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By Francesca Segal

*** Winner of the 2012 Costa First Novel Award *** "It is irresistible this novel's wit, grace, and charm."
--Lauren Groff, writer of The Monsters of Templeton and Arcadia

A clever and slyly humorous story of affection, temptation, confusion, and dedication; a successful and wonderfully achieved recasting of Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence.

Newly engaged and unthinkingly self-satisfied, twenty-eight-year-old Adam Newman is the prize trap of Temple Fortune, a small, tight-knit Jewish suburb of London. He has been relationship Rachel Gilbert considering that they have been either 16 and now, to the comfort and happiness of the complete Gilbert relatives, they're ultimately to marry. To Adam, Rachel embodies the top values of Temple Fortune; she is blameless, traditional, and completely safe in her community--a position during which everybody nonetheless understands the whereabouts in their nursery university classmates. Marrying Rachel will cement Adam's function in a hot, inclusive relatives he loves.

But because the colossal equipment of the marriage gathers momentum, Adam feels the 1st faint touches of claustrophobia, and while Rachel's more youthful cousin Ellie Schneider strikes domestic from ny, she unsettles Adam greater than he'd care to confess. Ellie--beautiful, weak, and fiercely independent--offers a liberation that he hadn't recognized existed: a freedom from the loving interference and not easy parochialism of North West London. Adam reveals himself wondering every little thing, abruptly torn among defense and pleasure, culture and independence. What could he be lacking by way of staying as regards to home?

Francesca Segal was once born in London and studied at Oxford and Harvard college ahead of turning into a journalist and critic. Her paintings has seemed in Granta, The Guardian, and The Observer, between different guides. for 3 years she wrote the Debut Fiction Column in The Observer and has been a good points author at Tatler. She divides her time among London and New York.

"With understated wit, empathy and a cinematic eye of aspect, Segal brings alive a number of characters so powerful for you to simply think them onscreen... A successful debut novel."

"Inspired by means of The Age of Innocence, Segal's booklet is hotter, funnier, and paints a extra dynamic and human portrait of a sensible neighborhood that may be a awesome juxtaposition to Wharton's chilly social strata."
--Publishers Weekly, starred review

"A artful homage... [Segal] writes with attractive warmth."
--Entertainment Weekly, Grade: B+

"Readers who take pleasure in fast paced, lightly satirical literary novels, fanatics of Allegra Goodman, and publication workforce individuals will discover a Shabbat dinner's worthy of noshing during this complete debut novel."
--Library Journal

"An emotionally and intellectually astute debut."

"[A] pleasant first novel... clever, witty and observant."
--The London Times

"Segal writes with an understated elegance."
--The Observer (UK)

"The Innocents is written with knowledge and deliciously refined wit... this can be a splendidly readable novel: dependent, entire, and romantic."
--Andre Aciman, writer of Out of Egypt, Call Me by way of Your Name, and Alibis

"A relocating, humorous, richly drawn story... jam-packed with actual pleasures and unforeseen knowledge, this ebook sweeps you along."
--Esther Freud, writer of Love Falls and Lucky Break

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She sought after the body in brushed stainless-steel and a cream mount, which I agreed with whilst she first introduced it, yet as soon as I’d lived with it for an afternoon or I observed that it didn’t want a mount in any respect and gunmetal grey used to be way more proper. but when she disagrees simply deliver it again. ” As he spoke Ian were unwinding the padding from round the picture and now he leaned it in entrance of the tulip canvas for Adam to examine. Adam glanced at it with out a lot curiosity, looking ahead to to determine a replica of a Chagall just like the 4 others that hung in Ziva’s hallway. as an alternative it used to be a photo of Ellie, nearly life-size, bathed in gray-green shadow and chlorophyll-green gentle and looking out extra extravagantly sensual than he had ever obvious her. It used to be an easy photograph. She stood leaning opposed to a tree trunk, her hair lengthy and rainy, her physique rainy and oiled. He felt a surprise of discomfort underneath his ribs; his belly gotten smaller. For one unusual, lurching second he felt an urge to be ill. “It’s received attractive balance,” Ian saw. Adam persisted to stare with no talking. He knew right away that it used to be the image taken for the Pirelli calendar and he might have given all he had in that rapid to trace down and ruin each reproduction. It used to be a ways worse than imagining a instances sq. billboard on show ahead of thousands. few thousand males may still consider possession of her or any kind of inner most, unique entry to her, even to this unmarried picture, was once nauseating. He had identified that she used to be in it—Jaffa had made a disapproving reference over dinner months in the past. Ziva were the one one on the desk to safeguard the choice and were staunch in her defense—“I were gaining knowledge of it on the web. the pictures i've got noticeable from the Pirelli are infrequently tremendous based and she or he will insist, she has promised me, on preserving a few regulate of the styling. the main attractive girls have posed for it on this planet. Why should still my Ellie no longer declare her position between them if she used to be invited? ” Beside him, Rachel had wilted. Ellie had implied that Rachel may need resented greater than simply her good looks. but it had constantly been so transparent to him that Rachel used to be the enviable one, and that she may need begrudged the eye her mom and dad had paid to a bereaved little woman was once no longer a sympathetic portrait. yet virtually once he’d thought of the assumption he’d disregarded it. regardless of a common lack of confidence in the course of moments whilst she measured herself opposed to her cousin, Rachel cherished Ellie and had continuously fearful approximately her—he may name up a decade’s stories of her affection and difficulty. Ellie was once envious, and he understood why. yet Rachel used to be innocent. And so throughout the Pirelli debate he had desired to make her consider higher and had disagreed with Ziva for the 1st time in his lifestyles, announcing, “Yes yet Ziva, if she desires to be taken heavily then she has to prevent doing this stuff,” and beside him Rachel had sat up a bit straighter and he were blissful he’d spoken. however it appeared that Ziva had taken a stand opposed to the overall disapproval—there used to be an area cleared above her sitting room mantelpiece for this photograph that she’d requested Rachel to assemble, a flag waved in public aid of her favourite granddaughter.

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