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The Custom of the Country
The Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
The Custom of the Country is a 1913 novel by Edith Wharton. It tells the story of Undine Spragg, a Midwestern girl who attempts to ascend in New York City society
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Litsi
Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
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Pickpick

Put Age of Innocence and Ethan Fromme down right now. Now! And pick this up. If you want to know why Fitzgerald admired Wharton or want to see my full review go here. https://www.facebook.com/groups/spbookdiscussion/permalink/363344881795995/

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Cathythoughts
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Look at this beautiful book that has arrived in the post for me ! ❤️ I wonder who sent this ? & I Thankyou very much ! .. I love it 😍

batsy Oooh 😍 2mo
Cathythoughts @batsy Oooh indeed ! Isn‘t it a beauty 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Yes! And I read it awhile back but it's a great book ❤️ 2mo
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Cathythoughts @batsy oh good & im reading her books now with the #WhartonBuddyRead so it‘s all the more welcome 🙏 2mo
TrishB There‘s a mystery book person out there! 2mo
Cathythoughts @TrishB 😂 there must be a little fairy on Litsy 😍 2mo
LeahBergen That‘s lovely! 😍 2mo
Centique Oh that‘s from me Cathy! I was going to send you a NZ book and then found it was out of print, so I saw you were doing the Wharton Buddy Read and thought that would be a good alternative! 💕💕 2mo
Cathythoughts @Centique Thanks Paula ! It‘s a beautiful copy & so thoughtful of you. I am indeed doing the Wharton Buddy Read .. and I‘m really enjoying it. Your gift is perfect 💫❤️Thankyou X 2mo
Cathythoughts @Centique I love the cover ❤️ 2mo
Centique @Cathythoughts im so glad! 2mo
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review
Woozy-Shooz
Pickpick

Undine Spragg. The heroine‘s name is reason enough to read this novel, one of the four great novels that Wharton produced imho; others being, House of Mirth, The Reef, and Age of Innocence. Custom is distinct for the success, however empty and short-lived, of the heroine‘s social climb. She‘s Lily Bart from House of Mirth, if Lily Bart had “made it.” Much needed indictment of the patriarchy, it left me disenchanted as opposed to heartbroken.

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Lcsmcat
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My #20best2020. At least for the moment. Ask me next week and I might have a different answer. 😀 And I didn‘t count rereads, which eliminated some I rated higher than these. Thanks for the tag @merelybookish ! Feel like playing @KVanRead @TheSpineView ?

TheSpineView Thanks for the tag! 😊📚 14mo
Graywacke Great list of books. Happy to have shared a couple with you. 14mo
Lcsmcat @Graywacke And there‘d have been more - both Cather and Shakespeare - if I had counted rereads. 14mo
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erzascarletbookgasm I‘m adding a few of these! 👍 14mo
Cathythoughts Nice list , I‘ve read 3 of them. Must investigate 14mo
Lcsmcat @erzascarletbookgasm @Cathythoughts It‘s fun looking at everyone‘s lists! 14mo
merelybookish What an eclectic list! Thanks for sharing. I love how you include so many genres and mix new and classic! I love, love, love Milkman! And am always excited when someone else does too. I'm curious about the last two on your list. I am not familiar with either one. 14mo
Lcsmcat @merelybookish Whale Day is Billy Collins‘ most recent volume of poetry. Over By the River is a short story collection by William Maxwell, who in addition to being an author was Eudora Welty‘s editor. 14mo
merelybookish @Lcsmcat Thanks! Maxwell is one of those mean to read sometime authors! Although I've heard his stuff is quite sad. 14mo
Lcsmcat @merelybookish Some of his stuff is, and some is nostalgic. 14mo
KVanRead Thanks for the tag! This is a great list. 14mo
Cinfhen Fabulous list 🎉💗‼️ 14mo
56 likes13 comments
review
EadieB
Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
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Pickpick

1913 Wharton's The Custom Of The Country is a novel of ambition featuring Undine Spragg, beautiful but very materialistic. Her rise to the top of New York's high society provides a commentary on the aspirations that eventually caused her ruin. Her misplaced values of greed and power is as relevant today as when it was written over a century ago. I found the book to be well-written with unique characters and enjoyed the book very much. recommended

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Lcsmcat
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Pickpick

Another indictment of the “social world” of the gilded age, the protagonist does not claim our sympathy. Yet Wharton makes clear how few choices were open to women and how harshly they were judged for taking an active role in bettering their social position. At one point Bowen, a minor character, makes it explicit when he says that American men brought it on themselves by not trusting their wives and daughters to have brains. 👇🏻

