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Nathaniel Hawthorne

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  1. 12.9 hrs • Mar/01/2017 • Unabridged

    The House of the Seven Gables, a fixture in Hawthorne's Salem, serves as the ancestral home of the fictional Pyncheon family-whose distinguished legacy is tainted by pious thievery. When country cousin Phoebe arrives at the house, she is like a cool breeze, refreshing a room that has been sealed for too long. The resulting mixture of dark and light imagery, illustrated by Hawthorne's rich prose, makes this romance an important American classic.

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    The House of the Seven Gables

    12.9 hrs • Mar/01/2017 • Unabridged
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  2. 9.0 hrs • Aug/27/2016 • Unabridged

    First published in 1850, The Scarlet Letter is Nathaniel Hawthorne’s masterpiece and one of the greatest American novels. Its themes of sin, guilt, and redemption, woven through a story of adultery in the early days of the Massachusetts Colony, are revealed with remarkable psychological penetration and understanding of the human heart.The book’s immediate and lasting success are due to the way it addresses spiritual and moral issues from a uniquely American standpoint. In 1850, adultery was an extremely risqué subject, but because Hawthorne had the support of the New England literary establishment, it passed easily into the realm of appropriate reading. It has been said that this work represents the height of Hawthorne’s literary genius, dense with terse descriptions. It remains relevant for its philosophical and psychological depth, and continues to be read as a classic tale on a universal theme.

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    The Scarlet Letter

    9.0 hrs • Aug/27/2016 • Unabridged
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  3. 10.8 hrs • Apr/27/2016 • Unabridged

    The House of the Seven Gables is a gloomy New England mansion, haunted from its foundation by fraudulent dealings, accusations of witchcraft, and sudden death. The current resident, the dignified but desperately poor Hepzibah Pyncheon, opens a shop in a side room to support her brother Clifford, who is about to leave prison after serving twenty-five years for murder. She refuses all assistance from her unpleasant wealthy cousin Judge Jaffrey Pyncheon. A distant relative, the pretty young Phoebe, turns up and quickly becomes invaluable, charming customers and rousing Clifford from depression. A delicate romance grows between Phoebe and the mysterious lodger Holgrave, who is writing a history of the Pyncheon family.

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    The House of the Seven Gables

    Read by Nicodemus
    10.8 hrs • Apr/27/2016 • Unabridged
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  4. 8.9 hrs • Jun/01/2015 • Unabridged

    Miles Coverdale embarks on a quest for the betterment of the world through the agrarian lifestyle and community of the Blithedale farm. The story begins with a conversation between Coverdale and Old Moodie, a character who reappears throughout the story. The legend of the mysterious Veiled Lady is introduced; she is a popular clairvoyant who disappears unannounced from the social scene. Coverdale then makes the voyage to Blithedale, where he is introduced to such characters as Zenobia and Mr. and Mrs. Silas Foster.At their first community dinner, they are interrupted by the arrival of Hollingsworth, a previous acquaintance of Coverdale’s, who is carrying a frail, pale girl. Though Hollingsworth believes the girl (whose age is never clarified) is an expected guest, none of the Blithedale citizens recognize her. She immediately develops a strong attachment to Zenobia and reveals her name to be Priscilla. Soon after, Coverdale becomes severely ill and is bedridden. During his sickness, he believes he is on the brink of death and develops a closeness with Hollingsworth due to their anxiety-ridden situation and discussion of worldly ideals. Hollingsworth and Zenobia take care of him, and he returns to health shortly.As he recovers and spring comes, the residents of the community begin to work the land successfully and prove to their neighbors the plausibility of their cause. Priscilla starts to open up, and relationships between the other characters develop as well. Tension in the friendship between Coverdale and Hollingsworth intensifies as their philosophical disagreements continue. Meanwhile, Zenobia and Hollingsworth become close, and rumor flies they might build a house together.

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    The Blithedale Romance

    Read by Jonathan Fried
    8.9 hrs • Jun/01/2015 • Unabridged
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  5. 0.5 hrs • May/13/2015 • Unabridged

    The travelling tobacco pedlar, Dominicus Pike, learns from a traveler he meets on the road, of the terrible murder of Mr. Higginbotham of Kimballton the previous evening. Once the traveler has gone, it puzzles Dominicus that the news could have traveled so quickly from Kimballton which is sixty miles away. Nevertheless, Dominicus passes on the sensational news everywhere he goes and enjoys being the center of attention. Things go awry when a witness points out that Mr. Higginbotham was seen alive that very morning. Dominicus leaves town next day in a hurry … but then meets another man who again confirms specific details of the murder of Mr. Higginbotham—saying it had happened the preceding night. Once again, in the next town, Dominicus spreads the sensational gossip—but again, cast-iron witnesses prove that Mr. Higginbotham is still alive. Dominicus is again hounded out of town. Now he determines to go and investigate the state of Mr. Higginbotham’s vitality himself.

