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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tragic love
In a way, Edith Wharton was at her best in her novellas -- her stories are lean, taut and emotionally deep. That's what "Summer" and "Ethan Frome" have in common, as they look at love, sex, marriage and the conventions of the 1800s. Put together, these novellas are utterly fascinating.

"Ethan Frome" is the male half of a loveless marriage, with the fretful,...
Published on April 9, 2005 by E. A Solinas

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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ethan Frome & Summer(The Worlds Best Reading)
Ethan Frome & Summer (The World's Best Reading)
I have bought this three times...shame on me....three times I have received another copy of this novel by another publisher....another three times I have had my money refunded after receiving a form note telling me how sorry they are that the book was previously sold...yet they continue to advertise this volume here 1-3...
Published on April 12, 2011 by oops


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tragic love, April 9, 2005
This review is from: Ethan Frome & Summer (Modern Library Classics) (Paperback)
In a way, Edith Wharton was at her best in her novellas -- her stories are lean, taut and emotionally deep. That's what "Summer" and "Ethan Frome" have in common, as they look at love, sex, marriage and the conventions of the 1800s. Put together, these novellas are utterly fascinating.

"Ethan Frome" is the male half of a loveless marriage, with the fretful, fussy Zeena. Then Zeena's lovely cousin Mattie Silver comes to live with them, and she brings out a happier, more passionate side of Ethan. But when Mattie is sent away, Ethan must make a decision. He knows he can't stay in his horrible marriage, so will he run away with Mattie? Or will something worse happen?

"Summer" shocked the 1917 public, with its frank-for-its-time look at a young woman's sexual awakening. It takes place in the New England village of North Dormer, where the young librarian Charity lives. But when Charity falls in love with an upper-class young rake named Lucius, she finds herself pregnant and unmarried -- a destructive combination in the 1900s.

Edith Wharton gave unvarnished looks at social conventions throughout her career -- she doesn't judge, she just tells it how it was, whether she's talking about the Roaring 20s or the uptight Victorian era. Divorce was almost unthinkable, affairs scandalous if revealed, and women had the cards stacked against them in matters of love, marriage and sex.

Both novellas also display Wharton's talent for writing characters who were totally unlike her, especially working-class heroes. Charity is an uneducated, naive, rough-mannered young woman, while Ethan is... well, male. Neither is much like Wharton, but she gets inside their heads and makes them entirely believable.

Wharton's formal writing style is offset by the starkness of her stories -- if she took a hard look at Victorian social conventions, she didn't flinch from showing what happened to those that transgressed. (I'll give you a hint -- neither novella has a smooching-lovers-ride-off-into-the-sunset finale) It's realistic, but a bit depressing.

"Summer" and "Ethan Frome" are both tales of love doomed by social conventions, and also two of Wharton's best stories. Sad and beautiful, gripping and classic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Tragic love, April 29, 2005
In a way, Edith Wharton was at her best in her novellas -- her stories are lean, taut and emotionally deep. That's what "Summer" and "Ethan Frome" have in common, as they look at love, sex, marriage and the conventions of the 1800s. Put together, these novellas are utterly fascinating.

"Ethan Frome" is the male half of a loveless marriage, with the fretful, fussy Zeena. Then Zeena's lovely cousin Mattie Silver comes to live with them, and she brings out a happier, more passionate side of Ethan. But when Mattie is sent away, Ethan must make a decision. He knows he can't stay in his horrible marriage, so will he run away with Mattie? Or will something worse happen?

"Summer" shocked the 1917 public, with its frank-for-its-time look at a young woman's sexual awakening. It takes place in the New England village of North Dormer, where the young librarian Charity lives. But when Charity falls in love with an upper-class young rake named Lucius, she finds herself pregnant and unmarried -- a destructive combination in the 1900s.

Edith Wharton gave unvarnished looks at social conventions throughout her career -- she doesn't judge, she just tells it how it was, whether she's talking about the Roaring 20s or the uptight Victorian era. Divorce was almost unthinkable, affairs scandalous if revealed, and women had the cards stacked against them in matters of love, marriage and sex.

Both novellas also display Wharton's talent for writing characters who were totally unlike her, especially working-class heroes. Charity is an uneducated, naive, rough-mannered young woman, while Ethan is... well, male. Neither is much like Wharton, but she gets inside their heads and makes them entirely believable.

Wharton's formal writing style is offset by the starkness of her stories -- if she took a hard look at Victorian social conventions, she didn't flinch from showing what happened to those that transgressed. (I'll give you a hint -- neither novella has a smooching-lovers-ride-off-into-the-sunset finale) It's realistic, but a bit depressing.

"Summer" and "Ethan Frome" are both tales of love doomed by social conventions, and also two of Wharton's best stories. Sad and beautiful, gripping and classic.
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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ethan Frome & Summer(The Worlds Best Reading), April 12, 2011
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Ethan Frome & Summer (The World's Best Reading)
I have bought this three times...shame on me....three times I have received another copy of this novel by another publisher....another three times I have had my money refunded after receiving a form note telling me how sorry they are that the book was previously sold...yet they continue to advertise this volume here 1-3 times!!
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Ethan Frome & Summer (Modern Library Classics)
Ethan Frome & Summer (Modern Library Classics) by Edith Wharton (Paperback - May 8, 2001)
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