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  • Virago

The House Of Mirth

Edith Wharton

1 Reviews

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Virago Modern Classics, Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

*THE HOUSE OF MIRTH is the first of Wharton's undisputed masterpieces. Its publication in 1905 changed Wharton's literary fortunes forever.

First published in 1905, THE HOUSE OF MIRTH shocked the New York society it so deftly chronicles, portraying the moral, social and economic restraints on a woman who dared to claim the privileges of marriage without assuming the responsibilities.

Lily Bart, beautiful, witty and sophisticated, is accepted by 'old money' and courted by the growing tribe of nouveaux riches. But as she nears thirty, her foothold becomes precarious; a poor girl with expensive tastes, she needs a husband to preserve her social standing and to maintain her in the luxury she has come to expect. Whilst many have sought her, something - fastidiousness or integrity- prevents her from making a 'suitable' match.

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Praise for The House Of Mirth

  • 'To my mind, her greatest novel beautifully written never jaded or perfunctory. The humour sedately delirious. Above all, it is a passionate book' NINA BAWDEN

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Edith Wharton

Edith Wharton (1862-1937), friend and contemporary of Henry James, was born in New York but spent her later life in France. She won two Pulitzer prizes and was probably the most accomplished American novelist of her generation.

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