The Rules Do Not Apply

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The Rules Do Not Apply
224 pages; Random House
"In the last few months, I have lost my son, my spouse, and my house," begins Ariel Levy's electric memoir, The Rules Do Not Apply. In it, Levy, a New Yorker writer known for acute observations on sex, gender, and politics, as well as profiles of colorful iconoclasts, turns a probing eye on herself. Though the book's wrenching core is the miscarriage the author suffers when five months pregnant and on assignment in Mongolia—"My baby was as pretty as a seashell," she writes—it's about so much more. For any woman who's ever questioned whether she can have a successful career and be a nurturing wife and mother, Levy's unsparing quest to "make a meaning" out of her own life amid infidelity, her wife's alcoholism and the loss of the island home they shared will pierce like a howl in the darkness. In piecing together her own narrative, Levy finds acceptance, acknowledging finally that "everybody doesn't get everything."
— Michele Filgate