Lcsmcat There are very few “likable” characters, and yet many that I sympathized with. #authoramonth @Soubhiville 2y
TheBookHippie We have the same book! 2y
Lcsmcat @TheBookHippie I got it years ago when “three novels for one price” meant more to me than “boy this book is heavy!” I read the other a long time ago, but somehow never go around to this one until now. 2y
TheBookHippie I found mine at a used book store for a couple bucks and thought why not 🤣🤷🏽‍♀️ 2y
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Lcsmcat
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Just started this for #authoramonth2020. I love Wharton, but haven‘t read this one yet. @Soubhiville

AllieLovesBooks Love your cocktail set up! 2y
Lcsmcat @OrtizReads1 Thanks! There‘s something civilized about a glass of sherry in the library on the weekend. 2y
AllieLovesBooks @Lcsmcat absolutely and I love your decanter label, you are quite the sophisticated person! ☺️ 2y
Lcsmcat @OrtizReads1 🥰 aren‘t you sweet. 2y
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TheBookHippie
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49 likes1 stack add
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zsuzsanna_reads
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My #firstpost on Litsy was about the tagged book (a "pick"), got five likes and my #firstlike was from @EvieBee . Two years and many likes later I'm still very happy to be on Litsy!

@DebinHawaii @daisydo @LeahBergen @BookishTrish

Not sure who started this #firstlike thing, I've just seen it on my feed!

hermyknee @Texreader started it! Fun, right?! 3y
Texreader Yay!! Glad you looked for your #firstlike !! 3y
LeahBergen Oh!! I love it! ❤️❤️ 3y
DebinHawaii So glad to be one of your early likers! 🤗 3y
55 likes5 comments
review
Ash.on.the.line
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Pickpick

How is it possible to hate a main character so much but thoroughly enjoy a book? Wharton definitely accomplished that with this one. I hated Undine but I couldn‘t stop reading to see what awful thing she did next. A social climber that would do about anything to reach to the top.
Towards the end I felt it started to drag a bit but overall I enjoyed!

Tamra That‘s Wharton! 💜 3y
RaimeyGallant I just finished You, so I know the feeling. 3y
Ash.on.the.line @RaimeyGallant Ah yes, Kepnes did a good job with that one. 3y
Ash.on.the.line @Tamra I had no idea I would enjoy it so much! 💜 3y
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Ash.on.the.line
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Started this one and I was unsure about it. Undine is quite the character and I can‘t help but keep reading. She is awful but I want to know what she does next.

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Cinfhen
Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
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Pickpick

#Rocktober #IntheEnd I didn‘t bail on my bookclub read and I actually grew to appreciate this novel of vanity, satire and social climbing. Edith Wharton has a mighty wit and a sharp pen...perfect for flinging zingers🙌🏻 While Undine Spragg is a total vamp, I give her credit for pursuing her wants😉I did do some #pageskimming but #IntheEnd I‘m glad I did not #TakeTheBail

BarbaraBB I haven‘t read this one but generally love Wharton‘s characters! 4y
batsy Whoo! Happy to hear that. Love me some Wharton. I haven't read this one yet. 4y
TrishB Well done 👍 4y
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Tamra Wharton is a master of snark. I love her! 😄 4y
robinb Love Wharton too! 4y
emilyhaldi Woohoo!! Nice to see your bookclub saga get a happy ending ☺️☺️ (edited) 4y
Reviewsbylola What other books of hers have you read? Just curious how this one compares. 4y
Cinfhen This was my first Wharton @Reviewsbylola and she does appear to be the master of snark @Tamra Bookclub is tonight and the girls are ready to chat @emilyhaldi @BarbaraBB @batsy @TrishB @robinb 4y
Reviewsbylola If you decide to read another one, The Age of Innocence is my favorite of hers! 4y
Cinfhen I probably won't @Reviewsbylola but #NeverSayNever I'll try to keep an open mind... 4y
Cinfhen I know lots of people loved 4y
Reviewsbylola 😂😂 I actually didn‘t love Mirth. It wasn‘t bad but just not great. 4y
BarbaraBB Age of Innocence and House of Mirth are both excellent I thought! And Ethan Frome as well! 4y
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Cinfhen
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Guess who's the odd man out in my RL bookclub? Everybody seems to be enjoying this Wharton, sadly I have zero interest in this overly cliched story. However with this group, #BailingIsNotAnOption

