Probably the most famous of Edith Wharton's novels, Ethan Frome contrasts sharply with her usual ironic contemplation of the fashionable New York society to which she herself belonged and whose strengths and weaknesses she understood so well. Ethan Frome is a keenly-etched portrait of the simple inhabitants of a 19th-century New England village.Ethan, a gaunt, patient New Englander, is a man tormented by a passionate love for his wife's young cousin, Mattie. Restricted by the bonds of marriage and the fear of public condemnation, his desperate quest for happiness ultimately leads to pain and despair. Ethan's story, with its tragic implications of what might have been, has had an irresistible fascination over the past century.
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Kind of a downer
- Sher from Provo