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Download The Custom of the Country Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Custom of the Country, by Edith Wharton Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (3,432 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Edith Wharton Narrator: Grace Conli Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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One of Edith Wharton’s most acclaimed works, The Custom of the Country is a blistering indictment of materialism, power, and misplaced values. Its heroine, Undine Spragg, is one of the most ruthless characters in all of literature, as selfishly unscrupulous as she is fiercely beautiful. When her family acquires a small fortune, they leave America’s heartland and head east. As Undine climbs the social ladder through a series of marriages and affairs, she shows little concern for who she has to step on to get anything and everything she desires. Her rise to the top of New York’s elite society—before moving on to conquer Paris as well—provides a poignant and scathing commentary on the unquenchable ambitions of America’s nouveau riche.

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Quotes & Awards

  • The Custom of the Country is one of the most enjoyable great novels ever written. Not all enjoyable novels are great, and not all great novels are enjoyable. This is, supremely, both.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Of all Edith Wharton novels, The Custom of the Country is my absolute favorite…Grace Conlin’s reading of Blackstone’s unabridged version is splendid, her voice fruity, elegant, and utterly ruthless.” 


  • “Brilliantly written.”

    Saturday Review (London)

  • “A splendid and memorable piece of work.”


  • “Edith Wharton’s finest achievement.”

    Elizabeth Hardwick

  • New York Public Library Staff Pick in November 2007
  • An Entertainment Weekly Pick for 12 Books to Ease Your Downton Abbey Withdrawl

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Janet | 2/17/2014

    " Surprise! I liked it - but I like all Edith Wharton. Probably ranks as one of my favorite of her's "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Stephanie Pugh | 2/12/2014

    " This book illustrates the consequences of conspicuous consumption and explores marriage as a woman's profession. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Carol | 2/10/2014

    " My favorite kind of book--old. Story of Undine Spragg who is never content with her lot in life and who feels it is everyone's due to make her happy. But she is a pawn, a symbol for the way capitalism with its excesses became the measure of a man/woman in the U.S. Crossing the Pond frequently, she charms and makes a fool of herself at the expense (literally) of all she encounters. Devoid of conscience, she truly introduces what T.S. Eliot called, "The Wasteland." Always love Edith Wharton! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by DiDi | 2/9/2014

    " Excellent writing. However, characters have no redeeming qualities. All the excess and want for more is sickening. Child was pawn between parents and families in the struggle for more money and material goods. "

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