The House of MirthLarge Print - 2009
This black comedy traces the downward spiral of a wellborn but penniless heroine, Lily Bart, who lives among the nouveau riche of New York City. Wharton presents a subtle but searing commentary on a society that desires women to be little more than hothouse flowers yet is willing to destroy such women should they dare to defy the dictates of artificial conventions.
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But now his love was her only hope, and as she sat alone with her wretchedness, the thought of confiding in him became as seductive as the river's flow to the suicide. The first plunge would be terrible, but afterward, what blessedness might come! ...Oh, if he really understood; if he would help her to gather up her broken life and put it together in some new semblance in which no trace of the past should remain!
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