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The Rules Do Not Apply
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The Rules Do Not Apply

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When thirty-eight-year-old New Yorker writer Ariel Levy left for a reporting trip to Mongolia in 2012, she was pregnant, married, financially secure, and successful on her own terms. A month later, none of that was true.

Levy picks you up and hurls you through the story of how she built an unconventional life and then watched it fall apart with astonishing speed. Like much of her generation, she was raised to resist traditional rules--about work, about love, and about womanhood.

"I wanted what we all want: everything. We want a mate who feels like family and a lover who is exotic, surprising. We want to be youthful adventurers and middle-aged mothers. We want intimacy and autonomy, safety and stimulation, reassurance and novelty, coziness and thrills. But we can't have it all."

In this memoir, Levy chronicles the adventure and heartbreak of being "a woman who is free to do whatever she chooses." Her own story of resilience becomes an unforgettable portrait of the shifting forces in our culture, of what has changed--and of what is eternal.

Title:The Rules Do Not Apply
Edition Language:English
ISBN:0812996933
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:224 pages
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    The Rules Do Not Apply Reviews

  • Roxane
    Apr 18, 2017

    Hmm. The writing on a sentence level is exquisite. Levy's vocabulary is just superb. This is an interesting book. Levy demonstrates self awareness and is willing to put herself on the page in uncomfor...

  • Esil
    Mar 27, 2017

    I didn’t know anything about Ariel Levy – who is a writer with The New Yorker -- but the description of her memoir sounded interesting. Well, it turns out that I would probably be happy to read an...

  • Trish
    Apr 08, 2017

    Ariel Levy always believed she could be a writer. Her mother told her it was a good idea, a normal thing for a pre-teen to aspire to, something for a teen to aim for. She was in her late teens when sh...

  • Eve
    Apr 14, 2017

    I rarely sit down with a book only to look up hours later and realize I've consumed it in its entirety. Such was the case with The Rules Do Not Apply! It was recommended on a Podcast, and I knew noth...

  • Diane
    May 20, 2017

    This memoir got a lot of hype, some of which is justified.Ariel Levy has some strong passages in the book, but parts of it felt padded and unfocused. The Rules Do Not Apply is an extension of an artic...

  • Julia Shaw
    Mar 09, 2017

    It's tough to rate a grief memoir without feeling like you're making a personal comment about the author or her experiences, so I feel a need to qualify my choice of three stars... I'm very impressed ...

  • Jenny (Reading Envy)
    Mar 31, 2017

    I had read such mixed reviews of this one that I almost didn't read it, but I'm glad I did. Where other people saw an unlikable writer, I only saw honesty, about relationships, deciding what kind of l...

  • Joy Clark
    Dec 24, 2016

    It's billed as a memoir, but The Rules Do Not Apply feels more like an exploration of grief, an attempt to make sense of tragedy and loss. And it reads beautifully. Levy doesn't pull any punches - s...

  • Bonnie Brody
    Feb 02, 2017

    Ariel Levy is a woman who grew up knowing she could have everything. She believed in the kindness of Mother Nature, the voice of reason (if it came from her), the importance of her own worth, and the ...

  • Julie Ehlers
    Nov 17, 2016

    I'm in Ariel Levy's camp for life. While I thought Female Chauvinist Pigs didn't quite live up to its potential, I appreciated its thesis and Levy's engaging writing, and reading her New Yorker essays...