A Thoroughly Dislikable Character

View "The Brave Escape of Edith Wharton"

View “The Brave Escape of Edith Wharton”

Undine Spragg was one of the most dislikable heroines Edith Wharton ever created. This social “swell,” star of the novel, The Custom of the Country, ruthlessly trampled over family, friends, and enemies alike in her quest to rise as far as possible above her humble Apex, Kansas roots. There was hardly a redeeming word to say about Undine back in 1913, when the book was published, and yet neither readers nor critics could resist being pulled into Undine’s corner as she single-handedly steamrolled into high society on both sides of the Atlantic.

Scarlett Johansson is about to become Undine Spragg.  There’s online chatter about a new 8-episode series (with the same title as the novel) about to hit the small screen. We’ll see if Ms. Johansson’s Undine can walk the tightrope between despicable and engaging as masterfully as Edith Wharton’s original did!

While you’re waiting to meet Undine Spragg, take a peek behind the scenes to see what Edith Wharton was dealing with in her own life while she was writing the novel, order a free Custom of the Country download, or purchase a hardcopy of the book.