Taken together, these impressive essays accomplish the book’s stated objective of a “starting point” and “introduction” to the study of Edith Wharton’s work. The book invites and continues conversations on Wharton’s engagement with a host of issues.”
Edith Wharton Review, 2018
Published by: Penn State University Press
“This volume of critical essays on American writer Edith Wharton (1862-1937) mixes some of the old with the new. A standard introductory essay and brief biography along with Dale Bauer’s overview of the current state of Wharton studies provide context for the rest of the essays. Some of these essays cover familiar ground in Whartonia, such as the role of women and economics; others present interesting forays into less familiar subjects. Hannah Huber offers an insightful comparison of Wharton and her contemporary Charlotte Perkins Gilman via the subject of eugenics. Mollie Barnes’s essay on literary history in The Age of Innocence provides an autobiographical and a textual appreciation of Wharton’s own reading. Finally, Robert Klevay captures the sharp dynamics of Wharton’s friendship with Henry James in his comparative of Wharton’s “Roman Fever” and James’s Daisy Miller. This collection will appeal to Americanists as well as Wharton Scholars.
Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and graduate students.”