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1. A Select Party
2. The Scarlet Letter
3. Twice-Told Tales (Modern Library
4. Nathaniel Hawthorne : Tales and
5. Mosses from an Old Manse (Modern
6. The Scarlet Letter: A Kaplan SAT
7. The House of the Seven Gables
8. Hawthorne's Short Stories
9. Selected Tales and Sketches (The
10. Nathaniel Hawthorne's Tales (Norton
11. The Celestial Railroad and Other
12. The Cambridge Companion to Nathaniel
13. Nathaniel Hawthorne : Collected
14. Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne.
15. Sunday at Home
16. Hawthorne: Tales and Sketches
17. The Great Stone Face: And Other
18. Twice Told Tales
19. The Cambridge Introduction to
20. Hawthorne: A Life

1. A Select Party
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-07-11)
list price: US$0.99
Asin: B003VIWQGO
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Editorial Review

Product Description
A Select Party by Nathaniel Hawthorne
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2. The Scarlet Letter
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 140 Pages (2010-10-13)
list price: US$6.85 -- used & new: US$6.85
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1453890580
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
THE SCARLET LETTER is considered Nathaniel Hawthorne's most famous novel-and the first quintessentially American novel in style, theme, and language.Amazon.com Review
Amazon Exclusive: Editorial Director Elda Rotor on Classics That Never Go Out of Style

Dear Amazon Readers:

Penguin Classics is pleased to publish three new Penguin Classics Deluxe editions of Wuthering Heights, The Scarlet Letter and Pride and Prejudice, with covers designed by world-renowned fashion illustrator Ruben Toledo.

With Penguin's history of excellence in book design and following the success of our continued series of award-winning deluxe editions with covers by leading graphic and comic artists, we wanted to explore another inspiring world of design for Penguin Classics. Roseanne Serra, our art director for this series, which we call in-house the Couture Classics, had the vision of inviting fashion illustrators to create specially commissioned art work.My first choice of an artist to ask was Ruben Toledo, whose work I have admired since I was a student combing through pages of the earlier incarnations of Paper and Details magazines. I always found his drawings of women dressed in the latest styles to be so imaginative, whimsical and surreal, that they could be characters out of beloved novels.

Ruben agreed to draw these three covers, each in a different medium of ink, watercolor or pencil, because he was attracted to the idea of creating covers for a younger generation of Penguin Classics readers and to promote literacy.They are "not your mother's Bronte" as Glamour tagged the set.Our hope is that these vibrant covers will entice general readers and students with an interest in design to delve into the stories that inspire these artistic creations.We hope that book lovers, those that cherish the old-school feel of a physical book, who love book design, fonts, and the all-around aesthetics of a beautiful book, will want all three.

Cathy and Heathcliff, Hester and Pearl, and Elizabeth and Darcy are the literary muses for these covers, and readers will enjoy Ruben's interpretations of these classic characters plus the mood, texture, and scenery inspired by them. From front to back cover, extending even to the French flaps, each cover represents a refreshing representation of the classic work through Ruben's unique artistic sensibility.

The fun of these covers is that they reiterate that classics are relevant for every generation, especially the latest one. Liesl Schillinger for the New York Times blog identifies the fun in seeing the aesthetics of today's youth embodied in Toledo's art: "Was Heathcliff--the wild child of Wuthering Heights--a 19th-century emo boy? Can you picture Jane Austen's Lizzy Bennet as a Regency gossip girl, and Darcy as her Mr. Big in knee breeches? And what about Hester Prynne--was she Nathaniel Hawthorne's idea of a colonial yummy mummy?" Nylon first blogged about Toledo's series, and the tongue-in-cheek challenge to judge a book by its cover: "While his surreal take on the Yorkshire moors or his Technicolor vision of Hester Prynne might not change the actual details of the plot, they certainly add a stylish edge to book club mainstays."

I've heard that people love the Wuthering Heights cover because it exudes the same dark Gothic sexiness of Twilight's Edward and Bella. (How perfect that Bella herself reads Wuthering Heights for advice on her own love life.) Toledo's details capturing Cathy's persona are mesmerizing, and the chic mysteriousness of Heathcliff peering above his collar captures the perfect bad-boyfriend tone.

The stark black and white Pride and Prejudice cover in silhouette is precise yet witty.(I love the chair on the back cover.) Ruben has a little extra for readers of Pride and Prejudice with a frontispiece of extra “accessories” for the cover's characters.

But my personal favorite is The Scarlet Letter cover.I love the gossiping women, who extend to the French flaps of the cover, emphasizing the size of Hester's scandal. For the font-crazed, Ruben creates various fonts of the letter "A" tacked along the fence. The rose bush, a classic image that appears in 19th-century illustrated editions, is the perfect anchor to this modern interpretation.Look at the ravishing Hester entangled by the mark she must wear on what might be a cashmere sweater dress with an utterly intimidating Pearl in tow in what could be Wolford baby tights. With such alluring images, who wouldn’t be compelled to read these novels?

What went through Ruben's mind in creating these covers?Ruben discussed his process with Women's Wear Daily, "I did approach each story as abstract images--visual quotes from a dream. As I read, I was playing the animated movie in my head. These masterpieces are all so well written."

We hope you enjoy all three books. We hope they spark your imagination and stir up passion for the classics, for Penguin Classics, so timeless and trend-setting, they never go out of style.

Best wishes,
Elda Rotor
Editorial Director, Penguin Classics

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Customer Reviews (501)

4-0 out of 5 stars Good One Book Night of Entertainment
Quick read because the book is really a short story and some of the character language can be annoying but necessary per the theme of the novel .Interesting read especially since the book was written in the late 1800s but set in our future.Not your typical "end of the world" novel with all the "glitter" and multiple story lines like Earth Abides (same genre) but for being written so long ago the author hit the nail on the head per the cascading long-term effects of a "Scarlet" event.

5-0 out of 5 stars color
My son wants to know why the cover of this book is bright green since that seems to have nothing to do with the story.I told him it was probably because is was a cheaper version and they used whatever color card stock they had sitting around the printing company.What do you think?

1-0 out of 5 stars Horrific forced reading
I will never understand why they force this book on school children, I'm sure there are many other "classic" stories that could be included in the curriculum.

1-0 out of 5 stars Unable to Review
Unfortunately, I have to say that I am very very disappointed with this order. I ordered this book on Sept 2 for my daughter to read and write a report about for school. (Report is due Oct 25) and to date, October 9, I have NOT RECEIVED it yet. When I contacted the vendor to report last week, I basically received a "sorry for your luck, but once it leaves our hands, we really don't care" type of response. Totally not impressed.

2-0 out of 5 stars whewww where to start!
Well, first off, this book is not ENTIRELY trash. in fact, the story is pretty darn good BUT the "story" can easily be rewritten in about 2 or 3 pages. almost the WHOLE story was pure detail. and not the good kind of detail,the type that has ABSOLUTELY NO RELEVANCE to the story!!! There is WAY too much detail where it doesn't matter, and the detail is VERY lacking in some places that it would really be good to have it in! At the VERY beginning, Hester goes to jail for (about) 3 years...the WHOLE TIME was totally skipped, and replaced with describing a door...this wouldn't tick me off so much if Hawthorne also described the jail but noooooo let's just talk about a door for about 20 pages and then move on to some other unimportant symbol. But like I said at the beginning, the STORY is actually VERY good and keeps you wanting to know what happens but by the time you FINALLY fight through all of the detail, you find yourself wondering if it was even worth it. Honestly, no. I see why this book is free now; no one would read it if it wasn't one of the "Required books" for high school. ... Read more

3. Twice-Told Tales (Modern Library Classics)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 432 Pages (2001-10-09)
list price: US$14.00 -- used & new: US$6.75
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0375757880
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Allegorical, supernatural and symbolic themes permeate these strange tales. Included are: "Legends of the Province House", "The Grey Champion", "Prophetic Pictures", "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment", "The Ambitious Guest", "Wakefield", "The Great Carbuncle", "David Swan", "The May-Pole of Merry Mount" and "The Threefold Destiny". (Four 90's). ... Read more

Customer Reviews (10)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Mastery of Hawthorne
The Reunion Reaper

As an English teacher at the high school level I cannot understand why so many of my colleagues do not care for Mr. Hawthorne's work. I would think that when someone gives Mr. Hawthorne due opportunity they will see the beauty and preciseness of his work. If you have not had the opportunity to read short stories that symbolize so much more than what lay in the contents of each story, I encourage you to delve into Twice Told Tales. Here you will discover a variety of work that taps into so many cavities of your psyche, not to mention discovering the experiences of a man who was obviously driven by man's seemingly natural inclination toward guilt and sin. Yes, there is a darkness and sadness to much of his work, but it is not morose or macabre like Poe. With Hawthorne humanity is in many ways, stripped away and we see, like in the "Minister's Black Veil", that we all hide behind a veil.

5-0 out of 5 stars Kindle edition
Twice-Told Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Published by MobileReference (mobi).

In your face, obvious, and heavy-handedly allegorical, still Hawthorne manages to pique my interest and hammer home his point. Switching from historically based stories to spiritual allegories, Hawthorne continually chips away at the danger of isolation. Although he clearly believed in the fallibility and evil of the human heart - particularly pointing out the religious hypocrites - he also believed that one must continue to risk and be a part of the community.

