A Well Behaved Woman
a novel of the Vanderbilts
By Therese Anne Fowler
From the bestselling author of Z - a novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, Therese Fowler's new novel goes back to the origins of the Jazz Age - the Gilded Age of New York Society in the late 19th/early 20th century - with a the page-turning and sympathetic account of Alva Vanderbilt - the woman who challenged New York Society.
'This is a wonderful book! Fowler's portrait is so nuanced, so complicated by context, and so informed by her own capacious generosity that we can't help being drawn in' Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
OUTSPOKEN. BRAVE. BRILLIANT. FIERCE.
Alva Smith, her Southern family destitute after the Civil War, married into one of America's great Gilded Age dynasties: the newly wealthy but socially shunned Vanderbilts. Ignored by New York's old-money circles and determined to win respect, she designed and built nine mansions, hosted grand balls, and arranged for her daughter to marry a duke. But Alva also defied convention for women of her time, asserting power within her marriage and becoming a leader in the women's suffrage movement.
With a nod to Jane Austen and Edith Wharton, Therese Anne Fowler paints a glittering world of enormous wealth contrasted against desperate poverty, of social ambition and social scorn, of friendship and betrayal, and an unforgettable story of a remarkable woman.
GOOD BEHAVIOUR WILL ONLY GET A WOMAN SO FAR.
Therese Anne Fowler was born in Illinois and is a graduate of North Carolina State University, where she earned a BA in sociology and an MFA in creative writing. She taught undergraduate fiction writing and was editorial assistant for the literary magazine Obsidian III before leaving to write fiction full-time.
- Other details
- Publication date:
16 Oct 2018
- Page count:
This is a wonderful book! Fowler's portrait is so nuanced, so complicated by context, and so informed by her own capacious generosity that we can't help being drawn in — Karen Joy Fowler, author of We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
Not just breathtakingly alive, but dazzlingly and profoundly timely. A must-read masterpiece. — Caroline Leavitt, the New York Times bestselling author of Pictures of You
A fascinating tale of Gilded Age manners and mores, and one remarkable woman's attempts to transcend them. — Chris Bohjalian, No.1 New York Times bestselling author of The Flight Attendant
Activist, egalitarian, philanthropist, trailblazer - these are the qualities of a historic leader . . . Alva's gumption and glamour will resonate with modern women and remind all that history belongs to those who courageously persevere. A sparkling, powerful story that needs to be heard now more than ever. — Sarah McCoy, New York Times and international bestselling author of Marilla of Green Gables