The Age of Desire

  • by Jennie Fields
  • Narrated by Meredith Mitchell
  • 14 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

They say that behind every great man is a woman. Behind Edith Wharton, there was Anna Bahlmann - her governess turned literary secretary, and her mothering, nurturing friend. When, at the age of 45, Edith falls passionately in love with a dashing, younger journalist, Morton Fullerton, and is at last opened to the world of the sensual, it threatens everything certain in her life - but especially her abiding friendship with Anna. As Edith's marriage crumbles, the women must face the fragility at the heart of all friendships.
The Age of Desire takes us on a vivid journey through Wharton's early Gilded Age world: Paris with its glamorous literary salons and dark secret cafes, the Wharton's elegant house in Lenox, Massachusetts, and Henry James's manse in Rye, England. Edith's real letters and intimate diary entries are woven throughout the book. The Age of Desire brings to life one of literature's most beloved writers, whose own story was as complex and nuanced as that of any of the heroines she created.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Lovely story about a late blooming woman

What did you love best about The Age of Desire?

Edith Wharton! In her excellent novel, Fields delicately traces the sexual and sensual blooming of a mature woman, revealing both the immense joy and the inevitable complications of such a journey.


Who was your favorite character and why?

I love the Wharton character because I love Edith Wharton's own fiction but Anna, the unassuming secretary, may be the real heroine.


What does Meredith Mitchell bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

a variety of voices though the men who are supposed to sound Bostonian sound more southern to me


Who was the most memorable character of The Age of Desire and why?

Morton Fullerton - a lover and a cad but also a man capable of appreciating sensuality in all its forms


Any additional comments?

Someone should have coached the narrator on her German! The pronunciation was way beyond incorrect. It's a quibble but there are quite a lot of German phrases in the narrative- one actually key - and it would have taken no time at all to explain how to say them correctly. jarred my enjoyment every time!

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- Crystal Ockenfuss "germanjunkie"

Fantastic book ruined by beginning narrator

Meredith, please don't give up, but do practice more or stick to female characters which you do very well, albeit somewhat inconsistently just yet. But oh my. I just happened to have the print copy first and thought, just maybe, the audiobook would be a delight. Why? Any Edith Wharton fans out there will LOVE the book. And maybe contribute to Jennie Fields, author, to have this gem re-narrated. Because the original print version IS that excellent! For now, go to the public library or order it, 'cause this 'performance' not only shows the difficulty re the art & craft of narration but also makes you wanna cry.
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- Susan Mather "Good books and peaceful days..."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-02-2012
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.