2-0 out of 5 stars This audiocassette is NOT an unabridged version
On the Amazon page the Twice Told Tales audiocassette is called UNABRIDGED in capital letters (twice!), and the review states that Hawthorne's Twice Told Tales in book form contains 39 stories. Unfortunately, the Twice Told Tales audiocassette only includes ten stories on four cassettes. This is clearly NOT an unabridged recording of Hawthorne's Twice Told Tales.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good Collection
Twice-Told Tales / 0-89577-332-5

I like Hawthorne well enough as a writer, and I love Hawthorne compared to his contemporaries, and this collection is a good example of his evolution as a writer. There are a lot of classics here, including "The Minister's Black Veil" and "Lady Eleanor's Mantle". This collection includes:

The Minister's Black Veil
The Maypole of Merry Mount
The Gentle Boy
Mr. Higginbotham's Catastrophe
The Great Carbuncle
The Prophetic Pictures
David Swan
The Hollow of the Three Hills
Fancy's Show Box
Dr. Heidegger's Experiment
Howe's Masquerade
Edward Randolph's Portrait
Lady Eleanor's Mantle
Old Esther DUdley
The Village Uncle
The Wedding Knell
The Ambitious Guest
The Sister Years
The White Old Maid
The Seven Vagabonds
Peter Goldthwaite's Treasure
Chippings with a Chisel
The Shaker Bridal
Endicott and the Red Cross
Edward Fane's Rosebud
The Threefold Destiny

4-0 out of 5 stars Twice-Told Tales
Hawthorne wrote this collection of short stories anonymously in the 1830's, first published in local papers. At the urging of a friend he signed his name and raised the money to publish it as a book in two collected volumes, a copy of which was sent to former classmate and famous writer Henry Longfellow at Harvard. Longfellow gave it a favorable review and thus launched Hawthorne out of obscurity and on the path to well known works such as The House of Seven Gables and his masterpiece The Scarlet Letter.

Overall the collection is a mixed bag, some are clearly dated while others have timeless appeal. There are a lot of stories and only a handful will I remember and/or want to re-read in the future so it was a bit of a chore to read through them all. Hawthorne was honing his style so some of the pieces are dead ends, while others echo some of his later better works.

My favorite stories include "The Minister's Black Veil" about a 17th century New England puritan minister who vows never to look at the world except with a black veil over his eyes - the reason why is the mystery of the story and revealed to us at the end. "Wakefield" has a similar theme of mysterious behavior, a man decides to walk away from home without saying he was leaving and then return 10 years later - it is based on a true story and in fact there are modern accounts of similar things happening. "The Gentle Boy" beautifully captures 17th century religious fanaticism, intolerance and historical forces concerning the conflict between Puritans and Quakers in New England. This story is probably his most mature and serious of the book. "Mr. Higginbothem's Catastrophe", about a rumor of a man's murder, is a riddle wrapped in a story, I was perplexed and enthralled to the end. "David Swann", about a young man who falls asleep by the side of the road, is a philosophical story about the nature of fortune and fate. "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment", about a liquid that makes the old young again, presages Robert Louis Stevenson and more recent movies like "Cocoon". ... Read more

4. Nathaniel Hawthorne : Tales and Sketches (Library of America)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Hardcover: 1493 Pages (1982-05-06)
list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$21.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0940450038
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
"Tales and Sketches" offers what no reader has ever beenable to find--an authoritative edition of Hawthorne's complete storiesin a single comprehensive volume. Here is everything from his threecollections, "Twice-told Tales," "Mosses from an Old Manse," "TheSnow-Image, and Other Twice-told Tales," his two books of stories forchildren based on classical myths, "A Wonder Book for Girls and Boys"and "Tanglewood Tales," and sixteen uncollected stories. The uniquearrangement by order of publication charts Hawthorne's evolution intoone of the most powerful and experimental writers of Americanfiction. From familiar but always surprising works like "Young GoodmanBrown," to masterly fables like "My Kinsman, Major Molineux," tolesser known gems like "The Wives of the Dead," these haunting storiesof love and guilt, of duty and licence, of the fateful ties of familyand nation, show why Hawthorne is a great artist, and an astonishinglycontemporary one. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
I received my book within a few days and my order was perfect. Definitely recommend this seller :)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent
An excellent book
A treasure of Hawthorne
A must have for any library

5-0 out of 5 stars My personal desert island book.
If Library of America had never published another book, this one alone would have justified their existence and earned them the gratitude of readers everywhere.Nearly 1,500 pages of what is arguably the best prose ever published by an Ameican writer.

I am sappy enough to enjoy Hawthorne the most in old editions, the older the better.But the stories are the same, no matter whether you're reading them in a dusty 19th century edition of _Mosses from an Old Manse_ or in this state-of-the-art omnibus edition, which includes all of Hawthorne's tales and sketches arranged chronologically, with brief bibliographic and biographic essays and a few explanatory notes.Take it on vacation with you some summer and experience it for yourself.

5-0 out of 5 stars All or Nothing at All
This is the best selection to buy of Hawthorne's short stories because it is NOT a selection, it is complete and, if you believe the editor, it's actually more accurate in its assessment of what is and is not a Hawthorne story than some complete collections because he did not include here some stories that his co-editors on the Hawthorne Centenary Edition did want to include. (Hawthorne spent much of his career as an underpaid and unsung magazine writer and some of his work went with no byline and without reprinting at his own choice, so what he wrote is no easy matter to decide.) The stories are, you probably know if you're looking up this book, stark and wonderful. But some of them are also twee and a little fanciful and not so wonderful. That too is instructive. One very useful thing about this volume is that it includes a listing of when each story first saw print in magazine form and when in book form. In that way the reader can chart Hawthorne's development as a magazine writer and a professional which in every possible sense of the word he determined to become and despite some difficult odds finally was. Some of the most beautiful and terrifying stories in the language and a beautiful object to hold in your hand. Expensive, but if you can get it - this is the one to buy.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Authoritative Hawthorne Collection
The only complaint I have about this book it its paper, which is "bible thin." The tales and sketches from all of Hawthorne's collections are included here, along with 16 previously uncollected stories. If you've read any of Hawthorne's more popularly anthologized tales, you will be amazed at the eloquence and quality of these lesser known jems. ... Read more

5. Mosses from an Old Manse (Modern Library Classics)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 464 Pages (2003-03-11)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$8.93
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812966058
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Mosses from an Old Manse is Nathaniel Hawthorne’s second story collection, first published in 1846 in two volumes and featuring sketches and tales written over a span of more than twenty years, including such classics as “Young Goodman Brown,” “The Birthmark,” and “Rappaccini’s Daughter.” Herman Melville deemed Hawthorne the American Shakespeare, and Henry James wrote that his early tales possess “the element of simple genius, the quality of imagination. That is the real charm of Hawthorne’s writing—this purity and spontaneity and naturalness of fancy.” ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Extreme high quality product
This would be a good book to spend your money on. This product has high quality paper cover and pages. And most importantly, Hawthorne is a very gifted author, and "Mosses from an old manse" is an accurate selection of his best works.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mosses From an Old Manse
This is a wonderful set of more stories and sketches.It is a great book to either read cover to cover, to to pick and chose stories.

5-0 out of 5 stars Once More, With Soul
Nathaniel Hawthorne had a leaning towards humility, phony or not. After calling his previous collection of short stories "Twice-Told Tales" (1837), he went the lichen route with his next installment, calling his 1846 collection "Mosses From An Old Manse". Get out that scraper? Not quite.

Unlike "Twice-Told Tales", a collection of somewhat hit-and-miss stories that owes some of its culture notoriety to its quaint title and much of the rest of it to one story ("The Minister's Black Veil"), "Mosses" catches Hawthorne's engaging genius at full flower. Right from the first of the Manse stories, the wonderful Poe-like "The Birthmark", about a scientist who risks losing his lovely bride in pursuit of perfection, Hawthorne shows himself in utter command: "In his grasp the veriest clod of earth assumed a soul."

Actually, Hawthorne begins the demonstration earlier than in his first proper story, with his introductory sketch about the house where he composed his stories, "The Old Manse" in Concord, Massachusetts. It's the only piece here that didn't see prior publication, and has Hawthorne ruminating, lightly but memorably, about the perishability of human thought. It also establishes the strong ambiance of time and place, crusty New England in its post-Puritan period, that undergirds much of what follows.

"Genius, indeed, melts many ages into one, and thus effects something permanent, yet still with a similarity of office to that of the more ephemeral writer," he explains.

More false humility? Maybe. But Hawthorne gives the impression, here and elsewhere in "Manse", of being utterly sincere. It's his blessing and curse. Even when he writes a story where the allegory, the moral point of the matter, is developed clearly enough, he feels a need to underscore his points with narrative rumination. At least he doesn't capitalize key words as he did in "Twice-Told Tales".

Yet unlike the stories in "Tales", which are often quite beautiful but easier to reduce, there is greater ambiguity and depth in "Manse". You have to take Hawthorne's messaging here with a grain of salt. Sure, there's a point in "The Birthmark", about being content with nature's imperfections, but there's also sympathy for the erring, striving doctor that complicates the picture, and connects it up with Hawthorne's own vocation.

One of the last stories here, "The Artist Of The Beautiful", is a marvelous bookend in that regard, regarding the attainment of perfection, and as open-ended a story as Hawthorne ever wrote. It's a crushing tale, and yet quite positive, a miracle of creation by itself.