LeahBergen 😂😂 The hashtag! 4y
bookishkai I don‘t get along well with the “classics” either, 4y
Foragingfantasy Can you find it on audio, might make it easier. 4y
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Cinfhen I'm going to look on my OverDrive system @Foragingfantasy ....I'm glad I'm not the only one @bookishkris 😉thanks @LeahBergen but this group is harsh😂 4y
Marchpane If bailing is truly not an option I advocate "skim finishing" 4y
Sydsavvy @Marchpane I like that term "skim finishing" - definitely been employed by me! (edited) 4y
Cinfhen Love that hashtag @Marchpane @Sydsavvy I've been known to use that method as well!! 4y
Marchpane @Sydsavvy @Cinfhen No shame in it! 😁 4y
readinginthedark Sorry you don't like it! I haven't read this one, but I really liked The Age of Innocence by her. 4y
TrishB Not read any Wharton and my VC in work is one of the world experts on her and always asks if I've read any yet....just don't fancy it!! 4y
Leniverse I haven't read this one, but I think I might be the only classics lover on the planet who rolled my eyes at The Age of Innocence. I did better with Ethan Frome, but that was a novella so I didn't have time to get thoroughly fed up. 😂 4y
Cinfhen Thanks so much @Leniverse my bookclub is loving her, and while I'm in awe of her feistiness this book just reads sooooooo dated! I can't get into it @TrishB @readinginthedark #ItsDefinitelyMe 4y
Blaire Good luck, if you want to try another Wharton - I'd go with house of mirth. That's my favorite one. For book clubs I have often done a very quick skim to make it through when I'm not enjoying it. (Can't actually remember if I've read custom of the country). (edited) 4y
DivineDiana @Cinfhen Not fun ploughing through a book you have no interest in reading! 🙁There must be Cliff Notes or Spark notes available?!? 🤔 4y
Cinfhen That's my next step @DivineDiana it's better than a #shawnmooney or a #skimfinishing 😂😂 4y
Cinfhen Thanks @Blaire I've heard good things about House of Mirth but it's #SoManyBooksSoLittleTime 4y
DivineDiana @Cinfhen Agree! 😀😉 4y
emilyhaldi Oh man, sorry this book club is not as kind and accomodating as your litsy readalong group! 😂💁🏻 4y
Cinfhen 😂😂😂 TRUTH @emilyhaldi 😘😘 4y
Reviewsbylola Can you read it on serial reader? Sometimes small doses help. 4y
[DELETED] 3803335244 I'd bail anyway! Lol 😂 4y
Cinfhen I'm scared of this group @ForeverNerdy 🙈think I may be #SparkNoting 4y
Elisa Oh yikes. You are a stronger woman than I am! This is exactly why I not do book clubs 😬 Is the book getting any better? How far are you? 4y
Cinfhen @Elisa I'm about half way through....it's just not grabbing me. I despise the MC & I just don't give a crap about her. I realize this book was written in 1913, which is amazing but you know what??? It feels REALLY DATED!!! 😩we meet next week, so I think I'll just read the online bookclub discussion summary 😉 4y
Elisa @Cinfhen haha attagirl, don‘t torture yourself! 😉 I totally get it though — if I don‘t like the main character, very often I just want to close the book quite decisively and never open it again, which basically me saying “that‘s enough out of YOU!” 😅 4y
ValerieAndBooks Ha. Sorry you‘re not enjoying it! I do like Wharton a lot 😆. 4y
112 likes26 comments
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EvieBee
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She arrived safely! Treated myself to this beautiful omnibus after finishing THE HOUSE OF MIRTH. #bookhaul #bookmail

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Soooo pretty 💜💜💜 4y
Eyelit Lovely cover! 4y
Reviewsbylola 😍😍😍 4y
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kspenmoll Love the cover, can see why you treated yourself! 4y
EvieBee @Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks @Eyelit @Reviewsbylola @kspenmoll Thank you! I have been ogling it at Barnes and Noble for a few years and finally bought it! It's cheaper on Amazon, FYI. $13! 🤓 4y
vivastory Love this cover 4y
BekahB Oohhh I've been eyeing that edition for a while. It's so pretty! 4y
batsy Oooh, I covet this. So pretty! I wish it was someone other than Franzen doing the intro, though. 4y
EvieBee @vivastory @BekahB Thank you! 🤗 4y
EvieBee @batsy Right?! I was annoyed by that. 4y
WhatDeeReads Franzen, gross. 🤢 4y
robinb I have this story but haven't got to it yet. Need to bump it up! 4y
LauraBrook Lovely lovely edition! 4y
EvieBee @WhatDeeReads Almost ruined it! Thank goodness it's gorgeous. I'll just have to skip that intro. (edited) 4y
EvieBee @robinb I started it like 5 times and it seemed right this year. Funny thing, huh? Hopefully it's right for you soon. Such a wonderful book and hard to put down. Drama town...and I love it! 4y
EvieBee @LauraBrook Thank you! Amazon marked it down, so you might want to take a gander IF you're interested. 🤓😄 4y
Ms_T Beautiful cover! I've only read Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton and should really read more as I enjoy her writing style. So many books, so little time 😃 4y
EvieBee @Ms_T I know that's right? I need to read Ethan Frome! I know I own a copy somewhere. 4y
87 likes3 stack adds18 comments
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EvieBee
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So I decided to revamp my #TBRBingo card to concentrate on classics, which is a little more challenging for me, and includes some Kindle books as well. My treat when I Bingo? I'm going to go for a Folio classic! Already got a budget approved from "the board" for this project. ??

