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The Spoils Of Poynton
by Henry James
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This gem does true justice to James's vision. His characters maneuver in the realm of those who've preserved their integrity while losing their heart's desire, their fineness and delicacy inadequate armature for the rough world. Maureen O'Brien's reading splendidly creates the three central characters, her Mrs. Gareth being particularly arresting. There is great wit in this novel of repressed and diverted emotion, great comedy before the final bitterness. This reader delivers it unerringly, her sense of timing and appropriate emotion rendering with careful precision the characters' words and the passions behind them. E.J.M. An AUDIOFILE Earphones Award winner (c)AudioFile, Portland, Maine
The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature
Short novel by Henry James, first published as a serial titled The Old Things in The Atlantic Monthly in 1896. Retitled The Spoils of Poynton, it was published as a book in 1897. Poynton Park is the home of old Mrs. Gereth, an antique collector with impeccable taste who has filled her lodgings with splendid art objects and furniture. The possessive Mrs. Gereth wants her weak-willed son to marry a pleasant young woman who shares her refined tastes. Instead he becomes engaged to a vulgar, greedy woman, and the treasures of Poynton become the prize over which mother and fiancee battle. In the end Poynton and its spoils, which have destroyed all of the novel's relationships, are immolated in a fire of undetermined origin.
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