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    Mr. Higginbotham’s Catastrophe

    Read by Cathy Dobson
    0.5 hrs • May/13/2015 • Unabridged
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  6. 9.1 hrs • Apr/21/2015 • Unabridged

    This is the classic American story of Hester Prynne, accused of adultery, ostracized by her Puritan community, and abandoned by both her lover and her husband. The story opens in Puritan Boston, a settlement only fifteen or twenty years old. A young woman stands on a scaffold clasping a three-month-old baby. As a married woman with a missing husband and a new baby, Hester Prynne could have been sentenced to death for the crime of adultery. Instead she is condemned to always wear the letter A as a badge of her shame. As she stands there, she sees her long-missing husband, who has been held captive by Indians. While the town chorus is murmuring against her and her old and unattractive husband stares silently at her, the young and handsome clergyman publicly demands the name of her partner in crime—while desperately praying she won’t reveal him. The Scarlet Letter rightfully deserves its stature as the first great novel written by an American, the novel that announced American literature equal to any in the world.

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    The Scarlet Letter

    Read by Dick Hill
    9.1 hrs • Apr/21/2015 • Unabridged
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  7. 12.0 hrs • Mar/03/2015 • Unabridged

    When it was first erected, the House of Seven Gables typified the mechanical Colonel Pyncheon; but it developed through the years until, by Hepzibah’s time, it has become humanized and almost organic. The history of the house is thus a record of continuity and change. Hawthorne’s The House of the Seven Gables is a study of guilt and renewal from generation to generation. At the time of the Salem witch trials, the patriarch of the Pyncheons covets the property of a tradesman and manipulates public opinion so as to get Matthew Maule hanged for witchcraft and acquire the land. The dying man’s curse on the Pyncheon family comes true generation upon generation and relationships between the families are colored forever by this “original sin.” That is, until six generations later when the long-hidden truth is revealed. The House of the Seven Gables is Hawthorne’s most humorous novel, it is also the work in which he is most serious in his devotion to the powers of beauty and imagination and his hatred of economic materialism and Philistinism.

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    The House of the Seven Gables

    Read by Buck Schirner
    12.0 hrs • Mar/03/2015 • Unabridged
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  8. 2.6 hrs • Aug/21/2014 • Abridged

    The Scarlet Letter is one of the great classics of American literature. Set in the harsh Puritan environment of seventeenth-century Boston, it describes the plight of Hester Prynne, an independent-minded woman who stands alone against society. Having given birth to a child after an illicit affair, she refuses to name the father and is forced to wear a red “A” for adulteress embroidered on her dress.

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    Scarlet Letter

    Read by Katinka Wolf
    2.6 hrs • Aug/21/2014 • Abridged
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  9. 4.0 hrs • Aug/21/2014 • Abridged

    “To inherit a great fortune. To inherit a great misfortune.” These words, from Nathaniel Hawthorne’s notebook, neatly encapsulate the theme of The House of the Seven Gables—that of a family whose fortunes are poisoned by its past misdeeds. The sins of the Pyncheon father are visited upon his children over a period of several generations, until one of his descendants unites with a member of the family he has wronged. Love conquers hate, and new blood washes away the original crime. This intriguing and insightful novel truly deserves its significant place in the canon of American literature.

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    House of the Seven Gables

    Read by Peter Marinker
    4.0 hrs • Aug/21/2014 • Abridged
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  10. 9.7 hrs • Apr/15/2014 • Unabridged

    In 1642, a pregnant Hester Prynne is found guilty of adultery, shunned by her neighbors, and forced to wear a scarlet letter “A” on her dress. Meanwhile, Hester’s husband—long thought to be lost at sea—has returned to Boston under the assumed name “Roger Chillingworth” and plots to uncover her lover’s identity. After her daughter Pearl is born, Hester is frequently visited by both Reverend Dimmesdale and Chillingworth, but always refuses to name her lover. As the years wear on and Pearl grows older, Hester’s defiance—and her lover’s silence—weighs heavily on the lives of all parties involved.

