The New York Stories of Edith Wharton

The New York Stories of Edith Wharton

Book - 2007
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A New York Review Books Original

Edith Wharton wrote about New York as only a native can. Her Manhattan is a city of well-appointed drawing rooms, hansoms and broughams, all-night cotillions, and resplendent Fifth Avenue flats. Bishops' nieces mingle with bachelor industrialists; respectable wives turn into excellent mistresses. All are governed by a code of behavior as rigid as it is precarious. What fascinates Wharton are the points of weakness in the structure of Old New York: the artists and writers at its fringes, the free-love advocates testing its limits, widows and divorc#65533;es struggling to hold their own.

The New York Stories of Edith Wharton gathers twenty stories of the city, written over the course of Wharton's career. From her first published story, "Mrs. Manstey's View," to one of her last and most celebrated, "Roman Fever," this new collection charts the growth of an American master and enriches our understanding of the central themes of her work, among them the meaning of marriage, the struggle for artistic integrity, the bonds between parent and child, and the plight of the aged.

Illuminated by Roxana Robinson's Introduction, these stories showcase Wharton's astonishing insight into the turbulent inner lives of the men and women caught up in a rapidly changing society.
Publisher: New York : New York Review Books, c2007.
ISBN: 9781590172483
Branch Call Number: FIC/WHARTON
Characteristics: xxviii, 452 p. ; 21 cm.
Additional Contributors: Robinson, Roxana


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Apr 17, 2015

"Youth is a high-colored season; but he had the satisfaction of feeling that he had entered earlier than most that chiaroscuro of sensation where every half-tone has its value."-"The Dilettante"
Edith Wharton is best known for "The Age of Innocence" and "Ethan Frome," the latter of which is a common high school text and probably ruins Wharton for quite a few readers. Pity, as, along with her friend and contemporary Henry James, Wharton analyzed, dissected, and explored the emerging urban upper class with precision, wit, and intelligence. Like James, she was born into affluence and privilege, which gave her a better vantage point to write about the idle rich. Her writing is tougher than you might think, with a lyrical strain of melancholy that certainly will reoccur in Fitzgerald. Spanning her career, these 20 stories are an excellent overview of her style and subjects. Also see "The Custom of the Country."


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