Danielle L. reviewed The House of the Seven Gables (Modern Library Classics) on
This was a very interesting book, the only problem is not with the reading itself, but with the ISBN. It says 1-55902-983-8, but when you type that in it says that this book is Gone With the Wild, I believe. The librarian told me to use the ISBN 0812504593, but other than that good book
"The House of the Seven Gables" is a novel by the late American author Nathaniel Hawthorne.
Hawthorne is one of two authors to comprise America's Anti-Transcendentalist movement. Along with Herman Melville, Hawthorne explored the limits of human nature. He was particularly fascinated by our inability to learn from our mistakes, and by the secret sins that outwardly righteous people carry within them. He also was burdened by a sense of ancestral guilt, as one of his Puritan forebears had been a judge in the Salem witch trials.
"The House of the Seven Gables" focuses especially on that last theme. The house in question was built on land claimed during the witch hysteria; unable to buy the land outright, Colonel Pyncheon accused the owner of witchcraft, and then acquired the land after the owner was sentenced to be hanged. Before he died, the accused man cursed Pyncheon and his entire line.
The book takes place some 200 years later, bringing together the last surviving descendants of Colonel Pyncheon and his victim, to conclude that ancient feud.
"...'The House of the Seven Gables" is one of Hawthorn's definig works, a vivid description of american life and values, replete with brillantly etched characters. The tale of a cursed house with a 'mysterious and terrible past' and the generations linked to it, Hawthorne's cronicle of the Maule and Pyncheon famlies over two centuries reveales , in Mary Oliver's words, 'lives caught in the common fire of history.'" (from the book jacket)
I have had these books for my neice who has read this book as a young adult and no longer needs it. So with her permission I am willing to swap them for other young adults with a love of reading or for book report ....