The American

The American

eBook - 1976
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HarperCollins is proud to present its incredible range of best-loved, essential classics. Christopher Newman is an American expatriate in Paris; his fortune made, he has moved to the Old World to enjoy his wealth and find a wife. Newman soon falls for a young widow, the aristocratic Claire de Bellegarde, but his brash New World sensibility horrifies her haughty family. Though the family oppose the idea of the couple's marriage, reversals of fortune cause them to reconsider. When another suitor arrives on the scene all appears lost, until Newman befriends Claire's younger brother Valentin and finds himself in possession of a dark family secret. As the novel unfolds, James's unmistakable stylistic grace combines with his less well-known sense of melodramatic romance, resulting in a finale that combines duels, death, betrayal and blackmail.
Publisher: Fairfield, N.J. : A. M. Kelley, 1976, c1907.
ISBN: 9780007516957
Characteristics: 1 online resource
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc

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lukasevansherman
Sep 28, 2014

James's first major novel embodies one of the key themes of his work (the differences and tensions between the New World and Old Europe) and is an accessible entry point into his formidable oeuvre. The title character is a brash, wealthy, optimistic American who comes to Europe and falls for a pretty, distant Frenchwoman from a distinguished and proud family. Her imperious mother doesn't approve of the romance and stands in their way. The strength of the novel is that James doesn't take sides, detailing the shortcoming of both parties. An excellent introduction to the Master's work. Consider reading "Daisy Miller," "Washington Square," and "The Europeans" next.

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