The House of Mirth

The House of Mirth

by Edith Wharton

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The House of Mirth 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 47 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love the novel, but pages of it are pure gibberish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book has garbled words throughout. It is illegible and should not be offered even as a free e-book. Doesn't someone proof read these books? I spent a great deal of time with nook technicians via the phone and then at a Barnes and Noble Store trying to determine if it was the Nook or the book! I learned it was the book, and that you may especially get these illegible books when they are free. I only gave it one star because it would not be submitted without a rating. I really shouldn't give it any stars because I couldn't read it! Not nice!
tsjoseph on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Poor poor Lily Bart. She's maddening! A great book, but not an easy one.
Katie_H on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Definitely not "mirthful," this downer of a classic is a social commentary and primer on manners of the wealthy-elite community during the turn-of-the-century Gilded Age. It is the story of Lily Bart, a poor girl, who does her best to fit into the closed and cruel society of the rich New York aristocracy. Money and greed become the center of her universe as she spends and gambles away whatever she has. She is beautiful and witty, so she is surrounded by suiters, both single and married. She forms what she understands to be a business partnership with one of the married admirers, and the relationship leads to her downfall when she is accused of having an affair with him. Deeply in debt and even deeper in depression, she struggles to stay afloat, even turning to Laudanum to help her sleep. Her descent is heartbreaking and disturbing, but her revelations are deeply moving. This melodrama is a fantastic reading experience, and I highly recommend it to all.
Zommbie1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Unfortunately this is going to be my first abandoned book of the year. I found Lily to be far to annoying for me to be able to finish the book. I listened to it on audio and I missed loads because I got distracted since the book didn¿t keep my attention.The language was beautiful but did at times ramble. To my mind nothing really happened. Lily was to blame for her predicament in life. She was arrogant and entitled. She had a great deal of distain for all those around her. She was snobbish and plain annoying.What it did show quite well was how trapped women of Lily¿s class were. If they were not independently wealthy they were dependent on a husband or on relatives. They had few chances to earn their own money and they weren¿t educated to take care of themselves. This issue is of great interest to me and possibly why I stuck with the book for as long as I did.The narrator was actually quite good. She managed to capture the tone of Lily and her world very well. There was also none of the annoying music one sometimes gets with audio book.I really wish I had liked it more than I did. Maybe I will try and read a physical copy of it.
Smiler69 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Set in and around New York in the 1890's, The House of Mirth tells the story of the beautiful and charming Lily Barth, who at 29 is still unmarried, but has hopes of making a brilliant match. Lily's friends are all members of New York high society, a well-heeled crowd made up of Wall Street financiers and their wives, such as Judy Trenor, who takes great pride in entertaining crowds as the most fashionable hostess at her summer residence Bellomont where one of the preferred activities is playing bridge for large sums of money. Lily's biggest problem is keeping up with these big spenders, and though she is a regular at Bellomont, where he good looks and well-honed social skills are well received, she finds it demeaning that Judy should make her pay her way by giving her little jobs to do, such as helping her keep guest lists in order. While she has been brought up wanting for nothing, Lily's now-deceased parents have left her destitute following her father's bankruptcy. She has since been living with her old aunt Julia Peniston, and while Mrs. Peniston gives Lily money here and there so that she can keep herself in the latest fashions, she isn't so generous as to allow her niece any financial independence, and Lilly soon finds herself in trouble with a huge bridge debt to pay off. But this is only a temporary setback, since Lily and her friends look forward to her making a brilliant match. But shortly after learning that her latest rich prospect has plans to marry to another woman, Lily makes an appeal to Judy's husband Gus Trenor, a Wall Street financier, who promises her that a few smart transactions by him on the stock market with a modest investment will give her good returns. This arrangement proves to be very profitable for the young woman, but things soon start unravelling for her as Gus becomes more and more pressing, then demands that Lily put herself at his disposition. I enjoyed the wonderful writing in this novel of manners¿my first by Edith Wharton¿and it was clear that Mrs. Wharton was writing about a world that she knew well. The prevailing attitudes of the time and the class of people she describes were meticulously rendered, though about halfway through I started feeling things dragging along, until quite suddenly a scene with Gus Trenor indicated the beginning of a much steeper downward slide for the lovely Lily. As much as I hate to say it, the worse things got for her, the more interesting the novel became, despite the fact that¿or perhaps because¿I knew all too well what kind of distress Wharton's heroine must have suffered.
bookwoman247 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lily Bart is a young woman born into New York's Golden Age society.In order to maintain her place in society, she must marry wisely. Being orphaned, she must look to herself to make a good match. As Lily says "...when a girl has no mother to palpitate for her, she must be on the alert for herself."Even with the advantages of beauty, ambition, wiles, and great delicacy, Lily, without an interested party to look out for her, makes a series of fatal mistakes.The inexorableness of Lily's fate, only whispered and hinted at at first, becomes more and more clear as the novel progresses until the reader is led to the inescapable conclusion. I felt as if I were firmly in the authors's deft hands through the entire book, although the author, herself, never intruded on the story once.Wharton has got to be one of the most gifted writers of all-time!
Jim53 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Ms. Wharton gives us Lily Bart, a young woman whose beauty has been her entree into a world of rich society in whch she cannot afford to live. She contemplates marrying a rich man who bores her but cannot keep from sabotaging her half-hearted efforts. Lily makes mistakes, and we see the noose of her fate tightening inextricably. Wharton does a nice job with the society characters, showing us the qualities that both attract and repel Lily. I found two other characters of greater interest: Lily's cousin Gerty, who lives a poor but honest life and longs to entice Lily away form her obsession with money; and Lawrence Selden, a bachelor who can move in various circles but shows Lily different ways of thinking and in effect acts as her conscience. The most finely drawn character is Lily herself; we see her motivations, her hesitations, her hope and despair. Her final choice to act honorably rather than accept a path into society seems inevitable based on how she has been developed throughout the novel.The style of the novel is unexceptional, reflecting the slow pace prevalent at the turn of the century, but with some nice phrases and imagery. The novel requires some patience but rewards it nicely.
fantasyfantastik on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I did my first real research report on The House of Mirth. It is the book that introduced me to the power of structure, and I continue to marvel at Wharton's masterful and intricate handling of this novel. The heroine is tragic, but not perfectly so. I love her and hate her by turns, but always always pity her and wish to save her and thank god I am not her.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked the movie but not the book,so slow.
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Cynthia Keithley More than 1 year ago
This edition was unreadable with the gibberish that marred every page.
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swbarnes2 More than 1 year ago
Sometimes, there were paragraph breaks in the middle of words at the end of lines, or closing quotes would be moved to the beginning of the next paragraph. Readable, but annoying. I figure I paid for superior editing, and this didn't measure up.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cather More than 1 year ago
The House of Mirth is a brilliantly constructed novel, with emotional tugs that will stick with you. Although some might find it a little dated in subject matter (social mores in the very early 20th century in New York), it does impart a fascinating picture of that place and time among the rich (and wealthy want to bes). Thoroughly readable and enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago