The Fruit of the Tree by Edith Wharton, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
The Fruit of the Tree

The Fruit of the Tree

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by Edith Wharton
     
 

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Controversial when it was first published in 1907 for its frank treatment of second marriages, desire, divorce, drug addiction, and mercy killing, Edith Wharton's The Fruit of the Tree addresses themes that remain strikingly relevant for today's readers.

Set in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts during the height of the progressive era, the book

Overview

Controversial when it was first published in 1907 for its frank treatment of second marriages, desire, divorce, drug addiction, and mercy killing, Edith Wharton's The Fruit of the Tree addresses themes that remain strikingly relevant for today's readers.

Set in the Berkshires of western Massachusetts during the height of the progressive era, the book centers on heroine Justine Brent, a professionally trained nurse who is called upon to attend her childhood friend Bessy Westmore, a rich textile mill owner left paralyzed by a riding accident. When Bessy begs to be released from a life of intense pain and suffering, Justine debates the moral issues and makes the difficult choice to administer a lethal dose of morphine. After Bessy dies, Justine falls in love with her widowed husband and joins him in his efforts to create better conditions for the factory workers. Questions surrounding Bessy's death, however, haunt their relationship, and Justine learns first-hand the tragic consequences of social idealism and reform.

Full of plot twists and turns and finely drawn characters, The Fruit of the Tree is a must read for anyone who has ever fallen under the spell of Wharton's superb prose.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This lesser-known 1907 novel reveals John Amherst's quest to improve working conditions in the mill inherited by his wife, Bessie. Throw in an unspoken love between John and Bessie's best friend, and you have a good literary soap opera. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781499625523
Publisher:
CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date:
05/21/2014
Pages:
126
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.27(d)

Meet the Author

Edith Wharton (1862–1937) was an acclaimed chronicler and keen observer of privileged society, novelist, and short story writer. Her novel The Age of Innocence made her the first female Pulitzer Prize winner for fiction in 1921. She is the also the author of The House of Mirth and Ethan Frome.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
January 24, 1862
Date of Death:
August 11, 1937
Place of Birth:
New York, New York
Place of Death:
Saint-Brice-sous-Forêt, France
Education:
Educated privately in New York and Europe

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