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    The Scarlet Letter

    Read by Robert Bethune
    9.7 hrs • Apr/15/2014 • Unabridged
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  11. 11.7 hrs • Apr/15/2014 • Unabridged

    In the mid 1800s, Pyncheon is still a revered namesake in Salem, with the gloomy Pyncheon mansion serving as a stark reminder of the family’s upper class history. However, the house—unique for its seven gables—has a dark and deadly past. Its current occupant, the older and unmarried Hepzibah Pyncheon, is all but destitute and unwilling to accept any assistance from her wealthy but unrelenting cousin, Judge Jaffrey Pyncheon. To support her brother Clifford, who is about to leave prison after serving thirty years for murder, Hepzibah opens a shop in a side room. Phoebe, a distant cousin from the country, moves into the mansion to help run the shop. Soon a romance blossoms between Phoebe and Holgrave, an attic lodger who is writing the Pyncheon family history.

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    The House of the Seven Gables

    Read by Susie Berneis
    11.7 hrs • Apr/15/2014 • Unabridged
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  12. 2.4 hrs • Feb/24/2014 • Abridged

    An “A” for “adultery” marks Hester Prynne as an outcast from the society of colonial Boston. Although forced by the puritanical town fathers to wear a badge of shame, Hester steadfastly resists their efforts to discover the identity of her baby’s father. Masterful in its symbolism and compelling in its character studies, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s tale of punishment and reconciliation examines the concepts of sin, guilt, and pride. Its timeless exploration of moral and spiritual issues, along with its philosophical and psychological insights, keep it relevant for readers today.

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    The Scarlet Letter

    Read by Kate Harper
    2.4 hrs • Feb/24/2014 • Abridged
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  13. 2.5 hrs • Feb/12/2014 • Unabridged

    Nathaniel Hawthorne was born in 1804 in the city of Salem, Massachusetts, and New England figures prominently in the majority of his works; many of his works, most famously The Scarlet Letter, draw inspiration from the puritan outlook, assuming humanity’s inherent evil and sin. This volume centers on Hawthorne’s short stories which are beautifully crafted pieces layered with characters ill at ease with their path through life.

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    Nathaniel Hawthorne: The Short Stories

    2.5 hrs • Feb/12/2014 • Unabridged
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  14. 3.7 hrs • Jun/19/2012 • Unabridged

    This anthology of unabridged short stories represents some of the most significant works from the most influential American authors of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Included are Rip Van Winkle by Washington Irving, Young Goodman Brown by Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allan Poe, Mermaids by Louisa May Alcott, The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County by Mark Twain, An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce, and The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry.

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  15. 6.9 hrs • May/10/2011 • Unabridged

    America’s first psychological novel, Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter is a dark tale of love, crime, and revenge set in colonial New England. It revolves around a single, forbidden act of passion that forever alters the lives of three members of a small Puritan community: Hester Prynne, an ardent and fierce woman who bears the punishment of her sin in humble silence; the Reverend Arthur Dimmesdale, a respected public figure who is inwardly tormented by long-hidden guilt; and the malevolent Roger Chillingworth, Hester’s husband—a man who seethes with an Ahab-like lust for vengeance. The landscape of this classic novel is uniquely American, but the themes it explores are universal—the nature of sin, guilt, and penitence, the clash between our private and public selves, and the spiritual and psychological cost of living outside society. Constructed with the elegance of a Greek tragedy, The Scarlet Letter brilliantly illuminates the truth that lies deep within the human heart. 

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    The Scarlet Letter

    6.9 hrs • May/10/2011 • Unabridged
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  16. 1.3 hrs • Apr/25/2010 • Audio Theater

    This is a full-cast dramatization of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s classic masterpiece. The Scarlet Letter is set in seventeenth century Salem, Massachusetts, and concerns the public condemnation of Hester Prynne, who bears an illegitimate child. However, the story is not about adultery, nor is it specifically about sin. Rather it traces the effect of actual and symbolic sin on the mind and spirit of each character. In the end, The Scarlet Letter comes to stand not for adultery but for the guilt that is the common experience of all humans.This L.A. Theatre Works full-cast performance features Shirley Anderson, David Catlin, Raymond Fox, Joy Gregory, Michael Lapthorn, Heidi Stillman, and Andrew White.

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    The Scarlet Letter

    Read by a full cast
    1.3 hrs • Apr/25/2010 • Audio Theater
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