The Turmoil

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University of Illinois Press, 2003 - Fiction - 348 pages
A familiar midwestern novel in the tradition of Sherwood Anderson and Sinclair Lewis, The Turmoil was the best-selling novel of 1915. It is set in a small, quiet city--never named but closely resembling the author's hometown of Indianapolis--that is quickly being transformed into a bustling, money-making nest of competitors more or less overrun by "the worshippers of Bigness."
"There is a midland city in the heart of fair, open country, a dirty and wonderful city nesting dingily in the fog of its own smoke," begins The Turmoil, the first volume of Pulitzer Prize-winner Booth Tarkington's "Growth" trilogy. A narrative of loss and change, a love story, and a warning about the potential evils of materialism, the book chronicles two midwestern families trying to cope with the onset of industrialization.
Tarkington believed that culture could flourish even as the country was increasingly fueled by material progress. The Turmoil, the first great success of his career, tells the intertwined stories of two families: the Sheridans, whose integrity wanes as their wealth increases, and the Vertrees, who remain noble but impoverished. Linked by the romance between a Sheridan son and a Vertrees daughter, the story of the two families provides a dramatic view of what America was like on the verge of a new order.
An introduction by Lawrence R. Rodgers places the novel squarely in the social and cultural context of the Progressive Era. The book also features illustrations by C. E. Chambers.
 

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User Review  - jeffome - LibraryThing

An enjoyable easy read - A good early 20th century family drama.....wealthy driven family shuns the black sheep dreamer in the family since that 'drive and greed' gene seems to have been missed ... Read full review

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Contents

CHAPTER I
1
CHAPTER II
6
CHAPTER III
13
CHAPTER IV
24
CHAPTER V
36
CHAPTER VI
46
CHAPTER VII
59
CHAPTER VIII
69
CHAPTER XVIII
188
CHAPTER XIX
197
CHAPTER XX
206
CHAPTER XXI
214
CHAPTER XXII
230
CHAPTER XXIII
238
CHAPTER XXIV
250
CHAPTER XXV
261

CHAPTER IX
81
CHAPTER X
96
CHAPTER XI
112
CHAPTER XII
123
CHAPTER XIII
135
CHAPTER XIV
145
CHAPTER XV
157
CHAPTER XVI
165
CHAPTER XVII
171
CHAPTER XXVI
268
CHAPTER XXVII
277
CHAPTER XXVIII
288
CHAPTER XXIX
300
CHAPTER XXX
310
CHAPTER XXXI
320
CHAPTER XXXII
330
CHAPTER XXXIII
339
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About the author (2003)

Newton Booth Tarkington was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on July 29, 1869. He was educated at Phillips Exeter Academy, than spent his first two years of college at Purdue University and his last two at Princeton University. When his class graduated in 1893, he lacked sufficient credits for a degree. Upon leaving Princeton, he returned to Indiana determined to pursue a career as a writer. Tarkington was an early member of The Dramatic Club, founded in 1889, and often wrote plays and directed and acted in its productions. After a five-year apprenticeship full of publishers' rejection slips, Tarkington enjoyed a huge commercial success with The Gentleman from Indiana, which was published in 1899. He produced a total of 171 short stories, 21 novels, 9 novellas, and 19 plays along with a number of movie scripts, radio dramas, and even illustrations over the course of a career that lasted from 1899 until his death in 1946. His novels included Monsieur Beaucaire, The Flirt, Seventeen, Gentle Julia, and The Turmoil. He won the Pulitzer Prize in fiction in 1919 and 1922 for his novels The Magnificent Ambersons and Alice Adams. He used the political knowledge he acquired while serving one term in the Indiana House of Representatives in the short story collection In the Arena. In collaboration with dramatist Harry Leon Wilson, Tarkington wrote The Man from Home, the first of many successful Broadway plays. He wrote children's stories in the final phase of his career. He died on May 19, 1946 after an illness.

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