summer: edith wharton

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 really liked this book. granted, i’m not the biggest fan of post civil war literature, but for some reason, this female author rocks the scene.

summer is about a woman, Charity (a name which bears so much symbolism in the story), who was born of a prostitute who ended up giving her child to Mr. Royall (symbolically named as well), to raise her in North Dormer, an affluent society brimming with expectations, and restrictions.  Charity has discovered her budding sexuality and desire to exhibit her freedom through her love for Harney, but is restricted by the prying eyes of the town, and her protector Mr. Royall- who is caught in the love triangle as he claims his love for her.

I like this book better than Ethan Frome.  Although both included a steamy love triangle, this one has more sybolism in its names, its characters, its setting, and of items in the novel.  It’s rich with the sentiment of its time, mainly focusing on the condition of women who are not of affluent families, and their struggle to survive in a patriarchal society.  She symbolizes the hopelessness of escaping into her own freedom and finding fulfilment or success, and therefore is coerced to live a life static, void of passion and freedom, instead, adhering to the limitations pressed upon her.

this was an easy read…highly emotional and entertaining. i enjoyed it, and i would love to share my ideas on it.

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