In between, Hawthorne's variety is on full display, as it was in "Twice-Told Tales", only the work is uniformly better. Not only do you have a stronger body of celebrated stories, like "Young Goodman Brown" and "Roger Malvin's Burial", but the less-heralded stories are nearly all brilliant. No dated bits of patriotic ephemera like "Gray Champion" or strained symbolism like "The Maypole Of Merry Mount" to be found here. You get instead inspired bursts of stirring melancholy ("The Christmas Banquet", "Feathertop") alleviated by clever gusts of humor ("Mrs. Bullfrog", "The Celestial Railroad"), and everywhere a modulated appreciation for the complexity of the human condition. "Earth's Holocaust" may be an ur-text for American conservativism, but then there's the transcendental strain that enlivens "Fire Worship".

A couple of stories here feel overwritten, but you will get that with such a large body of work, not to mention Hawthorne's anxiety to please. Overall, the tales and sketches of "Old Manse" is a stirring display of how much a great writer can capture of life, ironic given how many of the stories contemplate (and in a roundabout way, celebrate) the limitations of human imagination. A thing of joy, "Manse" holds its own alongside any of Hawthorne's great novels.

5-0 out of 5 stars Allegories of doom, gloom, and progress
First published in 1846, Hawthorne's second collection includes 26 stories, most of them written after the publication of the second (1842) edition of "Twice-Told Tales," as well as "Young Goodman Brown" and "Roger Malvin's Burial," two great tales from the 1830s that were inexplicably left out of the earlier book.

The only "new" piece (that is, the only one not previously published in a periodical) is the opening sketch, which took Hawthorne nearly a year to write; it is a leisurely tour of the "old Manse," his newly acquired historical estate in Concord and Emerson's childhood home. Interesting mostly from a biographical perspective, the essay tries hard--but largely fails--to share with the reader Hawthorne's enthusiasm for his new home. The rest of the volume, fortunately, is filled with grand, eerie, humorous, and memorable allegories. Every reader and critic has his or her own favorites, but a few stand out for their uniqueness.

"A Select Party" recounts a dinner hosted by a "Man of Fancy" in "one of his castles in the air"; the guests are such improbable personages as "an incorruptible Patriot; a Scholar without pedantry; a Priest without world ambition, and a Beautiful Woman without pride or coquetry." The thoughts and desires of the partygoers are as ethereal as the clouds they inhabit. In a similar vein, "The Intelligence Office" is a comic pre-Kafkaesque allegory of a parade of customers who seek the whereabouts (and the worth) of their long-lost desires; only a man seeking Truth unveils the Intelligencer as "merely delusive," a bureaucrat who makes wishes come true by simply acknowledging, not fulfilling, them. "The Celestial Rail-road," the full implications of which I appreciated only after a second reading, is a retelling of "Pilgrim's Progress," in which devilishly clever entrepreneurs have repackaged Christian's journey through the Valley of the Shadow of Death and to the Celestial City as a Disneyland-style theme park and tourist attraction.

Some of the stories can be read as prototypes in the genres of horror and science fiction. In the futuristic "Earth's Holocaust," a great bonfire is lit to "consume every human and divine appendage of our mortal state": medicine, liquor, literature, weapons, money, art, jewelry, scriptures--so that there "is far less both of good and evil." "The Artist of the Beautiful" pits Owen, a watchmaker who struggles to create a true-to-life mechanical butterfly, against a powerful village blacksmith; both contenders vie for the attentions of a beautiful woman in a classic struggle of intelligence and beauty versus technology and brute strength.

Two of Hawthorne's most well-known tales--"The Birth-mark" and "Rappaccini's Daughter"--are unsettling in their macabre Poe-like finales. Both feature scientists whose quest for what can be discovered override moral considerations of whether something should be done: the alchemist in the first story concocts a method to remove a birthmark from his wife's cheek; the second tale pits two rivals who conduct their academic warfare with potions and antidotes, using one's daughter and the other's apprentice as unwitting intermediaries. Their similar endings, while predictable, are disturbingly bleak visions of modernity.

When this collection was reissued in 1854, Hawthorne wrote that he no longer understood the point he was making "in some of these blasted allegories, but I remember that I always had a meaning--or, at least, thought I had." In spite of his protests, obvious themes do emerge: Hawthorne's mistrust of progress, his disdain for moral absolutism and his Puritan heritage, and his fascination with the elusive nature of evil. What will strike readers willing to wade through Hawthorne's intricate, highly wrought prose is how modern and relevant many of these stories still seem. ... Read more

6. The Scarlet Letter: A Kaplan SAT Score-Raising Classic
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Mass Market Paperback: 560 Pages (2006-11-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$4.28
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1419542206
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The Scarlet Letter: A Kaplan SAT Score-Raising Classic features:

*The complete tale of the classic novel, The Scarlet Letter

*More than 800 vocabulary words frequently tested on the SAT highlighted throughout the text

*Definitions for each highlighted word on the facing page

*A pronunciation guide

*An index for easy reference ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

4-0 out of 5 stars The Scarlett Letter Plus
I am an English teacher and I learned that many of my students find The Scarlet Letter intimidating and daunting because of its level of vocabulary. Ever since I found this book, I have recommended it to many of my students to alleviate their anxiety about reading it. Using this book cuts down the time that one has to spend looking up the words that one has never heard of or read, which is one of the reasons why many of my students quit reading this book in the first place. This also helps my students to become exposed to many SAT vocabulary words without having to memorize them from an alphabetized list. The newer edition has thinner papers, which makes this classic extremely portable and accessible. I highly recommend this to any student.

4-0 out of 5 stars A great classic-- but will a 17-year-old enjoy it?
I am an SAT tutor and believe that this is one of the most valuable books of its type a student preparing for the test can read.Unfortunately, in my experience, students also find this one of the least enjoyable books.Why is it valuable?
There are 2 major areas that a student must master to improve scores on the SAT Critical Reading section: (1) Vocabulary. (2) Understanding of complex sentence structures.This book provides a student with both.(1) SAT words are bolded, their definitions conveniently located on the facing page. (2) Sentence structure is complex and the book is written in "older" English which is partly a result of the era it was written in.The college board knows this and even suggests that students read books written before 1900.The complex sentences and old language may be reasons students do not put The Scarlet Letter on their Top 10 Favorite Books List, but it does not take away from the book's value-- if you can get your child to read it. ... Read more

7. The House of the Seven Gables (Enriched Classics)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Mass Market Paperback: 432 Pages (2007-06-19)
list price: US$5.95 -- used & new: US$2.70
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1416534776
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Enduring Literature Illuminated By Practical Scholarship

The story of the Pyncheon family, residents of an evil house cursed by the victim of their ancestor's witch hunt and haunted by the ghosts of many generations.

This Enriched Classic Edition Includes:

  • A concise introduction that gives the reader important background information
  • A chronology of the author's life and work
  • A timeline of significant events that provides the book's historical context
  • An outline of key themes and plot points to guide the reader's own interpretations
  • Detailed explanatory notes
  • Critical analysis, including contemporary and modern perspectives on the work
  • Discussion questions to promote lively classroom and book group interaction
  • A list of recommended related books and films to broaden the reader's experience

Enriched Classics offer readers affordable editions of great works of literature enhanced by helpful notes and insightful commentary. The scholarship provided in Enriched Classics enables readers to appreciate, understand, and enjoy the world's finest books to their full potential. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars A Mind-numbingly Complicated Novel
The story, Hawthorne's second, is a romantic mystery that takes place in a battered seven gable house in a small New England town. It begins with a complicated and top-heavy backdrop. At its center is the socially prominent Pyncheon family. The Pyncheons are a family that holds many dark, mysterious and often deadly secrets -- not the least of them being that 150 years earlier, the land on which the house of the seven gables was built, was actually swindled away from its rightful owner, Matthew Maude, by the locally prominent Colonel Jaffery Pyncheon. After the "good colonel" had swindled away the land, he then promptly (and conveniently) proceeded to have Maude executed for practicing witchcraft - an easy charge for a prominent citizen to level against someone of lesser status at the time. However, from the scaffold, Maude placed a curse on the entire Pyncheon family, and the plot of the story is launched. The rest of the story is primarily about both the unfolding of the deadly secrets of the Pyncheon family, and the effects of the curse that Maude had placed upon them, get played out.

Colonel Pyncheon was so unfazed by the promised curse that he brazenly hired to build (on the land he had just swindled from his father) Maude's son as his carpenter. Well, he "shouldn't have oughta" done that because true to the curse, at the house warming the "good Colonel" is found dead sitting at his desk. To add more intrigue to an already galloping mystery, the Colonel had also left a will with directions to a deed for a giant tract of land somewhere in Maine.

With this dense backdrop the prologue ends and sets up a complicated pretext for the second act of the story, which begins with Hepzibah, an old maid and one of the few remaining heirs to the now dwindling Pyncheon fortune as she opens up a penny store on the ground floor of the house of the seven gables. Finally waking up to her diminished social condition, becoming a shop operator was her last resort way of trying to "make ends meet."

The rest of the story and its intertwined intrigues, unfold within the store and with the tenants of the house being at its center. The Maude's curse continues to bring bad luck to the Pyncheon household, culminating in Jaffery Pyncheon II's alleged murder by his young nephew, Clifford. After spending 30 years in prison for a murder he did not commit, Clifford, the last of the Pyncheons still possessing first hand knowledge of the complicated set of family secrets, returns to the house, to be cared for by his elder sister.

Everyone thinks Clifford knows where the deed is, including his uncle who stalks the returned prisoner for his hidden secrets. But the deed is never found and the uncle, like his father, is found dead sitting at the same desk as his dead father was found. Hepzibah and Clifford abandon the house for a time but return in time for Phoebe and Hargrove (a photographer and tenant), to wed. This wedding appeared to be the cathartic medicine needed to rid the house of its evil spirits. Yet, Phoebe and her new husband chose to move the family away from the cursed home, and they (apparently) lived happily ever afterwards.

The moral of the story is that the sins of one generation can live on to infect subsequent generations. Or said differently, the sins of the father will always revisit the sons of subsequent generations. This was a much too long and too complicated and illogical novel for my taste. Three stars

4-0 out of 5 stars Love Hawthorne
I just love Nathaniel Hawthorne, he is brilliant and is a master at creating a mood.

5-0 out of 5 stars sentimental favorite
I read the House of the Seven Gables about thirty five years ago. I enjoyed the book then and I enjoyed rereading it. Nathaniel Hawthorne has a way of turning a phrase. There are portions of the book that I have reread several times. I would recommend this book to anyone that loves to read the classics. Hawthorne details scenes and emotion in a brisk, but complex way. I felt, sometimes, I was living in New England. As a classic, House is very readable. I try not to analyze, to deeply, all of the reasons a writer chooses how to handle a subject. Mid-nineteenth century literature can be a joy to read, it rewards one with a tangible sense of history. If you enjoy reading House, try The Scarlet Letter. ... Read more

8. Hawthorne's Short Stories
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 384 Pages (1955-05-12)
list price: US$10.95 -- used & new: US$6.03
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Asin: 0394700155
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Here are the best of Hawthorne's short stories. There are twenty-four of them -- not only the most familiar, but also many that are virtually unknown to the average reader. The selection was made by Professor Newton Arvin of Smith College, a recognized authority on Hawthorne and a distinguished literary critic as well. His fine introduction admirably interprets Hawthorne's mind and art. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

3-0 out of 5 stars Difficult to read
I read this author a bit at a time. You need to have a very good knowledge of everyday life in Hawthornes' time to fully understand what he describes.

5-0 out of 5 stars Heart Versus Intellect
In your face, obvious, and heavy-handedly allegorical, still Hawthorne manages to pique my interest and hammer home his point.Switching from historically based stories ("The Gray Champion" and "Endicott and the Red Cross") to spiritual allegories ("The Bosom Serpent" and "The Celestial Railroad"), Hawthorne continually chips away at the danger of isolation.Although he clearly believed in the fallibility and evil of the human heart--particularly pointing out the religious hypocrites--he also believed that one must continue to risk and be a part of the community.In stories such as "Young Goodman Brown" and "Wakefield", we see the gloom that comes over certain men who pull away.

Hawthorne, like Poe, uses graphic and surreal imagery, sometimes repetitively, to set a mood and draw a picture.His characters and scenes are alive and psychological consistent with his tales, and he manages to wring a moral out of nearly every page.

Heavy-handed?Yes, but he aims to state a message, and he states it clearly: The moral nature must never be sacrificed for intellectual pursuits (Ethan Brand).In a world of cheap commercialism and mindless brain fodder, at least Hawthorne has something to say.

3-0 out of 5 stars Part of Americana
I read these short stories in a haphazard fashion rather than sequentially and unknowingly saved the worst two for last.A few days ago I was ready to give the collection five stars but the egregiously macabre "EthanBrand" and "The Old White Maid" caused it a few points. These two tales are out of place among Hawthorne's other gems; they seemmore suitable to Edgar Allen Poe on a night when he was feeling exceedinglygruesome.

Among the highlights is "Feathertop" an eccentricpiece about a witch whose magic pipe gives life to her scarecrow. "The Prophetic Pictures," allegedly based on a true incident, isan intriguing yarn of a painter whose portrait accurately predicted hissubject's forthcoming madness."The Gray Champion," a patriotictale, must have been a hit with Hawthorne's good friends President and Mrs.Franklin Pierce. A recurring theme through Hawthorne's works is theindividual's perpetual battle with character flaws-a motif that makes themsuitable to our modern age and indeed timeless.Many of the allegoricalelements including the notorious "A," Hawthorne immortalized in"The Scarlet Letter" are scattered throughout these works.

Theproem by Newton Arvin offers an interesting biographical summary of theauthor's life.Much has been written about NathanielHawthorne-unquestionably one of America's finest and most beloved authors,and there is little I can add to voluminous evaluations.However, toanyone interested in building his or her vocabulary, Hawthorne's writingoffers a cyclopean lagniappe to dulcify sesquipedalian pursuits.For methat aspect was as beneficial as the enjoyable vignettes.

4-0 out of 5 stars Hawthorne must be read in his historical context
It's easy for our contemporaries to accuse Hawthorne of being formulaic or using timeworn themes.It must be remembered that in Hawthorne's own day, the many of the "timeworn" ideas represented a truly novel vision, and it was appropriate to use many different stories to convey itsfullness. Just remember, if you think it's a "cliche," it'sprobably because you've read a lot of post-Hawthorne "wannabes"!

2-0 out of 5 stars Nathaniel Hawthorne:Redundant, Dull, and Overrated
Nathaniel Hawthorne is supposed to be an author that everybody likes.Well, guess what?I can't stand his writing style.I can see that is a decent writer, but why does he have to make his message so blatant?Zippythe Chimp could see the obvious symbolism in Hawthorne's stories.He(Hawthorne, not Zippy) is basically beating us over the head withsymbolism.Why can't he let the reader find out the meaning on his own? Another thing I noticed is that a large majority of his stories have thesame exact theme. The only differences between some of the stories is thatthe characters' names are different.It's like Hawthorne was playingadlibs when he wrote the stories.He just fills in the setting, and thecharacters names, and then the story unfolds the same way as any other onein the book.His stories are extremely redundant and boring:once you'veread one, you've read them all.How many times can he use the "allmankind is bonded by original sin" theme?It just gets so old.I'msorry if I'm being "un-American"or something by not liking this"great"author, but I just think he is completely overrated. ... Read more

9. Selected Tales and Sketches (The Best Short Stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 296 Pages (2007-01-01)
list price: US$10.99 -- used & new: US$9.77
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Asin: 1420928511
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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"Selected Tales and Sketches" is a collection of the best short stories of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Collected here are the following tales: The Gray Champion, Sunday at Home, The Minister's Black Veil, The May-Pole of Merry Mount, Mr. Higginbotham's Catastrophe, Wakefield, The Prophetic Pictures, The Hollow of the Three Hills, Dr. Heidegger's Experiment, Legends of the Province-House: I.-Howe's Masquerade, II.-Edward Randolph's Portrait, III.-Lady Eleanore's Mantle, IV.-Old Esther Dudley, The Haunted Mind, The Ambitious Guest, Night Sketches, Endicott and the Red Cross, The Birth-mark, Young Goodman Brown, Rappaccini's Daughter, The Hall of Fantasy, The Celestial Rail-road, Feathertop: A Moralized Legend, Egotism; or, The Bosom-Serpent, The Christmas Banquet, Roger Malvin's Burial, Earth's Holocaust, Passages from a Relinquished Work, The Artist of the Beautiful, The Snow Image, The Great Stone Face, Ethan Brand, The Man of Adamant, The Wives of the Dead, My Kinsman, Major Molineux, Alice Doane's Appeal, Mrs. Hutchinson, Sir William Phips, and The Notch of the White Mountains. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Works, A Little Confusing to Navigate.
I bought this book for a class, and it's great, but the table of contents is a little confusing on the kindle.You can do "go to" then "table of contents" to navigate to a specific story, but NOT ALL THE STORIES IN THIS BOOK ARE LISTED IN THIS TABLE OF CONTENTS."The Minister's Black Veil," for instance, is in the book but not listed in the table of contents that links to the stories.There is a second table of contents after the linkable one that lists all the stories, but you still don't know where to "go to" to get to it without flipping through every page.It isn't that big of a deal because you can just use the "search this book" feature to find the specific story you need, but it was just a little confusing because at first I thought that the kindle version only had two thirds of the stories in the paper version.Just a heads up.

5-0 out of 5 stars PERFECT for Hawthorne fans.
A fantastic collection of Hawthorne's work in a neat package.That's really all there is to say.Oh! And the cover is very classy.

4-0 out of 5 stars Nathaniel Hawthorne's Excellent Short Stories deal with sin and sadness, deceit and madness
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) is best known for his classic American novels "Scarlet Letter", "The Blithedale Romance," "The House of Seven Gables" and "The Marble Faun." What you may not know is that he was also a short story author of genius. The stories in this Penguin edition are culled from several of his collections. They were written in the 1830s when the struggling author was seeking to make a living from his pen. Many of them suggest the major themes of his novels. Such stories as "The Minister's Black Veil", "Egoism or The Bosom Serpent" deal with the Calvinistic wrestling with sin and deception prevalent in the New England milieu which gave birth to the Salem Mass. born author. The first mention of a woman forced to wear a scarlet letter pronouncing her adultery with a large letter "A" is found in the tale "Endicott's Red
Cross." Tales like "My Cousin Major Molineaux" are ironical in a flowing style making good use of descriptive prose and first person narration.
Here you will find major stories such as:
Young Goodman Brown-the story of a young Puritan man who attends a devil's worship service in the forest at which many of the town's pillars of propriety are present. A classic tale of a fall from innocence in the American wilderness.
The May-Pole at Marymont is an indictment of legalistic Calvinist faith as all joy is erased from the human heart. Hawthorne wed one of the famed Peabody sisters who were influential in liberal Unitarian and Transcendalists circles.
The Celestial Railroad takes us on a wild ride to hell using images taken from John Bunyan's seventeenth century religious classic of Puritan thought: "The Pilgrim's Progress."
Rappaccini's Daugher is the story of a mad scientist who poisons his daughter with his potions making her glance or touch fatal to plants and animals.
Ethan Brand is a Faustian tale of a man who spends his fruitless life in quest of discovering the unforgiven sin.
In these 31 stories there is a festschrift of literary joy for all those who seek to know the mind of a brilliant American author whose short stories are in the top rank. The only element missing is humor.

