The charm of certain vacant grassy spaces, in Italy, overfrowned by masses of brickwork that are honeycombed by the suns of centuries, is something that I hereby renounce once for all the attempt to express; but you may be sure that whenever I mention such a spot enchantment lurks in it.' -'Henry James
In these essays on travels in Italy written from 1872 to 1909, Henry James explores art and religion, political shifts and cultural revolutions, and the nature of travel itself. James's enthusiastic appreciation of the unparalleled aesthetic allure of Venice, the vitality of Rome, and the noisy, sensuous appeal of Naples is everywhere marked by pervasive regret for the disappearance of the past and by ambivalence concerning the transformation of nineteenth-century Europe. John Auchard's lively introduction and extensive notes illuminate the surprising differences between the historical, political, and artistic Italy of James's travels and the metaphoric Italy that became the setting of some of his best-known works of fiction. This edition includes an appendix of James's book reviews on Italian travel-writing.
Six classic stories-one volume
This indispensible anthology collects the short novels of Henry James, offering readers the full range of his skill and vision-the singular art and imagination of an author who profoundly influenced American literature
The inspiration for a new film starring Julianne Moore, Alexander Skarsgard, Steve Coogan, and Onata Aprile
After her parents' bitter divorce, young Maisie Farange finds herself shuttled between her selfish mother and vain father, who value her only as a means for provoking each other. Maisie-'solitary, observant, and wise beyond her years-'is drawn into an increasingly entangled adult world of intrigue and sexual betrayal until she is finally compelled to choose her own future. Published in 1897 as Henry James was experimenting with narrative technique and fascinated by the idea of the child's-eye view, What Maisie Knew is a subtle yet devastating portrayal of an innocent adrift in a corrupt society.
Henry James wrote with an imperial elegance of style, whether his subjects were American innocents or European sophisticates, incandescent women or their vigorous suitors. His omniscient eye took in the surfaces of cities, the nuances of speech, dress, and manner, and, above all, the microscopic interactions, hesitancies, betrayals, and self-betrayals that are the true substance of relationships. The entirely new Portable Henry James provides an unparalleled range of this great body of work: seven major tales, including Daisy Miller, The Turn of the Screw, "The Beast in the Jungle," and "The Jolly Corner"; a sampling of revisions James made to some of his most famous work; travel writing; literary criticism; correspondences; autobiography; descriptions of the major novels; and parodies by famous contemporaries, including T. S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, Virginia Woolf, and Graham Greene.
Spirited, beautiful young American Isabel Archer journeys to Europe to, in modern terms, "find herself." But what she finds there may prove to be her undoing, especially when an infinitely sophisticated lady plots against her.
An angel with a robust bank account
Milly Theale, an American heiress in London, is young, hungry for life, and terminally ill. There she meets the dazzling beauty Kate Croy and reunites with an old acquaintence, Merton Densher. Unbeknownst to Milly, Kate is madly in love with Merton, a young journalist who has everything a woman like Kate could want-'except money.
Intensely aware of her new friend's fate and coveting her fortune, Kate secretly spurs Merton to seduce and marry Milly in order to inherit her wealth. But when Milly discovers their scheme, Kate and Merton learn that deceit can have unforeseen consequences....
Back when New York was still young, so was heiress Catherine Sloper. A simple, plain girl, she grew up in opulence with a disappointed father and a fluttery aunt in a grand house on Washington Square.
Enter Morris Townsend, a handsome charmer who assures Catherine he loves her for herself and not for her money. But Catherine's revered father sees in Townsend what she cannot. Now, with her tearful aunt Penniman as his amusingly melodramatic ally, Townsend will present Catherine with the hardest choice of her young life....
With a New Introduction and an Afterword by Michael Cunningham, Author of The Hours
Christopher Newman, a 'self-made' American millionaire in France, falls in love with the beautiful aristocratic Claire de Bellegarde. Her family, however, taken aback by his brash American manner, rejects his proposal of marriage. When Newman discovers a guilty secret in the Bellegardes' past, he confronts a moral dilemma: Should he expose them and thus gain his revenge?
James's masterly early work is at once a social comedy, a melodramatic romance and a realistic novel of manners.