Skinny Island: More Tales of Manhattan

Skinny Island: More Tales of Manhattan

by Louis Auchincloss
     
 

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It's only twelve miles long and two miles wide, but it has more money for its area, more history packed into its relatively brief settlement, and more emotional and intellectual energy coursing through its streets than any other place on earth. Manhattan is the setting for all of Louis Auchincloss's fiction, and it is the stage on which those New Yorkers whose roots

Overview

It's only twelve miles long and two miles wide, but it has more money for its area, more history packed into its relatively brief settlement, and more emotional and intellectual energy coursing through its streets than any other place on earth. Manhattan is the setting for all of Louis Auchincloss's fiction, and it is the stage on which those New Yorkers whose roots go down to its bedrock play out the drama of their lives.
From the turn of the century to our present urban follies, these stories follow the fortunes of the socially secure and powerful as they try to cope with the changes shaped by the momentous events and growing anxieties of recent decades. Taken together, the tales weave a larger pattern of human strengths and foibles that bemuses the mind and touches the heart.
The elegant prose, crystalline dialogue, immense insight into the mores, preoccupations, and afflictions of the rich, and the connoisseur's sense of both art and life that are characteristic of Auchincloss—all are here, but with a depth of passion and irony exceeding anything he has accomplished in the past.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Once again, Louis Auchincloss has raided the till of his social register to depict the travails of Manhattan's upper class. In 12 stories proceeding chronologically from the 1870s to the present, his protagonists try to accommodate themselves to the roles seemingly assigned them at birth. Few succeed. The robber baron of the first story is no more or less rapacious than the corporate raider of the last: 100 years of ``progress'' have merely taught the gently bred to meet defeat with increased grace and alacrity. Some of the book's women seem better able to forge their own destinies: one perseveres in her passion for avant-garde art despite the derision of family and friends; another, a widow whose children consign her to a life of baby-sitting and basket-weaving, instead forms a friendship with an effeminate but life-giving companion. Others seem only too willing to share their male partners' glum acceptance of the status quo, even when their golden chains limit both creativity and sexuality. Still, few give way to total despair. Their author has imbued them with a stubborn but lasting resilience that augers well for their continuing survivaland his, as their most inspired chronicler. (May 21)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547799780
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
05/21/1987
Sold by:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
230
File size:
215 KB

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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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