Age of Innocence and Ethan Frome but The House of Mirth was just too much social jockeying of the Desperate Housewives and Bachelorette kind. Ugh. Not that I've ever really watched those shows, though . . . just my armchair impression.
Wharton never fails to produce some wonderful writing and some pretty astute social observations, but it's a slog to get through *who* all the characters are and why they're acting this or that way. I didn't really care much for any of them so it was hard to pick up any kind of reading momentum. I won't give up on Wharton yet, though. I still have Summer and The Reef on my TBR shelf and I'm crossing fingers that they will be more accessible.
A black comedy of manners about vast wealth and a woman who can define herself only through the perceptions of others.
The beautiful Lily Bart lives among the nouveaux riches of New York City - people whose millions were made in railroads, shipping, land speculations, and banking. In this morally and aesthetically bankrupt world, Lily, age twenty-nine, seeks a husband who can satisfy her cravings for endless admiration and all the trappings of wealth. Her quest comes to a scandalous end when she is accused of being the mistress of a wealthy man. Exiled from her familiar world of artificial conventions, Lily finds life impossible. (back cover)