Rules of Civility, Paperback Book

Rules of Civility Paperback

3.5 out of 5 (13 ratings)


In a jazz bar on the last night of 1937, watching a quartet because she couldn't afford to see the whole ensemble, there were certain things Katey Kontent knew: the location of every old church in Manhattanhow to sneak into the cinemahow to type eighty words a minute, five thousand an hour, and nine million a yearand that if you can still lose yourself in a Dickens novel then everything is going to be fine.By the end of the year she'd learned:how to live like a redheadand insist upon the very best;that riches can turn to rags in the trip of a heartbeat,chance encounters can be fated, and the word 'yes' can be a poison.That's how quickly New York City comes about, like a weathervane, or the head of a cobra.

Time tells which.'A delicious and memorable novel that will leave you wistful - and desperate for a martini.' Stylist


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Showing 1 - 5 of 13 reviews.

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Review by

The Great Gatsy, this is decidedly not. Towles uses a dash (--) to set off dialogue instead of the standard quotation marks, thus proving that there is a visible annoyance multiple times on every page. His characters have ridiculous names and it's difficult to take them seriously, especially since they seem to not take themselves seriously. I enjoy reading about this time period, but this book was too vague and too untethered to truly reel me in. I actually have no idea what the plot was.

Review by

I chose Rules of Civility brcause an acquaintance said it was a "great book". I thought it was a pleasant read but wouldn't go so far as to say "great book.". It's the story of young people from various backgrounds living in New York in the 1930's. One strong theme is the struggle those from poorer backgrounds have "making it". As with many books with wealthy characters from the early 20th century there is an amazing amount of alcohol consumed...was it really like that?!

Review by

This is the story of the coupling and uncoupling of a group of friends in 1930's New York. To give away anymore of the plot would be to ruin this elegantly written book. I couldn't put this book down once I started and I loved the marvelously named heroine Katey Kontent. It's Kon-tent like the state of being something Katey ironically has trouble achieving. Anyone who can remember what it was like to be in your twenties, charting your course in life for the first time with your friends by your side can relate to this story. 1930's Manhattan was also exquisitely rendered. What I wouldn't give to step out there for one night like Owen Wilson's time travel in Woody Allan's movie Midnight in Paris. Reading this book is the next best thing.

Review by

One year, 1938. New York City. "High Society" Tinker Grey, perfecting perfection according to George Washington's Rules of Civility and with Anne Grandin's "tutelage." Working women Katie Kontent (the narrator) and Evie Ross, searching for their identities yet possessing strength of character. Peripheral characters Bitsy, Wallace Wolcott (I thought he was wonderful), Dicky Vanderwhile, Henry Grey (Tinker's brother), Mason Tate...wonderful. Rules of Civility is a character driven book, with many vignettes within the plot line. The language is superb.Thanks to the female customer in a wonderful little book store in St Joe, MI, who so highly recommended this book. It's a gem.

Review by

I am adding this book because I read 138 pages!I read about 40 books of all types a year so when something is b - o - r - i n -gjust sign me EV Rewoman!This book's narrator was such a downer of a person. Even at the supposedly tender ageof say 24 when the main story takes place she sounded like a jaded,older GUY! Yes,from the beginning pages I thought it was a man narrating the story until she looked for herhusband!On and on we seemed to be going to no good place so I gave up on this sad story.Who wants to be depressed in the summer?What a shame as the cover of this book is delightful and the story and era soundedso interesting....................

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