine who is as vain spoiled and selfish as she is irresistibly fascinating and through a most intricate and satisfying plot that follows Undine s marriages and affairs she conveys a vision of social behavior that is both supremely informed and supremely disenchanted i Anita Brookner i

Rating: 3.47 out of 5

Summer

Summer Description:

Considered by some to be her finest work Edith Wharton s Summer created a sensation when first published in as it was one of the first novels to deal honestly with a young woman s sexual awakening Summer is the story of proud and independent Charity Royall a child of mountain moonshiners adopted by a family in a poor New England town who has a passionate love affair with Lucius Harney an educated young man from the city Wharton broke the conventions of woman s romantic fiction by making Charity a thoroughly contemporary woman in touch with her feelings and sexuality yet kept from love and the larger world she craves by the overwhelming pressures of environment and heredity Praised for its realism and candor by such writers as Joseph Conrad and Henry James and compared to Flaubert s Madame Bovary Summer was one of Wharton s personal favorites of all her novels and remains as fresh and relevant today as when it was first written

Rating: 3.62 out of 5

The Buccaneers

The Buccaneers Description:

Nan and Jinny St George have both wealth and beauty in generous supply In the New York society of the s however only those with old money can achieve the status of the elite and it is here that the sisters seem doomed to failure br br Nan s new governess Laura Testvalley herself an outsider takes pity on their plight and launches them instead on the unsuspecting British aristocracy Lords dukes marquesses and MPs it seems not only appreciate beauty but also the money that New York s i nouveaux riches i can supply br br A love story of love and marriage among the old and new moneyed classes i The Buccaneers i is a delicately perceptive portrayal of a world on the brink of change

Rating: 3.79 out of 5

The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton

The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton Description:

These spine tingling tales of the supernatural bring to light the author s interest in the traditional New England ghost story and her fascination with spirits hauntings and other phenomena Fine line drawings by Laszlo Kubinyi enhance the mysterious and sometimes chilling mood br br The lady s maid s bell br The eyes br Afterward br Kerfol br The triumph of night br Miss Mary Pask br Bewitched br Mr Jones br Pomegranate seed br The looking glass br All souls

Rating: 3.31 out of 5

The Glimpses of the Moon

The Glimpses of the Moon Description:

Set in the posh milieu that Wharton knew so intimately The Glimpses of the Moon is a sweeping portrait of a couple caught up in the trappings of privilege and driven by a reckless all consuming ambition

Rating: 3.76 out of 5

Roman Fever and Other Stories

Roman Fever and Other Stories Description:

These short works display Wharton s talent as a satirist skilled at dissecting the elements of emotional subtleties moral ambiguities and the implications of social constrictions Cythina Griffin Wolfe from the Introduction br br Roman fever br Xingu br The other two br Souls belated br The angel at the grave br The last asset br After Holbein br Autres temps

Rating: 3.71 out of 5