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The Reef

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Edith Wharton was at the height of her enormous literary powers when she published The Reef in 1912, and everything about this novel suggests a mastery so complete that it can achieve nothing higher. The plot, which tells of the drastic effects of a casual sexual betrayal on the lives of four Americans in France, is expertly turned, suspenseful, continually compelling. An assured, unhurried dramatic instinct governs the great moments of confrontation and revelation. The central characters, two of whom are innocents and two of whom are burdened by experience and tinged with desperation, are perfectly delineated: their relationships to one another are constructed with a classical feeling for harmony, proportion, and balance. And the entire novel is imbued with a clear-eyed wisdom about both the possibilities and the limitations of human love. Wharton would go on to write splendid books after completing The Reef, but nowhere does she display a finer command of her art than she does here.

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the Reef

Hello, well i'm happy to be here in online-literature, cuz i've found here many useful things that i was searching for. well, i'm writing about Edith Wharton's heroines (New York upper class ladies) and i've chosen The Age of Innocence, The House of Mirth, and The Custom of the Country. But my teacher told me to add two more novels. so does The Reef fit for this paper or not?? i started to read it and the setting is in Paris and London, but the heroine Anna is originally from America... well i'll be gratefull to all of you especially those who'll help me yours Lit_stu

just loved it

I just got done reading the reef. it is one of the most wonderful novels out there. Edith captured so many different aspects of love, suspense and happiness. The book releaves a new dimension everytime something, or someone is introduced. The novel will have anyone contemplating over the lovers. Thank you Edith for writing.

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