The Pulitzer Prizeâ€“winning novel of desire and duty in Gilded Age New York
A respected lawyer and scion of one of Manhattanâ€™s most important families, Newland Archer knows what people expect of him and is eager to comply. The first step on the path to happiness is to wed May Welland, a beautiful young woman of fine social standing. But the arrival of the worldly and exotic Countess Olenska, Mayâ€™s cousin, changes everything. Ellen Olenskaâ€™s scandalous intention to divorce her husband, a Polish nobleman, is so far outside the realm of Newlandâ€™s experience that he cannot help but be fascinated by her, and by the independence she represents. As he draws closer to the irresistible countess, he risks breaking Mayâ€™s heart and destroying his life of privilege forever.
Winner of the 1921 Pulitzer Prize for Fictionâ€”marking the very first time a woman was so honoredâ€”and the basis for several film and stage adaptations, including the 1993 Academy Awardâ€“winning motion picture directed by Martin Scorsese, The Age of Innocence is one of the best-loved American novels of the twentieth century.
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