TrishB A great incentive 👍 4y
merelybookish Excellent! 4y
TheWordJar That's a great reward!! 4y
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rubyslippersreads A Folio book is an excellent way to treat yourself. 😊 4y
WhatDeeReads Excellent reward! 4y
minkyb Excellent reward choice! 4y
BarbaraBB Great books on your card! 4y
janeycanuck Oh! Brilliant reward!!! Folio books are GORGEOUS! 4y
UrsulaMonarch Wonderful! 👏👏👏 4y
LeahBergen Oooo! I like this idea! 4y
Cortg The Secret Garden is one of my all time faves! I've been working my way through Les Miserables for a year now. It's good but huge! Plus I haven't put my full attention towards it. It's huge! 4y
batsy Yay for "the board" ? Also you've given me the idea to use Agnes Grey for A in #LitsyAtoZ. You've got some wonderful books there! 4y
EvieBee @TrishB @merelybookish @TheWordJar @rubyslippersreads @WhatDeeReads @minkyb @BarbaraBB @janeycanuck @Lkelly @LeahBergen Thank you! Some of these are doozies so hopefully I won't have to wait too long!! 🤓 4y
EvieBee @Cortg It is! I was so reluctant to put it on the list for that reason but everyone says it's a rewarding read. I like to read other books in between classics, too so I can feel like I'm moving books around. 😊 4y
EvieBee @batsy Lol! The board is generous even if they don't understand that readers are gonna read and buy more books than they'll ever read. Yay! I adored TENANT OF WILDFELL HALL and have been meaning to read AGNES for awhile now. 4y
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jobertson
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'And so with his inner world. Though so coloured by outer impressions, it wove a secret curtain about him, and he came and went in it with the same joy of furtive possession.'

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zsuzsanna_reads
Pickpick

Good-bye Undine, I've enjoyed our time together. I will catch up with you again one day.

DebinHawaii Welcome to Litsy!! 🎉📚👍😀 5y
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KikiLovesBooks
Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
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Pickpick

Undine Spragg of Apex and lately New York is a force unto herself: self obsessed and an actress in her own life. Dazzling and materialistic, she sets a goal and will reach it, even though she likes to think of herself as a "good girl." She really knows nothing else. Vanity is her engine and flattery her fuel. Wharton writes amazing portraits of 1913 characters. Undine herself is a startling beauty. I both loved and despised her journey.

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KikiLovesBooks
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Happy New Year and a beautiful 2017, reader friends! ❌⭕❌⭕❤

LauraJ Love this image 💕 5y
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KikiLovesBooks
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"She might have been some fabled creature whose home was in a beam of light...She therefore watched herself approvingly, admiring the light on her hair, the flash of teeth between her smiling lips, the pure shadows of her throats and shoulders as she passed from one attitude to another." Undine loves herself.

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KikiLovesBooks
Custom of the Country | Edith Wharton
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I wish I had written this!

britt_brooke 💕💕💕 5y
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thatotherlisa

I find the connections Wharton draws between the heroine's social climbing and her dad's Wall Street dealings so fascinating. Undine has her father's ambition and skills, but bc her only outlet social climbing, she's maligned. She's still completely heinous, but it's fascinating to think about.

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thatotherlisa
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Anyone know where I can find a doctor to prescribe a "dash to Paris or London" to help deal with anxiety attacks? Cuz...if I could get my insurance to pay for this, that'd be grand.

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AmyStewart

"In such cases he often recommended a dash to Paris or London, just to tone up the nervous system." What genius doctor is this??!!

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AmyStewart

"She began by asking about his writing, but the subject was distasteful to him..." #storyofmylife

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AmyStewart

"The doctor she summoned advised her trying a small quiet place on the Riviera, not too near the sea." OK, that has NOT happened to me. #EdithWhartonCare

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AmyStewart

"Undine Marvell, for the next few months, tasted all the accumulated bitterness of failure". Been there!

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AmyStewart
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"Well, then, I know a little place in Switzerland where one can still get away from the crowd, and we can sit and look at a green water-fall while I lie in wait for adjectives."