The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy
A Memoir

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Synopsis

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A gorgeous memoir about a woman overcoming dramatic loss and finding reinvention—for readers of Cheryl Strayed and Joan Didion

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
 

About Ariel Levy

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Ariel Levy is a contributing editor at New York magazine. This is her first book.
 
Published March 14, 2017 by Random House. 225 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Gay & Lesbian, Health, Fitness & Dieting. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Apr 16 2017
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Weeks as Bestseller

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Rules Do Not Apply

Kirkus Reviews

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An award-winning journalist tells the story of how her formerly charmed life in which "lost things could always be replaced" came to a brutally abrupt end.

Feb 28 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

http://news.nationalpost.com

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It’s Levy’s voice in The Rules Do Not Apply that wins us over, at once commanding and vulnerable...With its hot pink cover, Levy’s memoir seems covertly retrogressive.

Mar 16 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

Star Tribune

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Levy is an incredibly talented writer who has built a solid body of work, but “The Rules Do Not Apply” does not have the same energy that her magazine writing is known for.

Mar 24 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

The Independent

Her narrative rattles along at the breakneck pace of a gripping thriller, yet her writing is never anything short of crystal clear.

Mar 15 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

In her new memoir, “The Rules Do Not Apply,” Ariel Levy comes face to face with grief ... This book doesn't pretend to be anything but a meditation on grief, in the ...

May 17 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

20Something Reads

A time to rediscover reading for pleasure --- and finally, read what you want.”.

Mar 14 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

20Something Reads

For those finding the models of maturity unattainable, for those struggling with defining themselves even with the growing options offered, for those who have felt hollow while following all the rules, this book will resonate.

Mar 23 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

The Sydney Morning Herald

The Rules Do Not Apply asks what happens when you can no longer control how the story unfolds. The result is a dependable antidote to loss and a valuable life lesson – with a happy (or at least intriguing) ending to boot.

May 03 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

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This book is haunting; it is smart and engaging. It was so engrossing that I read it in a day. But it’s also a deeply uneven book whose power in some moments only illuminates the absence of this force elsewhere.

Apr 03 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

London Evening Standard

So it’s interesting that the New Yorker writer’s second book, a memoir, confronts a feminist taboo: the cruelty of biology.

Mar 16 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

Elle

After Levy deliberated for years about whether to have a child, enduring the loss of her son—whose tiny, 19-week-gestated self is described in detail, down to his eyebrows—is compounded by the loss of her relationship with Lucy, who had struggled for years with alcoholism.

Mar 08 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

http://ew.com

If Levy comes off as self-lacerating and self-regarding in equal measure, well, you can’t spell memoir without a “me” and an “i”…and her “me” is still more interesting than most.

Mar 14 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

https://www.timeout.com

Two of the New Yorker’s shining stars—reporter Ariel Levy and TV critic Emily Nussbaum—gather together to discuss Levy's new memoir The Rules Do Not Apply and their shared history as colleagues at New York magazine, the New Yorker and beyond.

Mar 14 2017 | Read Full Review of The Rules Do Not Apply: A Memoir

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