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The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel…

The House of the Seven Gables (original 1851; edition 2010)

by Nathaniel Hawthorne

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5,43477801 (3.53)1 / 259
Title:The House of the Seven Gables
Authors:Nathaniel Hawthorne
Info:Applewood Books (2010), Edition: Reprint, Hardcover, 416 pages
Collections:Read and Stored on Kindle
Tags:Bernards Township Library Book Club

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The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne (1851)



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Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
Two venues for mud runs happen to bear the name of the author of The House of the Seven Gables: Hawthorne Racecourse in Cicero, IL, and Hawthorne, NJ. This is perhaps what induced one LT reviewer here to write: "I read somewhere that trying to read Hawthorne is like trying to run through mud."

In a rather strange coincidence, John Updike once wrote that "Reading Pynchon is like reading a very long Popeye strip, without the spinach." (Life, 61, No. 19, November 4, 1966) When you know that Hawthorne decided to make the House of the Seven Gables the dwelling of the Pyncheon family, the ancestors of Thomas Pynchon, the similarity of the two analyses is striking. I even wonder if Updike is the author of the comment on Hawthorne in my opening paragraph.

I too experienced falling asleep after 3 pages of The House of the Seven Gables; spending 3 weeks to read it; being interested in the last 3 chapters only; being bored to death by the circumlocutions and the long incised sentences.

But perhaps will I, for all these reasons, remember this book longer than if I had loved it. Strange, isn't it? ( )
1 vote Pepys | Sep 18, 2015 |
It's obvious from this book that Hawthorne was a damn good writer, but that doesn't necessarily make him an equally good storyteller. To my mind this novel should've been a novella or short story. Far too much time was spent developing the five characters in the story, at the expense of any kind of narrative drive. There's some really great stuff in here, starting with the first chapter detailing the origin of the house and the fate of its owner, but then the reader has to wait until he reaches the last third of the book to get to the rest of it,. Even then, he has to wade through lengthy passages and chapters that do nothing really to push the tale to its conclusion, a conclusion which left this reader less than satisfied. Two and a half stars out of five for great writing but not-so-great story structure. ( )
1 vote KevinMiller | Sep 1, 2015 |
Several years ago, I went on a trip to Salem, Massachusetts and right as we were getting on the airplane my best friend's mom gave me a copy of The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne. You might be completely confused about why this would be the best reading material for a quick airplane trip from Alabama to Massachusetts so allow me to shed some light on the situation for you. The story is all about the Pyncheon family and their gabled house in Salem (which is an actual home that you should all visit). The matriarch of the family, Hepzibah, has been forced to open a small shop in the house to supplement their income after her brother, Clifford, is released from prison for a crime which he has always maintained he did not commit. A distant cousin, Phoebe, joins their ranks just as they taken on a lodger by the name of Holgrave who mostly keeps to himself. An estranged cousin who is a Judge in town is a malevolent spirit on the fringes of their lives. There is a legend surrounding the family that they are cursed and that is why misfortune has seemed to follow them since the family home was acquired. It's a classic example of Gothic literature with a supernatural twist of the occult. If you're hesitant to give it a shot because of The Scarlet Letter (which I honestly wouldn't blame you for as I really didn't like that novel myself), I strongly encourage you to make an exception. It's a really fantastic book with a swiftly moving plot that is full of intrigue, romance, and familial drama. ( )
  AliceaP | Aug 21, 2015 |
The following quote is from the Introduction by Marion Merrill, Head of the Dept of English at Somerville High School.
"Hawthorne early fancied he might like a literary life. In a boyish letter to his mother he said, 'I do not want to be a doctor and live by men's diseases, nor a minister and live by their sins, or a lawyer and live by their quarrels: so I don't see there is anything left for me but to be an author. How would you like, some day, to see a whole shelf of books written by your son, with Hawthorne's Works printed on their backs?' "
  TrysB | May 24, 2015 |
The only reason I gave it three stars was the author's outstanding command of English prose. As a novel this book was insufferably boring. It took me two weeks to finish it. A work of this small size normally takes me a few days. ( )
  eruditescythian | Apr 15, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (90 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hawthorne, Nathanielprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brooks, Van WyckIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Colby, Homer W.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Davidson, Cathy N.Afterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fogle, Richard HarterIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Furst, ClydeEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lathrop, George ParsonsIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
MacEwen, MaryIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moffett, H. Y.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Peters, DonadaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schirmer, DukeAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stern, Milton R.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Half-way down a by-street of one of our New England towns, stands a rusty wooden house, with seven acutely peaked gables facing towards various points of the compass, and a huge, clustered chimney in the midst.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is the main work for The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne. It should not be combined with any adaptation, abridgement, etc.
ISBN 0809598752 is a Wildside Press publication.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553212702, Mass Market Paperback)

In a sleepy little New England village stands a dark, weather-beaten, many-gabled house. This brooding mansion is haunted by a centuries-old curse that casts the shadow of ancestral sin upon the last four members of the distinctive Pyncheon family. Mysterious deaths threaten the living. Musty documents nestle behind hidden panels carrying the secret of the family’s salvation—or its downfall.

Hawthorne called The House of the Seven Gables “a Romance,” and freely bestowed upon it many fascinating gothic touches. A brilliant intertwining of the popular, the symbolic, and the historical, the novel is a powerful exploration of personal and national guilt, a work that Henry James declared “the closest approach we are likely to have to the Great American Novel.”

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:13 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

The curse of Matthew Maule descends on seven generations of the inhabitants of an old New England house.

(summary from another edition)

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Editions: 1400102065, 1400110793

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