5-0 out of 5 stars For those who love gloom and doom and complex emotions
This volume contains Hawthorne's most well- known stories,among them"Young Goodman Brown" " The Birthmark" " The Hollow of Two Hills" "Ethan Brand."
They are written with that complicated, gloomy,Gothic, haunting, somehow discomfiting Hawthorne style. They bear them some sense of predestination, and irrevocable doom, a sense of sin and its punishment.
They have that kind of unique psychological penetration which marks Hawthorne's genius.
I can never say I loved reading these stories, really enjoyed this work. But always sensed they had a deep meaning and real value.

5-0 out of 5 stars excellent selection, excellent introduction
Hawthorne was, of course, one of (if not *the*) most important writers of 19th Century America and this edition demonstrates why.The level of engagement Hawthorne had with early America, the level of detail in his texts, and the level of scholarship advanced by the editor, demonstrate why Hawthorne is, inded, one of our contemporaries.Nobody can consider him- or herself "knowledgeable" about American literary history or American literature without reading "Young Goodman Brown," "My Kinsaman, Major Molineux," "The Minister's Black Veil," or "The May-Pole of Merry-Mount": these tales engage, variously, in themes of religiosity, national identity or formation, and the desire to re-write American-ness.indeed, these tales, which later influenced writers as disparate as Herman Melville, Henry James and Gertrude Stein, provide the very fabric of "American" literature.Although we have all been beaten over the head by Hawthorne in High School (if not college), an errand into his wilderness is, nonetheless, rewarding, fascinating, and enlightening: Colacurcio's editing and attention to detail (much like the subject of the book!) makes the volume accessible and rewarding. ... Read more

10. Nathaniel Hawthorne's Tales (Norton Critical Editions)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 480 Pages (1987-02-17)
-- used & new: US$12.11
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Asin: 0393954269
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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The text of this Norton Critical Edition is comprised of twenty-one of Hawthorne's most noteworthy tales and sketches, reprinted from the best collections available. Each tale is fully annotated.The Author on His Work contains the prefaces Hawthorne wrote for the three collections of tales published during his lifetime as well as relevant selections from his American Notebooks and selected letters, both of which are reprinted from The Centenary Edition of the Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne.

Criticism offers key contemporary assessments by Park Benjamin, Herman Melville, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Edgar Allen Poe, Henry F. Chorley, James Russell Lowell, and Henry James.

The collection of recent criticism displays a considerable range of approaches, including essays by Q. D. Leavis, John P. McWilliams, Jr., Frederick C. Crews, Michael J. Colacurcio, Jorge Luis Borges, Sharon Cameron, Robert B. Heilman, Nina Baym, Leo Marx, and John W. Wright.

A Chronology of Hawthorne's life and a Selected Bibliography are included. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Full of stuff
There is nearly enough material in here for an entire class on Hawthorne. Many short stories from Twice Told Tales are here. The stories have numerous footnotes explaining historical context. There are many letters by Hawthorne and also forwards to various works. Of course, since this is a critical edition, its full of critical articles too. I was pleased. I'd recommend it for a class. Also, if someone wants to really dig into Hawthorne's short stories, I can think of no better book to start with.

5-0 out of 5 stars He wrote more than Scarlet Letter.Dont Miss these.
Reminds you of how great American literature can be; the complexity of reflections of early American writers.His reflections of American society at the time of writing - often forgotten - help us reach back to a time of American history to get a better understanding of how America came about ... for good or for bad, we are where we are for a reason.And Hawthorne makes essential, intuitive, and thoughtful comments in his reflective writings. Absolutely classic.

5-0 out of 5 stars "I seek for truth." -- Elegant Work from a Beautiful Mind...
This Norton Critical Edition of 21 of Hawthorne's
tales and sketches (arranged chronologically according
to date of publication -- from "My Kinsman, Major
Molineux" [1831] to "Feathertop: A Moralized Legend"
[1852]) is a truly wonderful anthology.But the editor,
James McIntosh, in the excellent Norton Critical
Editions manner, has also included the major "Prefaces"
from Hawthorne's collections of tales ("The Old
Manse"-- from _Mosses from an Old Manse_ [1846];

"Preface to the 1851 Edition of _Twice-told Tales_";
and "Preface to _The Snow-Image_), as well as
Letters, excerpts from Hawthorne's notebooks, and
finally, an excellent series of critical essays,
extending from Hawthorne's own time up to 1980
[among these is a full inclusion of Herman Melville's
wondrous essay of praise and idolatry, "Hawthorne
and His Mosses" -- first published in _Literary
World_ on 17 and 14 August 1850.].
Even though one might have one's own reasons for
having bias against Hawthorne the man, still the
quality of literacy and the insight into human
psychology and feelings is of such an exceptional
artistic and genius sort that one must leave those
qualifiers outside the temple when one comes inside
to ponder and meditate upon the spirit and wisdom
of this artist.
The best words in speaking of him, of honoring him,
perhaps come from himself and from others who knew
him and read him and were influenced, in whatever way,
by him.
* * * * * * * * *
"Lightly as I have spoken of these old books, there
yet lingers with me a superstitious reverence for
literature of all kinds.A bound volume has a charm
in my eyes, similar to what scraps of manuscript possess,
for the Mussulman.He imagines, that those wind-wafted
records are perhaps hallowed by some sacred verse; and I,
that every new book, or antique one, may contain the
'Open Sesame' -- the spell to disclose treasures,
hidden in some unsuspected cave of Truth."
--Nathaniel Hawthorne; "The Old Manse."
* * * * * * * * *
"When a new star rises in the heavens, people gaze
after it for a season with the naked eye, and with such
telescopes as they may find.In the stream of thought,
which flows so peacefully deep and clear, through the
pages of this book, we see the bright reflection of a
spiritual star, after which men will be fain to gaze
'with the naked eye, and with the spy-glasses of
criticism.'The star is but newly risen; and ere long
the observations of numerous star-gazers, perched up
on arm-chairs and editors' tables, will inform the
world of the magnitude and its place in the heaven of
poetry, whether it be in the paw of the Great Bear, or
on the forehead of Pegasus, or on the strings of the
Lyre, or in the wings of the Eagle. [from Norton
footnote: Constellations, here representing -- rough
power, dynamic inspiration, musical grace, lofty
--Henry Wadsworth Longfellow; from an unsigned
review of _Twice-Told Tales_, 1837.
* * * * * * * * *
"No man can read a fine author, and relish him to
his very bones, while he reads, without subsequently
fancying to himself some ideal image of the man and
his mind.And if you rightly look for it, you will
almost always find that the author himself has somewhere
furnished you with his own picture.For poets (whether
in prose or verse), being painters of Nature, are like
their brethren of the pencil, the true portrait-painters,
who, in the multitude of likenesses to be sketched, do
not invariably omit their own, and in all high instances,
they paint them without any vanity, though, at times,
with a lurking something, that would take several
pages to properly define."
-- Herman Melville; "Hawthorne and His Mosses."
* * * * * * * * *
Wondrous praise for this Artist of the Beautiful
and Insightful -- Revealer of the Heart and Mind...

5-0 out of 5 stars the master of allegory
This is very well edited and prepared collection of Hawthorne's tales. It has everything what a critical edition needs. But the real value of this book are, of course, Hawthorne's tales themselves. For a long time Hawthorne was almost forgotten author, forgotten for common readers I mean, and he was only a name from literary history. But he did not deserve that. His place is among his readers. His tales are among the finest allegories ever written. "Wakefield" is maybe the only real predeccesors of Kafka's works. "Young Goodman Brown" reminds of "Twilight Zone". Hawthorne's tales are great and exceptionally and surprisingly modern. ... Read more

11. The Celestial Railroad and Other Stories (Signet Classics)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 336 Pages (2006-08-01)
list price: US$5.95 -- used & new: US$2.85
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Asin: 0451530209
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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The master storyteller-in short form

Famous for his novels, Hawthorne was first a short story writer.This collection includes his most powerful and penetrating stories, including "Young Goodman Brown" and "The Minister's Black Veil." ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

This is a nice pocket book edition of some of Nathaniel Hawthorne's greatest short stories. It's just the right size to carry around in your back pocket to read whenever you're stuck somewhere waiting for whatever it is.

