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Ethan Frome [NOOK Book]

Overview

I had the story, bit by bit, from various people, and, as generally happens in such cases, each time it was a different story.
If you know Starkfield, Massachusetts, you know the post-office. If you know the post-office you must have seen Ethan Frome drive up to it, drop the reins on his hollow-backed bay and drag himself across the brick pavement to the white colonnade: and you must have asked who he was.
It was there that, several years ...
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Ethan Frome

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Overview

I had the story, bit by bit, from various people, and, as generally happens in such cases, each time it was a different story.
If you know Starkfield, Massachusetts, you know the post-office. If you know the post-office you must have seen Ethan Frome drive up to it, drop the reins on his hollow-backed bay and drag himself across the brick pavement to the white colonnade: and you must have asked who he was.
It was there that, several years ago, I saw him for the first time; and the sight pulled me up sharp. Even then he was the most striking figure in Starkfield, though he was but the ruin of a man. It was not so much his great height that marked him, for the "natives" were easily singled out by their lank longitude from the stockier foreign breed: it was the careless powerful look he had, in spite of a lameness checking each step like the jerk of a chain. There was something bleak and unapproachable in his face, and he was so stiffened and grizzled that I took him for an old man and was surprised to hear that he was not more than fifty-two. I had this from Harmon Gow, who had driven the stage from Bettsbridge to Starkfield in pre-trolley days and knew the chronicle of all the families on his line.
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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940149695270
  • Publisher: Classics Restored
  • Publication date: 6/24/2014
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,223,557
  • File size: 199 KB

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 48 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(16)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(11)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 63 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 7, 2010

    Short, sour, and to the point!

    I was very skeptical about reading this at first because I love a happy ending. However, Edith Wharton completely changed that with her stark and simple realism that left you thinking there was no better way to end this story than tragically. I read it in 1 sitting... and I think that's the only way to do it with this story! Even though Ethan's relationship with his wife's cousin is borderline immoral... Wharton is able to manipulate your emotions and actually make you feel compassion for these two lovers. I will read this story over and over!

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 2, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Tragic, depressing and grim.

    The story takes place in a nineteenth-century New England village. Ethan Frome is married to Zeena. Zeena has a great many problems. One of which is her ailing self. It's not clear if she is truly ill, of if her meanness just makes her so, but she is bedridden to the point of needing a helping hand. Mattie, her cousin, comes to help them out.

    As the three of them spend time together, it's clear that Ethan has fallen hard for Mattie. He secretly catches glimpses of her at the supper table, and finds excuses to be alone with her. Although he hopes that she feels the same way, it's hard to tell as first what Mattie is thinking. However, it's not hard to tell what Zeena is thinking and it's no surprise that she makes it difficult for them in the end.

    My frustration with this book is that there is really no honor to be had when it comes to Ethan. He loves Mattie, but he doesn't really act upon it in a realistic way. He sort of fumbles along and experiences moments of gushing that you'd expect from a young girl, not a grown man. I mentioned the honor part because it's not really out of a sense of honor that he is with his wife. It's as if he doesn't have the energy to live any differently. He puts up with her but I'm not sure why. Certainly not for money, as they are poor farmers and with her medical costs, there is nothing extra to be had.

    I wanted to feel something for Ethan, but I felt nothing. It was like downing a glass of wine and having it go right to your head. I was numb to his plight and I felt no pity for him. The end of the book, as seen through a third-party visitor to the house, has got to be one of the most depressing endings ever.

    Although I didn't love it, there is plenty to discuss.

    On a funny note, when I saw the cover above, I was thinking torrid love affair, a "roll in the hay" so to speak, but when you read the book you realize the cover has nothing to do with what my dirty, smutty mind was thinking. Too bad

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2013

    Ethan Frome is a tragic story that will manipulate and twist you

    Ethan Frome is a tragic story that will manipulate and twist your emotions of what a good relationship is. Ethan and his sickly wife, Zeena, live in a bleak New England countryside. Zeena's younger cousin Mattie comes to help Ethan care for Zeena. Eventually, Mattie and Ethan begin to fall in love. All Ethan can do is think about Mattie and try to spend time with her. On one hand, you're inspired and touched by Ethan and Mattie's love and the hope for their future together, but you also feel bad for Zeena. The ending of the story is surprising and full of irony. This is a fast read, an interesting exploration in romance and relationships as we define them, and a tragic love story between even more tragic characters.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 17, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Last week I joined, at the urging of Love at First Book, the Cla

    Last week I joined, at the urging of Love at First Book, the Classics Club. What this means is that I vow to read at least 50 classics in 50 years (see my list here). Because classics come with the stigma of being heavy and daunting, I started out with Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton because it’s short and I’ve never read her. Don’t get me wrong, I love some of the classics (Pride & Prejudice and Tess of the D’Urbervilles are in my top ten favorite books), but it has been a while since I have read one.




    Ethan Frome is a story that pits love against duty, demonstrating that the two are not necessarily the same thing. It is, quite possibly, one of the most depressing stories I have ever read. There wasn’t anything catastrophic, per se, but the quiet desperation of Ethan and Mattie was palpable and it broke my heart. Because the story was published in 1911, I imagine the outcome is very different than what it would be if it were written today. This is not a book with a predictably happy ending, and yet it will draw out your sympathetic side.




