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Friday, January 18, 2013

The Innocents

There was this one time I reviewed Edith Wharton's Age of Innocence. Not long after that, Francesca Segal released her updated remake of the classic story of lust and tradition, The Innocents. This is its story.

In London, Adam is madly in love with Rachel and has always been so, ever since meeting her at summer camp at 16. He proposes over a decade later and they begin planning the rest of their lives together. That is, until Rachel's cousin Ellie shows up from America. Ellie is someone Adam has never seen before--sexy and confident yet so in need of care. She throws his life for a loop, and his relationship with Rachel may never be the same.

This was a world of which I am totally unfamiliar: the elite Jewish community of suburban London. It was incredibly interesting and not unlike Wharton's original to watch class and society play out among the crowd. I have to say that I am impressed with Segal's present-day interpretation of the classic; it translated well and kept the forbidden-love vibe alive and well in the text.

There was also a mirrored feeling of lusciousness that filled the pages. Segal's writing was proper and staid in the same way that I found Wharton's without being a copy. The author did an excellent job of staying true to the essence of the main character's tale of woe but updating it and making the story much more accessible to anyone under the age of 40. This was an great read for a rainy afternoon and a hot cup of chamomile.

As usual, Kindle version on the left, hard copy on the right:

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