Hawthorne, with his Puritan ancestry, was obsessed with the idea of sin and what human beings do to conceal them from the community at large. I guess, in a way, he was concerned with hypocrisy. Hawthorne believed in the Biblical saying that noone could cast the first stone against anyone else because we all have our secret sins. You can tell he has disgusted by the Puritan way of life because it allowed no confession and no reconciliation. Everything not up to their moral par, all their desire and passion, was pushed down into their subconscious where they rotted. Like William Blake says, "Desire not acted upon, breeds a pestilance". The very act of suppressing desire makes it stronger.

In the story "The Birthmark" a woman named Georgiana is the most beautiful woman in the world, except for a birthmark on her cheek in the shape of a red hand. Her husband fixates on this harmless mark, believing it to be the symbol of all that is evil in the world. So he tries to destroy it with all his scientific knowledge and destroys her along with it.

In another story called "Egotism" a man is afflicted with a snake growing out of his bosom. It gives him the ability to see everyone's secret sins. "The Minister's Black Veil", one of his most famous, concerns a community's obsession and ultimate horror of their village priest wearing a black veil. Why is he wearing it they ask? What horrible sin could he have committed to feel ashamed to show his face? All it is a thin veil of lace but all their evil comes out in the face of it. Ironically, the people that have awareness of the evil in themselves manifest physical symbols of them which themselves and others can see. Thereby excluding themselves from hypocrisy because their souls are on public display. "Young Goodman Brown" is also included here and is a nightmarish meeting with the Devil.

Some of the more haunting stories that divert away from the Puritan psyche are "Wakefield" in which a husband one day walks out of his house and never goes back home. He lives close by his wife and passes by her in the street for decades but never approaches her. There is no rhyme or reason for doing this. In "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment" the fountain of youth is presented to some elderly guests with surprising results. "The Ambitious Guest" is a cautionary tale about seizing the day. "The Maypole of Merry-Mount" is a surreal tale of circus entertainers coming to found a colony in the new world and their inevitable confrontation with the Puritans.

The only story in this book that I didn't like was "The Celestial Railroad", strangely enough. It's an allegorical odyssey based on John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress and if you've never read that work, like me, you will not get anything out of it.

Hawthorne is a master of the short story. His strength is the ability to acknowledge that the evil in ourselves is undeniably existant but that only through admitting that existence can it be combatted. Lots of the characters in this collection destroy their lives with this admission. But at least they are true to themselves. If you enjoy this book, seek out The Scarlet Letter and The House of Seven Gables, or vice versa. ... Read more

12. The Cambridge Companion to Nathaniel Hawthorne (Cambridge Companions to Literature)
Paperback: 308 Pages (2004-10-25)
list price: US$29.99 -- used & new: US$15.00
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Asin: 0521002044
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The specially commissioned essays collected in this volume establish new parameters for both scholarly and classroom discussion of Hawthorne. This Companion provides fresh perspectives on Hawthorne's classic works, and on topics such as Hawthorne's relationship to history, women, politics, and early America. It brings together a team of leading international scholars to offer the most comprehensive introduction available to Hawthorne's work and life. ... Read more

13. Nathaniel Hawthorne : Collected Novels: Fanshawe, The Scarlet Letter, The House of the Seven Gables, The Blithedale Romance, The Marble Faun (Library of America)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Hardcover: 1272 Pages (1983-04-15)
list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$22.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0940450089
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Here in one volume are all five of Nathaniel Hawthorne'sworld-famous novels. Written in a richly suggestive style that seemsremarkably contemporary, they are permeated by America's andHawthorne's own history. "The House of the Seven Gables" moves across150 years from an ancestral crime condoned by the Puritan theocracy toa new beginning in the bustling and democratic Jacksonianera. Hawthorne's masterpiece, "The Scarlet Letter," is a dramaticallegory of the social consequences of adultery and the subversiveforce of personal desire in a community of laws. "The BlithedaleRomance" explores the perils, which Hawthorne knew at first hand, ofliving in a utopian community, and the inextricability of political,personal, and sexual desires. "Fanshawe" is an engrossing apprenticework which Hawthorne published anonymously and later sought tosuppress. "The Marble Faun," his last finished novel, involvesmystery, murder, and romance among American artists in Rome. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Novels of Nathaniel Hawthorne
Nathaniel Hawthorne's prose is timeless and he remains the best. His use of the English language provides a treat on every page. Yes, it is slow going and lacks rapid fire action. Not a bad thing in this day and age. If you are looking for a real hero do not neglect Fanshaw.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great literature.
Unlike other reviews, this is not a review of just "The Scarlet Letter," but the entire Library of America volume.Here are all five of Hawthorne's completed novels in one volume, and they are true treasures of American literature."Fanshawe" is an early experiment and a simple story that is more interesting as a part of Hawthorne's development as a writer than a great work in itself.Next is the famous "Scarlet Letter."It is a great work and gives much enjoyment when read slowly and with a receptive spirit.After is the delightfully gothic "The House of the Seven Gables," which is another great work and an exploration of the soul of man."The Blithedale Romance" is less successful than the two preceding, but is still an enjoyable read, regardless of the fact that it leaves the reader wanting more at the end.It addresses the issue of a Utopia on earth, and has interesting characters.Lastly, "The Marble Faun" is a romance involving Americans in Italy, and explores the nature of evil and its effects on the human heart.In my opinion, it is Hawthorne's greatest and most successful work, and the one place where he fully realizes his potential.It is not as repetitive as "The Scarlet Letter," and has more depth than "Gables."
As for the physical book: simply put, the Library of America edition is wonderful; easy to hold, easy to read, and attractive to look at--a near perfect edition.My only complaint is that the notes in the back could be more thorough, but, then again, this is a reading edition, and not a scholarly edition.Perfect for sitting at home in a comfortable chair and relaxing to a good read.
And a final comment about Hawthorne's style--he wrote in the nineteenth century, when more emphasis was placed on sonorous language and the enjoyability of reading.He was not a self-absorbed modernist, or a smut entertainer.His books are meant to be read slowly and attentively.Often Hawthorne explores the same idea from numerous angles, always trying to bring the reader closer to his (Hawthorne's) own understanding.When an author does this, it is because he wants us to pay attention.Many times I have re-read a paragraph or line just to enjoy the flow of the words and his rich descriptive style.Also, his works have great psychological depth and an uncompromising moral vision that will be revealed to the receptive reader.
Buy this book, sit back, read, and enjoy the art of a master.Then, when you finish, pick up the companion Library of America volume of his short works!

5-0 out of 5 stars Hawthorne the master of "the master" (Henry James)
I strongly agree with Richard's comments.Hawthorne should be read again and again throughout one's life. Even the great master of the novel, Henry James, found himself coming back time and again to Hawthorne as a touchstone of his creative imagination.We are fortunate to have dedicated teachers lead us through Hawthorne's work while we are teenagers, as adults we can read his work and appreciate it as a greatwork of art.Those who prefer to run through literature at a rapid pace would be better off staying with Marvel Comics.Library of America has provided a great service by publishing the Centenary Edition of Hawthorne in this beautiful edition.We are the better for it who can meditate deeply on the art and imagination of Nathaniel Hawthorne.

5-0 out of 5 stars From a high school English teacher's P.O.V.
Please, whatever you do, don't categorize Hawthorne's (or any writer's) work as a long-winded relic from some gradeschool lit class.True, we English teachers are about the only folks left trying to keep this literature alive, but we do it because it's so worth preserving.I'll admit we do a disservice to Hawthorne by "forcing" young people to read it.Often a lack of maturity in the reader only translates to resentment for the writer, which in Hawthorne's case is a real shame.So you were "bored" by The Scarlet Letter when you were 15 years old...What a surprise... Has anything about you changed since then?Have you matured?Is there any possibility that you are more prepared today, as a thirty year old, to read, understand and appreciate Hawthorne's stories (and his brilliant style) than you were fifteen years ago?Give yourself some credit and give these great writers another try.You may be surprised at how deeply Hawthorne's insights into human nature cut after experiencing more of life yourself.

1-0 out of 5 stars The Scarlet Letter - should have been a short story
I am going against the grain here but can anyone explain how this story can take so long to tell.Trying to enjoy the majority of American authors, Hawthornes works have not be an easy go.Though admittedly not a fan of Hawthornes full length works, his short stores can be enjoyable.But a book that begins with 28 pages of 'The Custom House', before the story even begins, is already very dull.I, like many other people, was forced to read this work for a sophomore literature class.That was 31 years ago and I still remember thinking what a moderately entertaining short story this would have made.In its form, its unbearable. ... Read more

14. Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne. (150+ works) Incl: The Scarlet Letter, Twice Told Tales, The House of the Seven Gables, The Blithedale Romance, Tanglewood Tales for Girls and Boys & more (mobi)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Kindle Edition: Pages (2007-08-07)
list price: US$5.99
Asin: B000UVQSKA
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description

This collection was designed for optimal navigation on Kindle and other electronic devices. It is indexed alphabetically, chronologically and by category, making it easier to access individual books, stories and poems. This collection offers lower price, the convenience of a one-time download, and it reduces the clutter in your digital library. All books included in this collection feature a hyperlinked table of contents and footnotes. The collection is complimented by an author biography.

