The House of Hawthorne

The House of Hawthorne

[a Novel]

Book - 2015
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From Erika Robuck, bestselling author of Hemingway's Girl , comes a brilliant new novel about a literary couple. The unlikely marriage between Nathaniel Hawthorne, the celebrated novelist, and Sophia Peabody, the invalid artist, was a true union of passion and intellect....

Beset by crippling headaches from a young age and endowed with a talent for drawing, Sophia is discouraged by her well-known New England family from pursuing a woman's traditional roles. But from their first meeting, Nathaniel and Sophia begin an intense romantic relationship that despite many setbacks leads to their marriage. Together, they will cross continents, raise children, and experience all the beauty and tragedy of an exceptional partnership. Sophia's vivid journals and her masterful paintings kindle a fire in Nathaniel, inspiring his writing. But their children's needs and the death of loved ones steal Sophia's energy and time for her art, fueling in her a perennial tug-of-war between fulfilling her domestic duties and pursuing her own desires.

Spanning the years from the 1830s to the Civil War, and moving from Massachusetts to England, Portugal, and Italy, The House of Hawthorne explores the tension within a famous marriage of two soulful, strong-willed people, each devoted to the other but also driven by a powerful need to explore the far reaches of their creative impulses. It is the story of a forgotten woman in history, who inspired one of the greatest writers of American literature...
Publisher: New York : New American Library, c2015.
ISBN: 9780451418913
Branch Call Number: FICTION ROB
Characteristics: 402 p. ; 22 cm.


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Sep 14, 2018

This author truly loves the subjects of her historical novel and they found true love with each other that I would think is rare. It was really an interesting read in that Hawthorn, Emerson, Thoreau all lived at the same time and in near each other. They were friends and like thinkers in the pre-Civil War era.
This book also dealt with the subject of how does a woman nurture her Art(career) and be a wife and mother- same thing we deal with today. She was actually brought up to nurture her career in painting and her parents were disappointed when she fell in love with and married Hawthorne, totally the opposite of what usually happened in society at that time- a woman was brought up to make a good marriage.
Also, like today, money was key, if you had money you could hire domestic help, nannies, caregivers for extended family members who were ill. Thus, you had more options to have career and family.
All in all a very interesting and warm read, thumbs up.

Aug 17, 2016


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