The Age of Innocence


Read by Brenda Dayne

(4.6 stars; 143 reviews)

In an era before the advent of electric lights, telephones or motor vehicles, there exists a small cluster of aristocratic "old revolutionary stock" families that rule New York's social life. Under the rules of this society, "being things" is better than "doing things" and reputation and outward appearances come at the exclusion of everything else. In this Gilded Age, when America’s expansion and increased industrialism produce a group of newly wealthy robber barons and financiers, the patient, time-honored values of the old ruling class, and century, are giving way to the expediencies of the new. Caught at this cusp, a triangle of lovers, who must choose between the expectations of family and society, and the deepest yearnings of the heart.
Newly engaged couple, Newland Archer, a young lawyer, and May Welland, a society debutante, are part of the old world, where the "right people" follow the "correct rules" and marry into "acceptable families." The arrival from Europe of May’s cousin, the Countess Ellen Olenska, complicates their union, as Ellen’s mysterious past threatens to cast a shadow of scandal over the newly betrothed couple. Newland Archer, at first critical of Ellen's bohemian lifestyle, and her seemingly wilful ignorance of the rules and customs of his Old New York, is soon captivated by Ellen's warmth, spirit, and her generous and loving heart. Will he cast off the life for which he's been groomed, or sacrifice happiness for duty and the greater good of the social order?
(Summary by Brenda Dayne)

(12 hr 32 min)

Chapters

Chapter 01 19:13 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 02 15:24 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 03 17:28 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 04 12:56 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 05 21:47 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 06 19:20 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 07 15:03 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 08 17:39 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 09 27:41 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 10 21:51 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 11 18:29 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 12 26:49 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 13 16:17 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 14 16:39 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 15 24:22 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 16 22:02 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 17 21:23 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 18 26:46 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 19 26:32 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 20 28:01 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 21 31:26 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 22 18:50 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 23 22:24 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 24 12:59 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 25 21:31 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 26 24:58 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 27 16:51 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 28 15:15 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 29 17:33 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 30 22:15 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 31 30:43 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 32 22:17 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 33 37:40 Read by Brenda Dayne
Chapter 34 42:08 Read by Brenda Dayne

Reviews

Splendid reading

(5 stars)

I am not much a fan of the novel of manners as a genre of literature, but I have to applaud Brenda Dayne's wonderful reading of this book. Her clear, serene voice made me like this novel against my inclinations, and if it were not for the Librivox disclaimers at the beginning, I could have easily mistaken it for a professional recording.

Wonderful

(5 stars)

Although a broad reader (both in hip and in library), I have avoided this one because I am not much taken with a swept-away love story. But I think Ms. Dayne could read the Farmer's Almanac and it would be beautiful, compelling, and totally enjoyable. I wish we could search by reader. Thank you Brenda and Librivox. -- mary s

(5 stars)

Agree that this is the best read book I have encountered on Librivox. And I have listened to many. The novel and reading are superb.

The Age of Innocence

(5 stars)

Such a brilliant and beautifully read novel by Brenda Dayne!

brava!

(5 stars)

A wonderful book and beautifully read. “The Age of Innocence” is my favorite Wharton but its story is quiet and understated & the wrong delivery could have really screwed it up. Brenda Dayne’s reading is easily the best (for me) reading I’ve come across at LibriVox.

The Age of Innocence

(5 stars)

Excellent book beautifully read by Ms Dayne. In looking I see this is the only book she's read for LibriVox; perhaps sometime in the future she'll have the time to read another. This is my favorite book by Edith Wharton to date.

Wharton read by Elizabeth

(5 stars)

...fantastic! It doesn’t get much better than Ms Klett's narration of The Age of Innocence. The novel is a cool glimpse into New York "grand" society and is riveting. Many thanks to the narrator and to LibriVox for making it possible.

(4 stars)

Ms. Dane is clearly the best voice I've heard so far on LV. Thank you . I'd love to be able to search for the readers I like.