Bonnie's Reviews > The Age of Innocence

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
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's review
Jan 30, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: classics, 1001-books-to-read-before-you-die, newsweek-top-100, pulitzer-prize-winners
Read in April, 2012

I loved this! Who would've thunk it?

This was my very first Wharton and she is good. This is all hidden emotions and forbidden touches and silent communication. This is truly a tragedy of humans who have trapped themselves in the confines of their society. Even as Archer fights and ultimately accepts his fate, I could empathize with all the things he said and didn’t say. Countess Olenska was a gem – strong and brave and good-hearted. Archer was ready to let romance sweep him away, while the Countess actually thought about the realities.

I didn't think I'd like this when I started, since I have read several of Henry James' works and am not a fan of his. I mean, it is an author from the same period and covers the same Tragedy of Manners concept. I shouldn’t have underestimated Wharton, though. Where James is plodding and tedious, Wharton is insightful and witty.

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