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THE BRAVE ESCAPE OF EDITH WHARTON by Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge


by Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-547-23630-8
Publisher: Clarion

Edith Wharton, a New York City child of wealth and privilege, escaped in several ways, “[b]ut Edith’s keen eye, her reading...and her need to tell the truth were the beginnings of her brave escape from the expectations of the society into which she’d been born.” Wharton’s truth-telling appears in the sharply observed traits of her characters, traits that could not have pleased New York society’s rich and [in]famous. Although Wooldridge does not provide critiques of her writings, she does place Wharton in her times and describe her personal life, including her painful love affair and her several homes in the United States and abroad. But her subject does not come off the page as a full person in this chronological account, which is a pity, as most young readers will likely bring little familiarity of the subject to this reading. This lack is partially compensated for by the many photos and a full panoply of reference niceties: source notes, bibliography, list of Wharton’s works, film and TV adaptations. In all, a useful study that might lead sophisticated young readers to Wharton’s novels. (index) (Biography. 12 & up)