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The House of Mirth | [Edith Wharton]

The House of Mirth

First published in 1905, the House of Mirth shocked many by its candour. Lily Bart moves in the shallow, new-moneyed class of New York society in which men make the money and women spend it. There amongst the glib diversions of the newly rich, she seeks a husband who can not only maintain her in this charmed existence, but can also provide unstinting admiration.
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Publisher's Summary

First published in 1905, the House of Mirth shocked many by its candour. Lily Bart moves in the shallow, new-moneyed class of New York society in which men make the money and women spend it.

There amongst the glib diversions of the newly rich, she seeks a husband who can not only maintain her in this charmed existence, but can also provide unstinting admiration.

Scandal, however, intervenes. Accused of being the mistress of a wealthy married man, Lily must withdraw from society. She becomes a milliner, but finds life outside the hothouse unendurable.

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What Members Say

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  •  
    Leslie 10-26-12
    Leslie 10-26-12
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    "A wonderful reading of a wonderful book."

    I am a big Edith Wharton fan, and I love The House of Mirth. Eleanor Bron's reading is extraordinary, and brought a whole new dimension to this masterpiece. Fair warning: this book is anything by mirthful. It is a very sad, but very thought-provoking exploration of ethics, morality, and personal responsibility,revealed through the life story of Lily Bart and the people in her circle of the New York elite in the early 20th century. I defy anyone to listen through to the end of this book without being moved. Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alice 10-19-12
    Alice 10-19-12
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    "If you've seen Age of Innocence the film.."

    This is my second Edith Wharton book.

    I liked Age of Innocence both as a book and a film.
    But I find The House of Mirth more interesting to me.

    That's why I chose this audiobook, and the narrator's voice
    sounds great.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. J. Russell 10-01-12
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    "Near-perfect reading of imperfect classic"

    The novel has wonderful prose but, despite its cynicism, a sentimentality and moral flavour that doesn't always ring true to a modern ear. But Eleanor Bron reads it so beautifully and with such wit and feeling that she lends it the lightness it sometimes needs. A classic novel to which the narrator more than does justice.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne 02-12-14
    Anne 02-12-14
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    "Time Has Taken Its Toll"

    I love Edith Wharton's writing and how, for her time, she challenged society's perception of women. But time has taken its toll. The study of Lily Bart, sympathetically and yet clinically carried out, fails to resonate with today.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BookWorm620 Phoenix, AZ, United States 12-03-12
    BookWorm620 Phoenix, AZ, United States 12-03-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Enjoyable listen, but frustrating Herione"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The House of Mirth to be better than the print version?

    I found them both equal


    What other book might you compare The House of Mirth to and why?

    If you liked Edith Wharton's The Custom of the Country then you would probably enjoy this as well. Or even Portrait of a Lady. Because it involves the same time period and the same look at wealthier social customs.


    Which character – as performed by Eleanor Bron – was your favorite?

    I think she voiced the main character Lily's voice in an inviting and charming way, which is perfect for her character. She makes people love her while she is with them, and her voice draws people in.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes, while I did enjoy the tale as a whole I found the main characters motivations for self sabotage ill explained aside from absolute stupidity, and yet the author goes to great lengths to show her as very intelligent so it just baffled


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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