Friday, September 16, 2011

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton

I like to imagine myself as a great literature connoisseur.  I was excited to read this book and add it to my list of well-loved classic novels.  After all it won a Pulitzer Prize, someone must have thought it was fabulous, right?  Let me say, I would like to meet and speak to those people.  I think of all the Pulitzer Prize winning books I have read this year, this has to be the most disappointing. Someone….please….tell me why this book is so great.

Newland Archer is a young man in New York City high society in the 1870’s.  Society has some very strict rules and Archer seems to think they apply to everyone but him.  At the beginning of the book he announces his engagement to the beautiful, young, very innocent May.  May’s cousin the Countess Olenska comes to New York having left her cad of a husband behind in Poland.  May insists that Archer should be kind to the disgraced Countess.  Archer finds himself falling in love with the Countess.  From there he just continues to act like an insipid ass.  The Countess desires a divorce from her husband, which Archer talks her out of, yet he also insists that she not go back to her husband.  All the while he is pressing May to push up their marriage date. 

I don’t get it!  I couldn’t seem to care about any of the characters as they all seemed to have no spine.  The only person I liked at all was the demanding grandmother. 

2 stars (Rated PG – for adult themes)

1 comment:

  1. I think my favorite part was when you called Archer an insipid ass. That was right on the money!!

    Welcome to blog-world!!