THE IVORY CAGE by Corinne Willis


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Nora Carpenter is the shrinking violet type that almost any adolescent girl would readily sympathize with if she hadn't been treated to so much lily-gilding. She's one of those fifteen-year-olds who lives on the fringes of sophomore society--very self-conscious, admiring but incapable of emulating the poise of the girls who are popular, unable to handle the repartee of her classmates, and marked with the stigma of having one of the highschool teachers as her guardian. Nora, however, does very well in her studies, she worries about her slimness, she has a perfect complexion and hair, and her Aunt Ellen (her guardian) has brought her up in elegant, cultured surroundings--the superfluity of indications that Nora will blossom out will just wilt the enthusiasm of girls whose morales need bolstering. The book also suffers from the fact that the characters in Nora's milieu are unilateral--the populars are ridden with obvious faults from cheating to rudeness; on the other hand Nora's only friend (when she isn't with the elite) is a paragon of old-fashioned virtues. Aunt Ellen, whom the students find attractive and romantic, who apparently has given up the idea of marriage for Nora's sake, is ambiguous and their relationship seems unlikely and incomplete. On the whole the book is well-meaning, but not meaningful.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1966
Publisher: McKay