The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
“For inspiration, I go back to my favorite books, the ones I wish I had written. My No. 1 go-to book is ‘The Age of Innocence,’ by Edith Wharton.” – Roxane Gay
The Age of Innocence, for which Wharton won the Pulitzer Prize in 1920, is one of her most memorable novels.
Newland Archer, a restrained young attorney, is engaged to the lovely May Welland but falls in love with May’s beautiful and unconventional cousin, Countess Ellen Olenska. Despite his fear of a dull marriage to May, Archer goes through with the ceremony — persuaded by his own sense of honor, family, and societal pressures.