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The Glimpses of the Moon

3.83  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,110 Ratings  ·  198 Reviews
Nick and Susy are socially prominent but impoverished New Yorkers. They are in love and decide to marry but realize their chances of happiness are slim without the wealth and society that their more privileged friends take for granted. Nick and Susy agree to separate when either encounters a more eligible proposition. However, during their lavish honeymoon, jealous passion ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1922)
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Tatiana
Jan 19, 2012 Tatiana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics, 1001, 2012
I really love romances. The disdain I have shown over the years towards romance novels might conflict with this statement, but I truly adore a good love story. But why do I never find well-written, logical! (is that too much to ask?) but smutty romances? Why aren't there any novels as superbly written and plotted as The Glimpses of the Moon, but with some sexy in them?

So, The Glimpses of the Moon. Nick and Susy are a part of 1920th American high society, but they are penniless. They have no mean
...more
Duane
The Glimpses of the Moon has been compared to Wharton's great classic, The House of Mirth, and it's protagonist Susy Lansing to the tragic Lily Bart, and while similarities do exist, Glimpses falls short of House of Mirth. The Glimpses of the Moon was published in 1922, 17 years after The House of Mirth, and one year after The Age of Innocence, so Wharton was at the peak of her writing ability, but Glimpses falls just short of the greatness of the aforementioned novels. It's still good, worth re ...more
Laurel Hicks
I'm so glad I read this book! "It's not House of Mirth," the reviews kept saying. "Well, neither is Anna Karenina War and Peace," I answered, and kept on reading.

A marriage of two penniless socialites begins with a business bargain and ends. Or does it?
Cynthia
Jan 12, 2010 Cynthia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Susy and her beau Nick have both grown up around rich people though their own families have lost their fortunes. Susy makes her way in the world flitting from invitation to invitation acting as an unpaid but rewarded assistant to her rich friends. Nick has dreams of making a living by his writing. They meet and fall in love but one rich matron from Susy's circle tells her, in effect, hands off of Nick because she has designs on him. Susy tells Nick they have to part and why but by then they've f ...more
Moonlight Reader
Published in 1922, this was Wharton's last completed novel. It is also my fifth Wharton - I've previously read The Age of Innocence, The House of Mirth, The Custom of the Country and Summer.

There is something about Wharton that pierces me to my very soul. Glimpses of the Moon was no exception to that effect. No one wrote arid wealth and the oppressive customs of society better than Wharton - she explores the impact of narrow convention on characters at the same time that she ignored those conven
...more
Christina Dudley
Jun 26, 2012 Christina Dudley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget--

Imagine if Lily Bart and Lawrence Selden from Wharton's THE HOUSE OF MIRTH had given it a go and gotten together--this might have been the result. Nick Lansing and wife Susy have nothing between them but social popularity and an ability to live off the generosity of others. In a moment of "madness," they decide to get married, figuring they have a year before the money is gone and they may have to give each other up.

Although Nick reminded me (not in pleasant way
...more
Jane
Jun 06, 2013 Jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How lovely. Though it's something like a twenty-first century romcom (and if this hasn't been adapted for film, it really should be) and it almost reads like parody at times, it is so clearly Wharton's work, this is a charming book. I really, really love Edith Wharton, but sometimes she seems too viciously satirical, as in The Custom of the Country, where Undine Spragg is so aggressively vapid and self-serving as to be an insult to humanity at large (and American humanity in particular). This bo ...more
P.
Oct 10, 2007 P. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fictive
I'd never read Wharton before and picked this up on a whim because it seemed the most intelligent and charming of the new books section in the main library. It was charming indeed, but also emotionally torturous in the delightful way that well written romances are. Not, like, romance novels in the modern commercial sense, but in the Thomas Hardy sense. Only from the '20s. However, being a fan of tension, especially romantic tension, the letdown at the resolution was both a relief and akin to bei ...more
Denis
Dec 01, 2008 Denis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You never can go wrong with Edith Wharton. But I found this novel, not one of her most famous, especially fascinating, and Wharton's way of mixing romanticism, even sometimes clichés, with an acute realism, works amazingly well and casts a spell. No one has talked about American society as she has - and her characters, battling with their emotions and their ambitions, trapped without necessarily knowing it, are not only quite touching but also not that different from us.
Bill
I feel bad admitting that this is the first book written by Edith Wharton that I have read.But believe me I'm going to rectify that in a big way, because it was a really good book. I don't normally like romances but this was so well written and such a good story...the ending is pretty predictable, but that's okay. Anyway, I now want to read all of her books and am going to start with Ethan Frome.
Sarah
Jul 27, 2009 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you're comfortable dealing with the assumptions Edith Wharton makes about money and the classes who have it (basically the assumption that the green stuff is worth writing about, thinking about, being torn about, etc etc) then her often painful observations are beyond brilliant. And what carries you through those observations is this exquisite sense of longing and desire that permeates each page. At the beginning it's more of a longing to escape, but in her later novels it's distinctly sexual ...more
Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.)
Nick Lansing and Susy Branch are an extraordinarily clever young couple. First, they do actually care about one another. Second, they are both a bit short of cash, and for two young people in the Roaring Twenties that can be a problem. They cook up an innovative plan to marry and then embark upon a grand European tour to visit relatives and friends whom they can sponge off of. Kinda brilliant, come to think of it. But of course wrinkles in this little plan of theirs do come up.

