The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James

Isabel Archer, a spirited young American woman, "affronts her destiny" and finds it overwhelming. She inherits a large amount of money and subsequently becomes the victim of Machiavellian scheming by two American expatriates. Like many of James's novels, it is set mostly in Europe, mostly England and Italy. Generally regarded as the masterpiece of James's early period, this novel reflects James's continuing interest in the differences between the New World and the Old, often to the detriment of the former. It also treats in a profound way the themes of personal freedom, responsibility, betrayal, and sexuality.

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  • Roger K.

    I have never read anything by Henry James and don't know much about him or his work.

    November 21, 2013

  • sally j.

    By the way, I think it is a very sexist theme and shows what harm can be done. I am not sure if Jame's is critical, and thinks she is a lady because she gave in, or thinks all women should be like his hero.

    November 17, 2013

  • sally j.

    Can't wait!! Love the story but felt disappointed in the end. Thanks

    November 17, 2013

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