    All in all, it was not a bad way to start off the Classics Club.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2012

    Lousy copy

    This is a lousy copy, spacing spelling etc is awful. A person and not just a computer is needed to make sure that it looks good and is readable.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Fantastic

    This book touched my heart and had me near tears before I was finished with it. The characters and their developments were astounding and the storyline was wonderful. I read it first in high school, then again a few years later. I could read it over and over and it would never lose its intensity.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2009

    Ughhh

    I had to read this for school, and I did not like it at all. It started out depressing, became even more depressing as the story progressed, and ended in a very depressing way. Throughout the entire story, the only glimmer of hope that Ethan had was cheating on his wife with her cousin; very immoral. Then, that hope was lost too, after the accident, and he was stuck with two sad, whiny, bitter ladies and lived a sad, hopeless life.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2014

    Good

    Very interseting

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2014

    Get a pink ipad

    Kiss your hand 3 timeslook under your pillow

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2014

    Get a pink ipad

    Kiss your hand3 times post this three times looke under your pillow

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2013

    Interesting but irritating....

    This novel did not really interest me until I got towards the middle. I was eager to know how it would end and when I finally did, I was dissapointed. Great story, horrible ending.

    P.S. ... don't read this book if you don't like big words.

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  • Posted October 25, 2012

    Somewhat Interesting, But Very Dull

    Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton was a story about a man who wished to escape the means of his awful town. He falls in love with the one bright soul in the entire place, and no matter how much he loves her, he still feels that he has to keep a moral bond with his actual wife, Zeena, who is a cruel and cold woman. Overall, the storyline is actually quite interesting, but the way that it is explained is just very dull and dreary.

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  • Posted January 29, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Good Story

    I like to read stories that lean toward a "happy ending" and that's exactly what this one did. It leaned that way. I enjoyed the narrator's perspective Ethan's situation. I plan to re-read it some day after I've recovered from the realism.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    T.Hollis Good Idea, Poorly executed

    Ethan Frome is the story of a man who, following the death of his father, gives up his education and other opportunities to return to the family farm to support his ailing mother. When his mother dies, Ethan, overcome by loneliness, impulsively marries Zeena Pierce, an older cousin who helped nurse his dying mother. Within a year of their marriage, Zeena becomes sick and Ethan must again assume the role of caregiver and give up his dreams of moving to a large town and becoming an engineer. Ethan then meets Mattie, Zeena's Cousin, and falls in love. Mattie is happy and the opposite of Zeena. Ethan can't divorce Zeena because that would be rude and against the time periods values, so Ethan and Mattie come up with a plan that will change thier lives forever.

    Its an ok novel. None of the characters are fun, except Mattie, so the tone is very depressing. The plot was a good idea but poorly executed. Mattie and Ethan should have ended up together, but no Edith Wharton had to make it a sad book. I personally could have finished the book better. Ethan makes me depressed because he is always suffering for other people and overall the book is depressing. Depressing = 5 stars

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2006

    Winter

    This book was okay, besides the fact that it moved slower than a New England winter. It needed a little more action and suspense, but Edith Wharton writes well. I liked how short it was.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2006

    ethan frome is the best

    while reading ethan frome, I couldn't put the book down. The romance between Ethan and Mattie makes you want to know what happens between them. Since its written in flashback, it makes the book 100x better, the ending is a shocker. I love this book and I'm a person who does not like to read. recommend to romantic

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2004

    Very interesting indeed...

    I'm a high school junior, and just finished reading this book for school. Although I didn't like it at all in the beginning, by the end I thought it was great (although somewhat depressing). And if you're just starting to read it...don't get discouraged. I know the first part seems random, but it connects in the end. You definitely have to read it through at least twice. This book is especially great for discussion (we did literary circles in class).

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2003

    A book of infidelity...

    Ethan Frome was a very well written book. Its imagery was amazing. Such as when there were any descriptions of Mattie. The book is about this man named Ethan who is unhappy with the woman he married named Zeena. He married her because she was the person who looked after and took care of his sick mother and he felt obligated to marry her. He then meets and falls in love with Zeenas cousin Mattie who lives with them for approximately a year because her mother and father both died. They both want to leave Starkfield the town they were living in but they couldn¿t because of their obligation to Zeena. They try to kill them-selves but couldn't and end up mutilating their bodies. I recommend this book to readers because it is a quick and easy read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2003

    Ethan Frome: a story of tragedy, intrigue

    A very readable book with visually appealing text...this book was assigned to our Juniors Honors Class by Ms. Goff. She recommended this book, she liked it. At first, it's such a depressing novel with depressing details, however, it redeems itself in message. My chem. teacher read this book 25 years ago and would love to read the story again. Yes, it's a tragedy, but perhaps it was meant to be.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2002

    A Bad dream

    Ethan Frome is a alright book about everthing dreary and depressing.Everything about the story, even the name of the town, starkfield is designed to accomplish this image.

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