Be omnivorous, don't just read one kind of book, read everything. - Richard Wagamese

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Review: The Rules of Civility by Amor Towles

Publisher: Penguin Books
Pages: 352
Released: 2011
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 2/5


Best friends and roommates Katey and Eve are living it up in New York city during the late 1930's, single girls who earn their own money, and know how to work the men to stretch their dollars. Katey is a native of New York without family, while Eve is from the midwest, and has cut ties with her family. A chance encounter with Tinker Grey, a rich banker gives them a glimpse into his glamourous world. The three become fast friends, and Tinker has two girls he can easily pick from. While Tinker seems more attracted to Katey, an accident leads Tinker to feel guilty, and he decides to care for, a fragile, broken Eve. Katey begins to step away and leave the two together.      


I really expectead to love this book but I couldn't. It also took me awhile to realize why, and really kept me thinking about it. There were a few reasons why I didn't like it. I didn't like the characters and I had a hard time believing that this book took place during the Great Depression. Sure, the book takes places at the end of the depression but the girls seem so careless with money and jobs. I would expect someone who lived through the depression to be more attentive. At least mention the depression a little more. At times it felt like the book took place during the 1920's but I would have to remind myself that that wasn't the case. 

Also, I felt like Katey and Eve were unconvincing characters. Katey's voice did not feel like a native New Yorker, from a blue collar family. Eve gave me the impression that she was a native New Yorker, not a midwesterner.  Both characters were not likable, and neither was Tinker. I felt like none of them had any chemistry and the love triangle confused me. I actually had a hard time to finish this one.  This one really fell flat for me.


  1. My mother was born during the Depression and she's still very frugal with her money. Sorry this didn't float your boat.

  2. The synopsis sounds great, too bad it was not written better.

  3. Not picking this one up. It's hard to like a novel when you don't like the characters and things don't jive with the story.

  4. Sorry this one was a disappointment.

  5. I have heard that others had problems with this one as well, and that makes me less enthused about reading it. I can honestly say that I had been really excited about this book, but the mixed feelings just really tore those illusions away from me. Sorry you didn't enjoy this one.

  6. That's disappointing. I heard so many good things about this one. I actually started reading it a little while ago, but I haven't been reading much at all lately. I don't really know, but I wonder during the depression wasn't there a group of people that it didn't affect as much as others?