The Rules of Engagement

The Rules of Engagement

3.29 (637 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Hardback
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'I have come to believe that there can be no adequate preparation for the sadness that comes at the end, the sheer regret that one's life is finished, that one's failures remain indelible and one's successes illusory.' Elizabeth and Betsy are old school friends. Born in 1948 and unready for the sixties, they had high hopes of the lives they would lead, even though their circumstances were so different. When they meet again in their thirties, Elizabeth, married to the safe, older Digby is relieving the boredom of a cosy but childless marriage with an affair. Betsy seems to have found real romance in Paris. Are their lives taking off, or are they just making more of the wrong choices without even realising it?
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Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 142 x 218 x 28mm | 458.13g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 0670914363
  • 9780670914364

Review quote

This is Brookner's 22nd novel, and, as one might expect, it deals splendidly with human relationships. Elizabeth and Betsy are old friends dating back to their schooldays. Elizabeth's mother disapproved of their friendship, moaning at her daughter, "Can't you find someone more suitable?" Meaning someone richer, more fortunate, more useful. But Elizabeth is her own person, and she goes off and marries an older man, Digby, who is rather dull and boring. Elizabeth has no children, and embarks on an affair while Betsy seems to find romance in Paris. It is a clever, entertaining novel, beautifully observed.
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About Anita Brookner

Anita Brookner was born in London in 1928. She trained as an art historian and taught at the Courtauld Institute of Art until 1988. She lives in London SW10. THE RULES OF ENGAGEMENT is the 22nd novel from this Booker Prize-winning author.
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Rating details

637 ratings
3.29 out of 5 stars
5 13% (84)
4 32% (204)
3 33% (212)
2 14% (88)
1 8% (49)
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