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Everyman's Library #202: The Age of Innocenceby Edith Wharton
Synopses & Reviews
(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed)
The Age of Innocence, one of Edith Wharton’s most renowned novels and the first by a woman to win the Pulitzer Prize, exquisitely details the struggle between love and responsibility through the experiences of men and women in Gilded Age New York.
The novel follows Newland Archer, a young, aristocratic lawyer engaged to the cloistered, beautiful May Welland. When May’s disgraced cousin Ellen arrives from Europe, fleeing her marriage to a Polish Count, her worldly, independent nature intrigues Archer, who soon falls in love with her. Trapped by his passionless relationship with May and the social conventions that forbid a relationship with Ellen, Archer finds himself torn between possibility and duty.
Wharton’s profound understanding of her characters’ lives makes the triangle of Archer, May, and Ellen come to life with an irresistible urgency. A wry, incisive look at the ways in which love and emotion must negotiate the complex rules of high society, The Age of Innocence is one of Wharton's finest, most illuminative works.
With an introduction by Peter Washington
An extraordinary collection that features some of the most beloved stories in early American literature, ranging from tales of love and longing to those of personal transformation. With elegant cloth sewn bindings, gold stamped covers, and silk ribbon markers, these classics are an essential for any home library.
The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
The Complete Stories by Edgar Allan Poe
The Golden Bowl by Henry James
Moby-Dick by Herman Melville
Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Newland Archer saw little to envy in the marriages of his friends, yet he prided himself that in May Welland he had found the companion of his needs--tender and impressionable, with equal purity of mind and manners. The engagement was announced discreetly, but all of New York society was soon privy to this most perfect match, a union of families and circumstances cemented by affection.
Enter Countess Olenska, a woman of quick wit sharpened by experience, not afraid to flout convention and determined to find freedom in divorce. Against his judgment, Newland is drawn to the socially ostracized Ellen Olenska, who opens his eyes and has the power to make him feel. He knows that in sweet-tempered May, he can expect stability and the steadying comfort of duty. But what new worlds could he discover with Ellen? Written with elegance and wry precision, Edith Wharton's Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece is a tragic love story and a powerful homily about the perils of a perfect marriage.
Commentary by William Lyon Phelps and E. M. Forster
From the Trade Paperback edition.
About the Author
Edith Wharton was born into a privileged New York family in 1862 and died in France in 1937. In addition to her works as a novelist, most famously The House of Mirth, The Age of Innocence, The Custom of the Country, and Ethan Frome, she also was a renowned interior designer, and was the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
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