This is a tale ab
...more
Susan Oleksiw
Jul 12, 2013 Susan Oleksiw rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Set in the early 1920s, this novel continues Edith Wharton's examination of New York society and the costs it exacts on those who try to be part of it. Susy Branch and Nick Lansing concoct a plan to live free in the best spots of Europe by getting married and letting their friends offer their homes as honeymoon resorts. This is Susy's idea because both she and Nick are poor yet part of the New York world. The scheme works just fine until one evening Nick learns that the price of their palace in ...more
Beth
Oct 18, 2008 Beth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
First published in 1922, this is considered somewhat glib and satirical (in comparison with Warton's other work). It's the story of Susy and Nick who though without money themselves, are hanger's-on to the wealthy, the international set that cruises Europe, dashing from Rome to Paris to cruises on the Aegean. In order for Susy and Nick to continue in this life, each must marry into money (sell themselves, in other words). Instead they decide to marry each other and live off wedding gifts. Part o ...more
Perry Whitford
A pecunias socialite couple who live off their rich friends get hitched in order to enjoy a year-long honeymoon in various romantic locations off the money they receive as gifts, agreeing to divorce each other when somebody better (i.e. richer) comes along.

Susy and Nick Lansing try the experiment because of a shared 'kind of free-masonry of precocious tolerance and irony', meaning that they don't even like most of the people they shamelessly sponge off and consider themselves above them.

That's n
...more
Paul Bartusiak
Aug 01, 2015 Paul Bartusiak rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a kiss with a future in it: like a ring slipped upon her soul. And now, in the dreadful pause that followed--while Strefford fidgeted with his cigarette-case and rattled the spoon in his cup--Susy remembered what she had seen through the circle of Nick's kiss: that blue illimitable distance which was at once the landscape at their feet and the future in their souls.

Edith Wharton's The Glimpses of the Moon is a beautifully written novel of two young lovers, newly wed, fighting for their
...more
Ali
Aug 24, 2013 Ali rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have yet to read as many Edith Wharton novels as I would like to – although I do have about five TBR. This one immediately appealed to me – and yet I have been left rather disappointed in it.

Edith Wharton is famous for having written novels that lift the lid on the society in which she lived. In The Glimpses of the Moon, she satirises those bright young things with more money than sense, who divorce their spouses at a drop of a hat, and the poorer hangers on who live off them.

“Apart from the
...more
Marie
May 07, 2015 Marie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Opens up rather like Breakfast at Tiffany’s - you have two professional ‘hangers on’ who leech off their wealthy ‘friends’ falling in love. They plan to get married and live for a year off wedding gifts and live in a succession of other people’s homes donated to the cause of honeymooning.

What tears the couple apart is (GASP) the moral compromise of the woman helping one of their benefactors deceive her husband by posting letters from the borrowed home as though she were at home instead of off wi
...more
Laura
It is all about love and money by Edith Wharton managed to tell the story in a charming way.
Myles
Jan 29, 2016 Myles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Susy and Nick belong to the moneyed, leisure class - the jet set of their era - the problem is that their family's left them no money. After years of hanging on in their own way on the fringe of this crowd, the two decide for a bold experiment - to marry each other, without money, and to live on the wedding checks for as long as they can. The other part of the arrangement is that if either of them has the chance for better, the other will help them to it.

Wharton wastes no time in revealing the d
...more
Ilona
Feb 15, 2014 Ilona rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Tony
THE GLIMPSES OF THE MOON. (1922). Edith Wharton. ***.
The Library of America recently published a volume of Wharton’s novels from the 1920s, and this book was included. She began this book one year after receiving the Pulitzer Prize for “The Age of Innocence.” It is a likely reflection of the aspirations of most young people of the time, who held up the possessions of the wealthy as the goals of their lives. It is the story of two young people: Suzy Branch and Nick Lansing. Both of these young pe
...more
Suzanne
Mar 18, 2012 Suzanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a love story. It’s also about how people will justify and rationalize what they need to do to survive, although survival is a relative term.

