20 February 2012


   “We can't behave like people in novels, though, can we?”

Born Edith Newbold Jones, January 24, 1862, one of my favorite novelist's Three Novels of New York: The House of Mirth, The Custom of the Country, The Age of Innocence is being released by PENGUIN on the 29th of the month.


The House of Mirth was published in 1905- The Custom of the Country in 1913 & in 1920 The Age of Innocence won the Pulitzer Prize. 

Lily Bart inhabited The House of Mirth- “Lily had no real intimacy with nature but she had a passion for the appropriate and could be keenly sensitive to a scene which was the fitting background of her own sensations.” 

While Undine Spragg navigates The Custom of the Country- “Her black brows, her reddish-tawny hair and the pure red and white of her complexion defied the searching decomposing radiance:she might have been some fabled creature whose home was in a beam of light.”

Ellen Olenska is ostracized by The Age of Innocence. “I shan't be lonely now. I was lonely; I was afraid. But the emptiness and the darkness are gone; when I turn back into myself now I'm like a child going at night into a room where there's always a light.”

I've collected some of the Penguin's Classic Deluxe Editions of my favorite novels with special illustrations-the Wharton edition celebrating her 150th Anniversary year birthday is illustrated by Richard Gray, here. 


all illustrations above are from Richard Gray.




  1. Love the cover of the anniversary edition! Very Wharton with a splash of Gorey.


    1. Yes Lee-that is a great observation- and it means more to love-as I love Gorey. Thanks of visiting. pgt

  2. I love Lily Bart and the House of Mirth...but it's so sad.

  3. Beautiful illustrations. She is one of my favorite authors too. I recently posted about her love of dogs and her influence on today's culture in honor of her 150th birthday...

  4. I love the book illustrations, and I love book illustrations in general anyway...I think that with paperless offices and electronic this and that formats, the book form, and anything paper, becomes special...from Midori envelopes to book illustration...I would like to see more illustrated book covers and as per usual, you are feeling the pulse of this revival of book illustration. Love your posts.



Related Posts with Thumbnails