Overview

 

The offices, penthouses, and suburban chateaux of New York are the setting for Louis Auchincloss's The Dark Lady. Spanning three decades from the 1930s to the McCarthy era, the novel chronicles a powerful woman's rise and the human toll it exacts.

In a world where birth and style count nearly as much as wealth, Elesina Dart is supremely equipped to star. Lovely, well-born, bright, even moderately talented as an actress, Elesina seems ...
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The Dark Lady

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Overview

 

The offices, penthouses, and suburban chateaux of New York are the setting for Louis Auchincloss's The Dark Lady. Spanning three decades from the 1930s to the McCarthy era, the novel chronicles a powerful woman's rise and the human toll it exacts.

In a world where birth and style count nearly as much as wealth, Elesina Dart is supremely equipped to star. Lovely, well-born, bright, even moderately talented as an actress, Elesina seems perversely bent on canceling out these advantages. After two destructive marriages and an affair with alcohol, she is close to low ebb when Ivy Trask takes heron. Ivy's business is the exercise of power, as editor of the fashion-arbitrating Tone magazine and in her own loveless life. In Elesina, she finds material worthy of her best efforts.

Stage-managed by Ivy, Elesina makes a widely successful and equally scandalous match with Judge Irving Stein, banker, connoisseur, collector — and old enough to know better, as all who are close to him point out. Mistress of Broad-lawns, living's Westchester estate, and caretaker of his fabulous art collection are roles Elesina takes in stride. Forall his riches and influence, Irving is a man of deep sensibility, a romantic — as is David, his attractive youngest son, whose passion for his stepmother leads to tragic consequences. Inevitably, husband, lover, and friend all fall victim to Elesina's need for the center stage, which she has come to see as her manifest destiny. In this major new novel, Louis Auchincloss examines the many faces of ambition and desire that rule both the schemers and dreamers of fashionable society. It is a story that only Auchincloss, with his exceptional knowledge and insight, could write.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547790510
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 8/8/1977
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 246
  • Sales rank: 853,086
  • File size: 261 KB

Meet the Author

Louis Auchincloss was honored in the year 2000 as a “Living Landmark” by the New York Landmarks Conservancy. During his long career he wrote more than sixty books, including the story collection Manhattan Monologues and the novel The Rector of Justin. The former president of the Academy of Arts and Letters, he resided in New York City until his death in January 2010.

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