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1 Burnside Literature- A to Z

The Age of Desire

by

The Age of Desire Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

For fans of The Paris Wife, a sparkling glimpse into the life of Edith Wharton and the scandalous love affair that threatened her closest friendship

They say behind every great man is a woman. Behind Edith Wharton, there was Anna Bahlmann—her governess turned literary secretary, and her mothering, nurturing friend.

When at the age of forty-five, Edith falls passionately in love with a dashing younger journalist, Morton Fullerton, and is at last opened to the world of the sensual, it threatens everything certain in her life but especially her abiding friendship with Anna. As Edith’s marriage crumbles and Anna’s disapproval threatens to shatter their lifelong bond, the women must face the fragility at the heart of all friendships.

Told through the points of view of both women, The Age of Desire takes us on a vivid journey through Wharton’s early Gilded Age world: Paris with its glamorous literary salons and dark secret cafés, the Whartons’ elegant house in Lenox, Massachusetts, and Henry James’s manse in Rye, England.

Edith’s real letters and intimate diary entries are woven throughout the book. The Age of Desire brings to life one of literature’s most beloved writers, whose own story was as complex and nuanced as that of any of the heroines she created.

Review:

"In Fields's delicate and imaginative fourth novel (after Crossing Brooklyn Ferry), Edith Wharton struggles with the passion she feels for Morton Fullerton. Trapped in an unhappy marriage to the increasingly erratic manic-depressive Teddy, Edith is both fascinated and frightened by Morton's push-pull flirtations, his attentions tapping into parts of her she didn't know existed, since conjugal relations with Teddy have always been unpleasant. Edith's former governess Anna, now her friend, confidant, and secretary, is worried about Edith's susceptibility to Morton's flattery, and draws closer to Teddy, whom she believes Edith treats unfairly. As Edith gets more involved with Morton, she sends Anna off to explore her own life, a 'gift' that means she won't have to face her friend's disapproval. The layered dynamics of these characters add texture to scenes ranging in setting from London to Paris to The Mount in Lenox, locations that either compliment or contrast with what unfolds. The book's only flaw is the choice of present tense, which draws unwanted attention to the time period and pushes readers out just when they should be pulled in. Still, Fields's love and respect for all her characters and her care in telling their stories shines through. Agent: Lisa Bankoff, ICM." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

For fans of The Paris Wife, a sparkling glimpse into the life of Edith Wharton and the scandalous love affair that threatened her closest friendship
 
They say that behind every great man is a great woman. Behind Edith Wharton, there was Anna Bahlmann—her governess turned literary secretary and confidante. At the age of forty-five, despite her growing fame, Edith remains unfulfilled in a lonely, sexless marriage. Against all the rules of Gilded Age society, she falls in love with Morton Fullerton, a dashing young journalist. But their scandalous affair threatens everything in Edith’s life—especially her abiding ties to Anna.
            At a moment of regained popularity for Wharton, Jennie Fields brilliantly interweaves Wharton’s real letters and diary entries with her fascinating, untold love story. Told through the points of view of both Edith and Anna, The Age of Desire transports readers to the golden days of Wharton’s turn-of-the century world and—like the recent bestseller The Chaperone—effortlessly re-creates the life of an unforgettable woman.

About the Author

Jennie Fields received an MA in creative writing from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop and is the author of the novels Lily Beach, Crossing Brooklyn Ferry, and The Middle Ages. An Illinois native, she spent twenty-five years as an advertising creative director in New York and currently lives with her husband in Nashville, Tennessee.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780670023684
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Fields, Jennie
Publisher:
Pamela Dorman Books
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20120802
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 1 lb
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Contemporary Women

The Age of Desire Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 368 pages Pamela Dorman Books - English 9780670023684 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In Fields's delicate and imaginative fourth novel (after Crossing Brooklyn Ferry), Edith Wharton struggles with the passion she feels for Morton Fullerton. Trapped in an unhappy marriage to the increasingly erratic manic-depressive Teddy, Edith is both fascinated and frightened by Morton's push-pull flirtations, his attentions tapping into parts of her she didn't know existed, since conjugal relations with Teddy have always been unpleasant. Edith's former governess Anna, now her friend, confidant, and secretary, is worried about Edith's susceptibility to Morton's flattery, and draws closer to Teddy, whom she believes Edith treats unfairly. As Edith gets more involved with Morton, she sends Anna off to explore her own life, a 'gift' that means she won't have to face her friend's disapproval. The layered dynamics of these characters add texture to scenes ranging in setting from London to Paris to The Mount in Lenox, locations that either compliment or contrast with what unfolds. The book's only flaw is the choice of present tense, which draws unwanted attention to the time period and pushes readers out just when they should be pulled in. Still, Fields's love and respect for all her characters and her care in telling their stories shines through. Agent: Lisa Bankoff, ICM." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
For fans of The Paris Wife, a sparkling glimpse into the life of Edith Wharton and the scandalous love affair that threatened her closest friendship
 
They say that behind every great man is a great woman. Behind Edith Wharton, there was Anna Bahlmann—her governess turned literary secretary and confidante. At the age of forty-five, despite her growing fame, Edith remains unfulfilled in a lonely, sexless marriage. Against all the rules of Gilded Age society, she falls in love with Morton Fullerton, a dashing young journalist. But their scandalous affair threatens everything in Edith’s life—especially her abiding ties to Anna.
            At a moment of regained popularity for Wharton, Jennie Fields brilliantly interweaves Wharton’s real letters and diary entries with her fascinating, untold love story. Told through the points of view of both Edith and Anna, The Age of Desire transports readers to the golden days of Wharton’s turn-of-the century world and—like the recent bestseller The Chaperone—effortlessly re-creates the life of an unforgettable woman.

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