Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

  • March 20, 2013 · 6:30 PM
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Here is a comment from Amazon about the book.

Some books unfold at a leisurely pace and demand to be read in the same way --
nibbled and savored, the better to prolong the pleasure. Rules of Civility is
one of those. It's a throwback novel, the kind in which unashamedly bright
characters engage in impossibly witty conversations. The novel takes its name
from the 110
rules
that George Washington crafted during his teenage years. Katey Kontent
eventually sees Washington's rules not as "a series of moral aspirations" but as
"a primer on social advancement." They are the rules that shape a masquerade in
the hope "that they will enhance one's chances at a happy ending." Ultimately
Rules of Civility asks a serious question about Katey's observation: Are the
behavioral rules that define "civility" simply a mask that people wear to
conceal their true natures? Or are the rules themselves important, and the
motivation for following them irrelevant?

The story begins in 1966 but
quickly turns back to 1938, the most eventful year in Katey's life. Katey and
her friend Eve meet Tinker Grey, a charming young banker, at a jazz club on New
Year's Eve. Their blossoming three-way friendship takes an unexpected turn when
Eve is injured in an accident while Tinker is driving. Tinker's apparent
preference for Katey shifts to Eve as she recuperates. Months later, something
happens to cause a change in their relationship, giving Tinker a more important
role in Katey's life. Along the way, Katey's career is leaping forward: from
reliable member of a law firm's secretarial pool to secretary at a staid
publishing house to gofer and then editorial assistant at a trendy magazine. As
Katey socializes with the well-to-do and the up-and-coming, she learns
surprising secrets about the people in her life, including Tinker, and learns
some things about herself, as well.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    lovely time. we shared comments about the various characters in the book. that lead to other discussions about changes in women's place in the world today and just how much it had changed, but sadly how much further we had to go. that lead to to the cost of and benefit of education in today's world and i think ghosts somehow became the next topic of discussion? good time, everyone participated.

    March 21, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Lovely meeting you all last night. I'm looking forward to next month. Here's a critical review of "Thousand Autumns..." which I think raises some good points for discussion: http://naomijwilliams.wordpress.com/2011/04/26/the-thousand-autumns-of-jacob-de-zoet/.

    March 21, 2013

  • Judy

    We had a good discussion about the book. Most everyone enjoyed the story. It was great to see some new faces and hear their input.

    March 21, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Thanks for a nice time. I do wish more of the ladies had read the book so we could have discussed the ending.

    March 21, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Have out of town guests coming in this weekend for the whole week.

    March 15, 2013

10 went

  • Judy
    Organizer
    Event Host
  • A former member
  • A former member
  • A former member
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