We gave it a B
Gazing out the window while enduring a decorous ladies’ bridge party, young Mary Nell sees her gorgeous friend Lizzie Carswell emerge from New York City’s Gramercy Park Hotel accompanied by another friend’s fiancé. The ensuing scandal is the centerpiece of this intelligent, if wan, little novel, One Sunday Morning, Amy Ephron’s sober Jazz Age take on Sex and the City. Ephron’s women get hangovers, bob their hair, and stay out all night, but the underlying sexual rules haven’t changed much since Edith Wharton’s day. And while Ephron writes beautifully, she skates a little too safely across the brittle surface of society, never quite capturing the impact of its strictures on real lives.