Table of Contents

List of Works by Genre and Title
List of Works in Alphabetical Order
List of Works in Chronological Order
Nathaniel Hawthorne Biography

Fiction :: Short Story Collections :: Non-Fiction

The Blithedale Romance
Doctor Grimshawe's Secret - a Romance
The Dolliver Romance and Other Pieces: Tales and Sketches
Grandfather's Chair And Biographical Stories
House of the Seven Gables
The Marble Faun
The Scarlet Letter
Septimius Felton, or, the Elixir of Life

Short story collections
Mosses from an Old Manse and other stories (26 Stories)
The Snow Image and other stories (15 Stories)
Tanglewood Tales (7 Stories)
Twice Told Tales (36 Stories)
A Wonder-Book for Girls and Boys

Our Old Home
Passages from the American Notebooks
Passages From The French And Italian Notebooks
Passages from the English Notebooks

Sketches and Studies:
Life of Franklin Pierce
Chiefly About War Matters
Alice Doane's Appeal
The Ancestral Footstep

... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Pleased as Punch!
Being a new Kindle2 owner, and new to Kindle in general, I took a chance on this "cheap" collection by one of America's greatest all-time influential tale-tellers... and the gamble payed off!

See, what I am always worried about as a new Kindle Book shopper, is not so much whether I will enjoy the writing (I have my fave authors and I can always download a sample), but rather whether or not the formatting will be user-friendly, and boy o' boy is this collection a gem!!!

It breaks the stories down either alphabetically or by genre, and if a novel is selected, there are even chapter links at the beginning of each!

Now that I have downloaded this "Mobi" collection, I will definitely be picking up some of the others (many classic writers are represented)!

As for the specific Hawthorne content, there are two true gems of the short story genre hidden here:My Kinsman Major Molineux, and Young Goodman Brown... God, these bring back the g-rated college memories!I can almost smell the lecture halls and hear the voices of beloved professors...Hawthorne is a master and these two lil' stories are an excellent example of his thematic powers!

Given the author and the formatting, I have no choice but to give this collection 5 stars... WELL worth the five bucks!!!!!!!Kudos to Mobi!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars not just "The Scarlet Letter"
Works of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Huge collection. (150+ works) Includes The Scarlet Letter, Twice Told Tales, The House of the Seven Gables, The Blithedale ... Author's biography and Stories in the trial

This is an excellent collecton of Hawthorne's novels. They are true treasures of American literature. Read this ebook and enjoy the art of a master. ... Read more

15. Sunday at Home
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-07-13)
list price: US$0.99
Asin: B003VRZLXK
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Product Description
Sunday at Home by Nathaniel Hawthorne
**********************************************************We are pleased to offer thousands of books for the Kindle, including thousands of hard-to-find literature and classic fiction books.
Click on our Editor Name (eBook-Ventures) next to the book title above to view all of the titles that are currently available. **********************************************************
... Read more

16. Hawthorne: Tales and Sketches (Library of America College Editions)
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 1200 Pages (1996-05-01)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$17.06
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1883011337
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Earth's Holocaust
The story concerns a massive bonfire in which the people of the world, convinced that their modern society has reached a state of near perfection,
determine to burn up all the outdated old knowledge from Man's dark past :

Once upon a time - but whether in the time past or time to come, is a matter of little or no moment- this wide world had become
so overburthened with an accumulation of worn-out trumpery, that the inhabitants determined to rid themselves of it by a general
bonfire. The site fixed upon, at the representation of the insurance companies, and as being as central a spot as any other on the
globe, was one of the broadest prairies of the West, where no human habitation would be endangered by the flames, and where
a vast assemblage of spectators might commodiously admire the show. Having a taste for sights of this kind, and imagining,
likewise, that the illumination of the bonfire might reveal some profundity or moral truth, heretofore hidden in mist or darkness,
I made it convenient to journey thither and be present.

As our narrator watches, into the flames go all of literature and art, the titles and insignias of rank, the decorations and medals bestowed upon
soldiers, the weapons, the fashionable clothing, the liquor and tobacco, the clerical vestments and the church buildings entire, all the accretions of
Western civilization, until even the Bible is added :

[A]s the final sacrifice of human error, what else remained to be thrown upon the embers of that awful pile, except the Book,
which, though a celestial revelation to past ages, was but a voice from a lower sphere, as regarded the present race of man?
It was done! Upon the blazing heap of falsehood and worn-out truth- things that the earth had never needed, or had ceased to need,
or had grown childishly weary of- fell the ponderous church Bible, the great old volume, that had lain so long on the cushion
of the pulpit, and whence the pastor's solemn voice had given holy utterance on so many a Sabbath day.

And so, purified in the flame, and rid of all of the hoary old thoughts that had been holding mankind back for so long, the reformers prepare to face
their perfect future.The former executioners, who have cast into the fire the implements used by the various nations for administering capital
punishment, commiserate about how they will no longer have any work, now that Man is perfect, but a stranger interrupts their reverie :

'The best counsel for all of us is,' remarked the hangman, 'that- as soon as we have finished the last drop of liquor- I help you,
my three friends, to a comfortable end upon the nearest tree, and then hang myself on the same bough. This is no world for us
any longer.'

'Poh, poh, my good fellows!' said a dark-complexioned personage, who now joined the group- his complexion was indeed
fearfully dark, and his eyes glowed with a redder light than that of the bonfire- 'Be not so cast down, my dear friends;
you shall see good days yet. There is one thing that these wiseacres have forgotten to throw into the fire, and without which
all the rest of the conflagration is just nothing at all; yes- though they had burnt the earth itself to a cinder.'

'And what may that be?' eagerly demanded the last murderer.

'What but the human heart itself!' said the dark-visaged stranger, with a portentous grin. 'And unless they hit upon some method
of purifying that foul cavern, forth from it will reissue all the shapes of wrong and misery-the same old shapes, or worse ones-
which they have taken such a vast deal of trouble to consume to ashes. I have stood by, this live-long night, and laughed in my
sleeve at the whole business. Oh, take my word for it, it will be the old world yet!'

This brief conversation supplied me with a theme for lengthened thought. How sad a truth- if true it were- that Man's age-long
endeavor for perfection had served only to render him the mockery of the Evil Principle, from the fatal circumstance of an error
at the very root of the matter! The heart-the heart- there was the little yet boundless sphere, wherein existed the original wrong,
of which the crime and misery of this outward world were merely types. Purify that inward sphere; and the many shapes of evil
that haunt the outward, and which now seem almost our only realities, will turn to shadowy phantoms, and vanish of their own
accord. But if we go no deeper than the Intellect, and strive, with merely that feeble instrument, to discern and rectify what is
wrong, our whole accomplishment will be a dream; so unsubstantial, that it matters little whether the bonfire, which I have so
faithfully described, were what we choose to call a real event, and a flame that would scorch the finger- or only a phosphoric
radiance, and a parable of my own brain!

For good reason does he call this tale a '"parable", for in just a few pages Hawthorne presents several of the central themes that unify his work,
ideas which form the very core of the conservative critique : that Man's sinfulness is an immutable part of his character; that rationalists, reformers,
and progressives delude themselves with their utopian notions of the perfectibility of Man; that in their delusion they do incalculable damage to the
culture, while leaving human nature untouched; and that, no matter the "progress" they make, evil lurks, waiting to rear its ugly head and shatter
their dreams.

GRADE : A+ ... Read more

17. The Great Stone Face: And Other Tales of the White Mountains
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Paperback: 88 Pages (2010-03-16)
list price: US$18.75 -- used & new: US$11.87
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1147356653
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This is an EXACT reproduction of a book published before 1923. This IS NOT an OCR'd book with strange characters, introduced typographical errors, and jumbled words.This book may have occasional imperfections such as missing or blurred pages, poor pictures, errant marks, etc. that were either part of the original artifact, or were introduced by the scanning process. We believe this work is culturally important, and despite the imperfections, have elected to bring it back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide. We appreciate your understanding of the imperfections in the preservation process, and hope you enjoy this valuable book. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Stone Face no longer!
Though I am partial to this yarn, I think that it's only fair to warn the reader that the Old Man of the Mountains tumbled off his perch a few years ago. I stood on his forehead one day in July, thirty-five years ago, and wrote about that experience and the Old Man in The Country Northward. At that time, the profile was held together by steel rods, eye-bolts, and a plastic bandage to keep the rain out. Alas, the patch didn't hold, and Hawthorne's Great Stone Face collapsed due to erosion, the power of ice, and the vibration from automobiles and trucks grinding to the height of land in Franconia Notch. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford
... Read more

18. Twice Told Tales
by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-10-04)
list price: US$1.99
Asin: B002RKTK8E
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Product Description
This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

19. The Cambridge Introduction to Nathaniel Hawthorne (Cambridge Introductions to Literature)
by Leland S. Person
Hardcover: 154 Pages (2007-04-16)
list price: US$78.99 -- used & new: US$57.02
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 052185458X
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Product Description
As the author of The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne has been established as a major writer of the nineteenth century and the most prominent chronicler of New England and its colonial history. This introductory book for students coming to Hawthorne for the first time outlines his life and writings in a clear and accessible style. Leland S. Person also explains some of the significant cultural and social movements that influenced Hawthorne's most important writings: Puritanism, Transcendentalism and Feminism. The major works, including The Scarlet Letter, The House of the Seven Gables and The Blithedale Romance, as well as Hawthorne's important short stories and non-fiction, are analysed in detail. The book also includes a brief history and survey of Hawthorne scholarship, with special emphasis on recent studies. Students of nineteenth-century American literature will find this a rewarding and engaging introduction to this remarkable writer. ... Read more

20. Hawthorne: A Life
by Brenda Wineapple
Paperback: 528 Pages (2004-06-29)
list price: US$16.95 -- used & new: US$10.51
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812972910
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

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Handsome, reserved, almost frighteningly aloof until he was approached, then playful, cordial, Nathaniel Hawthorne was as mercurial and double-edged as his writing. “Deep as Dante,” Herman Melville said.

