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Selected Tales (Penguin Classics) Paperback – October 1, 2001
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From the Publisher
About the Author
In 1869, and then in 1872-74, he paid visits to Europe and began his first novel, Roderick Hudson. Late in 1875 he settled in Paris, where he met Turgenev, Flaubert, and Zola, and wrote The American (1877). In December 1876 he moved to London, where two years later he achieved international fame with Daisy Miller. Other famous works include Washington Square (1880), The Portrait of a Lady (1881), The Princess Casamassima(1886), The Aspern Papers (1888), The Turn of the Screw (1898), and three large novels of the new century,The Wings of the Dove (1902), The Ambassadors (1903) and The Golden Bowl (1904). In 1905 he revisited the United States and wrote The American Scene (1907).
During his career he also wrote many works of criticism and travel. Although old and ailing, he threw himself into war work in 1914, and in 1915, a few months before his death, he became a British subject. In 1916 King George V conferred the Order of Merit on him. He died in London in February 1916.
John Lyon is Senior Lecturer in English at the University of Bristol. He has published on the novel and contemporary poetry and edited 'The Sacred Fount' for Penguin.
Top Customer Reviews
Standouts include, "Daisy Miller", a story of innocence destroyed, with the touchingly willful Daisy one of his most vibrant and human creations; "The Lesson of the Master", where James cleverly gives us a foretaste of the best of O'Hara zingers in a super surprise ending; "The Jolly Corner", another ghostly tale about a man who discovers the self he left behind; and "Julia Bride" a favorite of mine, a late distillation of the themes found in his last major novels.
The contents are as follows,
Henry James Chronology
Notes on the Texts
The Pension Beaurepas
The Lesson of the Master
The Real Thing
The Middle Years
The Death of the Lion
The Figure in the Carpet
In the Cage
The Real Right Thing
The Abasement of the Northmores
The Beast in the Jungle
The Jolly Corner
Everyone will find favorites here, and for those scared off by the novels this set of stories is an excellent introduction.
In this Penguin edition "Selected Tales" the editors have selected several of James' best stories. "The Turn of the Screw" his best known story is not in this collection but in another Penguin edition along with "The Aspern Papers."
Among the tales told by stortyller James are:
Daisy Miller-An 80 page exploration of James'theme of American and European cultural exchanges. James was known for his "international theme" living most of his long life in Europe. The tale revolves around the ingenuous and fetching young American virgin girl Daisy Miller and her contacts with the old world civilization and morality of Europe. The story is narrated by a worldly Amercan expatriate named Giles Winterbourne. The story ends in tragedy. It is one of James best and most readable tales.
The Jolly Corner is a ghost story dealing with a famous writer's return to his boyhood home.
The Figure in the Carpet deals with people seeking to find a secret formula to be found in a great author's work. Many critics have seen that theme to deal with James' homosexual lifestyle.
The Death of the Master, The Middle Years and several other stories deal with the life of an author and his/her legacy.
The Birthplace is a story about a guide who embellishes the truth about Shakespeare as he guides tourists through the famous playwright's boyhood home.
James deals with Americans abroad in European high society. He often uses foreign phrases in his works.Read more ›
Reading these stories is coming into touch with one of the first class minds of world - literature.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A vast collection of the very vest of Henry James.....terrific end-notes!!!Published 19 months ago by DDP
I'll start with the reason why I didn't give it 5 stars. This is the only work by James that I read and I found it to be incredibly dense, the language he uses, the imagery,... Read morePublished on September 20, 2006 by Michael Fridman