• Rules of Civility: A Novel
  • Rules of Civility: A Novel
ISBN: 0670022691
EAN13: 9780670022694
Language: English
Pages: 352
Dimensions: 1.2" H x 9.1" L x 6.1" W
Weight: 1.2 lbs.
Format: Hardcover
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Book Overview

This Description may be from another edition of this product.

A sophisticated and entertaining debut novel about an irresistible young woman with an uncommon sense of purpose.
Set in New York City in 1938, Rules of Civility tells the story of a watershed year in the life of an uncompromising twenty-five-year- old named Katey Kontent. Armed with little more than a formidable intellect, a bracing wit, and her own brand of cool nerve, Katey embarks on a journey from a Wall Street secretarial pool through the upper echelons of New York society in search of a brighter future.
The story opens on New Year's Eve in a Greenwich Village jazz bar, where Katey and her boardinghouse roommate Eve happen to meet Tinker Grey, a handsome banker with royal blue eyes and a ready smile. This chance encounter and its startling consequences cast Katey off her current course, but end up providing her unexpected access to the rarified offices of Conde Nast and a glittering new social circle. Befriended in turn by a shy, principled multimillionaire, an Upper East Side ne'er-do-well, and a single-minded widow who is ahead of her times, Katey has the chance to experience first hand the poise secured by wealth and station, but also the aspirations, envy, disloyalty, and desires that reside just below the surface. Even as she waits for circumstances to bring Tinker back into her Read More chevron_right

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Book Reviews (7)

4
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4
   A rich evocation of New York City in the thirties
The elite of New York City were well- off and well- dressed. It was ruled by the brahmin class of inheritance, but the young, beautiful, and gifted were able to gain access. In the late 30s, a young woman ventured into New York society and wrote this book. It is a story of love, betrayal, and the good life. The prose is gorgeous. The characters are who you want to know. The New York in Rules of Civility can be found in the pages of this novel.
 
1
   How Can a Story Set in 1938 NYC Be This Boring
I should have trusted the negative reviews. New York City was bad in the 1930s. It is very bad. I wanted to throw my book out of the window. Bored and teary eyed. skimming to find out what happens I don't know what to do with just pages and pages of it. The author did his research, but the soul was left out of the descriptions and language. I want to like the main character, but I know there is more going on in her head and someone else could have told her a better story. I moved on to the next thing. It was too late to return. So sad.
 
5
   A real gem
Every once in a while, you find a book that is a real gem, and for me, this was one of them. I found the writing to be clever, witty and intelligent, and while there was not a specific plot or complex story overall, it was beautifully written and I enjoyed it immensely. The story is about a young woman in New York City in the 1930s as she navigates her way through jobs, friends, and love. I sometimes wondered if Kate was more like a man than a woman, but overall I liked her character and quick repartee. Her thoughts about herself and others, as well as life in general, added a depth to this book that I loved. It made me reflect on my own life. I might read this one more than once. I will find things I missed the first time around.
 
5
   Another World Perfectly Constructed by Towles
After reading Gentleman in Moscow, I decided I needed to read everything the author has written. His creativity and diversity. The world of 1930s New York that he creates is as good as the one he created for Russia. Towles has restored my faith in modern writers as his style and language are amazing and I hope that other writers follow in his footsteps so that he becomes a new standard for the age.
 
1
   Laughably bad.
This book was not good. The author's attempt to tell us about New York in the early 20 th century full of beautiful rich people arguing in club rooms about how to make a gin fizz is laughable. If I wanted to write a book about slaves living on a plantation, I would have to watch movies like Gone With the Wind. I have no idea about birthing no babies. Is this really true? I don't think a single character in a movie or a soap opera has a single line that comes from their mouth. If you want to see a world recreated with genius, you should read The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald did not have to use cliches in his book. Fitzgerald knew that the characters were real and they suffered in that world. The world was not the star. Many people liked the book. It was very bad.
 
1
   DREADFUL Written by the same man???
I finished A Gentleman from Moscow. It doesn't seem possible that the same man wrote this book. The narration was terrible and I stopped listening after half an hour. One should never assume anything, but after reading the other book, one expected a similar form of writing. It was not true. The narrator in the other book was great. I wanted to shut this down immediately. I would never have bought A Gentleman in Moscow if I'd read it first.
 
5
   Oh joy - Manhattan without having to go there
He praises Towles for writing the way he wants to. Words are allowed to do amazing feats and thoughts are allowed to live as they are. What a wonderful joy. I just had to stop and savor because I still have a long way to go. It's one of those books that makes you feel like you will never find a better one for you. It fits just right. I can be free to write as I please. Katey's life is hers to lead. I just finished A Gentleman. Towles' first book is almost as good as the one I' ll move to. I am not sure which one is better. They are both better. Better, that's better. Better person. It is a bet. She moved the key into her pants.
 
1