Nick and Susy Lansing, newlyweds in the early 1920s, are certainly in love, which makes the premise of the book a little weird but more compelling. Both have always relied on the generosity of well-to-do friends to keep them in the kind of society they feel they have to be a part of. As hangers-on at the fringes of the ‘20s equivalent of the jet-set
...more
Gail
Jul 27, 2009 Gail rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2009
Edith Wharton's book written in the early 1920's about Nick and Susan who find themselves in "society" without any money. They marry for convenience with the plan to live off the kindness of their wealthy "friends" for one year, and then to see what better opportunities come their way individually.

The story reads like a comedy of errors as the couple goes from one misunderstanding to another between themselves and between the acquaintances that offer them vacation villas for their use. They arri
...more
Kristen
When reading Wharton you never have the safety net of knowing that things will end happily. In fact – most of her books are tragedies in the most profound sense of the word. This is the first of her books that I have read in which the focus is primarily on a romance. Now I’m not much of a romance reader so when I realized that this would be a romance novel, I was a bit concerned. Lucky for me there was nothing sappy about this book.

Suzy and Nick enjoy each other’s company, however neither of th
...more
Margaret
Though strongly attracted to each other, Nick and Susy can't afford to get married and live in high society, but they make each other a deal: they'll get married and stay married as long as they can, but when they run out of money, they're free to divorce and remarry more advantageously. Their plan goes rather awry, however, when they start to feel more deeply about each other than they expected and must negotiate not only their financial situation but also their different ethical systems.

This r
...more
Dana Loo
Jul 04, 2015 Dana Loo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sposi per un anno! E' questo che si prefiggono Susy e Nick due giovani parassiti che vivono alle spalle di una high society americana agiatissima ma vuota e priva di valori.
Sarà una crescita la loro, sopratutto morale, e il sentimento che li unirà li farà maturare e comprendere che, al di là della ricchezza, c'è dell'altro: amore ma sopratutto rispetto di se stessi...
Un romanzo nn pretenzioso, leggero solo apparentemente, gradevolissimo e narrato con eleganza...
Nancy
The cast of characters in this Wharton novel might be considered the "bright young things" of the 1920's but the world she delineates is anything but bright.

Wharton's dark take on society even permeates this romance. There are very thought provoking aspects to the society she exposes in each of her novels but this one was particularly troubling to me because I suspect she thought she wrote a simple morality tale with a happy ending.

The bleakness I feel in reading her work is her exposition of th
...more
Eileen
Oct 09, 2014 Eileen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At first it's surprising to see that Edith Wharton ever wrote a 20s farce, but then it becomes apparent that this isn't actually a farce because it's Edith Wharton. Much less tragic and more romantic than most Wharton, even with the constant angst and threats of both falling into complete baseness of character and shady misunderstanding-based divorce. My initial ranking was a solid 3.5 simply because it isn't AS great as most Wharton, but if you compare it against the whole body of all written f ...more
Pip
Feb 17, 2016 Pip rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a pleasure to read Wharton again, after a long time, and in contrast to William Gibson's violent trash! The story is set in the Golden Age of the 1920's amongst the wealthy precursors of the Jet Set. Susy and Nick are cherished by their wealthy friends although neither of them has any money of their own. They earn their keep by being good company We meet them on their honeymoon, living in an idyllic place on Lake Como, lent to them for the occasion. They agreed to marry because they knew t ...more
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Edith Newbold Jones was born into such wealth and privilege that her family inspired the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses." The youngest of three children, Edith spent her early years touring Europe with her parents and, upon the family's return to the United States, enjoyed a privileged childhood in New York and Newport, Rhode Island. Edith's creativity and talent soon became obvious: By the a ...more
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“Apart from the pleasure of looking at her and listening to her--of enjoying in her what others less discriminatingly but as liberally appreciated--he had the sense, between himself and her, of a kind of free-masonry of precocious tolerance and irony. They had both, in early youth, taken the measure of the world they happened to live in: they knew just what it was worth to them and for what reasons, and the community of these reasons lent to their intimacy its last exquisite touch.” 6 likes
“Well--there it was, and the fault was doubtless neither hers nor his, but that of the world they had grown up in, of their own moral contempt for it and physical dependence on it, of his half-talents and her half-principles, of the something in them both that was not stout enough to resist nor yet pliant enough to yield.” 6 likes
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