The Rules Do Not Apply

The Rules Do Not Apply

A Memoir

Book - 2017 | First edition.
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * A gorgeous memoir about a woman overcoming dramatic loss and finding reinvention

"Cheryl Strayed meets a Nora Ephron movie. You'll laugh, ugly cry, and finish it before the weekend's over."-- theSkimm

Named one of the best books of 2017 so far by Time and Entertainment Weekly

When 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.

In this "deeply human and deeply moving" ( The New York Times Book Review ) memoir, Levy chronicles the adventure and heartbreak of being, in her own words, "a woman who is free to do whatever she chooses." Her story of resilience becomes an unforgettable portrait of the shifting forces in our culture, of what has changed--and of what is eternal.

Praise for The Rules Do Not Apply

"Levy has the rare gift of seeing herself with fierce, unforgiving clarity. And she deploys prose to match, raw and agile. She plumbs the commotion deep within and takes the measure of her have-it-all generation." -- The Atlantic

"[ The Rules Do Not Apply ] is a short, sharp American memoir in the Mary Karr tradition of life-chronicling. Which is to say that Levy, like Karr, is a natural writer who is also as unsparing and bleakly hilarious as it's possible to be about oneself. . . . I devoured her story in one sitting." -- Financial Times

"It's an act of courage to hunt for meaning within grief, particularly if the search upends your life and shakes out the contents for all the world to sift through. Ariel Levy embarks on the hunt beautifully in her new memoir." -- Chicago Tribune

"I read it in one big messy gulp, because it is beautiful and heartbreaking and unruly and real. You should preorder it immediately so you can fall into her complicated, funny, and finely wrought world as soon as humanly possible." --Lenny.com

"A thoroughly modern memoir, the elements of The Rules Do Not Apply seem plucked not from the script of Girls, which has also been exploring reproductive issues of late, but Transparent-- even Portlandia. " -- The New York Times

"Frank and unflinchingly sincere . . . A gut-wrenching, emotionally charged work of soul-baring writing in the spirit of Joan Didion, Helen Macdonald, and Elizabeth Gilbert, The Rules Do Not Apply is a must-read for women." --Bustle

"Unflinching and intimate, wrenching and revelatory, Ariel Levy's powerful memoir about love, loss, and finding one's way shimmers with truth and heart on every page." --Cheryl Strayed

"Every deep feeling a human is capable of will be shaken loose by this profound book. Ariel Levy has taken grief and made art out of it." --David Sedaris

"Ariel Levy is a writer of uncompromising honesty, remarkable clarity, and surprising humor gathered from the wreckage of tragedy. Her account of life doing its darnedest to topple her, and her refusal to be knocked down, will leave you shaken and inspired. I am the better for having read this book." --Lena Dunham
Publisher: New York : Random House, [2017]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780812996937
0812996933
Branch Call Number: 920.5 LEV
Characteristics: xi, 207 pages

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wmtlady
Oct 02, 2017

One of my worst reading decisions has been to keep reading-skimming-reading after I found out how poorly this book was laid out. But I kept looking for some redemption in the author's story (it is, after all, a memoir); there was not. For me it only got worse. When a person realizes that they are not and can never be "in control of their life"--that is the best and most logical time to turn to God for true orientation and understanding of them self, their value, their purpose, etc. Not this person. She is worthy of much prayer and compassion, but not the paper and efforts of many people to put her writing into a book.

s
singasong70
Sep 23, 2017

Fascinating to hear how somebody tried to circumvent "the rules" by applying her own - to ill effect I might add, nor sure whose rules she's referring to in the title. Nor surprised about outcome of pregnancy, interesting couple with so many problems considered parenthood a good idea. Doesn't mention divorce though mentions marriage ending and by the way, why did Emma get married in white? (Just asking.)

cmlibrary_lmansfield Jul 22, 2017

A touching memoir about love and loss. Levy's writing is beautiful, compelling, and connecting as she relates her own heartbreaking experiences to universal truths. Warning, this one will definitely make you cry.

s
Sandra_SMB
Jul 09, 2017

Ariel does an amazing job of describing the incredible lonely and severe anguish she felts after loosing her child due to a miscarriage. I have never been pregnant, but I know the feeling of having to move far away from a dear little boy I know in another country.... (the child I never had).

a
aday622
Jun 27, 2017

I am a notoriously slow reader, but read this in 2 days, it was so compelling. Levy's writing is beautifully eloquent and honest. Her story is both happy and tragic, and while she admittedly makes some poor choices in life, her reflection on this is insightful. I wished for a more conclusive ending, but somehow it perfectly completed her story.

l
lilypad_1
Jun 02, 2017

Did not enjoy, only finished it because I like to hear about women's travel adventures but she did not have many of those. It seemed to me like I was reading her unedited journal, some introspection but not anything like Cheryl Strayed.

i
Indoorcamping
May 25, 2017

This woman is the best interviewer I've heard lately which is why I finally took the time to read this book. She is upbeat and positive and so good at getting people to share their experiences, and has such original ways of responding. So reading her I figured she'd be that positive and unique, even though she's known for her tragic stories on podcasts and er completely, awfully sad story, "Thanksgiving in Mongolia."

Somehow the happy and the sad come together perfectly in a beautiful way, sharing in her original voice her original life. I think I read it in a day. I wanted to give her a hug, wanted to bake her cookies, wanted to thank her. I still do.

o
ownedbydoxies
May 01, 2017

Written in an easy, friendly voice, this book chronicles Levy's life with her parents, her move to independence and love, and then the losses she faced. It's interesting and engaging and I'd love to read more from her.

VaughanPLRachelP Apr 12, 2017

Ariel Levy has this really honest, straight-forward way of writing about her life that I really liked. Her memoir was sometimes difficult to read - sometimes as she was making choices I wouldn't have, other times as I was reading about her suffering and her happy life falling apart in ways that couldn't have been predicted. Recommended for all memoir fans, and especially fans of Cheryl Strayed.

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