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The Resource Rules of civility : a novel, Amor Towles

Rules of civility : a novel, Amor Towles

Label
Rules of civility : a novel
Title
Rules of civility
Title remainder
a novel
Statement of responsibility
Amor Towles
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Set in New York City in 1938, tells the story of a watershed year in the life of an uncompromising 25-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
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Review
  • This rhapsodic tribute to a bygone era conjures up mesmerizing images of 1930s New York. Two worlds collide on New Year’s Eve 1937, and three lives will never be the same. For Katey Kontent and Eve Ross, two working gals out on the town, a chance encounter with patrician banker Tinker Grey sets into motion a series of events causing far-reaching consequences. As Towles explores the seemingly random ways in which both choice and chance can impact the future, Katey, Eve, and Tinker each face a dark night of the soul, during which fates are twisted, reshaped, and realigned. Discerning readers will draw parallels between Towles and the ominously ironic Edith Wharton while relishing the fact that the snappy dialogue and descriptive prose are wrapped in a compelling narrative. -- Flanagan, Margaret (Reviewed 07-01-2011) (Booklist, vol 107, number 21, p39)
  • /* Starred Review */ In his smashing debut, Towles details the intriguing life of Katherine Kontent and how her world is upended by the fateful events of 1938. Kate and her roommate, Evelyn Ross, have moved to Manhattan for its culture and the chance to class up their lives with glamour—be it with jazz musicians, trust fund lotharios, or any man with a hint of charm who will pay for dinner and drinks. Both Kate and Evelyn are enamored of sophisticated Tinker Grey, who they meet in a jazz club; he appears to be another handsome, moneyed gent, but as the women vie for his affection, a tragic event may seal a burgeoning romance's fate. New York's wealthy class is thick with snobbery, unexpected largesse, pettiness, jealousies, and an unmistakable sense of who belongs and who does not, but it's the undercurrent of unease—as with Towles's depiction of how the upper class can use its money and influence to manipulate others' lives in profoundly unsavory ways—that gives his vision depth and complexity. His first effort is remarkable for its strong narrative, original characters and a voice influenced by Fitzgerald and Capote, but clearly true to itself. (July) --Staff (Reviewed March 14, 2011) (Publishers Weekly, vol 258, issue 11, p)
  • On New Year's Eve 1937, at a jazz bar in New York's Greenwich Village, Katey and Eve are charmed by the handsome and successful Tinker Grey. The three become fast friends and spend early 1938 exploring the town together, until a car accident permanently injures Eve. Feeling guilty, Tinker, the driver, takes care of Eve and unsuccessfully tries to love her. Despite the presence and initial impact of Tinker and Eve, though, this first novel is about Katey's 1938. Eve moves on, and Tinker fades, but Katey, the narrator, stays to challenge the New York bourgeois unwaveringly with her acerbic wit, capturing the attention of several doting men. She quits her job as a typist and pursues a career as editor of a respected, if risqué, society magazine. And Katey does it without a handout (she thinks). VERDICT Historical love story. Snappy dialog and sophisticated characters. A romantic look at the difficulties of being a New Yorker. But not, as the publisher suggests, reminiscent of Fitzgerald, though similar themes (class, betrayal, despair) arise. This novel would, however, make a nice (contemporary) companion to novels like The Great Gatsby and is thusly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, 1/17/11.]— Stephen Morrow, Ohio Univ., Columbus --Stephen Morrow (Reviewed April 15, 2011) (Library Journal, vol 136, issue 7, p90)
  • Manhattan in the late 1930s is the setting for this saga of a bright, attractive and ambitious young woman whose relationships with her insecure roommate and the privileged Adonis they meet in a jazz club are never the same after an auto accident. Towles' buzzed-about first novel is an affectionate return to the post–Jazz Age years, and the literary style that grew out of it (though seasoned with expletives). Brooklyn girl Katey Kontent and her boardinghouse mate, Midwestern beauty Eve Ross, are expert flirts who become an instant, inseparable threesome with mysterious young banker Tinker Grey. With him, they hit all the hot nightspots and consume much alcohol. After a milk truck mauls his roadster with the women in it, permanently scarring Eve, the guilt-ridden Tinker devotes himself to her, though he and she both know he has stronger feelings for Katey. Strong-willed Katey works her way up the career ladder, from secretarial job on Wall Street to publisher's assistant at Condé Nast, forging friendships with society types and not allowing social niceties to stand in her way. Eve and Tinker grow apart, and then Kate, belatedly seeing Tinker for what he is, sadly gives up on him. Named after George Washington's book of moral and social codes, this novel documents with breezy intelligence and impeccable reserve the machinations of wealth and power at an historical moment that in some ways seems not so different from the current one. Tinker, echoing Gatsby, is permanently adrift. The novel is a bit light on plot, relying perhaps too much on description. But the characters are beautifully drawn, the dialogue is sharp and Towles avoids the period nostalgia and sentimentality to which a lesser writer might succumb. An elegant, pithy performance by a first-time novelist who couldn't seem more familiar with his characters or territory.(Kirkus Reviews, June 1, 2011)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
390439
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Towles, Amor
Dewey number
813/.6
Index
no index present
LC call number
PS3620.O945
LC item number
R85 2011
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Young women
  • Upper class
  • Nineteen thirties
  • Man-woman relationships
  • Wall Street (New York, N.Y.)
  • New York (N.Y.)
Target audience
adult
Label
Rules of civility : a novel, Amor Towles
Link
https://bfgb.wordpress.com/2012/04/16/rules-of-civility-by-amor-towles/
Instantiates
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
23 cm
Extent
334 pages
Isbn
9780670022694
Lccn
2011004118
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Note
Imprint varies.
System control number
  • 681488389
  • (OCoLC)681488389
Label
Rules of civility : a novel, Amor Towles
Link
https://bfgb.wordpress.com/2012/04/16/rules-of-civility-by-amor-towles/
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
23 cm
Extent
334 pages
Isbn
9780670022694
Lccn
2011004118
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Note
Imprint varies.
System control number
  • 681488389
  • (OCoLC)681488389

Library Locations

    • James City County LibraryBorrow it
      7770 Croaker Road, Williamsburg, VA, 23188, US
      37.377573 -76.770995
    • Williamsburg LibraryBorrow it
      515 Scotland Street, Williamsburg, VA, 23185, US
      37.377573 -76.770995
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