Hawthorne himself declared that he was not “one of those supremely hospitable people who serve up their own hearts, delicately fried, with brain sauce, as a tidbit” for the public. Yet those who knew him best often took the opposite position. “He always puts himself in his books,” said his sister-in-law Mary Mann, “he cannot help it.” His life, like his work, was extraordinary, a play of light and shadow.

In this major new biography of Hawthorne, the first in more than a decade, Brenda Wineapple, acclaimed biographer of Janet Flanner and Gertrude and Leo Stein (“Luminous”–Richard Howard), brings him brilliantly alive: an exquisite writer who shoveled dung in an attempt to found a new utopia at Brook Farm and then excoriated the community (or his attraction to it) in caustic satire; the confidant of Franklin Pierce, fourteenth president of the United States and arguably one of its worst; friend to Emerson and Thoreau and Melville who, unlike them, made fun of Abraham Lincoln and who, also unlike them, wrote compellingly of women, deeply identifying with them–he was the first major American writer to create erotic female characters.Those vibrant, independent women continue to haunt the imagination, although Hawthorne often punishes, humiliates, or kills them, as if exorcising that which enthralls.

Here is the man rooted in Salem, Massachusetts, of an old pre-Revolutionary family, reared partly in the wilds of western Maine, then schooled along with Longfellow at Bowdoin College. Here are his idyllic marriage to the youngest and prettiest of the Peabody sisters and his longtime friendships, including with Margaret Fuller, the notorious feminist writer and intellectual.

Here too is Hawthorne at the end of his days, revered as a genius, but considered as well to be an embarrassing puzzle by the Boston intelligentsia, isolated by fiercely held political loyalties that placed him against the Civil War and the currents of his time.

Brenda Wineapple navigates the high tides and chill undercurrents of Hawthorne’s fascinating life and work with clarity, nuance, and insight. The novels and tales, the incidental writings, travel notes and children’s books, letters and diaries reverberate in this biography, which both charts and protects the dark unknowable core that is quintessentially Hawthorne. In him, the quest of his generation for an authentically American voice bears disquieting fruit.

From the Hardcover edition. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

4-0 out of 5 stars Less a literary biography than a thorough portrait of Hawthorne's social circle
Brenda Wineapple's palatable life of Hawthorne breaks little new ground, but its focus is a bit of a departure from the many previous biographies. Throughout, Wineapple concentrates on the author's family, neighbors, associates, career, finances, and politics. Such contemporary celebrities as Emerson, Longfellow, Melville, Margaret Fuller, Elizabeth Peabody, Horatio Bridge, James T. Field (Hawthorne's publisher), Horace Mann, and, above all, Franklin Pierce receive as much attention as Hawthorne's fiction.

The portrait that emerges is of a career man struggling to keep his family financially solvent, resisting the emasculating temptation to be a full-time author, and clinging defiantly to the anti-abolitionist Democratic principles shared by Franklin Pierce, the hapless 14th President and Hawthorne's closest friend. While Hawthorne's acquaintances were convinced of his talents, they were dismayed by his (and his wife's) bull-headed political views. His ill-fated alliances and loyalties often cost him salaried jobs, even while they appeared to have little affect on his literary celebrity. (His publisher, for instance, was convinced that a preface honoring Pierce would sink Hawthorne's final book, but "to Field's amazement, the dedication didn't hurt advance sales of 'Our Old Home.'") Nevertheless, among members of Hawthorne's class, a career as an author--especially one who suffered extended bouts of writer's block---was not enough to pay the bills, and his inability to keep a job haunted his family with the threat of poverty until the day he died.

Wineapple is superb at fleshing out Hawthorne's circle of family, neighbors, and friends, but--oddly enough--his literature is pushed to the background. There are certainly ample servings from Hawthorne's letters and journals, and Wineapple is somewhat more attentive to his five novels, especially how they are influenced by his political and metaphysical beliefs (on the one hand) and how their publication impacted his celebrity and finances (on the other). But she seems to have assumed that readers are intimately familiar with his tales and sketches, which, for the most part, are mentioned obliquely and glancingly. For example, a toss-away remark describing a contingent of visitors to a Union military base as "a group of do-gooders, spectators, and enthusiasts straight out of the pages of 'The Celestial Railroad'"--the only significant reference to the story--does little to elucidate or contextualize one of Hawthorne's most searing satires.

As a social biography, then, "Hawthorne: A Life" is largely a success, and Wineapple's colloquial, almost gossip-tinged, narrative makes for easy and pleasurable reading. Readers looking for a more literary biography, however, should hunt down a copy of Edwin Haviland Miller's "Salem Is My Dwelling Place" (published in 1981), which more thoroughly treats the biographical and thematic implications of Hawthorne's fiction.

5-0 out of 5 stars An exemplary biography of a preeminent man of letters
This thoughtful and graceful biography of Nathanial Hawthorne cogently captures his human complexity, which in turn reflects the polarities of the American character and experience that he vividly described in his self-styled romances: head and heart, reason and emotion, reality and imagination, materialism and transcendentalism, Puritanism and Quakerism, republicanism and federalism, states' rights and national union, slavery and abolition, heritage and freedom, tradition and independence. Brenda Wineapple's book skillfully chronicles Hawthorne's early and recurrent poverty, peripateticism, Hamlet-like indecisiveness, ambivalence about writing, and tendency to observe rather than to participate in life; and, like a Dickens novel, her work presents the author's family and distinguished circle of friends as fully developed and plausibly motivated characters: Franklin Pierce, Emerson, Melville, and, at a greater remove, Stowe, Whitman, and Poe. This volume's evident scholarship - it contains more than one hundred pages of notes - is expressed in a highly palatable style that is also educative in its unobtrusive use of words sufficiently uncommon (e.g., atavistic, coruscate, metonymic, sodality, solipsistic, treacle) to cause some readers to consult their dictionaries frequently. In sum, this work is the triumphant achievement of an ambitious undertaking.

2-0 out of 5 stars Poor Hawthorne
How he'd have loathed this biography by Wineapple. Invasive and outrageously distorted when it comes to interpreting what Hawthorne means in his own biographical entries [especially the letters], this volume commits the primitive biographical sin of reach a verdict, first; find the evidence, second. Some of Wineapple's assertions as to what Hawthorne "really" thinks [often in contradiction to his actual words] are simply preposterous. Thank God for the copious quotings from the great man, himself. The rest? Read quickly; take painkillers.

4-0 out of 5 stars To Know a Man Too Well
I'm not a big biography reader, so I can't throw out other tomes to compare to this one.All I can say is that it was, amazingly, a page-turner.Wineapple really made me want to know more, and helped me to understand a very, very complicated man, at least as much as it is possible to do so.Obviously meticulously researched, brimming with witty remarks (both Wineapple's and first-person quotes), one of few criticisms I can think of is that the author tried a little too hard to emulate Hawthorne's style, not always transparently.But then, when I read Hawthorne, my sentences tend to grow, too, so maybe that isn't a criticism.

Wineapple's only failing, in my opinion, is her tendency to skip over things she seems to assume we already know, like Sophia's fall on the ice precipitating her miscarriage.She neither disproves it nor states it, just ignores it.It made me wonder what else she left out that I didn't know enough to notice.

My only other comment is a warning - for those (like me) who have been fascinated by Nathaniel Hawthorne since their first exposure to him, beware - to know the man this well, with this much detail, is to demystify him before adoring eyes.He was a man, it turns out, just a man, with failings and foibles.Some, like his racism and sexism, might be excused by the times he lived in, but others, like self-pity and hubris, are timeless.After this book, I pity him more, and worship him less.But his work, as Wineapple points out in the Notes, remains as popular as ever.

5-0 out of 5 stars Professor Wineapple deserves an A for her great biography!
Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) was an enigma wrapped in a mystery.Hawhthorne the scion of Salem Mass.Puritans was a man who lived his life within his tortured guilt-ridden soul. The great nineteenth century author of such gems as "The Scarlet Letter", "The House of the Seven Gables", "The Blithedale Romance","The Marble Faun" and classic short stories comes vividly alive in this superbly crafted, researched and well written account. Wineapple is that "rare apple": an academic English professor who writes clear prose understandable by the popular reading public.
Hawthorne was a complex man who kept his thoughts interior until he spilled out his concerns on the page. He was a supporter of the Democratic party meaning he was opposed to abolitionism, felt whites were the superior race and had an almost unnatural love for our 14th President Franklin Pierce (one of our worst chief executives!).
Hawthorne's tale includes many interesting folks from his beautiful artistic wife Sophie and her fascinating sister Elizabeth Peabody (who may have been in love with Nathaniel)!
The third Peabody sister wed famed educational reformer Horace Mann.
Hawthorne's children were fascinating from the etheral oldest daughter Una to the troubled Julian to the youngest child Rose who opened the first hospice for indigent cancer patients.
Famed literary stars such as Emerson, Thoreau and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow are players in this story with colorful anecdotes from the pen of Wineapple. The early feminist Margaret Fuller is also discussed with acuity. Herman Melville who was Hawthorne a secretive man is chronciled as his hero worship of the Salem author led him to dedicate Moby Dick to the older man. ... Read more

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